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Citizens Bank offers private student loans and student loan refinancing to borrowers nationwide. Depending on where you live, you may be directed to the website for Citizens One, the national lending division for Citizens Bank.

Here’s what you need to know about borrowing and refinancing student loans through Citizens Bank:

Citizens Bank student loan refinancing

Best if:

  • You want to refinance a large loan balance
  • You didn’t get your degree
  • You bank with Citizens

Citizens Bank student loan refinancing: Interest rates and loan details

Citizens Bank offers a wide selection of loan terms and high maximum balances for students and parents who want to refinance student loans.

Loan amounts$10,000 to $500,000
(depending on degree and loan type)
Loan terms5, 7, 10, 15, and 20 years
Min. credit scoreNot disclosed
Min. incomeNot disclosed
Residency
  • U.S. citizen or permanent resident

  • Resident aliens may apply with a cosigner who is a U.S. citizen or permanent resident
Interest ratesFixed or variable
Loan typesAny private or federal student loan not enrolled in an income-driven repayment plan (PAYE, REPAYE, IBR, ICR)
Cosigner release
  • Applications accepted after 36 consecutive on‑time payments

  • Cosigner release not available on the Education Refinance Loan for Parents
Transfer parent loan to child?Yes
FeesNo application, origination, or disbursement fees
Prepayment penaltyNone
Key benefits
  • 0.25% autopay discount

  • 0.25% loyalty discount
EducationDegree not required
Loan servicerFirstmark Services
Best if
  • You want to refinance large loan balances

  • You didn't get your degree

  • You already bank with Citizens

Citizens Bank student loan refinancing review

With competitive rates and high maximum loan balances for qualified borrowers, Citizens Bank can be a good choice for student loan refinancing — particularly if you didn’t get your degree, or are already a Citizens Bank customer.

If you can prove that you have the income needed to repay your debt, Citizens will refinance up to $300,000 for students with a bachelor’s degree or less and $500,000 for parents or borrowers with graduate degrees. If you only have an associates degree or no degree, you may still be able to qualify for refinancing once you’ve made 12 qualifying payments after leaving school.

How to qualify

Citizens Bank (and Citizens One) will refinance both private and federal loans. But be aware that any federal loans that you’re paying back in an income-driven repayment program are not eligible for refinancing with Citizens. That includes federal loans enrolled in PAYE, REPAYE, IBR, and ICR.

Citizens Bank does not publicize the minimum income and credit score required to be approved for refinancing.

Repayment

Citizens Bank offers a choice of five repayment terms on student loan refinancing, ranging from 5 to 20 years. That can make it easier to match your monthly payment to your budget.

If you agree to have payments automatically deducted from your bank account, you’ll qualify for a 0.25% interest rate reduction. There’s also a 0.25% loyalty discount if you’ve got another account with Citizens.

If you applied with a cosigner, you can apply to have them released after making 36 consecutive on‑time payments. It’s not the fastest cosigner release in the industry — some lenders will take applications after 12 or 24 months — and cosigner release is not available at all on the Education Refinance Loan for Parents.

How Citizens Bank student loan refinancing compares to other lenders

 citizens bank student loanscollegeavepenfed purefy student loan consolidation
Rates from (APR)Fixed:
3.45%+¹

Variable:
2.19%+¹
Fixed:
3.54%+2

Variable:
2.37%+2
Fixed:
3.48%+

Variable:
2.32%+
Loan repayment terms (Years)5, 7, 10, 15, 2016 options from 5 to 20 years5, 8, 12, 15
Loan amount$10,000 to $500,000
(depending on level of education)
$5,000 to $300,000$7,500 to $300,000
Cosigner release?Yes, applications accepted after 36 months of consecutive paymentsNot offered for refinancingYes, applications accepted after 12 consecutive payments
Transfer parent loan to child?NoNoYes
Loan servicerFirstmark ServicesGraduates seeking flexible loan termsThose applying with a cosigner
Best forRefinancing large loan balancesGraduates seeking flexible loan termsThose applying with a cosigner

All APRs reflect autopay and loyalty discounts where available | 1Citizens Bank Disclosures | 2College Ave Disclosures | 3 ELFI Disclosures | 4SoFi Disclosures


