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Hello,

Can anyone provide some advice on the best way to consolidate 36K in private student loans from Wells Fargo and Sallie Mae?

All of my loans have (high) variable rates, this is the breakdown:
Ammount Rate Lender
$12,519.18 9.49 WF
$10,930.13 7.99 WF
$12,515.48 6.25 SM


I just graduated college (2011) and hate seeing the majority of my payments go interest. My goal is to consolidate all loans under a fixed rate with same or lower monthly payment with either SunTrust or Wells Fargo, as these have the lowest rates I've seen. After I get a consolidation, I hope to increase my payments and do a debt snowball sort of thing to get them paid off in a couple of years.

Some more detail that may be helpful is the following:

I make 53K a year.
My current payments for Wells Fargo is $239 and Sallie Mae is $93
I have no other debt right now besides a car that will be paid off in June of this year and a 18K Direct Loans student loan.
According to Credit Karma, my credit score is 761.
ETA: I've been employed at my current job for 1-year making the same salary.

What are the chances of Sun Trust or Wells Fargo approving me for a consolidation loan without a cosigner? I don't have a cosigner that has good credit and I don't want to get high interest rates like these again. Does anyone else have any suggestions or advice?

Thank you for your help!

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How much is 100% NADA value of your car?
Refinance your car at Penfed pull 100% cash out and pay off your 12.5k WF loan at 9.49%.
At that salary range you should be able to payoff the other 2 debts within 1 or 2 years depending on where you live and the cost of living.

If you get paid bi-weekly pay all of your bills at one time in the month. Try to limit your expenses to only 1 out of every 2 paychecks. This way you save 1 paycheck and use that towards paying off your debt quicker
Pay the loan with the highest interest rate first.
Don't focus on smaller payments, focus on reducing the highest interest loan balance first. This will pay off your debts faster in the long run.

Good luck, let me know if you have any other questions.
P.s. if you're feeling up to it, you can apply for the chase slate 18 month 0% BT offer and use that to pay off a portion of your debt. Make sure you pay it off in full by the 18 month mark.

Hi,

Thank you for your response. Sorry, what is NADA? I have an '04 Honda Civic that I bought used, so it's not a super really valuable car. I'd estimate maybe 7k.

As for my cost of living, I live in a pretty high cost of living area (DC/Northern Virginia). My share of rent is $1050 (not including utilities), and my lease will not up until April 2014.

If you're feeling up to it, you can apply for the chase slate 18 month 0% BT offer and use that to pay off a portion of your debt. Make sure you pay it off in full by the 18 month mark.

If I decided to go this route, how much do you think I should put on there? And what do you think my payments would be like with this amount?

If I decided to consolidate to get a lower interest rate and paid around $800 to $1000 a month, would that be a good idea?

If you are going to really focus on paying these loans back quick you should stick to a variable rate when/if you refi. The fixed rates aren't much better than what you have now.

Debt to income ratio is probably the biggest factor so even if you don't get approved now I would try again after you pay off your car and that monthly payment falls off your report.

Okay, so let's say I do go the refinance route. If I paid off my car and my only other debt is direct loans, would I be able to get a favorable interest rate without a cosigner? I understand that no one will know FOR sure, but from what I'm telling you, can anyone give me an estimate?

I wouldn't expect to get much better of an interest rate when consolidating. But, I've never consolidated private student loans before.

If you're really interested in a debt snowball approach, then you won't want to consolidate into one large loan. You'd want to keep them separate so you can go after the higher interest rate loans first.

Agree with @Infinion. I got a small interest rate reduction when I consolidated my federally-backed loans into federal direct loans, but I only consolidated the loans that were at the same interest rate. I kept my highest interest rate loans separate and am knocking those out first.



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