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Federal Student Aid (Studentloans.gov)

Federal Student Aid (Studentloans.gov) Logo

Federal Student Aid (Studentloans.gov)

Federal Student Aid offers government-funded student loan consolidation

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StudentLoans.gov is a site operated by the U.S. Department of Education and is designed to help students in the U.S. find their best options for financial aid. To use StudentLoans.gov, students generally are encouraged to complete the FAFSA, or Free Application for Federal Student Aid, which can grant them access to all that StudentLoans.gov has to offer-from free scholarships to highly rated private loans. To provide easier access to these financial resources, the U.S. Department of Education has compiled much of the necessary information online. This information makes StudentLoans.gov a great resource for resolving student debt.
 
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The Good

  • Be Informed
  • Easy First Step
  • Free Financial Aid

Be Informed

StudentLoans.gov emphasizes the importance of being fully informed and requires several debt counseling courses to be completed before an individual can move ahead with federal loans. This is a great learning method that is often only offered by private companies. Knowing how to graduate with low debt and understanding how to obtain the best loans possible makes a huge difference down the line. By holding students accountable to learn about financial aid before applying for loans, StudentLoans.gov is preparing them for a brighter financial future.

Easy First Step

While filling out the FAFSA itself may be more time consuming than other companies' applications, it is free and opens the door to many valuable federal services. Additionally, StudentLoans.gov offers several resources designed to help students resolve their student debt at the federal level. Many students may still need to apply for private loans, but nevertheless, StudentLoans.gov will help to provide reasonable federal support. The need to borrow less from private lenders could potentially mean less time in debt and less interest needed.

Free Financial Aid

Not only are all of the Department of Education's resources free, they can also help students to find out if they qualify for additional government assistance for their education. While many loan companies won't be able to help individuals without well-established credit or a cosigner, the Department of Education's tools are designed to help these individuals find a viable way to pay for college. Having access to free grants and scholarships will help lower eligible students' dependence on loans, and ultimately, their student debt.

The Bad

  • Not As Flexible
  • Time
  • Complicated

Not As Flexible

The FAFSA and other government aid is generally less flexible than most private loan companies. For example, borrowers are likely to have a fixed rate APR without having the option of a variable APR. Additionally, private and federal loans are not generally consolidated together, so finding a consolidation loan down the line may be harder to navigate. That being said, if students can work out a way to receive all of their financial aid through federal programs, they won't have to worry about consolidating private loans down the line.

Time

Unlike private loan consolidation companies who benefit financially from their customers, the FAFSA and federal loans are designed as a privilege for students who need financial aid. That means that instead of a "quick, three-minute pre-approval quiz," as you are likely to see on private loan sites, acquiring federal student aid requires more time. For example, there are mandatory counseling sessions that must be completed by anyone looking to apply for a federal loan. Each session is about half an hour long.

Complicated

Obtaining federal loans and financial aid is typically more complicated than private loans. In addition to the aforementioned counseling, the amount of documentation that potential borrowers will need to present is exceptionally large. Those who fill out the FAFSA expecting it to be a quick and simple process will likely be disappointed.

The Bottom Line

StudentLoans.gov is a great resource for students looking for financial aid. Not only will filling out its forms, such as the FAFSA, give students access to different types of financial aid, students may even find that they are eligible for free grants from the government. However, students who plan on applying for the FAFSA should prepare for a lengthy, complicated process.

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User Reviews

4.3

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19 Reviews

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Grant
December 6th, 2018 American Fork, UT

The student loans my family has taken out have all been through Federal Student Aid. They are simple to apply for online, and the ease of transferring them to each specific college is quick and easy.

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Fernando Delgado
December 6th, 2018 Tempe, AZ DETAILS
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The site was very thorough and helped me understand what information it needs to provide me the right numbers. The FAQ answered all my questions about how I qualified and for how much. It's lengthy to go through but the end result is a sigh of relief that you know there are options to help pay for school.

