Best Student Loan Refinance Companies for 2022

Looking for the best student loan refinance to save on interest and monthly payments? Here’s a list of the best student loan refinance companies.

Updated by Jason Joy Manoj on 1st February 2022

Student loans are stressful to manage — even more stressful if you think you’re paying more than the market price. That’s right; you might be paying a higher interest rate for your loan than the average student and not realize it until a few years into your loan. 

The solution? Finding a solid student loan refinance company. But how do you pick the best company to refinance student loans? Cost is a start, but loan terms might be another deciding factor. Today we’ll go through some of the best student loan refinance companies to help you pick the right fit. 

Rank

Lender

Rates

Eligible degrees

1

Earnest

Fixed: 2.44% to 5.79%

Variable: 1.74% to 5.64%

Undergraduate and Graduate

2

SoFi

Fixed: 2.49% to 6.94%

Variable: 1.74% to 6.59%

Undergraduate and Graduate

3

CommonBond

Fixed: 2.59% to 6.94%

Variable: 1.74% to 6.59%

Undergraduate and Graduate

4

LendKey

Fixed: 2.49% to 6.94%

Variable: 1.74% to 6.59%

Undergraduate and Graduate

5

Discover

Fixed: 2.49% to 6.94%

Variable: 1.74% to 6.59%

Undergraduate and Graduate

6

Citizens Bank

Variable: 1.99% to 7.58%

Fixed: 2.44% to 7.83%

Undergraduate and Graduate

7

RISLA

Fixed: 2.69% to 5.54% 

Undergraduate and Graduate

8

Laurel Road

Variable: 2.14% to 6.11%

Fixed: 2.75% to 6.25%

Undergraduate and Graduate

9

Splash Financial

Variable: 1.74% to 5.45%

Fixed: 2.30% to 6.62%

Graduate

Now, it may be tempting to scroll through the above list to find the company with the lowest interest rates. But student loan refinancing isn’t so simple. There’s always more to consider, which we’ll cover in the next sections describing each company and their pros and cons. 

 

Best Student Loan Refinance Companies

Here are some of the best banks to refinance student loans:

 

    1. Earnest

Student Loan Refinance Company - Earnest

Earnest is a well-known refinance company that has interest rates consistent with many other companies on the market. However, the company offers unique perks that might make up for the lackluster interest rate. 

Here are some of the benefits that come with refinancing with Earnest:

  • Customized loan terms
  • Pay as much as you want without penalty
  • Flexible choice between bi-weekly or monthly payments
  • Refinance both private and federal loans
  • Option to defer payments
  • Lowest credit score threshold for eligibility (650). 

If that weren’t enough, the most recent reviews of Earnest are impeccable, as students rave about the company’s easy processes, great customer service, and competitive interest rates. 

Fixed Interest Rate: 2.44%-5.79%

Variable Interest Rate: 1.74%-5.64%

Why We Like Them: Flexible loan terms

 

    2. LendKey

LendKey Logo

Like Earnest, LendKey offers competitive interest rates and customizable loan terms, specifically between 5 and 20 years. A transparent refinance company, LendKey doesn’t charge students any origination fees nor charge them for early repayment. For most competitive rates, though, you’ll need a higher credit score (660) to be eligible. 

A potential drawback of LendKey, though, is that you can only refinance your student loans if you’re the primary borrower (not eligible if your parents took out the loan).

Fixed Interest Rate: 2.49% to 6.94%

Variable Interest Rate: 1.74% to 6.59%

Why We Like Them: No fees for early repayment

 

    3. SoFi

SoFi Logo

SoFi is a great student loan refinance option if you’re a softie for benefits. Interest rates are comparable to other companies, as are loan terms. However, SoFi offers so many perks to members that shine above the competition:

  • Unemployment Protection: Loan payment deferral from 3-12 months if you’re laid off
  • Referrals: Earn $300 for every referral you make that signs up for a SoFi loan
  • Financial Planner: Free access to certified financial advisors to discuss your financial goals

Fixed Interest Rate: 2.49%-6.94%

Variable Interest Rate: 1.74%-6.59%

Why We Like Them: Member perks

 

    4. Discover

Discover Logo

Some refinance companies don’t charge origination fees. But Discover is one of the very few that don’t charge any of the following:

  • Origination fees
  • Application fees
  • Late fees
  • Missed Payment fees

On top of minimal fees, Discover refinanced student loans are accessible even without a cosigner; however, you’ll likely earn a better interest rate with the security of a cosigner on your application. They also allow you to refinance your student loans before you graduate, which is a huge plus if you’re stuck with high interest rates for other loans. 

Fixed Interest Rate: 2.49%-6.94%

Variable Interest Rate: 1.74%-6.59%

Why We Like Them: No late fees

 

    5. CommonBond

CommonBond Logo

Looking to refinance a medical school loan? Common Bond is the best place to refinance student loans from medical school. If you’re still in school, you’ll need a cosigner to apply for a CommonBond loan. Though CommonBond’s interest rates are comparable to others, this company stands out with its flexible hybrid loan option. 

The hybrid loan option offers a fixed interest rate for the first five years of your loan. After that, it turns into a variable rate. This is a great way to secure a low interest rate and incentivize faster repayment on your loans. Make sure you pay on time, though. CommonBond charges as much as 5% for missed payments, but with a $10 cap. 

