Student Loan Alternatives To Pay For College Tuition Without Owing

College cost has poised an incredible level of debt on students and their families; their income and available financial aid resources are not enough.

Because of these challenges, student loan repayment alternative provides a great opportunity to help pay for school.

Unlike Federal loans that are primarily based on a student’s need, these low-risk alternative loans are based on the student’s creditworthiness in relation to the total costs of their college education.

There are several channels through which you can pursue a student loan repayment plan. We will connect you with 8 options that will offer attractive alternatives for you and your family.

Besides that, you will also learn the important tips for student loan repayment alternatives, the benefits, and many more.

Carefully follow the contents outlined below and select the option that best suits your demand.

Why Student Loan alternatives?

Students loan repayment alternative is usually available on a case basis when a borrower has exceptional circumstances and the other available repayment plans do not adequately address the borrower’s situation.

The borrower must provide documentation of the exceptional circumstances. This repayment option is only available to federal student loans in the Direct Loans program however, it is one option you will need to consider when it is time to look for a loan for college.

A lot of students subscribe to alternative loan repayment for the following reasons;

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  • The amount borrowed cannot exceed your cost of attendance minus other financial aid.
  • These loans are primarily used to supplement federal programs when federal aid and scholarships do not meet the cost of attendance.
  • Alternative loans are based on a student’s credit history and often require a cosigner.
  • These loans cannot be certified across academic years (summer is the last term of any academic year at the UO).

How do I Apply For Student Loan Repayment Alternatives?

Lenders make alternative loans available to students who need additional funding to help with their educational costs.

However, choosing a student loan alternative is a decision that will affect your life after graduation. The following process will help you get started.

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Application Process with the Alternative (Private) Student Loan Lender

The following information will help you as an applicant for an alternative loan.

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  • First, select a lender and your program. Thereafter, you contact a lender and complete an application. 
  • The lender will complete a credit check and make an approval or denial. The lender will contact you if any additional information, or if a co-signer, is needed.
  • You will receive various disclosure statements from your lender explaining interest rates, terms, fees, and total cost of the loans. The lender may ask for a self-certification form.
  • Funds are received and posted by the designated office.
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School Certification

Whether you are applying for a students grant or scholarship, it will require you to submit some documents ad that includes your certification.

For the private loan, once your application has been provisionally approved by the lender, it will need to be certified. Most alternative loan certifications are typically done electronically.

They will certify your eligibility for the alternative loan based on individual lender guidelines. 

The designated body will verify your cost of attendance, that your loan dollar amount requested is acceptable within the cost of attendance, loan period, grade level, product eligibility, and other eligibility criteria.

If there are eligibility issues, your loan may be reduced or canceled in order to comply with lender guidelines.

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Loan Disbursement

Most alternative loan disbursements are done approximately ten (10) business days after the loan is certified.

Once the designated body receives the funds from your lender, it will credit your student account with the alternative loan disbursement based on the loan period certified.

Unless authorization is on file, once the tuition, fees, and room and board posted on your student account are paid, any credit balance for that term will be issued as a paper check or direct deposit if elected through the Cashiering/Student Accounts Office. 

Important Tips for Alternative Student Loan

The following rules will benefit any student contemplating an alternative to student loan:

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  • Never borrow more money than you absolutely need to cover your college costs. 
  •  Be selective in the lender you choose and don’t just rush into any loan agreement. 
  • Thoroughly review and decide how important the various features of an alternative loan. You should borrow from the same alternative loan program each year during your college career. 
  • Choose a loan that has a competitive margin above the index; This margin will determine your future interest rates.
  •  Look for good deals: Borrow from a lender that will provide discounts on your interest rate after so many years of consistent payments. Also, look for discounts if you opt to have your payments directly deducted from your checking account.
  • Think about the length of your repayment period and how your monthly payments will be affected. If you plan to borrow more than $30,000 in alternative loans for your undergraduate career, consider a loan that offers a 15, 20, or 25-year repayment term. 
  •  Do not sign until you are comfortable with the terms and conditions your lender has offered.
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What Are The Best Student Loan Alternative?

