Guide To Smart Option Student Loan: All You Need To Know

One of the biggest and most well-known providers of student loans is Sallie Mae Smart Option Student Loan. 

It provides a variety of loan packages for higher education at all levels. 

However, without having to adhere to rigid enrollment or program requirements, Sallie Mae’s Smart Option Student Loan is made to assist undergraduates in covering up to the full cost of tuition.

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Undergraduate Student Loans from Sallie Mae Smart Option Loan

Undergraduates can borrow up to 100% of their school’s cost of attendance, less any financial aid they may have received, using the Smart Option Student Loan. 

Loan funds must be used for certified school expenses such as tuition, fees, lodging, books, and supplies. 

Borrowers must be enrolled in a participating degree-granting institution and pursuing an associate’s, bachelor’s, or certificate program. 

Although there is no minimum enrollment requirement, this student loan option is more accessible for part-time students.

With a variety of repayment options, Sallie Mae offers reasonable interest rates on student loans. 

For each loan application, a minimum loan amount of $1,000 is required. But rather than applying for each academic semester, you can do it once for the whole school year.

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Review of Sallie Mae Smart Option Student Loans: Positives and Negatives

Positives

1. Available to non-U.S.citizen or non-permanent residents 

Non-citizens or non-permanent residents are eligible. 

Those who live in the United States and attend schools there include DACA students. But they need a cosigner who is an American citizen or legal permanent residence.

2. No minimum enrolment requirement

Full-time, part-time, and part-time students may be eligible.

3. A number of programs are eligible

This is accessible to students from the United States who are enrolled in a school overseas, professional certification courses, or study abroad programs.

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4. Flexible alternatives for in-school repayment

The option for borrowers to make interest-only or set $25 monthly loan payments, postpone payments entirely, or both is available. 

By deciding on in-school payments, you might lower your interest rate.

5. Grace period of six months

Six months after graduating or ceasing to be enrolled in school, monthly principal and interest payments start.

6. Autopay discount

When you sign up for automatic withdrawals from your bank account, your interest rate is reduced by 0.25%.

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7. Fewer fees

Application fees, origination fees, and prepayment penalties are all waived by the lender.

8. Cosigner release

Once the necessary conditions have been met, such as 12 months of timely principal and interest payments, you can apply to have your cosigner released.

9. Options for deferring student loans

You might be eligible for deferral if you go back to school, enroll in graduate school, or undertake an internship, clerkship, fellowship, or residency in the future. 

Your loan repayment plan will revert to the initial in-school option you selected (e.g., interest-only, fixed, or completely deferred).

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10. Extra benefits

In addition, Sallie Mae provides instruction in financial literacy and a scholarship search tool. Four months of Chegg Study are given for free to borrowers as a promotional bonus.

Negatives

1. Rigorous Credit check is Required in order to Research Interest Rates

Sallie Mae Smart Option Student Loan conducts a hard credit pull in contrast to other lenders who offer a pre-approval procedure to obtain preliminary rate data for comparison.

2. Charge for late payment

If your payment is received after the deadline by more than 15 days, you can be assessed a late fee. 

You can also stop being eligible for borrower advantages or rewards for timely repayment.

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Sallie Mae’s Smart Option Student Loan Eligibility Requirements

Private student loans are based on credit, as opposed to federal loans for undergraduates. 

Sallie Mae will therefore review your credit history when you apply for a loan. 

Interest rates and eligibility will be impacted by your creditworthiness. 

This entails obtaining the necessary credit score as well as examining your borrowing history and other financial indications, as well as your payback history. 

Sallie Mae recommends employing a cosigner because the majority of undergraduates haven’t had the chance to establish their credit to the point where they could be approved for a private student loan on their own.

Students who include a creditworthy cosigner have a fourfold increased chance of being approved, according to Sallie Mae.

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Who is Eligible for a Sallie Mae Smart Option Student Loan?

With the Smart Option loan from Sallie Mae, undergraduate students can borrow the full cost of education, including living expenses, together with their parents. 

If you are short on funds during your college years, that is a huge benefit. 

The fact that this loan is accessible to both full-time and part-time students is an added bonus. 

This loan may include the student, their parent(s), or both of their signatures on it. 

The Sallie Mae Smart Option loan has a few more advantages, but the company also provides a separate parent loan. 

The student is the principal borrower for this loan, but if you have a cosigner, your chances of getting approved would be substantially higher.