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Katie Howard
December 5th, 2018 Pleasant Grove, UT DETAILS
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This is one of the best ways to get financial aid for college, aside from scholarships. If you're lucky, you'll qualify for a Pell Grant and you won't have to pay the money back. But if you have to get a subsidized loan, you will have the interest deferred until you're done with school, which is about the best deal you can get on a loan. It's a huge pain to fill out the paperwork, though. That's the cost of working with the government. We have had several government-subsidized student loans over the years. The key is to pay them off as quickly as possible before the interest starts adding up.

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Rashida Laumatia
August 24th, 2018 Saint George, UT

Grateful for all their help with helping me pay back my student loans. But when they took my tax returns when they weren’t suppose to, was very frustrating. I didn’t get my refund til September. They were so quick to take my funds and so slow to return them.

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Thomas Hullinger
August 24th, 2018 Pleasant Grove, UT DETAILS
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They offer a much needed service in this industry. I like their ease of application and being able to pay easily online. They are very easy to work with.

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Mallory Millett
August 21st, 2018 Lindon, UT

I have a small student loan with this company. It was pretty easy to defer for graduate school and very reasonable.

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Reena Kivlehen
July 25th, 2018 Phoenix, AZ

Very trustworthy. Great customer service. Easy to use web experience.

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Cody Linden
July 19th, 2018 Lehi, UT

Relatively easy to use, dependable and extremely helpful when trying to focus on school.

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Aaron Foote
July 10th, 2018 Queen Creek, AZ

This solution has helped me be able to afford college and the process was not bad at all.

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Trent Allen
July 6th, 2018 Queen Creek, AZ

Easy to apply and navigate. Money went directly to the school so it was a smooth process to get our tuition paid for.

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Jeff Martin
April 19th, 2018 Layton, UT DETAILS
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Great place to get student finance assistance. I used it when I was in college and had a great experience. A lot of different options and they give you a lot of help.

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Chase Huntzinger
April 18th, 2018 Provo, UT DETAILS
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Thank goodness for FSA. I am very grateful for the help that pell grants have provided my wife and I while finishing school. It has made it possible for me to devote my time to my studies. Also, try to get a federal student loan before any other options. Great rates!

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Trent
April 18th, 2018 Provo, UT

FAFSA has saved our lives! We have been able to get through school with minimal impact to our budgets

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Christopher M
February 27th, 2018 Manchester, CT DETAILS
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Fed Aid offers a *lot* of ways to pay off higher education. The rates are pretty bad however, but the fact you have official protection from being hounded for money and a generous amount of options to repay, this is the first go-to to get higher education funding, period. Get these loans first before any other!

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Alicia
December 13th, 2017 Salt Lake City, UT

It as been hard on me to get it paid off but they have not hounded me to make a payment

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Kylee Carpenter
December 12th, 2017 Tooele, UT DETAILS
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It was time for me to pay. I was moving States, was pregnant, and didn’t have a job at the time. They were absolutely amazing and found a program for me to make low payments! So grateful they were willing to work with me.

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Nikki Caple
December 12th, 2017 Idaho Falls, ID DETAILS
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Getting signed up and the loan was simple. Paying it off has been a pain. For some reason we keep having issues with my bank account routing number. I’ve gone months at a time thinking I’m on auto pay and I haven’t been paying at all. Frustrating that I have to keep logging in and reentering my bank info.

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Lindsey
December 6th, 2017 American Fork, UT DETAILS
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I've used Federal Student Aid for receiving financial aid from the government. I think it could be more user-friendly. The website is more just trying to get the job done.

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Cassidy Gundersen
December 5th, 2017 Orem, UT DETAILS
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I took out all of my student loans through federal student aid and would not recommend it to anyone! The customer service was terrible and they were less than helpful every time I reached out for help. Their rates may seem good, but there are better rates out there with companies who are more willing to work with you. Because this it is government run- there is no incentive to provide good service. I left the country in the middle of my college career for a service mission for my church. I reached out before leaving to ensure I would not be penalized for late payments. They assured me I wouldn't. Upon returning- I found that they had given me late payments for the entire duration of my trip and my credit score was significantly affected. After spending hours via email and phone to rectify the issue they said it was their mistake but they would not do anything to fix it.

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