Fixed Interest Rate: 2.59% to 6.94%

Variable Interest Rate: 1.74% to 6.59%

Hybrid Interest Rate: 2.84% to 6.72%

Why We Like Them: Flexible Repayment

 

    6. RISLA

RISLA Logo

RISLA, or Rhode Island Student Loan Authority offers only fixed interest rates on their student loans. Depending on your risk appetite (or lack thereof) this might be a plus. One of the biggest benefits of refinancing with RISLA, however, is its income-based repayment plan. RISLA bases your monthly payment amount on both your income and family size, making student loan repayment more manageable. 

Unlike other private lenders, RISLA offers loan relief if you experience a permanent disability - an ethical touch in a world with mainly cut-throat lenders! Finally, RISLA offers both graduate loan deferment for up to 36 months and forbearance in the event of unemployment or emergency.  

Fixed Interest Rate: 2.69% to 5.54%

Why We Like Them: Income-based repayment

 

    7. Laurel Road 

The average student loan is about $30,000, but we all know that it’s possible to surpass that. If you’re looking at refinancing student loans in the hundreds of thousands, Laurel Road is a great option because they offer unlimited loan amounts to borrowers. If you’re a parent who took out a loan for your child, Lauren Road might be the best company to refinance student loans. Ideal for Parent PLUS borrowers, Laurel Road refinance terms allow loan transfers to different names. Parents can rest easy knowing that their kids will have up to 20 years to pay off the loan, 

Fixed Interest Rate: 2.75% to 6.25%

Variable Interest Rate: 2.14% to 6.11%

Why We Like Them: Unlimited loan amount

 

    8. Citizens Bank

Citizens Bank shines in this list of the best student loan refinancing companies because of its accessibility to college dropouts. Life takes unexpected turns sometimes, but many college dropouts are barred from student loan refinance companies simply because they didn’t finish school. 

As long as you’ve paid 12 consecutive payments on your existing student loans, Citizens Bank will approve you for a student loan refinance, provided that you meet their other eligibility criteria. Other perks include a low starting interest rate, a loyalty discount of 0.25% on your interest rate, an automatic payment discount, and cosigner release. Keep in mind though that you cannot be currently enrolled in a post-secondary school program for Citizens Bank to consider you. 

Fixed Interest Rate:  2.44 to 7.83%

Variable Interest Rate:1.99% to 7.58%

Why We Like Them: Ability to refinance even if you dropped out of college; low interest rate potential

 

    9. Splash Financial

Splash Financial Logo

When you consider Splash Financial’s 0.25% autopay discount, this loan refinance company offers the lowest interest rates around! Flexible loan terms, no fees, and cosigner release are all positive attributes of this student loan refinance company. 

One potential drawback, though, is that you may have to join a credit union to take advantage of Splash’s interest rates.

Fixed Interest Rate: 2.30% to 6.62%

Variable Interest Rate: 1.74% to 5.45%

Why We Like Them: Low interest rates

Interested in student loan refinance companies that offer tailored solutions to your degree? Check out our articles about:

 

Best Student Loan Refinance Company by Category

Here’s our student loan company picks for each borrowing category:

Best for Students Without Degrees: Citizens Bank

Best for Parents: Lendkey

Best for Hybrid Loans: Common Bond

Best Features: Earnest

Best Member Perks: SoFi

Best for Ethics: RISLA

 

Conclusion

The best student loan refinance company is one that checks all the boxes in your personal scenario and budget. Slowly research every option to ensure you pick the best company to refinance student loans!
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Frequently Asked Questions

  • 1.How much student loan debt can be refinanced?

    You can refinance a student loan debt of $5,000 to $500,000 of your current federal, private, and Parent Plus loans. The limit of refinancing depends on the amount borrowed by the borrower.

  • 2.What credit score is needed to refinance student loans?

    Generally, a credit score of more than 600 is required to qualify for refinancing. If the borrower fails to meet this then a cosigner with a good credit score that is between 650 to 680 is needed for refinancing student loans.

  • 3.Does everyone qualify for student loans?

    No. Not everyone qualifies and you need a degree, good credit score, and a regular income that lets you meet your expenses otherwise you will not be able to refinance your student loans

  • 4.Which loans can be included in refinancing?

    You can include all the loans that you have taken for your education but you cannot include debt from mortgage or credit card even if you have used those loans to pay educational expenses.

  • 5.Is there any risk of refinancing?

    Yes.There is a big risk that comes with refinancing. Extending payment loans makes you pay a lot of interest on your student loans. It’s better to compare the payment you pay over time with your total loan costs before refinancing. If it would be high then its better to rethink refinancing.

  • 6.When is the best time to refinance?  

    Its better to refinance when you get lower interest than the present interest rate on your student loans. before refinancing if you are using an in-school deferment option or grace period you will move into full repayment once your loans have been refinanced.

  • 7.Can a student loan be refinanced when he/she is still in college?

    No.Most lenders do not allow you to refinance your student loans when you are in school. You need to be close to your graduation and likely to start repayment immediately then only the lender allows you to refinance your student loans.