College Ave Student Loan Review

Prequalify for College Ave student loan rates without a hard credit check

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College Ave Student Loans is one of just a few lenders that exclusively provides student loans and no other financial products. This online-only lender based in Delaware touts the fact 98% of its borrowers make on-time payments and more than half began repaying their loan while still in school. 

Who Is a College Ave Student Loan Best For? 

College Ave is a great option for borrowers looking for undergraduate and graduate loans, parent loans, or loans for a career training program. You can also refinance your existing student loans with this lender. 

While it does not disclose a minimum credit score requirement, you can prequalify for a loan from College Ave without a hard credit check. This will allow you to see eligibility, rates, and terms. And if you decide to move forward, College Ave claims it takes about three minutes to complete a free online application. Getting a loan from College Ave may be a good fit for you if:

  • You want to compare lenders without affecting your credit 
  • A timely decision on your application is important to you 
  • You want to borrow between $1,000 and the school-certified cost of attendance
  • Want to refinance between $5,000 and $150,000 (or $300,000 if you have debt from medical school, dental school, or pharmacy or veterinary doctorate program) 

Pros

  • Prequalification available with no hard credit check

  • Apply online in just three minutes

  • Cash-back reward available for Career Loan borrowers

Cons

  • No other financial products offered

  • Doesn't disclose required minimum credit score

  • Some competitors require less time before a co-signer can be released

Pros Explained

  • Prequalification with no hard credit check: Some lenders, such as Sallie Mae, require a hard credit check to find out loan terms. This affects your credit because too many inquiries can lower your score. College Ave lets you find out loan terms without a hard credit check so you can compare lenders more easily without affecting your score
  • Apply online in just three minutes: You can submit an online application and get a decision in about three minutes. There are no fees to apply, and you can move forward quickly with securing the funds you need for school. 
  • Cash-back reward available for Career Loan borrowers: You’ll be rewarded for finishing your academic program within five years with a $150 reduction in your Career Loan balance, making what you owe a little less.

Cons Explained

  • No other financial products offered: Some lenders, such as SoFi, offer multiple financial products like CDs or personal loans, but College Ave doesn't. This means you could be missing out on relationship discounts that may be available when you have multiple accounts with the same financial institution. You’ll also need to find a different lender if you’re in need of a mortgage or personal loan in the future. 
  • Doesn't disclose required minimum credit score: College Ave indicates its credit score requirements are proprietary information. That means you can't find out if you're likely to qualify for a loan without submitting your details to prequalify. 
  • Some competitors require less time before a co-signer can be released: If you have a co-signer, they can’t be released from legal responsibility for loan repayment until half of your scheduled repayment period has elapsed, and then only if the previous 24 payments have been made on time. Other lenders allow co-signer release sooner. For example, Sallie Mae requires just 12 on-time payments before a co-signer can be let off the hook. 

What Does College Ave Offer?

College Ave makes it easy for students and parents to borrow for undergraduate programs, graduate programs, and career training. You also have the option to refinance existing student loans. Some of the loan products College Ave offers include:

  • Undergraduate student loans
  • Graduate student loans 
  • Parent loans
  • Career loans
  • Refinanced student loans 

College Ave Undergraduate Student Loan Rates & Terms

  • Loan amount: $1,000, up to the school-certified cost of attendance 
  • Fixed APR: 4.39% to 12.99% (with autopay)
  • Variable APR: 1.49% to 11.98% (with autopay)
  • Terms available: 5, 8, 10, or 15 years
  • Recommended credit score: Not disclosed
  • Grace period: 6 months after graduation or dropping below half-time enrollment
  • Fees: No origination or prepayment fees, but charges a late fee (amount depends on monthly payment amount)

Undergraduate loans are available to help you cover up to 100% of the cost of attendance. You can defer payments for six months after graduation, have a choice of four flexible repayment options, and can score a discount for auto-paying your loans. 

College Ave Graduate Student Loan Rates & Terms

  • Loan amount: $1,000 up to the school-certified cost of attendance 
  • Fixed APR: 4.39% to 11.98% (with autopay)
  • Variable APR: 1.79% to 10.97% (with autopay)
  • Terms available: 5, 8, 10 or 15 years
  • Recommended credit score: Not disclosed
  • Grace period: 9 months
  • Fees: No origination or prepayment fees, but charges a late fee (amount depends on monthly payment amount)

Graduate student loans provide money for a postgraduate degree, master’s degree, doctoral degree, or MBA or professional degree. You have a choice of four different repayment options, including flat-fee or interest-only payments while in school, and can pick between fixed and variable rate loans. 

