FFEL Program Repayment Options
Borrowers may choose from one of the five following repayment options depending on their total loan amount and economic situation.
Standard Repayment. Typically this is the least expensive option in terms of total interest costs. Most federal education loan borrowers choose this option. This option provides a fixed monthly payment of at least $50 over a period of up to ten years. A lender may permit a borrower to make smaller payments than otherwise required if the reduced scheduled monthly payment equals at least the amount of interest due on the loan.
Graduated Repayment. This plan starts off with low payments, which then gradually increase every two years. The loan term varies depending on the total loan amount. Unless you consolidate several federal education loans, the maximum repayment term under this option is ten years. No single payment will be more than three times greater than any other payment.
Income-Sensitive Repayment. Monthly payments in this plan begin low and increase as the borrower's income increases. Repayment terms can be adjusted annually to adapt to income changes. While this benefits the borrower with smaller initial payments, borrowers should be aware that by reducing early payments, the long-term interest costs will increase.
Income-based Repayment (IBR). Effective July 1, 2009, Stafford, Grad PLUS, and some Consolidation loan borrowers who meet the definition for Partial Financial Hardship will be able to limit their monthly payment to 15 percent of the amount by which adjusted gross income exceeds 150 percent of the poverty line applicable to the borrower's family size. Any outstanding eligible loan balance is forgiven after 25 years of payment.
Pay As You Earn Repayment Plan for eligible William D. Ford Federal Direct Loan (Direct Loan) Program borrowers and Federal Family Education Loans (FFEL). On November 1, 2012, the Department of Education (the Department) issued final regulations for this new repayment plan based on the President's "Pay As You Earn" initiative and announced its intention to implement the plan on December 21, 2012, at the discretion of individual borrowers. This means that eligible Direct Loan and FFEL borrowers can be placed on the Pay As You Earn Repayment Plan beginning on December 21, 2012. The form (IBR/PAYE/ICR) is available here .
Learn more about IBR at Federal Student Aid.
Extended Repayment. This plan is for borrowers with accumulated loan balances of $30,000 or more received on or after October 7, 1998. Under this plan, you may reduce the amount of your monthly payment by spreading payments over a period of up to 25 years. You may choose to make payments over this extended period under a level or graduated schedule. Because payments are stretched over a longer term, total interest costs will be significantly higher than under the other repayment plans. Although a borrower's monthly payment will be lower, the total amount of money paid back over the life of the loan will be more than standard repayment.
Loan Repayment Calculator. Just select one of the repayment options or compare them all by entering your loan amount, interest rate, and annual wages and this calculator will do the math. An optional extended repayment calculation is available for larger loan balances.
All borrower options and benefits are subject to change.