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Citizens Bank

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LAST UPDATED: May 26th, 2021

Citizens Bank is a financial services firm that was founded in Providence, Rhode Island in 1828. It is one of the oldest financial services firms in the United States. Citizens Bank offers undergraduate student loans, graduate student loans, and parent loans, providing a financial solution for a variety of circumstances and needs.

Continue reading for a full review of this company, or jump down to Citizens Bank student loan reviews.

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The Good

  • Multi-Year Approval
  • Parent Loan Option
  • Flexible Repayment Options
  • No Fees
  • Reduce Your Rate by 0.50%
  • Helpful Student Loan Tools

Multi-Year Approval

Citizens Bank offers a multi-year approval which is designed to aid borrowers in securing funding for the additional years that they are in school. With this feature, Citizens Bank claims that borrowers won't have to worry about impacting their credit scores for those years to come. This is meant to provide borrowers with a level of security within their financial plan.

Parent Loan Option

In addition to undergraduate and graduate student loans, Citizens Bank also offers parent loans, a product not offered by all student loan lenders.

Citizens Bank's parent student loans offer the following interest rate options:

  • Fixed rates — 4.94%–8.58% APR
  • Variable rates — 2.49%–8.33% APR

Parents can choose between a 5 or 10 year loan term, with available loan amounts ranging from $1,000 to $350,000.

Flexible Repayment Options

When it comes to repayment options, Citizens Bank provides three basic plans to help borrowers depending on their situations. The three repayment options include the following:

  • 5-year term — Out of the three options, this usually has the lowest interest rates and lowest borrowing cost total.
  • 10-year term — This plan presents low interest rates with moderate total borrowing cost savings.
  • 15-year term* — Lastly, this plan has the lowest monthly payment with highest interest rates as well as borrowing cost total.

*Note: The 15 year loan term product is not available on parent student loans.

Citizens Bank also allows borrowers to make additional payments without any penalty regardless of which plan they choose.

No Fees

Citizens Bank makes it more affordable to take out a student loan by providing loans with no fees. With Citizens Bank you won't need to pay an application fee, origination fee, or disbursement fees.

Reduce Your Rate by 0.50%

Citizens Bank provides the option to lower your interest rate by 0.50 percent through its loyalty and auto payment discounts.

If you have any existing and qualifying Citizens Bank accounts, you can receive a 0.25 percent discount.

If you enroll in automatic payments you will be eligible for another 0.25 percent rate reduction.

Helpful Student Loan Tools

Citizens Bank provides a student loan calculator tool to aid borrowers in finding which student loan fits their needs the best. It takes several factors into consideration:

  • Loan amount
  • Student loan type
  • Degree type
  • Credit rating
  • Term
  • Repayment options
  • Discounts

This calculator gives borrowers a solid estimate of which loans will work for them.

Citizens Bank also provides a College Financial Planning Tool, allowing you to compare prices of different colleges, calculate costs of attendance, and receive guidance on tackling your tuition bill.

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The Bad

  • Co-Signer Strongly Recommended

Co-Signer Strongly Recommended

To start with, Citizens Bank strongly recommends each borrower have a co-signer on the loan. This comes across as a challenge to receive a loan without a co-signer. Other companies in the student loan industry allow co-signers, but they do not push for all borrowers to have a co-signer like Citizens Bank.

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The Bottom Line

Overall, Citizens Bank provides borrowers with a reliable multi-year approval process that allows some financial security. They also give borrowers flexibility through their repayment options. If you are looking to save more on your student loans, Citizens Bank could be a good option since it doesn't charge any fees, and you can receive a 0.50 percent rate reduction if you are an existing Citizens Bank member with a qualifying account and if you enroll in automatic payments.

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