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Agency updates tool for comparing student loans, including its estimates of new interest rates

Graduation

This month, students throughout the nation will be receiving college acceptance letters. For many families, this can mean taking on student loan debt.

Compare financial aid offers

To help consumers compare financial aid offers, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has launched a new version of its Paying for College tool kit.

Consumers can compare offers from community college, bachelor’s, certificate, and graduate programs.

The GI Bill calculator, which gives service members the ability to calculate the benefits available to them through the GI Bill and tuition assistance programs, also has been updated.

Another aid: More than 2,000 schools have adopted the Financial Aid Shopping Sheet, which they’ll send to prospective students this year. Using this shopping sheet, consumers will be able to compare information, such as average debt after graduation, side by side.

If you or someone in your family has to take out student loans, be sure to compare options. It can help you find the student loan that will best meet your needs.

Estimates of the new interest rates

What will the new interest rates be for student loans?

The new rates aren’t set yet, but interest rates on new federal student loans are expected to increase in July.

When the bureau updated its tool, Paying for College, it used its best guess of what the rates will be, so consumers can have a better estimate of what their monthly payment might be after graduation.

In May, there will be a Treasury bond auction, and that rate will set federal student loan interest rates.

See Current and Estimated Interest Rates on Federal Student Loans for the bureau’s estimates of what the new interest rates will be and what the monthly payment may be for loan repayment.

Copyright 2014, Rita R. Robison, Consumer Specialist

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