PROS / The discount PNC offers for setting up automatic payments is one of the best among the banks we reviewed.
CONS / PNC does not offer loan consolidation or front-end rate reductions when you apply for loans.
VERDICT / PNC is a good college student loan solution if you are a current student, but the lack of loan consolidation hinders its long-term benefits.
There have been many recent changes in the college student loan industry, so banks have gone from the primary institution for housing federal student loans to supplementing federal college loans by providing private student loans. PNC Bank is a major college student loan provider that offers private student loans to both undergraduate and graduate students.
PNC offers both fixed-rate and variable-rate college loans, which lets you plan for the long term with a single interest rate or take advantage of lower variable-rate programs. PNC doesn't offer consolidation loans, which let you combine all of your federal and private student loans into a single payment. When combined with refinancing, this would lower the total monthly payment and give you only a single APR to monitor.
As is standard for the best private student loans, PNC does not charge an origination or application fee. Unlike many other private student loan companies, however, it doesn't offer any rate-reduction incentives when you apply for student loans.
PNC has excellent information on its website for both students and their parents on the ins and outs of college loans. One of the best tools that PNC provides is the cost calculators. These help you budget while attending school as they calculate how much money you need to attend university.
PNC only offers one loan term, which is common among student loan companies. There is no prepayment penalty for paying off the student loan before the term expires. PNC offers online and automatic payment options. Its rate-reduction offer for automatic payments is among the best for student loan lenders.
PNC Financial's customer service has a full range of help and support options. This includes a FAQs section and live chat on its website. These are both great resources for quick, common questions. For more complex questions, PNC offers phone and email support.
PNC is a good option for private student loans. It offers many of the same benefits of other banks, and its automatic payment rate reduction is among the best of all private student loan lenders. Not offering consolidation loans limits PNC's long-term benefit, but if you're a current student, there are some benefits to using PNC for your college loan needs.