Citizens Bank Education Refinance Loan Rate Disclosure: Variable rate, based on the one-month London Interbank Offered Rate ("LIBOR") published in The Wall Street Journal on the twenty-fifth day, or the next business day, of the preceding calendar month. As of December 1, 2019, the one-month LIBOR rate is 1.70%. Variable interest rates range from 2.19%-8.92% (2.19%-8.92% APR) and will fluctuate over the term of the borrower's loan with changes in the LIBOR rate, and will vary based on applicable terms, level of degree earned and presence of a co-signer. Fixed interest rates range from 3.45%-9.02% (3.45%-9.02% APR) based on applicable terms, level of degree earned and presence of a co-signer. Lowest rates shown are for eligible, creditworthy applicants with a graduate level degree, require a 5-year repayment term and include our Loyalty discount and Automatic Payment discounts of 0.25 percentage points each, as outlined in the Loyalty and Automatic Payment Discount disclosures. The maximum variable rate on the Education Refinance Loan is the greater of 21.00% or Prime Rate plus 9.00%. Subject to additional terms and conditions, and rates are subject to change at any time without notice. Such changes will only apply to applications taken after the effective date of change. Please note: Due to federal regulations, Citizens Bank is required to provide every potential borrower with disclosure information before they apply for a private student loan. The borrower will be presented with an Application Disclosure and an Approval Disclosure within the application process before they accept the terms and conditions of their loan.

How to refinance student loans with Citizens Bank

Citizens can be one of the best companies to refinance with — for certain borrowers. Because every lender that offers refinancing determines the rate they’ll offer you on a case-by-case basis, it’s impossible to know your lowest possible rate without first comparing multiple lenders.

With Credible, it’s easy to compare top rates from Citizens Bank and other student loan refinancing lenders with just one simple form. You can even check prequalified rates with just a soft credit pull (so it won’t affect your credit).

Compare Rates Now

Citizens Bank private student loans

Best for:

  • Professional students (law, medicine, and MBA)
  • Parents who can qualify to take out big loans
  • Citizens bank customers

Citizens Bank student loans: Interest rates and loan details

Citizens Bank offers generous loan limits on private student loans to qualified borrowers. There’s a decent selection of loan terms and repayment plans, allowing undergraduate, graduate students, and parents to tailor loans to their needs.

Loan amounts$1,000 minimum, up to 100% of cost of attendance
(aggregate limits may apply)
Loan terms5 , 10, 15 (15-year loans not available to parents)
Min. credit scoreNot disclosed
Min. incomeNot disclosed
Residency
  • Borrower or cosigner must be U.S. citizen or permanent resident
  • International students may apply with cosigner
Interest ratesFixed or variable
FeesNo application, origination, or disbursement fees
Prepayment penaltyNone
Key benefits
  • 0.25% autopay discount

  • 0.25% loyalty discount
EnrollmentMust be enrolled at least half time in a degree-granting program at an eligible institution
Cosigner release
  • Applications accepted after 36 consecutive on-time payments
  • Cosigner release not available on the Student Loan for Parents
Loan servicerUniversity Account Service (UAS)
Best for
  • Professional students (law, medicine, and MBA)

  • Parents who can qualify to take out big loans

  • Citizens bank customers

Citizens Bank private student loans review

Citizens Bank offers private student loans with some interesting features, like the ability to apply once and be approved for additional loans over multiple years. But Citizens offers fewer loan terms and repayment plans than some other lenders — particularly if you’re a parent.

Citizens will loan up to $350,000 to qualifying parents and students taking out medical school loans or pursuing careers in dentistry, pharmacy, and veterinary medicine. MBA and law school students can borrow up to $225,000.

But the longest loan term offered by Citizens is 15 years, and parents can’t take more than 10 years to repay their loans. Though, for some borrowers, a 10- or 15-year repayment term on a six-figure loan will mean a budget-busting monthly payment.

Depending on the rate you qualify for, Citizens Bank student loans can be competitive with federal PLUS loans, particularly after factoring in upfront fees on parent PLUS and grad PLUS loans.

How to qualify

To qualify for a Citizens Bank student loan, you’ll need to be enrolled at least half-time in a degree-granting program. If you’re not a U.S. citizen or permanent resident, you can apply with a creditworthy cosigner who is. Most students won’t have the income or credit history needed to qualify for a loan without a cosigner.

You can request prequalified rates from Citizens and other lenders through Credible without affecting your credit.

Multi-year approval

Since students will typically need to take out loans every semester or year they’re enrolled, Citizens offers multi-year approval. Once you’ve been approved for your initial loan, Citizens can just do soft credit inquiry whenever you come back for more loans. Just keep in mind that you can still be denied, and international students aren’t eligible for multi-year approval.

