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7 Best Student Loan Opportunities for International Students and How to Apply

International Students who lack financial aid can consider applying for student loans so that they can cover their academic expenses. International student loans are usually lent to students by private financial institutions because federal loans in different countries are only for citizens. Some financial institutions and banks lend to students who intend to pursue undergraduate, graduate, or professional training. Students get to choose their interest rate and repayment options before taking the loan. Students need to plan and save in college so that they can start paying back the loan before it becomes debt.

Most financial institutions require international students to have co-signers before they can borrow loans. A co-signer is someone who agrees to take responsibility for a loan if a student defaults in the repayment plan.

Requirements For International Students to Apply for a Student Loan

  • Proof of enrollment at a university, training boot camp, college, etc. (a completed registration form, acceptance letter). The student must state his/her year of study and course of study.
  • Biographical information (name, address, social security number, etc.)
  • Foreign unexpired passport
  • Driver’s license or official identification card
  • Employment and income information.
  • Recent tax documents (if applicable)
  • Requested loan amount
  • Personal contacts of persons to act as co-signer (number of persons depends on the financial institution)
  • Statement of Bank account and asset information
  • Payment obligations.

List of Top Financial Institutions That Offer Loans to International Students

1.) MPOWER Private Student Loan

MPOWER Financing is a public-benefit company that offers loans to international students, U.S. citizens, and Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) students who do not have collateral or a co-signer to take loans from banks or money lenders. The company has assisted over 2 billion students from more than 190 countries since its inception to graduate from universities through its scholarship and loan schemes. The company assists students who are enrolled at 350 universities and colleges in the USA and Canada. International students can take advantage of their loan scheme to pay off academic expenses. The company also offers a Path 2 Success Career Support program for students who borrowed from them free of charge. This program offers resume review sessions with industry experts, interview practice, mentoring, and networking opportunities to help students with their job search.

How Much Can International Students Borrow from MPOWER Financing?

Students can borrow up to $100,000 to cover their tuition fees, living expenses, books, and other academic expenses. International students are required to pay interests that are determined by the amount of money they borrowed. They can do this when they are in school and 6 months after graduation. If they are unable to pay after this period, the student is expected to pay a10-year loan term with full interest plus principal payments.

How to Apply For Loans With Mpower Financing

  • Students can check their eligibility and apply for a loan using the online application form.
  • Wait for the application decisions. The decision could be delayed by a few days if you need to send or upload documents.
  • Review the terms and conditions of the offer. Afterward, accept the offer. Students may be required to electronically sign documents that state their loan terms. The lender may require the school to certify the loan amount—which can take three to five weeks—before it can be disbursed. Some lenders disburse the loan directly to your school based on the school’s disbursement date, sometimes with one disbursement each semester.

Also Check: MPOWER Global Citizen Scholarship 2022 for Study in US and Canada

2.) Prodigy Private Student Loan

Prodigy Finance is a financial institution that offers loans to graduate students from more than 150 countries. Since its inception, it has helped finance the education of more than 2 billion students. Applications are open throughout the year to students enrolled in master’s programs such as business, engineering, law, and public policy in 850 universities around the world. The application process does not require co-signer or collateral details. Students can borrow between $15,000 to $220,000. They offer interest rates that are determined by credit history or future earning potential.

What Goes on During the Application Process?

During the online application, students are required to obtain a credit report and undergo a background check against Know Your Customer (KYC), Anti Money Laundering (AML), and Politically Exposed Persons (PEP) criteria. All necessary documents must be uploaded to the online platform before the application is deemed complete. The operations team is available to take any questions during the online application. If the application is successful, the loan will be disbursed to the student’s university and the student needs to re-sign a loan acceptance letter for the loan to be finalized. Students can request a loan letter from Prodigy finance so they can start their visa application process.

Students can decide to pay back the loans gradually while they are in school or when they graduate. International students can take loans to study at more than one university. Interest starts counting once the loan is released.

If a student decides to repay the loans 6 months after they graduate, the interest will add up with the principal balance.

Eligibility Requirements for Students to Get Prodigy Private Student Loan

  • Students must not be residing in countries that are not eligible for the loan.
  • Students must be enrolled at an eligible university.

