Tips to Borrowing a PLUS loan

Take some time to review carefully your family's financial situation and identify every available financing resource. Review and consider all available payment options, including the monthly payment plan. This will help limit what you actually need to borrow. 

Financing Tip: If you are planning to borrow a loan, you should consider a monthly payment plan to reduce the amount you need to borrow. For example, if you are planning to borrow $20,000 but can afford a $5,000 payment plan ($500 per month for 10 months) you then need to borrow just $15,000 instead of borrowing the full $20,000. The reduced loan amount will reduce your future interest charges and your future monthly loan payments. Also, in most cases, PLUS loan borrowers will not have any monthly loan payments until beginning in March, so why not make payments on a monthly payment plan before then to help reduce the amount you need to borrow?

Determine the total amount of education debt your family is willing to accumulate during the student's college enrollment. Use online calculators to help determine future monthly payments.

Borrow for the entire year. Do not apply for only the fall term if the student plans to be here for the spring term as well. If the student will be attending only for the fall or spring term, then borrow for that one term. Try to avoid borrowing one semester at a time, as this may cost you more in the long run because of the minimum monthly payments, you may begin making monthly payments sooner, you will need to apply twice in one year, and your application for the second semester may be credit-denied--this has happened!

Ask questions when considering a PLUS loan. Don't feel uncomfortable asking what may seem to be simple questions. You are borrowing a loan that you will be paying back over a long period of time, so be sure to ask any questions you may have.

Be in touch with our loan counselor.