My job or income has been impacted by COVID-19. What help is there for me?
As COVID-19 has been classified as a national disaster, it qualifies for natural disaster forbearance for CommonBond members.
This functions in much the same way as standard forbearance, but you can take advantage of this program through the end of the national emergency declaration. Any time that you are in natural disaster forbearance does not count towards your standard forbearance. As with any form of forbearance, be aware that interest will still accrue, but there are no fees to participate
To apply for natural disaster forbearance, visit commonbond.co/forbearance.
What is CommonBond doing to help members impacted by COVID-19?
If you are unable to make payments during the COVID-19 outbreak, you can take advantage of CommonBond’s natural disaster forbearance, which allows payments to be paused for the duration of the national emergency. As with any form of forbearance, be aware that interest will still accrue, but there are no fees to participate.
To apply for natural disaster forbearance,, visit commonbond.co/forbearance.
CommonBond is also waiving all late fees for our members for the duration of this national emergency.
I heard New York has stopped collecting student loan debt. What does this mean?
On March 17th, New York Attorney General Letitia James announced that the state would temporarily stop collection of outstanding student loan debt owed to State University of New York (SUNY) schools.
This does not mean you should stop paying your student loans if you live in the state of New York. This announcement only applies to student loan debt that is past due. This does not apply to private loans or federal loans for schools outside of the SUNY system.
What has the government announced about student loans?
During a press conference on March 13th with respect to the United States’ response to COVID-19, President Trump announced that the government would “waive interest on all student loans held by federal government agencies.”
On March 20th, President Trump announced that the interest waiver would be in effect for “at least the next 60 days.” The interest waiver was extended on March 27th with passage of the CARES Act.
On August 8th, President Trump signed an Executive Order to extend the interest waiver to December 31st, 2020.
What was the federal student loan interest waiver?
The federal student loan waiver program temporary set the interest rate on all Direct Student Loans held by the federal government to 0%.
Do federal student loan borrowers still have to make their monthly payments?
For student loans held by the US government (Direct Loans and Department of Education administered FFEL loans), all payments are suspended, and all interest is paused until December 31, 2020. If you are unsure if your loans qualify, you can use our interactive guide for help. https://go.commonbond.co/guide-to-student-loan-relief
I’ve already refinanced my loans, what does this mean for me?
If you refinanced your loans with a private company, your monthly payment and interest rates are not impacted by this announcement.
I understand interest rates are at all-time lows but I've already refinanced. Can I refinance again?
Yes, there is no limit to how many times you can refinance with CommonBond. If you have previously refinanced with CommonBond, there is no fee to refinance again and you can see your estimated rate in less than 2 minutes.
Who can apply for a CommonBond Medical Loan?
You must be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident, and you must be enrolled at least half-time at one of the schools in our network. We’ll review your credit profile to quickly make a decision on your application.
Is a cosigner required?
A cosigner is not required for the CommonBond Medical Loan, as long as you meet our underwriting criteria. You can always add a cosigner if you need to.
What programs meet the eligibility requirements for a CommonBond Medical loan?
CommonBond lends to MD students attending one of our 59 partner medical schools in the US.
Why should I consider borrowing with CommonBond?
The CommonBond Medical Loan is designed exclusively for Medical students. We know that you have big goals and our new loan is crafted to save you thousands of dollars over the life of the loan compared to the Federal Grad PLUS loan.
How much am I allowed to borrow?
CommonBond does not have a fixed annual limit. Your school will set your maximum borrowing amount based on their published cost of attendance (COA) minus scholarships and other forms of assistance such as scholarships, grants, fellowships, and other financial aid. The lifetime borrowing limit is $500,000.
Are there any fees or penalties?
The CommonBond Medical Loan has an origination fee of 2%, subject to state specific regulations. CommonBond charges a late fee of 5.00% of the unpaid amount of the payment due or $10.00, whichever is less, and a return check fee of $5.00, subject to state law restrictions.
What's the difference between a fixed-rate and a variable-rate loan?
