Student Loans for Oklahoma Students
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Going to college isn’t cheap. Many students require some sort of financial aid. In Oklahoma there is a organization that helps students look for colleges, find various avenues of financial aid, provide financial literacy, and offer student loan management programs and services. They are the Oklahoma College Assistance Program (OCAP). OCAP is dedicated to students and stick to five key factors:
- To build enthusiasm in students for education beyond high school
- To empower both students and families so they can reach their educational goals
- Provide schools and communities with the necessary tools and support needed to help students succeed
- training and technical support to partners in the industry
- Provide advice and debt counseling to those with student loans, and help prevent defaulting on these loans
Oklahoma Alternative Loans
The first thing any college student should do before applying for enrollment is apply for any scholarships that particular school is offering. If that isn’t enough, the next step is to search for grants or other sorts of federal funding. These types of financial aid require no repayment. After you have exhausted all other sorts of financial aid but still need more, then is the time to look to alternative or private student loans. Unlike scholarships and grants, you do have to repay these after graduation.
One feature of alternative loans is that they are credit-based. So if your credit score isn’t up to par, you may need to have a co-signor in order to get the loan. Just remember to borrow only as much as you need. If you borrow too much, you may be paying off the loans longer than you would otherwise have to. OCAP can help you find the most affordable and safest loan available.
Every private or alternative loan requires the borrower to submit to a credit check. Young students just entering college usually have very low credit scores or no credit score at all. The norm in these situations is to get a co-signor to sign the loan agreement with you. This can be a parent, relative, friend, or legal guardian. Be sure to have a co-signor with a great credit rating. The better their rating, the better the interest rates on your repayment will be and the more you could potentially get. If your alternate loan provider makes no mention of a credit check or says that it isn’t needed, they probably aren’t a legitimate loaner. DO NOT GO THROUGH THEM!
Deferments and Forbearance
If you do end up using alternative loans, and start having problems with repayment, contact your lender immediately! There are many people who go through hardships. After your six-month grace period after graduation is over, you still may not have found a job. Lenders understand this and offer forbearance or deferment plans. This would allow you to temporarily reduce or postpone your monthly loan repayments. Using a forbearance or deferment plan can save you from defaulting on your student loans. Lenders always frown upon a default and it will haunt you the rest of your life and ruin your credit.