What’s the typical repayment term for these loans?
Federal direct student loans are typically repaid over a 10-year period, except in cases where the borrower has requested extended repayment options, which can go up to 25 years.
Can I pay my loans off faster, or is there a penalty for doing so?
There is no early repayment penalty on any federal direct student loan.
Do my federal student loans follow me to a new school if I transfer?
Generally speaking, the answer is no. Most student financial aid, including federal loans, is tied to the institution you’re attending. So you’ll need to refile your FAFSA and begin the process all over again.
Does it affect my federal student loans if I go to a part-time schedule?
Indeed, it could affect them a lot. Under federal guidelines, you must begin repaying your loans once you graduate, leave school or switch to less than half-time attendance, which is usually defined as anything below 6.0 credit hours.
What’s the difference between subsidized and unsubsidized loans?
Simply put, subsidized loans have a lower interest rate, since they are backed by the federal government, which pays the interest while a student is in school. On unsubsidized loans, the borrower pays all the interest, which is sometimes capitalized or folded into the loan.