Consolidating plus loans

If you’re a graduate or professional student with a PLUS loan, you can take advantage of a grace period, which means you don’t have to make any payments while you’re enrolled in school at least half-time, and for an additional six months after you graduate or leave school.If you’re a parent who took out a PLUS loan on behalf of a dependent undergrad, you must start making payments as soon as your loan is fully disbursed.The government doesn’t give parents the option to officially shift PLUS loans into their child’s name.

They include flexible repayment plans, student loan forgiveness and payment postponement options like deferment and forbearance.

But there’s a way to ease the burden of repayment once your child graduates: student loan refinancing.

There are two methods of refinancing a PLUS loan: You or your child will lose some borrower protections by refinancing, and your child must be financially secure enough to qualify solo.

Graduates have to meet those prerequisites to apply, and the more favorable their financial profile the lower the interest rate they’ll get.

A child can also include a parent as a co-signer on a refinanced loan, which may help him or her qualify or get a lower interest rate.

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