FAQ

Undergraduate Loan

Am I eligible for a PA Forward Undergraduate Loan?

To qualify, you must:

  • Be enrolled or plan to be enrolled at least half-time in a degree, certificate, or diploma granting program at an eligible school.
  • Be a PA resident attending an
    approved school

    Approved School

    Federally-approved educational institution under Title IV of the Higher Education Act of 1965

    in or out of PA or a student from an approved state (NJ, DE, NY, VA, and OH) attending an approved PA school.
  • Be a U.S. citizen/national or a Permanent Resident Alien of the U.S. with a permanent resident card (Green Card).
  • Pass a credit check.
How much can I borrow?
  • Each year, you may borrow up to the cost of attendance (tuition, fees, room, board, books, transportation expenses, and miscellaneous expenses) minus any financial aid you are receiving (including other loans and work study) as certified by your school’s financial aid office.
    Aggregate loan limits

    Aggregate loan limits

    Total amount of PA Forward Student Loans borrowed and disbursed during a student’s academic career.

    for a PA Forward Student Loan ($150,000) apply.
  • The minimum amount is $1,500 for each loan.
Do I need a co-signer?
If you have not reached the
age of majority

Age of Majority

The age a person is considered an adult.

based on the law of your state of residence, you will be required to obtain a co-signer. You may also be required to obtain a co-signer if you don’t meet the loan credit requirements.
NOTE: Approval for private loans is based on your credit score and credit history. Although you may not be required to obtain a co-signer, you may benefit from a
creditworthy

Creditworthy

Having a satisfactory credit rating

co-signer if you do not meet the minimum credit criteria. Having a co-signer may increase your chances that the loan will be approved and, perhaps, may get you a better interest rate.
What is the interest rate on the PA Forward Student Loan?

We offer competitive, fixed interest rates. Because the interest rate depends on your credit score/history the rate can range from:

5.01%1 – 7.43% APR2

1 Annual Percentage Rate (APR) Calculations - The lowest APR is based on the following assumptions: a loan of $10,000 made in a single disbursement, a borrower who selected an Immediate Repayment Plan and a repayment term of 120 months, monthly payments of $107.05 and a final payment $79.67, a fixed periodic interest rate of 5.45%, and a total amount financed of $12,711.07. The borrower in this sample qualified for a 0.25% Direct Debit benefit for the entirety of the repayment period and a 0.50% Graduation benefit was applied 47 months into repayment.

2 The highest APR is based on the following assumptions: a loan of $10,000 made in a single disbursement, a borrower who selected a Fully Deferred Repayment Plan and a repayment term of 180 months, monthly payments of $127.51, a fixed periodic interest rate of 7.90%, and a total amount financed of $22,951.20. The borrower received an in-school deferment of 46 months and a grace period of 6 months. The borrower in this sample did not qualify for any interest rate discounts.

Please note these APRs are estimates and may differ from the actual rates received.

NOTE: Subject to aggregate loan limits.

Applicants, including co-signers, are subject to credit qualifications, completion of an application and credit agreement, and verification of application information.

PHEAA reserves the right to discontinue all programs or benefits without prior notice

What is a Graduation Benefit?

We believe graduating is a great accomplishment and we want to reward you! Therefore, upon graduation and when you enter repayment, you will receive a 0.50% interest rate reduction.

NOTE: You will not be required to notify us when you graduate as we typically receive enrollment information directly from your school. Once we receive notification you graduated, we will apply the 0.50% interest rate reduction to your account.

What is Direct Debit?

Direct Debit is a free, automated payment service. It's not only convenient—you don't have to write a check or pay for a stamp—you will also qualify for a 0.25% interest rate reduction when you use Direct Debit.

What are my repayment plan options?
  • Immediate Repayment- If you want to get a head start on paying back your loan right away, this is the option to choose. With this option you will:
    • Be eligible for the lowest interest rate available
    • Pay your loan off earlier
    • Pay the least amount of interest over the life of the loan compared to the other repayment plan options
    NOTE: Your first payment will be due within 30 to 60 days after the date of your final
    disbursement

    Disbursement

    Disbursement is the transfer of loan funds from a lender to the school

    .
  • Interest Only- If you want to avoid
    interest capitalization

    Interest Capitalization

    Capitalization is the addition of unpaid interest to the principal balance of a loan. Capitalization of interest results in a higher principal balance and additional finance charges over the course of repayment and may cause your monthly amount to increase.

    this is the repayment option for you! With this option you will:
    • Be responsible to pay the accrued interest during school
    • Enter repayment with the starting principal balance of the original amount you borrowed
    NOTE: Interest payments will begin 30 to 60 days after the loan’s first disbursement. Full payments, payments made toward principal and interest, will not begin until 30 to 60 days after the expiration of your
    grace period

    Grace Period

    A grace period is a 6-month period before the first payment on a loan is due. The grace period begins the day after you graduate, leave school, or drop below half-time status and ends the day before repayment begins.

