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Compare Think Student Loans

Until now, many families relied on home equity loans, retirement savings or, worse yet, credit cards to pay college expenses. But those options may not give families all the features they want and need when paying for education.

If students need help paying for college, they should first turn to the federal Stafford loan program. Stafford loans are offered at very attractive interest rates and terms which private loans simply can’t match. But because of their low loan limits, most families need more assistance. In our comparison chart, we outline the distinct advantages of Think student loans compared to other, non-education specific loans like home equity and credit cards.


Our comparison chart details the distinct advantages of a Think student loan and the distinct disadvantages of using non-education specific loans to pay for school.

Loan comparison chart

  THINK STUDENT LOAN FEDERAL STAFFORD LOAN FEDERAL PLUS LOAN CREDIT CARD HOME EQUITY LOAN
LOAN COLLATERAL None None None None House
LOAN LIMIT Up to the cost of attendance with a lifetime aggregate maximum of $250,000 Beginning on July 1, freshmen $3500, sophomore $4500, juniors and seniors $5500 cost of attendance less other aid varies by credit limit varies by available equity
APPLICATION PROCESS Apply online or over the phone in 15 minutes Fill out FAFSA form first, then fill out Stafford Loan Application. Forms can take hours to complete Graduate students must complete FAFSA form first. Forms can take hours to complete. Apply online or over the phone in short period of time Fill out credit application, timeline depends on individual lender
APPLICATION DEADLINE None In most states, FAFSA must be submitted by March 1. In most states, FAFSA must be submitted by March 1. None None
APPROVAL TIMELINE Preliminary approval in as fast as 60 seconds after application submitted FAFSA review takes weeks to months FAFSA review takes weeks to months Depends on individual credit card provider Usually takes hours or days, depending on individual lender
DISBURSEMENT TIMELINE Check sent as fast as 48 hours from final approval1 Entire process takes weeks to months Entire process takes weeks to months Card usually sent in days or weeks Home equity proceeds sent in days or weeks
DISBURSEMENT PROCESS Check sent directly to applicant(s)2 Loan proceeds sent to school Loan proceeds sent to school Card sent directly to applicant(s) Depends on individual lender, but receiving loan proceeds can take weeks
DEFERMENT PROVISIONS Repayment begins 6 months after graduation or six months after you cease to be enrolled on at least a half-time basis. Repayment will begin no later than 5 years from disbursement. Defer all payments while in school for up to 5 years Defer all payments while in school for up to years Usually no deferment provisions Usually no deferment provisions

Read more about Think student loans: About Think Student Loans.

1 Disbursement can occur in 48 hours after receipt and verification of signed loan documents and all other requested documentation and must be within 21 days of the enrollment date.

2 This loan does not require school certification and the proceeds are disbursed in the form of a check co-payable to the borrower and cosigner (if applicable), mailed directly to the applicant with the stronger credit profile.

* Think Financial refers applications to Simple Tuition, a leading student loan comparison site, and is paid a fee for this referral.