We offer both fixed and variable rate terms. Everyone who is approved will receive one of two rates, depending on the loan product (fixed or variable) and repayment term you choose. Click here to see our current rates.
What is APR?
APR stands for Annual Percentage Rate. The APR considers your interest rate, fees, and expected deferment period. APR allows you to compare rates for different loan products on an apples-to-apples basis, which can be helpful if you are comparing loans that have different fee structures.
What's the difference between a fixed-rate and a variable-rate loan?
An interest rate is "fixed" if it remains unchanged over time, while a "variable" interest rate can fluctuate over time. Our variable rate loans adjust every month based on 1-month LIBOR, which is a market benchmark for interest rates.
Where do you send the funds? How do I get my refund?
Once you make a final decision, we’ll send funds directly to your school. They’ll take what they need for tuition and fees, then refund the rest to you. The exact timing depends on your school’s billing cycle.
What is a Money Mentor?
Money Mentors are real people with real answers that can help borrowers become smart financial consumers as they enter college and beyond. Our Money Mentors are able to deliver customized guidance to CommonBond Borrowers on topics such as creating a budget, submitting the FAFSA, finding internships, mapping majors to career pathways, responsibly building credit, and more! And it’s all over text message, for free.
All undergraduate borrowers are automatically enrolled in the Money Mentors program. Grad students may elect to opt-in and be paired with a Money Mentor. Questions about Money Mentors? Learn more here.
What’s the application process like?
Applying for a CommonBond Dental Loan is easy.
1. Fill out our online application.
2. Once approved, select a loan product and e-sign your loan disclosures.
3. We’ll confirm your enrollment and loan amount. (This can take anywhere from five days to three weeks, depending on your school and the time of year).
4. Once your school certifies the loan, we’ll notify you by email and disburse the funds directly to your school.
Is there a hard credit pull?
Yes, we do need to perform a hard pull to fully review your credit profile and determine if we can offer you a rate. This "hard" inquiry will show up on your credit report.
How is my credit score affected?
Medical student loans look and act like any other loan on your credit report. When shopping around for student loans, it’s best to do so in a shorter period of time. For example, if you do so within 30 days, there should be less impact on your credit score than if you did so beyond 30 days.
Do I need to fill out a FAFSA or will I need to provide other forms?
We don’t require that you complete the FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid). You just need to fill out our online application to get started. However, we encourage you to check in with your financial aid office as they may have forms you need to complete with them.
Once I start my application and confirm my rate, do I have to take out a loan with CommonBond?
Nope! Seeing your rate never obligates you to take out the loan!
How do I enroll in autopay to receive the 0.25% rate discount?
You can enroll in autopay during the loan application process! Once you sign your final documents you can fill out the autopay form and start receiving the .25% rate discount on your next payment.
What are the different in-school payment options?
- Full deferment: Borrowers can defer their payments while enrolled in school plus a six-month grace period. You can always choose to make one-time payments while in deferment.
- Fixed monthly payment of $100 per month: Borrowers may choose to make a fixed payment of $100 per month while enrolled in their education program and during the six-month grace period.
- Full and immediate principal and interest payment plan: Borrowers can pay the full principal and interest payment monthly while in school. Borrowers who choose this option cannot later choose to defer payments while in residency.
What are the repayment terms?
CommonBond offers repayment terms of 10, 15 and 20 years, both fixed and variable rates.
Are there any prepayment penalties?
Nope! You can make extra payments any time you like!
Are payments required in residency?
CommonBond offers a $100 payment option during residency and fellowship.
Are any discounts offered?
Yes! There is a 0.25% discount for enrolling in autopay. Please keep in mind that you can only be in autopay during repayment.
Do you have a grace period?
Yes, there is a 6-month grace period after graduation.
Do you offer forbearance?
We do! Under certain circumstances, including economic hardship, you can apply to defer your payments through our forbearance program. This allows you to put your payments on pause for 3 months at a time up to 12 months over the life of the loan. For more information on our forbearance eligibility requirements, please reach out to the Care Team at firstname.lastname@example.org or (800) 975-7812.