Federal Student Loans
You must meet certain requirements to qualify for Federal Student Aid, see requirements. If you are eligible for federal aid, you can apply for assistance by completing the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). You must complete FAFSA yearly to be offered assistance.
- Automatically offered with the completion of the FAFSA.
- Maximum Loan amount $20,500 if you have not borrowed the aggregate maximum of $224,000
- Origination fee of 1.057% is charged by the government prior to disbursement
- Fixed interest rate of 5.28% (interest accrues at the time of disbursement)
- Repayment begins 6 months after graduation, termination of enrollment or once you become less than half-time
- Promissory note must be completed
- Cycle to apply opens yearly in June each academic year
- Maximum loan amount awarded is up to the cost of attendance minus any other aid (Must complete the FAFSA first before applying)
- Origination fee of 4.228% is charged by the government prior to disbursement
- Fixed interest rate of 6.28% (interest accrues at the time of disbursement)
- Repayment begins immediately, with provisions for deferment while enrolled greater than half-time.
If you must borrow a student loan, students are strongly encouraged to first consider borrowing from the federal student loan programs by completing FAFSA. Federal student loans tend to have lower interest rates and better borrower benefits than what private student loan lenders can offer. Federal student loans also offer repayment plans that private loans tend not to offer, such as Income-Driven Repayment.
- VCU will not recommend nor endorse any private student loan lender to students. Students are encouraged to compare respective lender borrowing terms and conditions. VCU accepts all non-federal private student loan lenders who will offer you a loan. Most lenders will send the loan proceeds to VCU electronically to disburse to your account.
- Credit checks are required for a private student loan, and also for their co-signer. These credit checks are known as "hard inquiries." A hard inquiry could lower your scores by a few points, or it may have a negligible effect on your credit scores. In most cases, a single hard inquiry is unlikely to play a huge role in whether you're approved for a loan.
- Not all private lenders offer loans for international/DACA/undocumented students. However, there are some lenders that do. Should you be concerned about this, you should check with your lender to see if they have an option that best meets the needs of you and your family.
More information on private loans can be viewed here.