Alternative Education Loans
Alternative loans are designed to help "fill the gap" when the amount of financial aid offered is less than the students total cost of attendance.
We recommend that you first exhaust your eligibility under the federal loan programs before applying for a private student loan. Click on our Alternative Loan Comparison Guide below for a breakdown of the differences in the loan programs and contact information for known lenders.Click here to view the ALTERNATIVE LOAN COMPARISON GUIDE.
The Financial Aid staff in the One Hop Shop created this guide to help assist you in choosing a lender. The guide was developed based on a survey of lenders doing business in our region. You are NOT required to use any of the lenders listed in this guide. You may first want to check with your own credit union or bank for options.
What are the differences between federal and private loans?
Federal Student Loans
Federal Parent Loan
* or Parent
|Repayment begins 6 months after enrollment ends.||Repayment begins 60 days after disbursement.||Repayment begins 60 days after disbursement.|
| No interest on Subsidized Loans unless student exceeds 150% of current program length.
Interest accrues on all Unsubsidized Loans.
|Interest accrues while enrolled.||Interest accrues while enrolled.|
*Often a co-borrower is required by the lender in order for the student to be approved as most students do not have enough income and credit history.
As you can see from the chart above, loans are borrowed in the students name and based on credit worthiness. Even if you are approved without a co-borrower, you may find adding one will give you a lower interest rate and/or fees. Some lenders have begun allowing the loan to be in a name other than the students' and pay to the students' account. While it may be referred to as a Private Loan for Parents the borrow doesn't have to be a parent or even related to the student.
THE APPLICATION PROCESS
- Apply for the loan directly with the lender on their website or request a paper application. Some may let you begin the application process by phone.
- The lender will check your credit worthiness and determine if you are eligible or need to obtain a co-borrower.
- Submit any required documents to the lender.
- After approval and all documents are on file with required signatures, the lender will notify SUNY Canton that the loan is ready to be certified.
- The staff in the One Hop Shop will confirm your enrollment and certify the loan for an amount that fits into your educational cost of attendance (after you have completed the application and all paperwork for your federal student aid). Contact us if you are unsure of the maximum amount we will certify you for.
- The lender will send payment directly to SUNY Canton on your behalf at the beginning of each semester.
We hope you will carefully review the information and choose a lender that best suits your needs. Our guide does not list all available lenders. If you choose a lender not listed in the guide, be sure to ask questions and use the criteria listed in the guide to help you evaluate that loan program. It takes most students at least 10 years to repay a loan after graduation, be sure to invest the time now in deciding which loan is best for you. If you have any questions regarding private alternative loans, please feel free to contact the One Hop Shop at any time.
Please feel free to read our Code of Conduct - SUNY Student Loan Practices.