If you’re interested in refinancing your student loans, Laurel Road is one of the top lenders on the market. With competitive rates and other features, the lender has reportedly funded $2.6 billion in loans and saved its customers $400 million.
Not just anyone can refinance their student loans with Laurel Road, though. In this review, you’ll learn about the lender’s eligibility requirements, features, and the application process.
About Laurel Road
Established in 2006 by Darien Rowayton Bank (DRB) as its online lending division, Laurel Road was simply known as DRB. It began offering student loan refinancing for college graduates in 2013, then changed its name to Laurel Road in mid-2017.
Headquartered in Connecticut, Laurel Road offers competitive interest rates that make it worth considering for anyone looking to lower their interest rate, monthly payment, or both.
Who is Laurel Road student loan refinancing designed for?
You generally have to have good or excellent credit to apply for student loan refinancing with Laurel Road, even if you have a cosigner.
You also need to have graduated from college with a four-year or graduate degree — this means that you’ll have to look elsewhere if you left college before graduating.
Laurel Road: Student loan refinancing review
Refinancing your student loans can give you more flexibility in how you pay off your student loans.
Refinancing can lower your payment while simultaneously shortening your payment period and lowering the amount of interest you’ll pay over those years. Online student loan consolidation programs don’t give much better rates or will give higher rates and spread out the payment period so that their payment is lower, but they are paying significantly more interest long term,” she adds.
Online student loan consolidation programs don’t give much better rates or will give higher rates and spread out the payment period so that their payment is lower, but they are paying significantly more interest long term.
With potentially lower interest rates and several loan terms to choose from, you can decide what’s best for you rather than just sticking with what your current student loan company gave you when you took out the loans.
What are Laurel Road’s student loan refinance interest rates and terms?
As with any lender, your interest rate will depend on your credit history, income, current debt, and whether you have a cosigner. Laurel Road offers both variable and fixed interest rates to allow you to choose the best option for yourself.
Variable interest rates are generally lower, mainly because they can fluctuate as market rates change. If you’re planning on paying off your loans in a relatively short period — say, a few years — this may be a good option.
If, however, you’re planning on taking longer, fixed rates might be higher, but they won’t increase over time.
See our Laurel Road page for current rates.
Some other terms for Laurel Road student loan refinancing include:
- Can refinance both private and federal student loans.
- You must be currently employed or have a signed offer letter.
- No origination fees or prepayment penalty.
- You cannot refinance loans that have been previously defaulted.
- Current repayment periods of five years, seven years, 10 years, 15 years, and 20 years.
- You can refinance as little as $5,000; there is no maximum loan amount.
What is Laurel Road student loan refinancing eligibility criteria?
Lauren Road borrowers must have a credit score of at least 680 to apply for refinancing, even if they have a cosigner. There is no minimum income requirement, although the more you earn, the easier it will be to qualify for a lower interest rate.
What extra features does Laurel Road offer?
Refinancing your student loans isn’t just as simple as finding a lender and applying. Depending on your situation and needs, one lender may be better than another.
Parent PLUS Loan transfer
If you took out student loans for your children using a Parent PLUS Loan, few student loan refinancing lenders allow you to transfer that debt to your child once he or she has finished school.
Fortunately, Laurel Road is one of the few that do offer it. SoFi and CommonBond are two other top lenders who offer that service.
Even if you don’t get the best interest rate Laurel Road offers, you can lower your interest rate by setting up automatic payments from your bank account. Doing this will reduce your interest payment by 0.25%.
That may not sound like a lot, but it can add up over time. For example, say you refinance $35,000 worth of student loans on a 10-year term at 6.00% APR.
Your monthly payment would be $389, and you’d pay $11,629 in interest over the life of the loan. If, however, you get the autopay discount, your monthly payment would be $384, and you’d pay $11,103 in interest.
Saving $526 over 10 years likely won’t change your life, but look at it this way: you’ll save $526 for doing just one thing. Not a bad return on investment.
Paying off student loans is a long-term commitment, and there’s no way of knowing if you’ll be able to manage your monthly payments down the road. The good news is that Laurel Road offers forbearance if you suffer economic hardship.
You can qualify for one or more three-month periods, not to exceed 12 months in the aggregate during the term of your loan.
How does Laurel Road’s student loan refinancing application process work?
There are three steps to applying for student loan refinancing with Laurel Road. This section will walk you through each one.
Fill out your personal information
To get an understanding of what sort of rate you’d qualify for, Laurel Road needs your basic personal information. You’ll need to share your name, date of birth, Social Security Number, address, phone number, citizenship status, annual income, and more. You’ll also need to share information about your school and degree, as well as how much you’re looking to refinance.
- Choose your terms
After you submit your personal information, Laurel Road will run a soft credit check on you to give you a rate estimate. Soft inquiries do not impact your credit score in any way.
On this page, you can play around with the terms a little to see how interest rate type, loan term, and the autopay discount will affect your monthly payment and interest rate.
- Finalize your application
Now that you’ve gotten the terms nailed down, you’ll finish your profile and upload documents to support your income, employment, and residence information. Then, Laurel Road will run a hard credit check to get your full credit profile and give you a final offer.
Laurel Road contact
If you have any questions about Laurel Road’s student loan refinancing program, you can reach their customer service phone number Monday through Saturday at 855-245-0989. You can also use the live chat function on their website or email them at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Should you refinance your student loans with Laurel Road?
If you’re looking for a lender that offers competitive rates and terms, Laurel Road is worth considering. Qualifying isn’t easy, though, so make sure your credit score is high enough to meet the lender’s minimum requirement.
One big drawback to Laurel Road is that it doesn’t offer a cosigner release option. With other lenders, this feature allows you to apply to get your cosigner released from the loan after one to two years of on-time payments.
If you don’t have a cosigner, though, or your cosigner is OK with not being removed from the loan, there shouldn’t be an issue.
Before you settle on Laurel Road, be sure to shop around and compare other top student loan refinancing lenders. For example, SoFi and CommonBond both offer solid options for student loan refinancing.
Be wary of putting in inquiries and getting rate quotes from multiple online sources. This can affect your credit. To avoid this, compare companies like Laurel Road that give you an estimate up front based on a soft credit check.