College students and graduates have been feeling the effects of high student loan interest rates for several years. Lucky for those still in school, federal student loan interest rates have dropped for the 2015-2016 academic year.
Stafford loans are student loans available to any student attending undergraduate or graduate school at least halftime. These student loans are awarded based on financial need for up to $25,000 per year.
- Undergraduate: The undergraduate student loan rate for Stafford Loans has dropped to 4.29% for 2015-2016 from 4.66% in 2014-2015.
- Graduate: The graduate student loan rate for Stafford Loans has dropped to 5.84% for 2015-2016 from 6.21% in 2014-2015.
Historic rates for federal loans have been as high as 6.8% for undergraduate loans and as high as 8.5% for graduate loans in the last five years.
Parent Loans for Undergraduate Students (PLUS) enable parents to borrow money for any portion of their child’s tuition that not covered by financial aid. There is not a limit on the amount you can borrow, but your school determines the exact number based on your financial aid package. PLUS loan rates are the same for both undergraduate and graduate students, dropping to 6.84% from 7.21%.
Perkins loans are also student loans subsidized by the government and are awarded to those students showing significant financial need. Perkins loan rates will remain the same at 5%.
The new Federal student loan interest rates will be available starting July 1, 2015. The best resource to find out more about you Federal student loan options is Federal Student Aid.
Private student loan interest rates are typically higher than federal loans. As most fixed interest rate loans are above federal options, students who need to take out private loans can also get variable rates that are currently being offered below 3%. Citizens Bank also offers a parent loan that is several basis below the federal option.
Want to lower your rate?
Current student loan refinancing interest rates are offered as low as 2%, so if you went to school while federal interest rates were high, do not feel as though you are stuck with these high student loan interest rates.
If you want to learn more about private student loan rates available and what the best option for you is to finance your college education, check out Credible, the leading resource providing personalized private student loan offers from multiple lenders.