Ally Bank offers a wide variety of services — from savings accounts to variable-rate mortgages — but one product you won’t find is Ally Bank student loans.
If you are an Ally Bank consumer looking for a student loan, where can you find one that will help you pay for college without breaking the bank? Here are some great alternatives, including both federal and private student loans:
Maximize your federal student loan eligibility
Before turning to a bank for a student loan, research your federal student loan options. Federal Student Aid Offers subsidized and non-subsidized student loansas well as PLUS loans for graduate students and parents.
Federal loans usually have low fixed interest rates and usually do not require a co-signer to borrow. In addition, they have built-in protections, including:
To access federal student loans, all you need to do is submit the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). Your letter of financial support from your university will tell you how much you are eligible to borrow.
Since federal loans typically have borrower-friendly terms, you should probably max out these terms before turning to a private lender. However, because federal loans do loan limits, so you may not get enough money to cover college costs. Then it may make sense to take out a private student loan.
Compare private student loan options
While you won’t find student loans with Ally Bank, you can borrow a private student loan from another bank, credit union, or online lender. Unlike the typical federal loan, you must pass a credit and income check to qualify. Most undergraduate students cannot qualify on their own, so they apply with a co-signer, such as a parent.
Rates and terms vary by lender, so it’s important to: compare loan offers from multiple lenders. Find a loan with the best interest rate to lower your borrowing costs. You can also look at other factors before choosing a lender, such as: borrower protection (e.g. forbearance) and a reputation for strong customer service.
And familiarize yourself with the details of your loan before signing any paperwork. Find out when your first payment is due and if your loan comes with a grace period. Carefully choose your repayment term – be it the standard 10 years or something else – and use a student loan calculator to estimate your monthly payments.
Reading the fine print will help you understand exactly what you’re getting into and hopefully avoid taking on a heavy amount of debt.
5 Great Student Loan Alternatives from Ally Bank
Since Ally Bank student loans don’t exist, where should you go? You have many options – here are a few lenders with great rates and terms to consider.
Ally . Private Student Loan Alternatives
First, let’s see where we can go for student loans. Remember, you almost always want to exhaust all your federal student loan options first. (See why.) But if you still need money for college after that, here are some great options to consider.
- Has variable annual percentage rates (APRs) from 1.19% to 11.98% and fixed APRs from 3.49% to 12.99% as long as you are subscribed to autopay
- Offers loans to cover up to 100% of the cost of attending your school
- Offers 5, 8, 10, 15 year repayment terms
- Allows you to defer payments while you are in school and six months after you graduate, or make interest-only, fixed or full payments while you are in school
- Does not charge origination fees
- Offers variable APRs from 1.89% to 11.98% and fixed APRs from 3.75% to 13.30% as long as you are subscribed to autopay
- Offers loans to cover 100% of the cost of participation
- Let’s lend you a minimum of $1,000 with no maximum limit
- Loans have no costs
- Repayment terms of 5, 10, 15 years
- Shows you multiple offers at once from its partner lenders, including credit unions and community banks
- 10-year repayment term
- These partners offer variable APRs from 1.13% to 11.23% and fixed APRs from 3.50% to 12.60%, as long as you are subscribed to autopay
Ally Bank Student Loan Refinancing Alternatives
At some point during the repayment of your student loan, you may want to refinance. When you refinance, a lender pays off your existing loan with a new loan with a lower interest rate — that lower interest rate will save you money. Just as there are no Ally Bank student loans, there are also no Ally Bank refinancing products.
Instead, check out these two lenders to see if either one is the best alternative for you.
- Offers variable APRs from 1.74% (with autopay) to 9.51% (without autopay) and fixed APRs from 2.29% to 8.63% (both without autopay discount).
- No application, initiation or prepayment fees
- Minimum loan of $5,000 with no maximum (depending on lending partner)
- Provides private and federal student loan refinancing
- Offers variable APRs from 1.74% and fixed APRs from 2.99% as long as you are subscribed to autopay
- No application, initiation or prepayment fees
- Repayment terms up to 20 years
- Offers loans from $5,000 to $500,000
Shop around to find the best deal
Even if Ally Bank were offering student loans, it would still be a good idea to shop around with different lenders before choosing one.
Many online lenders make it easy to check your rates from the comfort of your laptop or phone, after providing a few basic details. These instant rate quotes do not affect your creditworthiness at all and allow you to compare multiple offers at once. By taking the time to compare offers, you can find a loan that will cost you the least interest over the years.
This same shopping around principle applies if you decide to: refinance for lower rates in the future. Since private lenders all want your business, let them compete for it.
And if you’ve exhausted your federal loan options and need to turn to a private lender, you should still make sure to shop around. Once your first payment has been made, you’ll be glad you took the time to get a private student loan with the best interest for you.