New Federal Law Lets Student Loan Borrowers Choose Lenders
June 21, 2006
(HELENA) Congress recently passed legislation that repeals the single lender rule for student loans. With the new legislation, student loan borrowers now can consolidate their loans with any lender they choose.
”Without the single lender rule in place, borrowers now have many opportunities to find the best customer service, interest rates and loan packages available,” said Jim Stipcich, president of Student Assistance Foundation (SAF). SAF, a Montana nonprofit, manages and services student loans for the Montana Higher Education Student Assistance Corporation (MHESAC). MHESAC provides the Swiftstart Consolidation Loan Program for Montana borrowers.
Loan Rates to Rise
”Student borrowers have less than a week to lock in their current lower interest rates that are set to rise on July 1,” Stipcich said. “By locking in lower interest rates now, students could potentially save thousands of dollars over the course of repaying their loans.”
MHESAC Can Help
According to Stipcich, MHESAC can help students consolidate their loans and save money. “We know our customer service and dedication to the success of Montana students make a compelling reason for folks to stay local,” he said. As a nonprofit, all of MHESAC’s earnings are returned to Montana students in the form of loan discounts and reduced interest rates – so far nearly $28 million.
MHESAC loans are serviced by Student Assistance Foundation, a Montana nonprofit that uses its earnings to provide grants and outreach programs for Montana students. “To date, Student Assistance Foundation has provided $3.1 million in Acce$$ (pronounced “access”) grants for Montana students – more than any other Montana-based student grant program in the state,” Stipcich said. “We also staff campus outreach offices across the state; spearhead College Goal Sunday – an annual statewide effort that helps Montana families complete their federal financial aid forms; and provide access to the Montana Career Information System (MCIS).” MCIS, a Web resource for Montana students, is dedicated to financial aid, college and career planning and debt management.
For more information, call 800.852.2761, ext. 9750 or visit the Web site at http://www.safmt.org.
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