Depending upon the type of student you were, your college experience was either filled with stress, studying and the excitement of reaching new learning vistas – or it was filled with beer, parties, and hanging out with lots of members of the opposite sex.Either way, it is a fact that you – like all college students – had to come up with a way to pay for the whole experience. Whether you attended a less expensive state school as an in-state resident or whether you went to a fancy-schmancy private university, your student loans likely run into the tens or even hundreds of thousands of dollars.The reality of having to repay all of those loans hits most grads at one of the worst-possible times: just a few months after graduation. Just when you are faced with the need to find a job, get an apartment, and generally get your post-college life on track, you get hit with your first student loan bill.Things can even be worse if you have multiple loans, given that you are having to manage multiple payments at once.However, for those with multiple loans, there is a bright side: you are likely to be eligible for private student loan consolidation.Who Qualifies For Private Student Loan Consolidation?If you have more than one student loan through a private lender (i.e., not the federal government but rather through a private bank), you are eligible to consolidate your student loans through a private consolidation lender.You should consider consolidating if you are less than half-way through your repayment period, if you want to reduce your monthly payments, and/or if you believe your credit score has improved since your initial loans were received.How Your Consolidation Loan Interest Rate Is DeterminedFor private loans, your consolidation loan interest rate is determined by a combination of the going prime rate – or other major right like the LIBOR – and your credit score. Of course, your private lender will have some discretion as to your new interest rate, which is precisely why it pays to shop your rate around with multiple lenders.3 Steps To Finding The Best Bank For Student Loan ConsolidationHere are 3 steps to finding the best bank for private student loan consolidation:1. Start with a list of at least 3-5 banks: Do your research online to get together a list of at least 3 to 5 banks who specialize in private student loan consolidation. Remember, it is very unlikely that your first offer will be your best, so by researching multiple banks you will have a much better chance of potentially saving thousands of dollars in interest over the life of your loan.2. Visit their websites: These days, there is nothing like the Internet in terms of conducting efficient, fast and comprehensive research. Start with each company’s website. If you like one or more sites and have the time, order an information packet through the mail.3. Apply to at least 3 of them: Once you have found at least 3 lenders you like based upon your research, apply to all of them. When the offers start rolling in, be sure to wait for all of the offers before making a decision.Follow these tips in order to find the best bank for your private loan consolidation.
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