How to Get a Student Loan Without a Co-Signer
How to Get a Student Loan Without a Co-Signer

Starting to think about how to pay for the college expenses you are about to incur? Will you need financial aid? Chances are, you will probably use some form of financial assistance; most students these days have to. There are many different types of loan options from federal loans to private loans. However, many require that you have good credit. As a young person, you may not have had the opportunity to establish your credit yet. But just because you don’t have credit, doesn’t mean you can’t get student loans. Even without a co-signer you may still be able to finance your education with student loans successfully. But, without a co-signer and with no credit history, your options may be just a little more limited. Keep reading to learn the steps involved in getting a student loan without a co-signer and with no credit history. It can be done!

Step One
Do your homework. Doesn’t that sound like something your parents would say? But it’s true, too, for finding student loans. Neither the Stafford nor Perkins loans require a credit check at this time. These are federal loans for traditional students.

Step Two
Perhaps the most important step in securing student loans is to complete the FAFSA, Free Application for Federal Student Aid. The FAFSA is the gatekeeper of sorts to federal student assistance. Your FAFSA will put you on track not only to receive loans, but it will also help you secure grant money if applicable. And, some states use information that you put on the FAFSA to determine your eligibility to state assistance. You’ll need your parents’ income tax returns to complete the FAFSA. If you worked, you’ll need yours, too.

Step Three
Apply for the Stafford loan. Stafford loans are either subsidized or unsubsidized, depending on who pays the interest while you’re a student. A Subsidized Stafford loan is for needy students, so if you have low-income and no credit or a cosigner, you will likely succeed in getting this loan. While the amount awarded in a Stafford Loan is small, it is a starting point.

Step Four
Apply for the Perkins loan, another federally-funded student loan. Perkins loans are usually designated for students who show the greatest financial need. The Perkins loan has a 5% interest rate and longer payback terms than the Stafford loan.

Step Five
If you are a non-traditional student, you may have a few more options available to you. While you still may only qualify for Stafford loans and Perkins loans, there are many scholarships and grants available for students returning to college to pursue degrees.

Private College Loans
Student loans that are obtained from private sources, such as banks or credit unions, generally do require a cosigner. However, if you have very good credit and/or a high interest rate attached to your loan, then you may be able to obtain one without a cosigner.

It is more than possible to obtain student loans without a cosigner – in fact, it is more than likely that you can. Federal student aid is available to almost anybody to make college more affordable, and no cosigner is necessary. Gift aid and private student loans also may help you to fund your academic career but may be more difficult to obtain, or more difficult to obtain without a cosigner, respectively.
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