How to consolidate a federal loan?

The Federal Student Loan Consolidation program is designed to help students transition from a pile of payments to one monthly payment. In this program, multiple student loans are paid off by the Department of Education and one new loan is created. Often the monthly payments are extended, however, the potential for a lower interest rate as well as the lowered monthly payment attract many debtors.

The application for federal student loan consolidation application is available on the Internet. If equipped with all necessary loan information, the process takes about 20 minutes. Included on the site is the helpful online calculator feature. By inputting the data of all loans, an estimated monthly payment can be calculated.

HOW TO APPLY

    The Application Home tab at www.loanconsolidation.ed.gov is where borrowers submit information for review. After applying, a digital promissory note is able to be printed and mailed (within 14 days) or signed instantly online. Then an email is sent to a directed account with a toll free number to be used to check on loan status.

HOW THE PROCESS WORKS

    - Assessing the Application
    Applications are reviewed and, if necessary, omitted information is requested. A promissory note is mailed if one has not been electronically signed. If requested information is not supplied within 14 days, the loan application process is aborted.

    - Verifying the Loans
    After reviewing the application, loans are verified. Lenders are allowed 10 days to verify the loans by postal mail, although some are electronically verified.

    - Processing Repayment Plan
    In the event that the borrower selected Income Contingent Repayment (ICR) Plan or is required to repay by this method due to a defaulted loan, the Internal Revenue Service must confirm the accuracy of the information or the process is slowed with additional requests for borrower information.

    - Eradicating Previous Loans
    Once these processes have been completed, previous loans are repaid and summaries are mailed to the borrower.

    - Finalizing the Account