General Question

jlm11f's avatar

Does it matter which lender I choose for my federal student loans?

Asked by jlm11f (12378points) June 18th, 2009

I have to choose between Sallie Mae Medical School, or Fifth third bank or Access Group for my medical school loans. They have the same interest rate, origination fee, default fee and repayment deal. So does it really matter which I choose? Or should I just select one at random?

Any additional advice is always appreciated!

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21 Answers

marinelife's avatar

The differences have to do with the fine points of repayment. Check out this article to see if any of these apply to one or the other.

Also, Fifth Third bank has had some problems with government auditors.

Good luck, PnL!

scamp's avatar

Check out Peterson’s Finacial Aid for scholarships too. There are several to apply for and they have something for almost everybody. The best thing is you don’t have to pay these back. I have a friend who is going to law school on the funds she found on this site. It’s amazing how much free funding is out there and allwe have to do is ask for it!

Scholarships are on this page

YARNLADY's avatar

You might find a couple of useful tips on this similar question. Also, ask you financial advisor which one she/he would recommend and why.

SeventhSense's avatar

No but can I consolidate mine with yours?

Kiev749's avatar

currently i am going with sallie mae and they are quite nice and pleasant as could be to deal with regarding student loans.

Facade's avatar

I’m with Sallie Mae

Facade's avatar

She’s fine. Kind of hungry though :P

SeventhSense's avatar

Her Friend Freddie had a big Mac
so corny I’m cringing from the shame

EmpressPixie's avatar

Definitely talk to your Financial Aid office. And do your loan counseling. I did my loan counseling today and you would not believe the awesomesauce of helpfulness in that stuff. It’s super boring and a lot to read, but very, very helpful.

I mean, for the most part it is six of one, half dozen of the other. They can—and might—sell your loan to each other anyway if it’s like the loans I was reading up on. Also, again pending similarity to Stafford federal loans or graduate PLUS loans, the origination fee might be set by the government along with the interest rate. And your options may be quite a bit larger than that—I know I had a HUGE list of potential loaners to go through, but ended up choosing one my school recommended. Talk to the FinAid dept about who they recommend and why.

But once you make the choice, don’t stress about it. It’s in the past and you have much more important things to focus on.

DrasticDreamer's avatar

I chose Sallie Mae, too. They have a cool program, kind of like a Bank of America “Keep the Change” program (that automatically rounds up when you make purchases and puts the extra change in your savings), that allows you to make small payments to your loan, by rounding up, every time you purchase something. That’s the only difference I noticed between all the lenders, but it was a cool one.

walterallenhaxton's avatar

Of course not. The government will own all of the banks before you finish paying it off.

fireside's avatar

I got my loans through Sallie Mae about ten years ago and have never had any trouble.
But I would do a bit of research in case things changed in regards to terms of repayment.

jlm11f's avatar

Thanks for all your help guys, I decided to go with Sallie Mae. It turns out that is the biggest student loans company and also the safest in terms of financial strength. I did do additional research to compare them all, but they are really exactly the same.

My brother also goes through Sallie, so I guess we are making her a part of our family. ~

SeventhSense's avatar

@walterallenhaxton
Absolutely. Sally Mae and Freddy Mac are perfect examples.
The government is now the largest holder of mortgages and bad loans in the country
Welcome to the United Socialist Republic..formerly known as the USA

walterallenhaxton's avatar

@PnL Their financial strength has nothing to do with your ability to pay. They could go bankrupt the next day after you got the money and it would not effect you. Why consider it at all?

SeventhSense's avatar

The only thing to really consider is terms and interest rates.

jlm11f's avatar

@walterallenhaxton – I need loan for four years of school. I’d rather stay with the same lender. So if they are offering the same terms/rates, it would be a better idea to choose the one that’s most stable.

walterallenhaxton's avatar

@PnL OK but I suspect that none of them are. The federal government is borrowing all loanable cash. Business still needs loans. Something has to break.

SeventhSense's avatar

@PnL
Yes. If it’s a choice between Chase and Indiana Central Bank, all things the same, you’d be foolish not to go with the former.

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