How To Choose Your Loan Provider



Updated June 8, 2022

You’re reading an excerpt of Admitted by Soundarya Balasubramani. Written by an Ivy League graduate from India, this is the proven guide for students worldwide looking to pursue undergraduate or graduate study abroad in the U.S., Canada, or Europe. Purchase for instant access to the guide and other exclusive resources—including sample SOPs, sample resumes, scholarship lists, and a private community with other readers.

So far, you learned a lot about the various options available for you out there. To cap it off, we built a mental model in the form of a flowchart that you can use to pick the right options. We also went a step further, and created a table comparing the various options available side-by-side.

We hope you find the next few pages useful!

NameIndian BanksU.S. Federal AidU.S. BanksNeobanksNon-banks
Application Processing Time~ 1 week (private sector). Longer for public sector.3 days - 3 weeks~ 1 week< 1 week< 1 week
Interest Rate (w/o co-signer or collateral or good credit score)Not ApplicableLowHighMediumLow
Interest Rate (w/ co-signer or collateral or good credit score)HighNot ApplicableMediumLowMedium
Co-signer and CollateralAt least one requiredNot RequiredAt least one requiredTypically Not RequiredTypically Not Required
Credit HistoryHighly RelevantNot RelevantHighly RelevantRelevantNot Relevant
Loan Tenure7+ years10 years7+ yearsFlexibleFlexible
Terms of AgreementNot FlexibleNot Flexible (for good reason)Not FlexibleFlexibleFlexible

danger We broke our heads trying to come up with the flowchart and table above because there are too many outliers when it comes to lenders. Hence, any form of generalization chips away a lot of valuable information. So, please do your own research into each lender before finalizing anything.

Getting Quotes: Do’s and Don’ts

As you begin to approach these entities, keep the following in mind:

  • Do your due diligence before, during, and after the process.

    • Before: Check websites like Quora to read other people’s experiences.

    • During: Prepare a list of questions you want answered (to make your job easier, we’ve added a checklist of questions to ask in the Resources folder).

    • After: Begin thinking about your repayment plan from day 1 (more on this soon).

  • Do bargain. The people you talk to will mostly be sales reps who get commissions based on the number of sales. Use that to your advantage and ask for a reduced interest rate, reduced fee, flexible terms, etc.

  • You’re reading a preview of an online book. Buy it now for lifetime access to expert knowledge, including future updates.
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