Updated: Nov 15, 2022
There is arguably no more visible student loan refinancing company right now than SoFi. Founded in 2011 by four students at Stanford University, the company grew steadily into the industry leader that it is today.
SoFi has refinanced over $30 billion in student loan debt, and has helped over 375,000 borrowers since their operations began.
This article will focus solely on SoFi student loan refinancing.
What is SoFi?
A large and still growing private lender, SoFi predominantly focuses on working with higher income earners that graduated from top colleges, but this in no way a requirement.
Known for their perks and customer service, they offer other perks and services to borrowers including:
Relationships with financial advisors
Refinancing with SoFi
SoFi refinancing may be an option for you if you have a minimum of $5,000 in outstanding debt, and unlike other private lenders, you can oftentimes borrow up to your total loan balance that is still outstanding.
The experience is meant to be a little more upscale than with other lenders, and they offer
There are no minimum income requirements to refinance with SoFi, and anybody with at least an associate degree is eligible to refinance, so long as your monthly income is greater than your monthly expenses.
Plus, if you refinance with our referral link, you'll earn $300 after your loan funds!
SoFi loan terms and details
SoFi offers loans with a fairly standard range of terms, including 5, 7, 10, 15, and 20 years. The late fees are very manageable, at just $5, which does not kick in until your payment is 15 days late.
Of course, there will be impact to your credit score.
Like LendKey, there are no application or origination fees, and there is also no prepayment penalty if you decide to pay off your loans as quickly as possible.
Get our student loan refinancing calculator to see how different loan terms and rates can change your repayment!
SoFi student loan refinancing eligibility
SoFi offers a lot more flexibility than many other private lenders on the market. Regardless of this, your eligibility may depend on things like your credit score, debt to income ratio, and history of repaying past debts.
In order to be eligible for student loan refinancing with SoFi, you'll need to meet the following criteria:
Be a citizen of the United States, permanent resident, or on a legal visa. Some other immigration statuses are also eligible with an eligible cosigner.
Have achieved at least an associate degree
Have a credit score of at least 670 and ideally above 700
This likely isn't an exhaustive list, and you'll likely find other requirements that you need to be in compliance with to retain your refinancing eligibility.
Another unique feature to the SoFi experience is that they deal with parent loans. Unlike LendKey, for example, SoFi allows you to refinance Parent PLUS loans into your name.
Pros to working with SoFi
There are some undeniable perks to refinancing your student loan debt with SoFi, including:
Using soft credit checks to qualify prospective customers
Borrower perks offered to customers
Pro: Using soft credit checks
By evaluating your finances and prequalifying you off a soft credit pull, you'll avoid any risk of your credit score declining as a result. After you've prequalified, though, if you decide to move forward with an application, a hard credit inquiry will occur at that time, which can have an effect on your credit score.
Pro: SoFi's customer perks
As a private lender, SoFi also offers unique programs to their customers. Since federal borrowers that refinance with a private lenders will lose access to the repayment options, federal rights, and protections offered by the federal government, SoFi has put some protections in place to protect you in case the unexpected happens:
Unemployment forbearance - If you lose your job, rest assured knowing that you can postpone your loan payments for up to 3 months at a time (for up to 12 months over the course of your loan repayment). And while interest will continue to accrue, this is still a better protection than many other loans offer.
Of course, no lender is going to be the perfect solution for all borrowers looking to refinance. For those that are looking to use a hesitant cosigner, for example, you may be better off looking elsewhere, as SoFi does not offer cosigner release, like CommonBond does.
Essentially, if you use a cosigner, then their name will be on the loan until it has been paid off.
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