Perkins Loan

With education fees and the cost of living increasing every year, paying for college can be an expensive affair, especially for students from low-income households. Fortunately, students with exceptional financial need may be entitled to a special low-interest loan called a Perkins loan. This loan is offered by the federal government with the intention to make education more accessible to those who come from low-income backgrounds.

As with other types of federal loan, a Perkins loan has a low rate of interest. Indeed, at the moment the current interest rate for a Perkins loan is just 5%. While this is not as low as some forms of Stafford loan, it is certainly cheaper than many other types of private loan.

One of the great things about the Perkins loan is that there are no additional charges. This means that you will not have to pay an origination fee when you sign up for the loan. However, it is important to remember that if you do forget to make a payment or do not pay the full amount, you may be charged a fee.

The government covers the interest fee whilst the student is studying and during the generous grace period after graduating. Currently, if you are studying at least half time, you have nine months grace period after graduating or quitting before you have to start paying back your Perkins loan. This makes it more financially manageable to allow these under privileged students to pay back the money they borrow.

Perkins Loan Amount and Eligibility

You may be eligible for up to $5500 a year at the most. However, the actual amount that a student is entitled to will vary in accordance to their financial situation. Hence, all students need to fill out a FAFSA.

This type of loan is available to all students between—just so long as they have exceptional financial need.

In addition, it does not matter whether or not you are completing your course full or part time; you can still be considered for a Perkins loan.

Things to Consider

  • Not all schools offer this loan, so, if you know that you will benefit from this loan, make sure you check that your chosen institution offers it. You can find this out by getting in contact with the school’s financial aid office.
  • Funds for this type of loan are limited. This means that even though you may qualify for a loan, you may not receive it. To make sure that you have a good chance of getting a Perkins loan, be sure to file your FAFSA as early as possible.