    .
  • Partial Interest Payment- To get a head start on paying the interest that accrues on your loan; this is a great option for you! With this option you will:
    • Be required to pay a fixed $25.00 a month payment that is applied toward your loan while you are in school
    • Have less interest capitalize when you enter repayment
    NOTE: Payments will begin 30 to 60 days after the loan’s first disbursement. Full payments, payments made toward principal and interest, will not begin until after the expiration of your grace period.
  • Full Deferral- If you don’t want to worry about making payments until you leave school, this option is available to you! With this option you will:
    • Not have to make payments while in school; however, will end up paying the most amount of money over the life of the loan compared to the other repayment plan options
    NOTE: Payments will not be due until after you separate from school and any applicable grace period has expired.

Graduate Loan

Am I eligible for a PA Forward Graduate Loan?

To qualify, you must:

  • Be a student seeking an advanced degree such as masters, doctoral, law, health profession, certificate, diploma, or others at an eligible school.
  • Be a PA resident attending an
    approved school

    Approved School

    Federally-approved educational institution under Title IV of the Higher Education Act of 1965

    in or out of PA or a student from an approved state (NJ, DE, NY, VA, and OH) attending an approved PA school.
  • Be a U.S. citizen/national or a Permanent Resident Alien of the U.S. with a permanent resident card (Green Card).
  • Pass a credit check.
How much can I borrow?
  • Each year, you may borrow up to the cost of attendance (tuition, fees, room, board, books, trance expenses, and miscellaneous expenses) minus any financial aid you are receiving (including other loans and work study) as certified by your school's financial aid office.
    Aggregate loan limits

    Aggregate loan limits

    Total amount of PA Forward Student Loans borrowed and disbursed during a student’s academic career.

    for a PA Forward Student Loan ($150,000) apply.
  • The minimum amount is $1,500 for each loan.
Do I need a co-signer?
If you have not reached the
age of majority

Age of Majority

The age a person is considered an adult.

based on the law of your state of residence, you will be required to obtain a co-signer. You may also be required to obtain a co-signer if you don’t meet the loan credit requirements.
NOTE: Approval for private loans is based on your credit score and credit history. Although you may not be required to obtain a co-signer, you may benefit from a
creditworthy

Creditworthy

Having a satisfactory credit rating

co-signer if you do not meet the minimum credit criteria. Having a co-signer may increase your chances that the loan will be approved and, perhaps, may get you a better interest rate.
What is the interest rate on the PA Forward Student Loan?

We offer competitive, fixed interest rates. Because the interest rate depends on your credit score/history the rate can range from:

5.01%1 – 7.43% APR2

1 Annual Percentage Rate (APR) Calculations - The lowest APR is based on the following assumptions: a loan of $10,000 made in a single disbursement, a borrower who selected an Immediate Repayment Plan and a repayment term of 120 months, monthly payments of $107.05 and a final payment $79.67, a fixed periodic interest rate of 5.45%, and a total amount financed of $12,711.07. The borrower in this sample qualified for a 0.25% Direct Debit benefit for the entirety of the repayment period and a 0.50% Graduation benefit was applied 47 months into repayment.

2 The highest APR is based on the following assumptions: a loan of $10,000 made in a single disbursement, a borrower who selected a Fully Deferred Repayment Plan and a repayment term of 180 months, monthly payments of $127.51, a fixed periodic interest rate of 7.90%, and a total amount financed of $22,951.20. The borrower received an in-school deferment of 46 months and a grace period of 6 months. The borrower in this sample did not qualify for any interest rate discounts.

Please note these APRs are estimates and may differ from the actual rates received.

NOTE: Subject to aggregate loan limits.

Applicants, including co-signers, are subject to credit qualifications, completion of an application and credit agreement, and verification of application information.

PHEAA reserves the right to discontinue all programs or benefits without prior notice

What is a Graduation Benefit?

We believe graduating is a great accomplishment and we want to reward you! Therefore, upon graduation and when you enter repayment, you will receive a 0.50% interest rate reduction.

NOTE: You will not be required to notify us when you graduate as we typically receive enrollment information directly from your school. Once we receive notification you graduated, we will apply the 0.50% interest rate reduction to your account.

What is Direct Debit?

Direct Debit is a free, automated payment service. It's not only convenient—you don't have to write a check or pay for a stamp—you will also qualify for a 0.25% interest rate reduction when you use Direct Debit.

What are my repayment plan options?
  • Immediate Repayment- If you want to get a head start on paying back your loan right away, this is the option to choose. With this option you will:
    • Be eligible for the lowest interest rate available
    • Pay your loan off earlier
    • Pay the least amount of interest over the life of the loan compared to the other repayment plan options
    NOTE: Your first payment will be due within 30 to 60 days after the date of your final
    disbursement

    Disbursement

    Disbursement is the transfer of loan funds from a lender to the school

    .
  • Interest Only- If you want to avoid
    interest capitalization

    Interest Capitalization

    Capitalization is the addition of unpaid interest to the principal balance of a loan. Capitalization of interest results in a higher principal balance and additional finance charges over the course of repayment and may cause your monthly amount to increase.

    this is the repayment option for you! With this option you will:
    • Be responsible to pay the accrued interest during school
    • Enter repayment with the starting principal balance of the original amount you borrowed
    NOTE: Interest payments will begin 30 to 60 days after the loan’s first disbursement. Full payments, payments made toward principal and interest, will not begin until 30 to 60 days after the expiration of your
    grace period

    Grace Period

    A grace period is a 6-month period before the first payment on a loan is due. The grace period begins the day after you graduate, leave school, or drop below half-time status and ends the day before repayment begins.