Repayment

Most borrowers will have the option of paying their loans back over 5, 10, or 15 years, although 15-year loans are not available to parents. Students can defer making monthly payments altogether until six months after leaving school or make interest-only or full payments. Parents, however, don’t have the option of deferring payments until after their child’s graduation — but they can make interest-only payments while the student is in school.

If you authorize automatic payments from a bank account, you’ll qualify for a 0.25% interest rate discount. If you’ve got another Citizens Bank account, that can qualify you for an additional 0.25% loyalty discount.

How Citizens Bank student loans compare to other lenders

 citizensdiscovercollegeave
Rates from (APR)Fixed:
4.40%+1

Variable:
2.73%+1
Fixed:
5.09% - 12.49%

Variable:
3.47% - 11.62%
Fixed:
4.89%+2

Variable:
2.84%+2
Loan repayment terms (Years)5, 10, 1515, 205, 8, 10, 15, 20
Loan amount$1,000 minimum, up to school's cost of attendance
(Aggregate limits apply)
$1,000 up to 100% of certified cost of attendance
(Aggregate loan limits apply)
$1,000 up to 100% of cost of attendance
Cosigner release?Yes, applications accepted after 36 on-time payments
(Not available for parent student loan)
No option for cosigner releaseYes, applications accepted after more than half of the scheduled repayment period has elapsed
Loan servicerUniversity Account Service (UAS)Discover BankUniversity Account Service (UAS)
Best forProfessional students (law, medicine, and MBA)Students who can claim rewards for good gradesStudents and parents seeking flexible loan terms

Lowest APRs reflect autopay, loyalty, and interest-only repayment discounts where available | 1Citizens Bank Disclosures | 2,3College Ave Disclosures | 6Discover Disclosures | 7SunTrust Bank Disclosures | 9Sallie Mae Disclosures


Citizens Bank Student Loan Rate Disclosure

Variable rate, based on the one-month London Interbank Offered Rate ("LIBOR") published in The Wall Street Journal on the twenty-fifth day, or the next business day, of the preceding calendar month. As of December 1, 2019, the one-month LIBOR rate is 1.70%. Variable interest rates range from 2.73%-11.06% (2.73%-10.91% APR) and will fluctuate over the term of the loan with changes in the LIBOR rate, and will vary based on applicable terms, level of degree earned and presence of a co-signer. Fixed interest rates range from 4.40%-12.19% (4.40% - 12.04% APR) based on applicable terms, level of degree earned and presence of a co-signer. Lowest rates shown requires application with a co- signer, are for eligible applicants, require a 5-year repayment term, borrower making scheduled payments while in school and include our Loyalty and Automatic Payment discounts of 0.25 percentage points each, as outlined in the Loyalty Discount and Automatic Payment Discount disclosures. Subject to additional terms and conditions, and rates are subject to change at any time without notice. Such changes will only apply to applications taken after the effective date of change. Please note: Due to federal regulations, Citizens Bank is required to provide every potential borrower with disclosure information before they apply for a private student loan. The borrower will be presented with an Application Disclosure and an Approval Disclosure within the application process before they accept the terms and conditions of the loan.

How to take out student loans with Citizens Bank

Citizens Bank makes applying for a student loan online easy and has helped many students and their families cover unmet educational expenses. Before taking out a private student loan, make sure you’ve taken advantage of any scholarships and grants you may qualify for, and researched your federal student aid options and the best ways to pay for college.

Because there are so many lenders competing for your business, it’s smart to compare rates you can qualify for with multiple lenders offering the best private student loans. Credible lets you fill out one simple form and request rates from top student lenders including Citizens Bank, without affecting your credit score or putting your personal information at risk.

Find Your Student Loan

How Citizens Bank can improve

Citizens Bank stands out from some of its competitors for its willingness to provide or refinance large student loans. It could improve by:

  • Providing a wider selection of loan terms for its student loans
  • Allowing borrowers to refinance federal loans enrolled in income-driven repayment plans
  • Providing more transparency around minimum income and credit requirements
 
The company above is one of Credible’s approved partner lenders. Because they compete for your business through Credible, you can request rates from them by filling out a single form. Then, you can compare your available options side-by-side. Requesting rates is free, doesn’t affect your credit score, and your personal information is not shared with our partner lenders unless you see an option you like. Credible receives compensation if you close a loan with one of our partner lenders. The rates you receive and the fees you pay (if any) are not impacted by this compensation.
About the author
Matt Carter
Matt Carter

Matt Carter is a Credible expert on student loans. Analysis pieces he’s contributed to have been featured by CNBC, CNN Money, USA Today, The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal and The Washington Post.

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