Managing Student Loans

After you graduate, leave school, or drop below half-time enrollment, you have a six month period of time before you have to begin repayment. This six month period of time is called the “grace period”. Your federal loan servicer will provide information about repayment and will notify you of the date your loan repayment begins.

You will be able to choose a repayment plan that meets your needs. The amount you pay and the length of time to repay your loans will vary depending on the repayment plan you choose. Generally, you’ll have from ten to twenty-five years to repay your loans. Our office recommends that you explore the Direct Loan Repayment Plans and Calculators 🔗 for more information about the repayment plans and to calculate your estimated repayment amount under each of the different plans.


Guide 🔗 to repaying your federal student loans.

Guide to Repaying Your Loans (PDF)

Federal Student Loans: Repaying Your Loans (PDF)
Préstamos federales para estudiantes: Pago de sus préstamos (PDF)

Loan Servicers

All Federal Direct/Stafford, PLUS, and Graduate PLUS loans are now being serviced by one of the agencies listed on StudentAid.gov.  For specific questions about loan repayment or deferment, you can contact your federal loan servicing center directly. If you are not sure who your federal loan servicer is, you can look it up by logging into studentaid.ed.gov (preferred) or nslds.ed.gov (archaic).

For more information on loan servicers, please go to StudentAid.gov.


Student loan debt relief companies say they’ll help you get loan forgiveness—if you pay them. SCAM ALERT! Details: bit.ly/2RnhIvT 🔗
Alert! The Department of Education Appropriations Act, 2019 includes a provision that allows individuals diagnosed with cancer to have their federal student loans placed in a deferment status while they undergo cancer treatment. The U.S. Department of Education is assessing the newly enacted law and will explain the new deferment conditions to customers on this page 🔗 as soon as more details are available. We encourage you to check back periodically. If you need assistance in the meantime, contact your federal loan servicer.
Login to FSA

Countdown to Repayment

Are you a recent graduate? Prepare yourself for the end of your grace period by following the steps written in this Web article by Great Lakes, a federal loan servicer:

In summary:

Month one: Find out what you owe and when.

Login to FSA

Month two: chip away at (pay off) interest.

Some examples of the difference it could make are shown here (click below):

If you pay the interest as it is charged…
If you do not pay the interest and it is capitalized…

Loan Amount
$19,000 subsidized and 8,000 unsubsidized
$19,000 subsidized and 8,000 unsubsidized

5% Interest on unsubsidized loans as disbursed over four, trimester years and after six month grace period
$1,000 (paid as accrued)
$1,000 (unpaid and capitalized)

Principal to be Repaid
$27,000
$28,000

Monthly Payment
$286
$297

Number of Payments
120
120

Total Repaid
$34,365 + $1,000 upfront
$35,637

Difference
$272

If you pay the interest as it is charged…
If you do not pay the interest and it is capitalized…

Loan Amount
$27,000 unsubsidized
$27,000 unsubsidized

5% Interest on unsubsidized loans as disbursed over four, trimester years and after six month grace period
$3,200 (paid as accrued)
$3,200 (unpaid and capitalized)

Principal to be Repaid
$27,000
$30,200

Monthly Payment
$286
$320

Number of Payments
120
120

Total Repaid
$34,365 + $3,200 upfront
$38,438

Difference
$873

Month three: evaluate payment plans.

Looking to lower your monthly payments and/or your overall payment amount? Use FSA’s Repayment Calculator to find your savings under each repayment plan.


Follow thisTwitter_Logo_Bluethread to learn how switching plans helped these three borrowers.
Month four: educate yourself on loan forgiveness.
Page One from USEDLoanrepayment
This presentation was created for financial aid administrators; however, it has current information on student loan repayment options and loan forgiveness programs.


Twitter_Social_Icon_Square_Color FFEL/Perkins Loan Borrowers, click here.
If you’re considering Public Service Loan Forgiveness, make sure your payments count!

Here are 5 ways you may be able to get your student loans forgiven.

Learn more: bit.ly/2HFt37U
Month five: connect with your servicer.

Month six: save and get ready with auto-pay.

Have a Federal Direct Loan? Never miss a payment AND get an interest rate deduction by signing up for automatic debit. Learn more at bit.ly/2UAVi0U.
Twitter_Social_Icon_Square_Color The Power of Additional Payments on a Typical Loan

What kind of impact would making additional payments on your student loans have? 🤔 Glad you asked.

Defaulted Student Loans

Loan Repayment Options

There are multiple Federal Loan Repayment Options.


Refinance? (Infographic)

US Department of Education Loan Repayment & Forgiveness Presentation

This presentation was created for financial aid administrators; however, it has current information on student loan repayment options and loan forgiveness programs.

Take a few minutes to review this important information

  • US Department of Education Loan Repayment & Forgiveness Presentation
  • ED Homeroom
    🔗 Student Loan Forgiveness (and Other Ways the Government Can Help You Repay Your Loans)

    Articles and Resources on the Web on the Subject of Student Loans


    Top Six Ways to Reduce What You Owe by Great Lakes Educational Loan Services 🔗

    There’s a lot of information to take in when it comes to your student loans. Follow the Wizard 🔗 to Find Ways to Reduce Your Debt!

    GreatLakesWizard

    A Montag. (2018, Sep 19). Kevin O’Leary shares his No. 1 piece of advice for paying off student loans. CNBC Make It. Retrieved from https://www.cnbc.com/2018/09/19/kevin-olearys-top-advice-for-paying-off-student-loans.html


    Beware: You never have to pay for help with your student loans.
    Make sure you understand which companies and claims are legitimate. 🔗

    Borrowers have reported receiving phone calls, emails, letters, and/or texts offering them relief from their federal student loans or warning them that student loan forgiveness programs would end soon. Usually, the so-called student loan debt relief companies offering these types of services don’t offer any relief at all. Often they’re just fraudsters who are after your money.

    Here are some examples of the false claims made in these communications:

    • “Act immediately to qualify for student loan forgiveness before the program is discontinued.”
    • “You are now eligible to receive benefits from a recent law that has passed regarding federal student loans, including total forgiveness in some circumstances. Federal student loan programs may change. Please call within 30 days of receiving this notice.”
    • “Your student loans may qualify for complete discharge. Enrollments are first come, first served.”
    • “Student alerts: Your student loan is flagged for forgiveness pending verification. Call now!”


    Link to Homeroom, The Offical Blog of the U.S. Department of Education. 8 Common Student Loan Mistakes
    GRADUATES 🎓! Here are 8 common student loan mistakes (and how to avoid them): bit.ly/2WITyPX
    ED Homeroom