Getting an education is one of the best investments you can make in your future career, but attending school doesn’t come cheap these days. That’s why most students and their families take out loans to help cover their tuition, books, rent, and more. While all education loans have different terms and conditions, they tend to fall into one of six categories, each of which caters to students with specific financial circumstances. Here are six types of students who are eligible for an education loan.
1. Graduating from college
Sure, it’s a big accomplishment and your parents will likely be excited, but that’s not why you went to school. You went to learn something—and hopefully land a job—that would make your life better. Your first major milestone is getting a job (or launching your own business), but once you do that, how can you improve yourself further? Here are six suggestions from people who have already been there
2. Studying abroad
One big perk of studying abroad is getting a great deal on tuition. If you’re going to be in your home country, however, you probably won’t qualify for that sweet foreign exchange rate. In-state schools often charge comparable rates to private schools—and may even be more affordable. The important thing here is not necessarily where you choose to go to school but how much it costs, which can open up a lot of opportunities. Take advantage!
3. Parents can apply on behalf of their children
If your child has been accepted to college, you can apply on their behalf. You’ll need a co-signer if they’re under 18 years old (and, ideally, if they don’t have a credit history). In general, it’s easier to get approved as a parent than as an independent student. However, there are other factors that go into your decision about whether or not to apply on behalf of your child (such as their income), so don’t just assume it will be easier.
4. Students with critical illnesses
This is also a consideration in determining eligibility to receive a government-backed student loan. Most government loans require you to be less than 24 years old, which indicates that you have not yet started your own family. As such, applicants will need to verify that they do not have any dependents. If a student does have dependents and needs financial assistance, it is recommended that he or she apply for non-government student loans instead. These loans tend to come with more flexible lending requirements and can often offer more competitive interest rates and repayment terms. Additionally, these loans typically do not require collateral such as real estate property or vehicles as guarantees against defaulting on payments. Education providers also may make concessions on tuition fees based on need provided certain conditions are met.
5. Students with disabilities
There are many universities and institutions that offer scholarships and grants to disabled individuals. These institutions can offer both academic funding and financial aid to those with physical or mental disabilities, including visual impairments or learning disabilities like dyslexia. Common scholarships include Eagle Scout Scholarships, arts scholarships, minority student scholarships, sports scholarships, and many more. The Federal Pell Grant program also provides financial aid opportunities to anyone who meets eligibility requirements.
6. Students with dependents
If you have dependents, such as children or spouse, your level of debt isn’t necessarily a concern to lenders. They will consider how much money you can pay back each month and make sure that whatever you borrow is manageable. If you get approved for an education loan with a co-signer (your parents or spouse), your lender will expect your parent or spouse to make payments if you don’t. This can be both helpful and hurtful depending on their financial situation. The upside is that they help ensure that even if you fall on hard times, they won’t foreclose on your house or stop sending money to support your family in order to get their money back.