Chances are if you’re dealing with student loan debt, you’re not just dealing with one loan. And if you couldn’t cover the costs with federal loans, you very well may have turned to a private lender, such as a bank or other lending institution (e.g., Sallie Mae) to fund the rest of your expenses.
One option you have when you begin tackling your student loan debt is to explore loan consolidation.
[Back to top] Applying for consolidation takes most borrowers less than 30 minutes, according to the Federal Student Aid website.
As part of the process, you’ll need to provide details about your existing federal student loans, and choose a federal loan servicer and repayment plan for your new consolidation loan.
You have to complete the application in a single session, so do your research before you start. You can consolidate all your federal loans or just some of them.
You can consolidate all, just some, or even just one of your student loans.
Consolidating federal student loans may be a good strategy to lower monthly payments or to get out of default, but it is not always a good idea.