College Ave Parent Loans Rates & Terms

  • Loan amount: $1,000 to $80,000                          
  • Fixed APR: 4.39% to 12.97% (with autopay)
  • Variable APR: 1.49% to 11.96% (with autopay)
  • Terms available: Between 5 and 15 years 
  • Recommended credit score: Not disclosed
  • Grace period: None
  • Fees: No origination or prepayment fees, but charges a late fee (amount depends on monthly payment amount)

College Ave helps parents afford the cost of a college education by providing student loans with flexible repayment options including interest-only payments, interest payments plus whatever your chosen amount is while kids are in school, or full payment of both principal and interest to pay off the loan faster. 

College Ave Career Loans Rates & Terms

  • Loan amount: $1,000 up to the school-certified cost of attendance 
  • Fixed APR: 4.39% to 12.95% (with autopay)
  • Variable APR: 1.49% to 12.99% (with autopay)
  • Terms available: 5, 8, 10, or 15 years
  • Recommended credit score: Not disclosed
  • Grace period: 6 months after graduation or dropping below half-time enrollment
  • Fees: No origination or prepayment fees, but charges a late fee (amount depends on monthly payment amount)

College Ave Career loans are available for undergraduates enrolled in certain career-focused programs, including some programs at community colleges. You can borrow up to the full cost of attending school and have a choice of four repayment plans including interest-only, flat $25 payments (while in school), full payments, or deferment until six months after graduation. 

If you borrow a Career loan through College Ave and finish your degree within five years from the date of the first loan disbursement to the school, you may qualify for the $150 Success Rewards statement credit. College Ave will apply it to your Career loan balance to help lower the amount you owe.

College Ave Refinanced Student Loans Rates & Terms  

  • Loan amount: $5,000 to $150,000 or $300,000 if you have a medical, dental, pharmacy, or veterinary degree
  • Fixed APR: 4.64% to 8.99% (with autopay)
  • Variable APR: 3.64% to 8.99% (with autopay)
  • Terms available: 16 options between 5 and 20 years
  • Recommended credit score: Not disclosed
  • Grace period: None
  • Fees: No origination or prepayment fees, but charges a late fee (amount depends on monthly payment amount)

College Ave enables you to refinance both private and federal student loans. Refinanced loans are available only to borrowers 18 or over who have graduated from an eligible program and who meet underwriting requirements. When applying, you'll need to provide your current loan servicer information, including your account number and the amount you want to refinance.

College Ave does not offer student loan refinancing to borrowers residing in Maine. 

How to Get a Student Loan From College Ave

To qualify for a student loan from College Ave, you must meet certain requirements including enrolling in a degree-granting program and attending school at least half time unless you're in an eligible school that qualifies you for less than half-time enrollment. 

You can only apply online (no phone applications are allowed) and will get a credit decision within three minutes. Once you're approved and electronically sign your loan documents (which can be done immediately), College Ave will contact the school for certification and then schedule funds for release on the school's timeline. 

Repaying Your College Ave Student Loan

College Ave provides flexible repayment options, including four different payment plans while in school. You can defer payments on most loans, pay a flat $25 amount, pay interest-only, or make your full principal and interest payments. If you set up automatic payments, you'll also qualify for an interest-rate discount of 0.25% on your loan. You also have flexibility in your repayment timeline if you refinance so you can ensure your monthly payment fits in your budget. 

The Bottom Line

College Ave has competitive student loan interest rates and its $150 statement credit for graduates with Career loans provides you with a little bit of a break on loan repayment. While it does not disclose the minimum required credit score for its loans, you can submit your prequalification request and get a quick decision that doesn't affect your credit score. This makes College Ave worthy of a spot on your list of student loan lenders to consider

Article Sources

  1. College Ave Student Loans. "About Us." Accessed May 14, 2020.

  2. College Ave Student Loans. "Find Your Best Student Loan." Accessed May 14, 2020.

  3. College Ave Student Loans. "Frequently Asked Questions: How Much of My Education Costs Will This Loan Cover?" Accessed May 14, 2020.

  4. College Ave Student Loans. "Frequently Asked Questions: What Is the Minimum and Maximum Amount That Can Be Refinanced?" Accessed May 14, 2020.

  5. College Ave Student Loans. "Career Loan with Success Rewards Terms & Conditions." Accessed May 14, 2020.

  6. College Ave Student Loans. "Frequently Asked Questions: Can a Cosigner Ever be Released From the Loan?" Accessed May 14, 2020.

  7. Sallie Mae. "Apply to Release Your Cosigner." Accessed May 14, 2020.

  8. College Ave Student Loans. "Undergraduate Student Loans." Accessed May 14, 2020.

  9. College Ave Student Loans. "Graduate Student Loans." Accessed May 14, 2020.

  10. College Ave Student Loans. "Parent Loan Possibilities." Accessed May 14, 2020.

  11. College Ave Student Loans. "Undergraduate & Graduate Career Loans." Accessed May 14, 2020.

  12. College Ave Student Loans. "Refinance Your Student Loans." Accessed May 14, 2020.

  13. College Ave Student Loans. "Frequently Asked Questions: What Is the Auto-Pay Rate Reduction?" Accessed May 14, 2020.