The federal government has a variety of federal loan options available for students and parents, and we encourage you to review the following information carefully before making any decisions about your loans. If you have previously borrowed federal student loans at Wartburg or another postsecondary institution, you should begin by reviewing your borrowing history at www.nslds.ed.gov using your FSA ID. This will give you a better idea of how much you have borrowed to date and what your repayments might look like after graduation. Most importantly, remember these are loans and they must be repaid, so borrow only what you need. Please refer to the following to help you better understand your loan options. You do not have to make payments on Direct Loans while you are enrolled at least half-time. You also have a six month grace period after you graduate or drop below half-time enrollment before you begin repayment.
Federal Direct Loans
Direct Loans, from the William D. Ford Federal Direct Loan Program, are low-interest loans for eligible undergraduate students to help cover the cost of higher education. These federal loans are borrowed directly from the U.S. Department of Education at participating schools. These loans do not require a credit check. A small origination fee is withheld from the loan when it is disbursed to you.
There are borrowing limits on the maximum amount you are eligible to borrow each academic year (annual loan limit) and in total (aggregate loan limit). You may qualify to borrow both subsidized and unsubsidized loans based upon your demonstrated financial need and the maximum loan limit per grade level. The actual amount that you can borrow depends on your grade classification, whether you are a dependent or independent student and other factors. It may be less than the maximum amounts shown in the loan limit chart.
Direct Loan Borrowing Limits
The following chart provides maximum annual (fall, winter and summer) and aggregate loan limits for Subsidized and Unsubsidized Direct Loans.
|Classification||Dependent Undergraduate Student||Independent Undergraduate Student (and dependent students whose parents are unable to borrow PLUS Loans)||Graduate Student|
|Freshman||$5,500 ($3,500) *||$9,500 ($3,500)*||$20,500 (Graduate students are no longer eligible for Subsidized Loans as of July 1, 2012)|
|Sophomore||$6,500 ($4,500)*||$10,500 ($4,500)*|
|Junior/Senior||$7,500 ($5,500)*||$12,500 ($5,500)*|
|2nd BA/ Teacher Licensure||NA||$12,500 ($5,500)*|
|Maximum Total Debt from Loans (aggregate loan limits)||$31,000 ($23,000)*||$57,500 ($23,000)*||$138,500|
*The numbers in parentheses represent the maximum amount that may be subsidized. The loan amounts listed above cannot exceed your cost of attendance minus other financial aid received.
There are two types of Federal Direct Loans: Subsidized and Unsubsidized.
1. Direct Subsidized Loans provide a fixed interest rate and are available to undergraduate students who demonstrate financial need based on the results of the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). You are not charged interest on these loans while you are in school at least half-time and during deferment periods. The interest on your subsidized loan begins during your grace period. A new borrower on or after July 1, 2013 must complete your degree within 150% of the published length of your program to remain eligible for the interest subsidy benefits on all subsidized loans. If a degree is not completed within the 150% timeframe, you will lose all subsidy benefits and future eligibility for subsidized loans.
2. Direct Unsubsidized Loans provide a fixed interest rate for undergraduate loans and are available to students regardless of financial need (although the FAFSA must still be filed). Interest accrues on an unsubsidized loan from the time it is first disbursed to you. You can pay the interest while you are in school or allow it to accrue and be capitalized (added to the principal of the loan) upon repayment.
Interest is fixed and the current interest rate can be found online.
Borrowing a Direct Loan: Master Promissory Note & Entrance Counseling
If you are a first-time borrower of Direct Loans you will need to complete a Direct Loan Master Promissory Note (MPN) at www.studentloans.gov using your FSA ID. The MPN is a legal document in which you promise to repay your loans and any accrued interest and fees to the U.S. Department of Education. The MPN explains the terms and conditions of your loan and is used for loans that you receive over a period of multiple academic years. New borrowers of Direct Loans also need to complete Entrance Counseling at www.studentloans.gov using the FSA ID. This process helps you to understand the rights and responsibilities as a Direct Loan borrower. If you have borrowed Direct Loans at Wartburg in previous years, you have already completed both of these requirements. However, new students who may have borrowed Direct Loans while attending another institution will still need to complete MPN and Entrance Counseling before receiving loans at Wartburg.