3.) Sallie Mae Private Student Loan

This is a private financial institution that offers students loans to pursue a wide range of part-time or full-time degrees such as undergraduate, graduate, medical, career training, and certificate programs. Students can choose among various flexible payment options which can be in school or after graduation. Students can borrow a minimum of $1000 and above to cover tuition fees, books, accommodation, meals, travel costs, laptops, equipment, supplies, and tools. International students studying in various countries such as the UK and Canada are welcome to apply for a loan.

Sallie Mae offers lower interest rates to borrowers who repay $25 monthly or who signed up for interest-only repayments while in school. If a student does not have a credit history, Sallie Mae requires him/her to have a co-signer who has adequate income before they can apply for loans. The co-signer takes responsibility for the loan if the student fails to repay. The only exception to this is the death of the student which prompts the loan repayment to be discharged.

How to Apply For Sallie Mae Student Loan

The steps to apply include:

  • International students and co-signers need to fill the online application form. They will have to submit copies of the necessary documents online for verification.
  • After submission, the application will be reviewed. If successful, the student can choose his/her interest rate and repayment options. Next, both consigned and the student accepts the terms and conditions of the loan and signs electronically.
  • Sallie Mae sends a verification request to the student’s school. Once this is done, the loan will be disbursed to the school. Any student loan refund (extra money) will be issued to the student by the university.

It usually takes 15 days for Sallie Mae to review, verify and disburse payments to the student’s university.

4.) Ascent Funding Student Loan

This online financial institution lends loans to undergraduate and postgraduate international students who are enrolled to study in a US university provided they have co-signers. It offers a minimum loan of $2,001 and up to $400,000 which can be used to cover tuition fees, room and board, books, and academic expenses. To be eligible for this loan, an international student must have a co-signer who meets the following conditions:

  • Be a U.S. citizen or U.S. permanent resident.
  • Meet a minimum gross annual income of $24,000 for the current and previous year.
  • Must show proof of income.
  • Have a credit score.

They offer flexible repayment options for international students to choose from.

How to Apply For Ascent Funding Student Loan

International students and their co-signers are required to fill the online application form and submit the necessary documents. This takes a few minutes. After submission, Ascent reviews the application and makes a decision. This takes about 2 business days. The loan will be disbursed to the school. The school distributes the extra money to the student after tuition fees have been taken care of.

5.) Citizens Bank Private Student Loan

Citizens Bank offers loans to undergraduate and postgraduate international students who have a creditworthy cosigner who is a U.S. citizen or a permanent resident. International students need to be enrolled either full-time or part-time in an accredited US University for them to be eligible to borrow a loan. Students are allowed to borrow as little as $1,000 and a maximum of $150,000. They offer flexible repayment options to suit students. International students and co-signers are required to fill the online application free of charge and submit the required documents. Students will be notified if their application is successful. They will have to accept the terms and conditions of the loan and sign electronically before the loan is disbursed to the student’s university. International students will get their money when the university sends it to them.

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6.) Sofi Private Student Loan

This financial institution is known to offer low-interest loans to international students who intend to study for undergraduate or graduate degrees in the US, UK Canada, Ireland, Australia, and many other countries. They offer a minimum loan of $1000 above to cover tuition fees, room and board, books, and other academic expenses. They offer both in-school and post-study repayment plans that international students can choose from to repay their borrowed loans. Like other lenders who require co-signers, Sofi lends to international students provided they have creditworthy co-signers who are US citizens or permanent residents. This is done to verify creditworthiness and boost the application.

How to Apply for Sofi Funding Student Loan

International students and their co-signers are required to fill the online application form and submit the necessary documents. This takes 15 minutes. After submission, Sofi reviews the application and makes a decision. This takes about 2 business days. The loan will be disbursed to the student’s school. The school distributes the extra money to the student after tuition fees have been taken care of.

7.) College Ave Private Student Loan

College Ave offers low-interest loans to international students who intend to study undergraduate or graduate degrees in the US, UK Canada, Ireland, Australia, and many other countries. They offer a minimum loan of $1000 above to cover tuition fees, room and board, books, and other academic expenses. They offer both in-school and post-study repayment plans that international students can choose from to repay their borrowed loans. Like other lenders who require co-signers, College Ave lends to international students provided they have creditworthy co-signers who are US citizens or permanent residents

How to Apply for College Ave Funding Student Loan

International students and their co-signers are required to fill the online application form and submit the necessary documents. This takes a few minutes. After submission, Ascent reviews the application and makes a decision. This takes about 2 business days. The loan will be disbursed to the school. The school distributes the extra money to the student after tuition fees have been taken care of.

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