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Notably, both fixed and variable interest rates are available. 

At the time of writing this article, variable loan rates might be as low as 2.75% APR and as high as 10.65% APR. 

Your ability to repay the loan and credit history, which are both very essential, will determine the rate you obtain. 

In general, rates on the low end are only offered to the most creditworthy candidates. 

Variable loans have two possible bases for their ups and downs: the Prime Rate or the London Interbank Offered Rate (LIBOR). 

This is an important distinction to keep in mind. Remember that Sallie Mae maintains the right to alter or stop providing any of its products or services.

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What to Expect throughout the Application Process

Online, you can apply for a Sallie Mae Smart Option Student Loan in a snap. In actuality, it usually takes borrowers less than 10 minutes to apply and learn their credit judgment. 

Nevertheless, make sure you have the necessary data close at hand before beginning the application:

1. Permanent address

You must also give your prior address if you have resided at this residence for less than a year.

2. Social Security number (SSN)

You will also need the SSN of any cosigners, if any.

3. School information

Included in this are your school’s name, enrollment status, academic program, and degree. 

Additionally, you must include your enrollment period and academic year.

4. Loan amount

Be prepared to provide information about the additional financial aid you anticipate receiving as well as the loan amount you’re requesting.

5. Information about employment

This includes the name of your present company and your annual gross revenue.

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6. Financial information

Assemble information about your bank accounts, monthly rent or mortgage payments, and other expenses.

You must specify whether you are applying as a cosigner or a student when you are ready to apply. 

Make a note that the loan money will be utilized to pay for a bachelor’s degree. Enter the correct state and school information after that.

The remaining application components can then be completed after providing general information on the student (and cosigner). 

If accepted, you will need to choose an interest rate type (e.g., fixed versus variable interest rate) and an in-school repayment plan that best suits your circumstances. 

Following your signature on the loan agreement, Sallie Mae will work with your school to handle the remaining steps of the procedure, including loan distribution.

You can be sure to experience user-friendliness throughout the entire application. 

However, if you require assistance, you can contact 1-877-279-7175 or utilize the chat tool on Sallie Mae’s website during business hours.

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Is It Possible To Defer A Sallie Mae Smart Option Loan?

You can postpone repayment in a few different ways.

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There is a six-month grace period if you decide to start making payments after finishing your undergraduate degree. 

Hopefully, this provides you some breathing room to find your feet and reliable work. 

You may postpone payments for up to 48 months if you’re a graduate student who wants to continue your study. 

Remember that while delaying payments may give you more time, the cost of your loan increases because interest continues to accrue. 

Co-signers are occasionally necessary to obtain student loans, but if you’ve made 12 consecutive on-time payments, you can discharge your co-signer.

Although late penalties apply, there is no penalty for prepayment. 

In order to avoid additional fees, it is best to sign up for an auto-draft payment plan. 

Missing a payment or consistently paying after the due date can have a negative impact on your credit rating.

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Are Sallie Mae Smart Option Student Loans the best option for you?

Before relying on private student loans, college students should explore all alternative funding options. 

Investigate all possible sources of funding, including federal student loan options, savings options, and grant and scholarship alternatives. 

Loan forgiveness programs and income-driven repayment plans are only two examples of the perks and safeguards offered to borrowers with federal loans. 

However, the Sallie Mae Smart Option Student Loan is a good choice if you need financial assistance for education or have run into borrowing challenges, whether they are related to your citizenship or residency status or your status as a half-time student.

If you think you might require private student loans, be careful to compare your options and only borrow what you actually need.

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Conclusion 

Sallie Mae Smart Option student loan is one of the most forgiving lenders if you’re concerned about becoming eligible for a student loan. 

The Sallie Mae Smart Option Student Loan will help you if you’re enrolled less than half-time, are a non-citizen of the United States, and need to borrow the whole amount required to attend your school. 

We consider them to be one of your greatest possibilities if you don’t intend to have a cosigner. 

Furthermore, after just 12 on-time monthly payments, if you intend to have a cosigner, they will release them (which is very low compared to other top lenders).

Naturally, no lender is flawless. 

You can definitely discover better rates and benefits with other reputable lenders when it comes to pricing. 

They’ll charge you a fee if you’re past due on a payment, and if you want to know what your interest rate would be, be prepared for them to run a hard inquiry on your credit.

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