PROS / Discover Student Loans has no maximum limit for either undergraduate or graduate student loans and instead bases amounts off the cost of attendance.
CONS / Discover Student Loans does not offer consolidation loans.
VERDICT / Discover Student Loans has many rate reductions available and high limits that make them a competitive option for student loans.
Discover Student Loans offers loans to undergraduate students and those pursuing graduate degrees. Unlike other private student loan lenders, Discover Student Loans doesn't have a maximum limit set for its loans. This is good for students that are looking for significant amounts of financial aid in addition to their traditional federal student loans.
One item that Discover Student Loans lacks is the ability to consolidate your loans. The best private student loan companies offer the option to borrowers to combine their student loans into one lump sum with a single monthly payment. This option usually results in lower monthly student loan payments and a more competitive interest rate.
There are no fees included with Discover Student Loans, including origination, application or early payment penalties. This means that you can take the maximum term offered by Discover for both its fixed-rate or variable-rate loan and pay off the balance any time. This will result in lower monthly payments for you over the life your student borrowing. However, this lender only offers two payback options, deferred and in-school payment.
The APRs offered by Discover Student Loans are competitive compared to other private student loans. It also offers rate-reduction programs to help lower your APR, for example, if you set up automatic payments. Discover Student Loans is the only company that has a cash-back reward for good grades. If you earn a 3.0 GPA or better, you can get up to a 1 percent cash reward on each new student loan. This feature helps Discover Student Loans be among the best student loan companies we reviewed.
To qualify for a student loan through this program, you must be 16 years old, younger than some of the other private student loans we reviewed. This service also has fewer requirements than other student loans, and while you must pass a credit check, it does not have the same credit history and income stipulations as other lenders do.
The help and support is one of the best compared to the student loan companies we reviewed. Discover has an excellent FAQs section on its website, filled with answers to common questions you might have regarding student loans. Discover also has live chat, phone and email support for more complicated questions that might arise throughout the college-loan process.
Discover is one of the best private student loan lenders we reviewed. The lack of a consolidation loan service hampers what Discover can offer you. Yet, the competitive rates, solid rate-reduction offers and lack of a maximum loan amount make it competitive for students looking for new loans.