Federal Direct PLUS Loans
Parents of dependent students may apply for a Direct PLUS Loan to help pay for their student’s education as long as certain eligibility requirements are met. To be eligible for a Direct PLUS Loan for parents:
Parents may borrow up to the cost of attendance minus other financial aid received. The interest rate is fixed and is charged from the date of the first disbursement until the loan is paid in full. Interest rates will be determined on an annual basis; however, rates for the specific academic year borrowed will be fixed for the life of the loan. An origination fee is deducted proportionately each time a disbursement is made.
Borrowing a Direct Parent PLUS Loan: Master Promissory Note & PLUS Request Process
All NEW and PREVIOUS parent borrowers will need to complete a PLUS loan request form. This form needs to be completed each time you wish to borrow a new amount. Once completed, please fax or mail this form to the Financial Aid Office.
If the credit is initially denied and the parent chooses to appeal or endorse the loan, the parent will be required to complete PLUS Loan Counseling at www.studentloans.gov.
Private Education Loans
Some families find that private education loans can be used as a source of additional funding when federal aid options have been exhausted. A private education loan is a nonfederal loan issued by a private lender such as a bank or credit union. Private education loans often have variable and fixed interest rates, require a credit check, have varied repayment options and do not provide the same benefits as federal student loans. Students may borrow up to the cost of attendance minus other financial aid received. Federal regulations require the Office of Financial Aid & Scholarships to be notified of any private education loans received. Students and parents should always exhaust federal loan options first before considering a private loan. If you determine that you need a private education loan to help pay for your educational expenses, you should carefully research and compare the options available from our Preferred Lender List.
The Financial Aid Office is utilizing FASTChoice, a loan comparison tool offered by Great Lakes Higher Education Corporation which allows students to compare up to five different loans side-by-side. By clicking on the following link, you will be directed away from the Wartburg College website. We encourage you to bookmark this page for future reference. Enter FASTChoice now to view private loan products that are a part of Wartburg College’s preferred lender list. Students may borrow from any lender they choose and are not required to use a lender on Wartburg’s preferred lender list. Wartburg College will process loans from any eligible lender you select. Loans will be disbursed in two equal payments at the beginning of the fall and winter terms or summer terms if applicable.
Preferred Lender List Disclosures In an effort to provide better counseling services to our students, Wartburg College has entered into a preferred lender arrangement (PLA). Federal and state law mandates that we must provide the following disclosures in association with this process:
Lender Selection: To determine which lenders and loan options to present, Wartburg College evaluated and selected lenders based on information requested from each financial institution. We feel the lenders on our list will provide you with exceptional customer service, excellent incentives such as low interest rates, low or no origination fees, and loan principal reductions. We are also interested in lenders who provide timely processing, electronic funds transfer capabilities, as well as counseling both before and after you complete the loan process.
Affiliation: Lenders chosen for this list are not affiliated with one another.
Federal Perkins Loans
Perkins Loans have a fixed low interest rate of 5% per year and are available to students who demonstrate high financial need based on the results of your Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). A credit check is not required to receive these loans and there is no origination fee. You are not charged interest on these loans while you are in school at least half-time and during grace and eligible deferment periods. Perkins Loan funding at Wartburg is limited, so not all qualifying students will receive a Perkins Loan. Students who have been awarded a Perkins Loan are required to complete a Perkins Promissory Note and entrance counseling online prior to receiving the Perkins loan each year.
All graduating senior Federal and private loan borrowers should consider viewing:
A benefit of Federal Direct loans is that the repayment plans are designed to provide flexibility for any budget. Once you complete school and enter repayment, you will have the option to pick from a number of helpful plans:
For more information on repayment plans: http://studentaid.ed.gov/repay-loans/understand/plans#direct-and-ffel
– Stay on top of your private loan.
– Know your repayment options.
– Troubleshoot repayment issues.
– Learn about private loan consolidation options.