Citizens Bank is one of the oldest financial institutions in America. Founded back in 1828, it is currently under Citizens Financial Group as its holding company. It has provided financial services for almost 200 years and still counting.
Among the various refinancing options in the market, Citizens Bank has also been offering its Student Loan Refinancing program. The status of reliability and trust that Citizens Bank has earned over its long years of service is one of its most appealing features. By refinancing with such experienced institutions, customers face lesser issues and ambiguity with their lenders when compared with smaller and younger platforms.
The only major issue with Citizens Bank is its narrow reach in terms of branches. They have more than 1,100 branches but only extends to 11 states in the New England, Mid-Atlantic and Midwest region. However, their services are not limited to just these states.
List of contents
- Citizens Bank Student Loan Refinance
- Interest rates
- Eligibility criteria
- Loan terms offered
- Modes of making payments
- Refinancing for parents
Citizens Bank Student Loan Refinance
The Student Loan Refinancing program offered by Citizens Bank gives you a chance to refinance your personal loans and/or federal loans with lower interest rates and flexible loan terms.
They offer to refinance student loans with the amount not lesser than $10,000. They can refinance loans as high as $300,000 for students with a bachelor's degree and below, and up to $500,000 for students with a graduate degree.
Benefits of Refinancing with Citizens Bank
If the interest rates and the current terms of your loans are not suitable for you and you are planning to refinance your student loans with Citizens Bank, you will receive the following benefits.
1 - Lower rate of interest
The interest rates offered by Citizens Bank are fairly competitive compared to other lenders n the market. When you refinance your student loan, you have the chance to receive a new loan with much lower interest rates that could potentially save you thousands of dollars over the life of the loan.
2 - Lesser monthly payments
Loans with lesser terms allow you to have a lesser monthly payment. This could improve your monthly expense pattern significantly. However, loans with longer terms would result in a higher loan amount throughout the life of the loan.
3 - Option of fixed and variable rates
Federal loans only come with fixed interest rates. However, most of the private lenders offer variable interest rates which are dependent on the market rate. If the market favors, borrowers may pay at much lower interest rates compared to fixed rates.
4 - Refinancing combines multiple-loan
You may refinance multiple loans into one new loan including private student loans and federal loans.
5 - Flexible terms
Citizens Bank offers variable loan terms to choose from. It could be 5, 7, 15, 20-year repayment period depending on your budget.
6 - Co-signer release
You will have the option to release your co-signer and become independent after making 36 on-time monthly payments on your refinanced loan.
7 - Multi-year approval
For courses with multiple years, you may receive approval for the entirety of the course without having to submit any progress report or transcripts.
8 - Loyalty Discount
A discount of 0.25% off the interest rate of the refinance loan is given if the account holder or the co-signer is certified.
9 - Autopay Discount
A discount that gives 0.25% off on the interest rate is given if an automatic payment is set up.
Learn more on student loan refinancing
The following are the various interest rates offered when you refinance your student loans under Citizens Bank.
1 - Fixed APR: 3.59% to 9.85%
Fixed interest starts a little higher than the variable rates. However, the interest rates will not change over the life of the loan.
2 - Variable APR: 2.60% - 9.60%
Variable interest rates could potentially be much lower than fixed rates at the start. However, the interest rate will change according to the market rate. In unfavorable conditions, you may have to pay with a rate as high as thrice the rate you started with.
To be eligible to refinance student loans with Citizens Bank borrowers must qualify the following criteria.
Be a U.S citizen, permanent resident or have a valid Social Security Number
Have a minimum loan amount of $10,000
12 qualifying monthly payments for students without a degree or with an associate degree
Have a good credit score or a cosigner who does
Must not be currently enrolled as a student
Federal Loans that are currently under the following income-driven repayment plan are not eligible for this program. They include Revised Pay As You Earn Repayment Plan (REPAYE Plan), Pay As You Earn Repayment Plan (PAYE Plan) and Income‑Contingent Repayment Plan (ICR Plan).
Loan terms offered under Citizens Bank
There are several repayment options including a 5-year plan, a 10-year plan, and a 15-year plan. The period to repay the loan is optional and can be chosen.
Additional payments can be made without penalty to pay off loans swiftly.
5-year plan - Interest rate and cost of borrowing are at the lowest.
7-year plan - Interest rates are low and cost-effective.
10-year plan - The Interest rate is lower and average saving in the cost of borrowing.
15-year plan - Elevated interest rate with the lowest monthly deposit and the cost of borrowing.
20-year plan - It offers the lowest monthly payments with the highest loan amount.
Modes of making payments
The following modes of payment are available to customers who refinance their student loans with Citizens Bank.
1 - Phone - The borrowers have the option to make payments by calling the following phone number 1-888-805-0200.
2 - Web - Borrowers can make multiple one-time payments through their web portal.
3 - E-mail - Borrowers can make payments via e-mail which has a secured line. You must mail your payments on the address which appears on your statement.
4 - Automated payment - Borrowers can set up an automatic payment from their savings account. The monthly payment dues will be automatically deducted from this account.
Refinancing for parents
Besides student loan refinancing, Citizens Bank offers the option for parents to refinance all the student loans that they have taken. It makes it easier for parents instead of making separate monthly payments for the multiple loans that they have taken for their children.
Citizens Bank claims that you could save up to 3.49% on interest rates when you refinance with them. Parents can refinance loans up to $500,000. The repayment terms and modes of payments remain the same as mentioned above.
Interest rates for parents
The following are the various interest rates offered when parents refinance their PLUS loans under Citizens Bank.
Fixed APR: 3.59% - 7.61%
Variable APR: 2.60% - 7.37%
Confused about borrowing money? Read student loans, refinancing, forgiveness and more to clear your queries
Citizens Bank being one of the oldest banks in America provides reliable services including their refinancing programs. They have a very user-friendly web portal from which customers can check all their account statements.
They also have a very reliable mobile application. Apart from student loan refinancing, Citizens also offer the option to refinance Parent PLUS Loans for parents who have taken loans to support higher education for their children.
The reliability of Citizens Bank when it comes to providing services is unmatched. However, not everybody will benefit the same way when refinancing with Citizens Bank. You must check with all your options in the market and choose the lender which will save you the most money in the long run.
Can I use student loans to study in a foreign country?
Currently, Citizen bank only provides student loans for those students who need funds for a US school study abroad program.
Do foreign schools participate in federal loan programs?
Many foreign schools participate in both the Federal Direct loan programs and Federal Direct Plus Programs.
Are international students eligible to borrow?
Citizen bank allows international students to borrow as long as they have a creditworthy co-signer who is a US citizen or a permanent resident.
Does citizen bank provide a loan that my parents can take out for my education?
Citizens Bank Student Loan for Parents, which enables parents to borrow a private student loan to cover the cost of college without adding the burden of debt to the student. It should be noted that there is no origination fee for this loan.
I received my financial aid award letter, but still, owe money to the school. Are there other loans available?
Given the situation, you should go for a private student loan. It is recommended to go first for all the available federal loans you are eligible for and then go for private loans to try and cover up any additional amounts.