There are several channels through which you can pursue school funding options. After you have exhausted all scholarships, grants, and other financial aids opportunities, consider the alternative loan.

We have highlighted 8 student Loan alternatives that will benefit you. As you read further, you will get detailed information on the various options.

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  • Work-Study Programs
  • Payment Plans or Tuition Installment Plans
  • Scholarships
  • Crowdfunding
  • Online College
  • WeFinance
  • Pave
  • Citibank Student Loans

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#1 Work-Study Programs

Federal work-study are mostly part-time jobs that offer you a chance to gain work experience while providing an income. You can work in the dining hall or in the library, but some schools attempt to give students work experience related to their field of study.

Furthermore, income from work-study programs does not reduce eligibility for financial aid unlike working a standard job.

At the graduate level, you can receive work-study known as a fellowship. Fellowships cover tuition and sometimes a small salary for working for a professor or an academic department as a teaching or research assistant.

#2 Payment Plans or Tuition Installment Plans

Payment plans also known as tuition installment plans are designed to help you manage your college expenses without breaking the bank. Instead of paying your college fee for a semester or quarter all at once, you pay in monthly installments. Often, the first payment is larger than the ensuing payments

For instance, if as a student, you have a shortfall of $3,000, your school’s financial aid may allow you to spread out payment over the course of 10 months ($300 per month).

Most payment plans do not charge interest, but they have penalties for falling behind on payments. Therefore, before choosing a payment plan, it’s important you check if the school charges interest or fees, especially for late or incomplete payment.

#3 Scholarships

Scholarships are the best student loan alternative. Almost all students can win some scholarship money to help offset the cost of college. 

Most institutions offer need and merit-based scholarships specifically to their student body. You can also find private scholarships through civic organizations, charities, government organizations, businesses, and private individuals.

Websites like and many others list hundreds of scholarships and also provide application information to students.

#4 Crowdfunding

Crowdfunding has become an easy and popular student loan alternative. It is the practice of funding where people raise small amounts of money (like $1-$10) and then your college funding account adds up quickly. 

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One of the super creative ways of carrying this out crowdfunding is having close friends and family contribute to your college fee, it could be enough to at least pay for a semester or two at an in-state school.

#5 Online College

Education is moving toward modern technology. Age-old universities that existed before electricity are moving into the age of technology, creating record amounts of Distant learners.

We well know it that online college is much cheaper than a traditional college. This isn’t because there is a lack of quality education, but the cost associated with traditional schools. 

There are varieties of free accredited and recognized online schools that offer certificates and also quick online certifications that pay well, you can choose the one that fits your demand.

#6 Income-driven Repayment

One of the best alternatives for your student loan is to sign up for income-driven repayment.

These plans cut payments to a percentage of your income; if you have no income, you’ll pay $0 per month. After 20 or 25 years of payments, you’ll receive forgiveness on the remaining balance. This works for both Federal and Private loans.

#7 Pave

Pave does not technically offer loans for students. It is only an online lender that seeks to revamp student lending to provide affordable funding to young people.

They offer affordable credit to students based on more than just their credit score. This means you may still qualify for financing through Pave even if you get turned down by a traditional bank.

The added benefit is that you can get significantly lower rates through Pave than you would, using a credit card.

#8 Loans Refinance

Student loan refinancing allows you to adjust the interest rate and repayment terms on your private and federal student loans.

Basically, it permits you to combine multiple loans into a brand new loan that pays off some or all of your existing education debt.

Consolidation won’t lower your interest rate, but it can lower your payments by extending your repayment term, though you’ll repay more overall.

In addition, to choose your refinancing companies, you will need to consider the fixed-rate ranges, variable-rate ranges, rate check option, minimum credit score, refinancing terms, repayment option, hardship options, and the fees.

Before applying for any loan, you need to know how its benefits and disadvantages affect you as a student. Check here for Pros And Cons associated with students Loans Alternative.


Frequently Asked Question On Student Loan Repayment Alternatives

Lenders make private or supplemental loans available by lenders to students who need additional funding to help with their educational costs.

Yes! Once you meet the eligibility requirements.

There are certain eligibility criteria you must meet to qualify for a loan alternative.


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