- Some of the lowest refinance rates + 0.25 autopay discount
- Offers Parent PLUS loan refinancing
- No origination or prepayment fees
- National coverage
- Career support
Sofi has become the de facto leader in student loan refinancing. This type or refinancing is ideal for students who have an associate’s degree or higher, including medical and dental students, as well as parents with PLUS loans. Sofi has grown and now offers personal loan and mortgage products as well.
One of the key to Sofi’s success has been its relentless focus on a specific market – future high income earners. By focusing on these types of students, they have been able to keep rates as low as possible. They can also refinance Parent PLUS loans, so if you’re a parent with a good credit score who took out loans to pay for a child’s education, Sofi can help. According to Sofi, borrowers who refinance their loans save an average of $22,359 — that’s a lot of extra dough to help you save for your other goals. Sofi offers fixed rates as low as 3.25% and variable rates as low as 2.63%. A variable rate simply means that as the national interest rate increase, the rate on your loan goes up. In addition to low rates, Sofi will deduct another 0.25% for borrowers who pay with autopay directly from a checking account.
With Sofi, there are NO origination or prepayment fees. This is huge. Origination fees with other lenders can run 3-5% which adds up fast. And whether it’s for a student loan or a mortgage, the option to pay early in the future is a big benefit. Even if that option seems unlikely now, it means that you won’t be locked in for the full term of the loan should you have the ability to pay it quicker.
Sofi has national coverage in all 50 states. Medical and dental refinance loans are not available to borrowers in Mississippi, Montana and Washington, D.C. The minimum medical and dental refinance loan is $25,001 for borrowers in Pennsylvania, and $15,001 for borrowers in Connecticut. For student loan refinancing, you’ll need to have at least $10,000 in total student loans, and the amount you are refinancing needs to be at least $5,000 (may be slightly higher in some states).
In addition to its core business or refinancing student loans, Sofi also offers career support. Its career coaches can help you negotiate salaries, transition to new industries, and develop your personal brand.
- Must have high income
- Must have good-to-excellent credit
- Are a U.S. citizen, permanent resident or visa holder. SoFi recognizes J-1, H-1B, E-2, O-1 and TN visas.
- Questionable company culture
You must be employed, have an offer to start a job within the next 90 days or have sufficient income from other sources. The average approved borrower has an annual income above $100,000, according to the company. Is this a negative? For some borrowers, yes. But does it reflect poorly upon Sofi? No. This is why their model works and why they can offer low rates: they are focusing on people with minimal debt and high earnings potential. If that’s not you, we have lots of other very highly rated companies for student loan refinancing. Also, Sofi is only if you are a U.S. citizen, permanent resident or visa holder. SoFi recognizes J-1, H-1B, E-2, O-1 and TN visas.
For a thorough and unbiased review, I have to mention Sofi in the press. In 2017, Sofi was rocked by a sexual harassment scandal then resulted in the firing of the CEO. This bought to light accusations of a company culture where harassment was tolerated, as well as where employers worked much longer hours than the norm. The new CEO has said he is committed to improving the company culture on all fronts.
Sofi is one of the first companies that specialized in student loan refinance and has been a leader in the space since its inception. For the well-educated borrower with a good credit score, Sofi should be an option when comparing rates among companies.