First Republic Bank started in 1985, and is headquartered in San Francisco, California. The company was named the "Best Private Bank" in North America by Private Asset Management Magazine. The bank has more than 60 offices on both the west coast and northeast and offers a range of services, including lending, deposits, loans, and investments. The company offers a student loan refinancing program that does not charge origination, annual, or prepayment fees; however, First Republic requires members to be in close proximity with one of its U.S. offices.

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The Good

  • Prepayment Rebate Incentives
  • Modifying the Interest Rate
  • Rebate Option
  • Physical Locations
  • Repayment Terms
  • Other Benefits

Prepayment Rebate Incentives

First Republic has a refinancing program called Eagle Gold All-in-One that claims to put customers' savings to work. The program offers a one-month payment plan, with a variety of term options. There are no origination, annual, or prepayment fees, though the website does not specify whether or not there is an application fee. Borrowers work with a First Republic banker to begin the refinancing process. First Republic's goal is to reduce customers' monthly payments and overall loan repayment costs. The company boasts having a stress-free and simple program.

Modifying the Interest Rate

Borrowers can save 5% if they sign up for automatic payments, direct deposit, and online banking. If customers decide not to sign up for these three features, 5% percent will be added on in addition.

Rebate Option

First Republic offers an additional rebate on the interest paid against the loan. If the loan is paid within 48 months, borrowers can receive a rebate of up to 2% of the original loan balance.

Physical Locations

A common complaint of private student loan refinancing is that a majority of options involve online or over-the-phone communication with few options for face-to-face correspondence. First Republic Bank requires customers to be near a U.S. office. For customers who might prefer to discuss refinancing student loans in person, First Republic Bank gives them the chance to do so.

Repayment Terms

Clients can choose to pay off their loan in 5, 7, 10, or 15 years. These flexible options aren't available with every lender. For student loan borrowers who want to pay their loans with a longer repayment term, they'll need to look elsewhere.

Other Benefits

First Republic Bank offers some other perks for those who choose to refinance through the company:

  • Cosigner option
  • Parent loan transfer
  • No application, annual, or origination fees
  • Personal, assigned representative

The Bad

  • Strict Eligibility Requirements
  • Lacks Features
  • Monthly Fees
  • Website Lacks Information
  • High Loan Minimum

Strict Eligibility Requirements

In order to be eligible for Eagle Gold All-in-One's program, borrowers must meet the following requirements:

  • Must have a First Republic ATM Rebate Checking Account set up with automatic loan payments, direct deposit and online banking
  • Must have at least $500 to open the checking account
  • Loan amount must be $60,000 to $300,000
  • Must be located close to one of the company's offices in San Francisco, Palo Alto, Los Angeles, Santa Barbara, Newport Beach, San Diego, Portland (Oregon), Boston, Palm Beach (Florida), Greenwich, or New York City.
  • Must have an excellent credit score

Borrowers must also meet in-person to complete the paperwork for the refinancing program.

Lacks Features

Eagle Gold All-in-One's program does not offer forbearance periods, financial hardship deferment periods, or income-based repayment plans.

Monthly Fees

If borrowers do not keep up with a $3,500 average monthly balance, First Republic Bank will charge a monthly fee of $25.00. This fee can be waived for the first three months.

Website Lacks Information

The website lacks key information. Rates and loan terms are not explained in-depth. While many lenders won't provide all their information online, it's typical for a loan servicer to provide information on average rates, forbearance options, and required documentation before you apply. For those pre-screening loan servicers for repayment terms before they apply, the lack of information provided by First Republic Bank may be discouraging.

High Loan Minimum

Many companies in the industry only require a $5,000 loan minimum. First Republic Bank requires that loans be between $60,000 to $300,000. This is on the high end of many student loan refinancing needs.

The Bottom Line

First Republic Bank is a well-respected and big name in the industry. The company's been in business since 1985 and has a large following on social media. First Republic's refinancing program, Eagle Gold All-in-One, offers competitive fixed and variable interest rates. Borrowers can choose among 5-, 7-, 10-, and 15-year terms.

First Republic Bank has strict eligibility requirements that could be hard for borrowers to meet. They require loan amounts of $60,000–$300,000, and members must be in close proximity to at least one their office locations. The entire process requires in-person communication, and the company charges fees if monthly financial requirements aren't met. For First Republic ATM Rebate Checking Account members, this refinancing program may be worth looking into. Otherwise, we recommend looking into a company that doesn't have such rigid financial requirements.

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User Reviews

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2.7
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3 Reviews

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Jman
January 2nd, 2019 New York, NY DETAILS
Value for your money
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Amazing lender. It took some doing to go through the application process, but it's been a great experience and is really worth it. Fantastic rates.

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gstettle
April 9th, 2018 Fremont, CA

I should have known this was a scam when I had to spill my guts to an account pre-screener who asked alot of questions. I have excellent credit and just wanted a better rate on college loans, but they want people who really don't need the money, and people who have large amounts of capital to invest in their brokerage arm. Don't waste your time.

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Peggy Yau
April 4th, 2018 Milpitas, CA

Bad experience. Without appointment, won't allow us to open new checking account in Sunnyvale branch office. We have good credit rate and never been turned down by bank.

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