As an international student, getting a student loan without a cosigner may seem impossible but you should not give up yet. There are student loans for international students without cosigner that you can apply for and get the funds you need to continue your education. This blog post shares information on student loans without a cosigner and you can apply for them right away.
Studying as an international student can be expensive especially if you are going to the US or Canada, these are top-tier study destinations, to study. Although there are typical financial aid options like grants and scholarships for international students that you can apply for to help fund your college degree the problem with these types of aid is that they are highly competitive and selective and they are hard to find.
The next feasible option is getting a student loan, unlike grants and scholarships, these ones are readily available with just a few requirements and you have to pay them back with interest. Student loans are provided by the federal government and private financial institutions, and their requirements are slightly different. But a typical requirement across nearly every lender is that international students who want to apply for a student loan must have a cosigner.
What is a Cosigner?
A cosigner is an individual, usually a member of your family, that takes full responsibility for paying back your student loan if you – the borrower – are unable to repay them. Cosigners are a standard requirement in any type of lender-borrower kind of business.
Therefore, to get a student loan, cosigners are a necessary requirement and even your cosigner must meet some requirements to be eligible as a cosigner such as having lived in the country where you want to study for at least 2 years and having a good credit history.
If you are studying in the US or coming to the US and you need a student loan, you will be required to have a creditworthy cosigner since you do not have a credit history in the US yourself. Aside from being legally bound to repay the loan if the borrower is unable to, another importance of a cosigner is that you will get your loan approved and disbursed faster and the interest rates on the loan can be much lower.
For international students, getting a cosigner can become challenging and this can put their academics and inadvertently their careers and dreams on hold.
However, there are still a few options for international students to get a student loan without a cosigner. Yes, it is possible to get a student loan for international students without a cosigner, and details on how to make this possible are shared in this article.
Student Loan For International Students Without Cosigner
You can get an international student loan without a cosigner but there are a handful of lenders that offer this service. Rather than using the credit history of a cosigner to disburse student loans to international students, the lender assesses the candidate with their academic achievement, graduation timeline, and career.
The lender also checks the school you are enrolled in if it is listed as an eligible institution. If these are satisfactory by the lender, the loan will be approved and disbursed to your host institution. The time frame varies across lenders. There are certain documents that you need to have on hand when applying for a loan that doesn’t require a cosigner, the documents include:
- Standardized test scores
- Financial summary or invoice from the university
- A verified address
- Employment letter or pay stub
Other documents may be required but just have these in hand just in case.
Having said that, let’s get into the list of financial institutions, organizations, and other lending platforms that offer student loans for international students without a cosigner.
- MPower Financing
- Stilt’s Loans
- Prodigy Finance
- 8B Education Investment
1. MPower Financing
MPower Financing is one of the lending platforms that offer student loans to international students without cosigner and no collateral. You can get student loans from $2,001 to $100,000 with fixed and competitive interest rates that will never increase and you can earn a discount on your interest rate. This platform provides student loans to international students who want to study in universities either in the US or Canada.
Other perks of getting student loans from MPower include visa support and career development guidance. To be eligible for the funding, you must be an undergraduate or graduate international student within 2 years of graduating or about to begin a 1-year or 2-year program. Application for the loan must be a maximum of 12 months prior to when you need the money for school.
2. Stilt’s Loans
Stilt is another financial institution that offers student loans to international students without cosigner. The aim of Stilt is to offer student loans to international students in the US who cannot get student loans from private or federal financial institutions. Aside from international students, Stilt provides loans to immigrants and DACA holders who do not have a cosigner.
The major advantage of applying for a loan from Stilt is the swift response, you can get a response within 24 hours of submitting your application and then get the funds as quickly as one business day after the promissory note is signed, the competitive interest rates start at 7.99%, and students’ eligibility to apply irrespective of the university they are attending.
3. Prodigy Finance
Here is another institution that provides student loans to international students without cosigner. Prodigy Finance has limited universities that they are in partnership with and the student loans are only provided to students in a master’s degree program.
Edxtra offers up to $100,000 in student loans to international students who are enrolled in an undergraduate or graduate degree program in the US or Canada. Edxtra Student loan does not require a cosigner nor collateral. Repayment for the loan is 6 months after graduation, based on your earning potential, and it is spread across a payment period of 10 years.
There are other perks that Edxtra offer students alongside the student loan such as free visa support, career development services, and no penalty for prepayment. To be eligible for the Edxtra $100,000 student loan, you must have been admitted or attending an accredited college in the US or Canada, about to begin a master’s degree program, or within 2 years of graduating with a bachelor’s degree. Priority will be given to those nursing students and those pursuing a master’s degree in STEM or MBA degrees.
5. 8B Education Investment
8B Education Investment is a fintech company that provides international student loans only to African students who want to study abroad in the US, partnering with US-based Nelnet Bank to make it possible. There are two different student loan options on the platform for undergraduate students and for graduate students.
To be eligible for the student loan, the borrower must be at least 18 years old, enrolled in a full-time degree program at an accredited US college, be a citizen of an eligible country in Africa, and have two references. Application for the loan is done online in 3 easy steps. Some perks of the 8B Education Investment student loan are its flexible lending terms, 6 months grace period following graduation, and competitive interest rates.
Before choosing a lender, it’s important to do your research and find a lender that will offer you a loan that meets your needs. When researching a loan a few items you will want to take note of include:
- How much you can borrow
- The interest rate (including if it’s fixed or variable)
- The repayment period
- When and how your funds will be disbursed
- Compare lenders
- Apply for a loan directly through the lender
It may be tempting to jump on board with any lender who is willing to work with you, but make sure that their interest rate and repayment terms will stay within your budget. Being aware of what is expected from you as the borrower can save lots of trouble in the future – it pays off, so don’t forget this important step before you sign the dotted line.