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Thursday, April 22, 2010

Student Loan Debt Consolidation - What to Look for in a Student Loan Consolidator

If you want to make a wise financial decision upon graduation, choose to consolidate your student loans and reduce your number of monthly debt payments. Recent graduates typically have more than one Federal student loan. Multiple loans mean managing different accounts each month and keeping track of varying due dates. With a student loan consolidation, all outstanding loan balances merge into a single account. Since student loan consolidations typically offer lower rates, the monthly payments on a combined account will be considerably less. Of course, prior to making the decision to consolidate, it helps to find a good consolidation company.

How to Find a Good Consolidation Company

Picking the right student loan consolidator requires time and research. Banks and lenders constantly bombard recent graduates with consolidation offers. These offers promise to reduce monthly payments by up to 60%, which saves money. Because student loan consolidation companies are different, accepting the first offer is never a good idea. It is best to search the Internet first and compare different consolidation programs.

What to Look for in a Student Loan Consolidation Company

Even though student loan consolidation companies may aggressively seek your business, they may not have your best interest in mind. A good student loan consolidator will provide a guide or counselor to help you through the process. It is normal to have questions and reservations. A reputable company will acknowledge your concerns and provides satisfactory answers in a timely manner.

What's more, a good student loan consolidator will not hurry the loan process. Rather, they will give you sufficient time to review the terms of the agreement, and then decide whether the loan is right for you.

Does the student loan consolidation company offer flexible payment options? If not, think twice before signing the document. Federal student loans offer graduates various payment options such as a deferment or forbearance. If the borrower stumbles upon financial hardships, these options allow them to skip a few payments. Lastly, before picking a student loan consolidator, make sure that the company is accredited by the Association of Independent Consumer Credit Counseling. Accreditation means that the student loan consolidation company is reputable and competent to handle your loan needs.

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