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CommonBond is a private student loan lender that has funded more than $4 billion in student loans since it was founded in 2012. It provides loans for undergraduate, graduate, MBA, dental and medical students and student loan refinancing. CommonBond also ties its business into various philanthropic efforts.
Pros & Cons
- Fixed and variable rates
- Multiple repayment programs
- Flexible options
- Social Promise
- Only works with a network of schools
- Cosigners required
CommonBond is a private student loan provider with multiple programs and flexible options. Although it doesn’t outline its list of approval requirements or its network schools, it does offer free pre-qualification.
What is CommonBond?
CommonBond is a private student loan company offering undergraduate and graduate student loans and student loan refinancing. It was created after one of its co-founders had a difficult time finding affordable student loans for his needs. The company also operates under a Social Promise, funding the yearly tuition of one student in need for every degree it fully enables with its loans.
How does CommonBond work?
CommonBond borrowers must meet certain requirements:
- All students must have a creditworthy cosigner to apply. Cosigners can be removed after two years of consecutive, on-time payments, though.
- Students must also attend a school in the CommonBond network, but we couldn’t find any information about what schools are in its network. You can check your school on the company’s website.
- Loans must be for at least $2,000, but you cannot borrow more than $500,000 over your lifetime. These limits shouldn’t affect most borrowers, however.
CommonBond also offers customers the ability to pause their loans. Customers are eligible for a six-month grace period if they need it, and borrowers can even postpone their payments for up to 12 months over the lifetime of the loan.
How to get a CommonBond Loan
CommonBond has an online application process that screens borrowers. If you pre-qualify, you can choose which loan product you want and electronically sign all disclosures.
CommonBond’s application process requires a credit check. After that, CommonBond should reach out to your school to confirm enrollment and the amount you requested, which can take up to three weeks. After approval, funds are distributed directly to your school for payment.
CommonBond rates vary by borrower, purpose and loan option:
- Fixed APRs for undergraduate student loans start at 3.74% (with a discount for automatic payments) and range up to 10.74%.
- Variable rates for undergraduate loans start slightly higher at 3.8% and go up to 9.36% (with the same discounts).
- Variable rates for student loan refinancing start at 2.5%, including the discount for automatic payments.
Loan terms of five, 10, and 15 years are available with both fixed and variable interest rates. CommonBond publishes interest rate ranges for different uses on its website. While the company’s rates are higher than some competitors’, it does not charge origination fees.
Is a CommonBond loan considered unsecured?
Yes, secured loans are backed by collateral, like a house or a car. Student loans are generally considered unsecured loans.
What credit score do I need for a CommonBond loan?
CommonBond does not promote its credit score requirements on its website.
Can I refinance a CommonBond loan?
Yes. CommonBond also offers its own refinancing program with rates as low as 2.5%, including a discount for automatic payments. There is no limit to how many times you can refinance with CommonBond.
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