Student loan debt is more than $1.3 trillion, and that number probably won't stop growing anytime soon. And if you have any student debt, you might have considered refinancing that debt. If so, the Citizens Bank Student Loan Refinance program could be for you.
Refinancing debt isn't for everyone, though. So be sure you do your research and choose the option that works best for you, your life, and your finances.
Citizens Bank Student Loan Refinance Options
The Citizens Bank Student Loan Refinance program is an excellent option if you want to consolidate your student loans. If you're tired of juggling multiple student loans, you can make a single payment and lower that payment.
With the Citizens Bank Student Loan Refinance program, you can keep making payments on your student debt. However, the program can make those payments more manageable and less stressful.
We all know that student debt can be crushing, but refinancing your student loans can be helpful. So, should you use the Citizens Bank Student Loan Refinance program?
The Citizens Bank Student Loan Refinance program provides you with an education refinance loan, so you make one payment to cover all of your student loans.
You can choose between fixed rates and variable rates. With a fixed interest rate, your interest and payments will stay the same. However, a variable rate loan can help lower your monthly payments and interest rate, but that rate can and will change.
You can even fix your variable rate loan so that your payments are predictable. Citizens Bank offers terms from 5 to 20 years. The single payment means you don't have to spend as much time paying all of your loans.
To be eligible for the plan, you must have a valid Social Security number, and your student debt must exceed $10,000.
If you have no degree or only an Associates, you should have made at least 12 qualifying payments after leaving school.
How to apply
You can start by getting a quote on the Citizens Bank Student Loan Refinance website. They offer quotes for both fixed and variable rate loans.
If you don't need a quote, you can use the online application. Adding a cosigner can help lower your rates and increase your odds of being approved, but it's not necessary.
Next, you'll choose between the fixed and variable rates, select the term of your loan, and you'll decide on your repayment plan.
Finally, you and your cosigner will sign and accept your loan documents from your computer. There's no need to visit a bank.
Pros and cons
Like any program, the Citizens Bank Student Loan Refinance program has both advantages and disadvantages.
First, the pros:
Now for the cons:
While we couldn't find reviews for the Citizens Bank Student Loan Refinance program, we did find reviews for the bank itself. On Consumer Affairs, the bank has an average rating of about 3.0 out of 5 stars.
One customer said it had taken months for them to close a loan for a mortgage, so the student loan program could have similar issues. A second customer said they tried to refinance their mortgage with Citizens Bank but were rejected.
However, another customer said that Citizens Bank is great about putting their customers first. Someone else said they've used the bank for years with no issues.
Refinance the Right Way
Refinancing any loan, student loans, or otherwise, is a big decision. Of course, there are benefits, like lower interest rates. However, refinancing isn't for everyone.
What's more, the Citizens Bank Student Loan Refinance program isn't for everyone. Whether you get rejected or don't like their terms to begin with, you should explore other options.
We wanted to compare the program to a couple of other options from the competition. That way, you can make the best choice for you and your finances.
And if you decide refinancing isn't for you, there are other resources you can use to pay off your debt. Just make sure you keep making payments and understand the basics of your current plan.
When in debt...
Almost everyone knows that student debt is a huge burden for many of us. Even if you've managed to avoid student debt, you probably know at least one person who has had to take out a mountain of loans.
And unfortunately, student loans aren't the easiest to pay back. So refinancing can simplify your repayment process and make your student loans less stressful.
To determine if the Citizens Bank Student Loan Refinance program is for you, we looked at the features, application, and pros and cons. We also considered customer reviews and compared the program to a couple of its competitors.
Our first competitor is SoFi, which lets you refinance your student loans online. The SoFi program can help you save money and even pay off your debt faster than if you didn't refinance your loans.
They offer low fixed and variable rates, which can help you lower your payments. You can apply online at any time, and there are no hidden application or origination fees. They also don't penalize pre-payments.
SoFi also offers career coaching and financial advice to all of its members for free.
To start, you can get pre-qualified online, which can save you time on the application. Next, you'll choose the rate and term of the loan. After that, you'll upload the necessary documents and sign all of your paperwork online.
The average rating for SoFi is about 2.5 out of 5 stars on Consumer Affairs. One customer liked their referral program, which can help you earn some extra cash.
A second customer mentioned that SoFi made refinancing their mortgage super easy. They plan to also refinance other personal loans. A third customer praised the help of the SoFi staff for consolidating loans.
However, another customer said that SoFi requires a lot of verification before you can get a loan. Someone else said they were denied a loan despite having little debt and a good income.
Here are some pros:
And for the cons:
Credible is another company worth considering if you want to refinance your student loans. With Credible, you can consolidate your loans from up to nine lenders, and you can compare various options.
Unlike Citizens Bank and SoFi, Credible doesn't give you a loan. They help you find the best loan for you and your needs. So, you would still need to find a lender to actually give you the money to refinance your student debt.
However, it's a great program if you don't want to do the comparing yourself.
On Consumer Affairs, Credible has an average rating of about 2.5 out of 5 stars. One customer said they liked Credible's customer service. Another customer appreciated that Credible works with different programs to help people pay off debt.
However, Credible doesn't ask if you're in or out of school, which can affect how you qualify for various refinancing programs. Another customer said that if you're a cosigner on a student loan, you can't get much information about refinancing.
So what are the pros?
And the cons?
A Financial Plan
If you're struggling with student debt, you need a plan to pay it off. For some, the Citizens Bank Student Loan Refinance program is a good option. It seems easy enough to apply, but you do need to meet some stringent requirements to qualify.
Luckily, there are plenty of other options for paying off debt, like SoFi or Credible. You can even make a plan to pay off your current plan.
Have you refinanced your student loans? What was the process like? Leave your thoughts down in the comments!