    .
  • Partial Interest Payment- To get a head start on paying the interest that accrues on your loan; this is a great option for you! With this option you will:
    • Be required to pay a fixed $25.00 a month payment that is applied toward your loan while you are in school
    • Have less interest capitalize when you enter repayment
    NOTE: Payments will begin 30 to 60 days after the loan’s first disbursement. Full payments, payments made toward principal and interest, will not begin until after the expiration of your grace period.
  • Full Deferral- If you don’t want to worry about making payments until you leave school, this option is available to you! With this option you will:
    • Not have to make payments while in school; however, will end up paying the most amount of money over the life of the loan compared to the other repayment plan options.
    NOTE: Payments will not be due until after you separate from school and any applicable grace period has expired.

Parent Loan

Am I eligible for a PA Forward Parent Loan?

To qualify, you must:

  • Be a PA resident or a resident of an approved state (NJ, DE, NY, VA, and OH) and be the biological or adoptive parent or
    legal guardian

    Legal Guardian

    Anyone who is providing support to a dependent student.

    of the student; OR
  • Be the spouse of the student’s parent and considered to be a parent in accordance with the instructions on the FAFSA® (Free Application for Federal Student Aid) for the purposes of reporting income and assets on the FAFSA.
  • The student must be attending an
    approved school

    Approved School

    Federally-approved educational institution under Title IV of the Higher Education Act of 1965

    in or out of PA or a student from an approved state (NJ, DE, NY, VA, and OH) attending an approved PA school.
  • Be a U.S. citizen/national or a Permanent Resident Alien of the U.S. with a permanent resident card (Green Card).
  • Pass a credit check.
How much can I borrow?
  • Each year, you may borrow up to the cost of attendance (tuition, fees, room, board, books, transportation expenses, and miscellaneous expenses) minus any financial aid your student is receiving (including other loans and work study) as certified by your student’s financial aid office.
    Aggregate loan limits

    Aggregate loan limits

    Total amount of PA Forward Student Loans borrowed and disbursed during a student’s academic career.

    for a PA Forward Student Loan ($150,000) apply.
  • The minimum amount is $1,500 for each loan.
What is the interest rate on the PA Forward Student Loan?

We offer competitive, fixed interest rates. Because the interest rate depends on your credit score/history the rate can range from:

5.19%1 – 7.38% APR2

1 Annual Percentage Rate (APR) Calculations: The lowest APR is based on the following assumptions: a loan of $10,000 made in a single disbursement, a borrower who selected an Immediate Repayment Plan, monthly payments of $107.05 for a period of 120 months, a fixed periodic interest rate of 5.45% and a total amount financed of $12,845.50. The borrower in this sample qualified for a 0.25% Direct Debit benefit for the entirety of the repayment period. This APR is an estimate and may differ from the actual rate received.

2 The highest APR is based on the following assumptions. A loan of $10,000 made in a single disbursement, a borrower who selected an Interest Only Repayment Plan and a repayment term of 180 months, monthly payments of $61.67 for 46 months and monthly payments of $92.13 for the remainder of the repayment term, a fixed periodic interest rate of 7.40% and a total amount financed of $19,420.77. The borrower in this sample did not qualify for any interest rate discounts.

This APR is an estimate and may differ from the actual rate received.

NOTE: Subject to aggregate loan limits.

What is Direct Debit?

Direct Debit is a free, automated payment service. It's not only convenient—you don't have to write a check or pay for a stamp—you will also qualify for a 0.25% interest rate reduction when you use Direct Debit.

What are my repayment plan options?
  • Immediate Repayment- If you want to get a head start on paying back your loan right away, this is the option to choose. With this option you will:
    • Be eligible for the lowest interest rate available
    • Pay your loan off earlier
    • Pay the least amount of interest over the life of the loan compared to the other repayment plan options
    NOTE: Your first payment will be due within 30 to 60 days after the date of your final
    disbursement

    Disbursement

    Disbursement is the transfer of loan funds from a lender to the school

    .
  • Interest Only- If you want to avoid
    interest capitalization

    Interest Capitalization

    Capitalization is the addition of unpaid interest to the principal balance of a loan. Capitalization of interest results in a higher principal balance and additional finance charges over the course of repayment and may cause your monthly amount to increase.

    this is the repayment option for you! With this option you will:
    • Be responsible to pay the accrued interest while your student is enrolled in school
    • Enter repayment with the starting principal balance of the original amount you borrowed
    NOTE: Interest payments will begin 30 to 60 days after the loan’s first disbursement. Full payments, payments made toward principal and interest, will not begin until the student leaves school or drops below half-time.

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