Parent PLUS loans—also known as student loans for parents—are typically used by parents who want to help finance their children’s education at the college or university of their choice. The loans, which are administered by the U.S. Department of Education, are designed to supplement financial aid packages, but are not intended to be the sole source of funding for higher education. If you’re currently a Parent PLUS loan borrower, you may have wondered if you need to reapply every year in order to remain eligible for the loan.

The Parent PLUS loan is a PLUS loan taken out by a parent of a student. Even though it is a loan, parent loans are less common than they used to be, because most parents of students have some sort of assets that can be taken to pay for their child’s education. A PLUS loan is a loan made out to students and parents of students. It is made out to students whose needs are not met by other aid, and to parents of students whose needs are not met by assets.

You’ve probably heard of Parent PLUS loans, which are loans for parents who want to help their children pay for college. These loans are made by the federal government and have an interest rate of 7%. Parents have the option to consolidate their loans, which makes the monthly payments more manageable. The downside is that once the loan is consolidated, the parents lose the right to cancel out the loan. But, they don’t have to reapply every year. (They just need to reapply every time their child takes out a new loan.)

Tuition fees are high and costs continue to rise. In 1989, the average cost of a four-year degree was $1,730. Starting in 2020, the average cost will increase to $10,440 per academic semester. As the cost of college continues to skyrocket, many parents are applying for federal Parent PLUS loans. Since these loans are in the parent’s name, it is important for parents to understand the details of these loans and how often they should be applied for to ensure that students receive the proper funding. To make sure you don’t miss the application deadline, here’s some helpful information about Parent PLUS loans and the application process. Related to : How to make corrections in the FAFSA Photo credit: designer491/istockphoto.

What are Parent PLUS credits?

word-image-10149 The Parent PLUS Loan is a type of Direct PLUS Loan available to parents of a student enrolled part-time in an eligible educational program. Borrowers may receive an amount equal to, but not exceeding, the full cost of tuition minus any other financial aid, such as scholarships and grants, your child has received. These loans are funded by the federal budget and are not subsidized. This means that the interest on the loan is accrued while the student is in school. Parent PLUS loans offer fixed interest rates that do not change over the life of the loan. Parent PLUS loans for the 2020-21 school year have an interest rate of 5.30%. It is also important to note that from 1. In October 2019, direct PLUS loans will be charged a fee of approximately 4.24% of the loan amount (which will be deducted pro rata from each loan payment). Photo credit: designer491/istockphoto.

Eligible parent plus

word-image-10150 To qualify for a Parent PLUS loan, borrowers must:

  • be a biological or adoptive parent or, in some cases, a part-time parent of a part-time pupil in an appropriate school
  • Have a poor credit history (unless the parent meets additional criteria). For more information on what is considered an unfavorable credit history, please visit the Student Aid website.
  • Do you meet the general conditions for eligibility for government-funded tutoring?

Remember: Even if the grandparents have primary responsibility for the student, they are not eligible for Parent PLUS credit unless the grandparents have legally adopted their grandchildren and are legal guardians. Photo credit: fizkes / istockphoto.

Parent PLUS Loan Application

word-image-10151 The first step in applying for a Parent PLUS loan is to complete a FAFSA form with the student. Parents can then log on to, select the Parent Borrowers tab, and click the Apply for a PLUS Loan link. Most institutions require you to apply for a Direct PLUS Loan online, but some institutions have different application procedures that you must follow. Go to for a list of schools you can apply to online. If your institution is not on this list, contact your institution’s financial aid office for application procedures. Individuals who qualify for a Parent PLUS loan must sign a Master Promissory Note (MPN) for the Direct PLUS loan. This document confirms that the borrower agrees to the terms of the loan. Each institution may have a different procedure. So contact your financial aid office to make sure you understand the specific procedure at the institution of your choice. Please note that those who take out more than one Parent PLUS loan for different children must sign multiple MPNs. Photo credit: utah778/istockphoto.

Apply for the parent plus credit each year

word-image-10152 When you complete the FAFSA, you are applying for financial aid for one academic year. You must then complete a new FAFSA form to receive new financial aid for the following year. However, you can use the FAFSA renewal form on the website. This form remembers your information from previous years so you can apply for new financial aid more quickly. In addition, it is important that you meet the FAFSA submission deadline so that you do not miss out on opportunities for financial assistance. As a general rule, you must submit the FAFSA before the first financial aid deadline of the institutions to which you apply, usually in early February. Each state may have different deadlines. You can check with your state for a specific date. Photo credit: designer491/istockphoto.

Parent PLUS benefitsLoans

word-image-10153 First, eligible borrowers may take out a generous Parent PLUS loan, as long as it does not exceed the total cost of tuition at their chosen institution (minus any other financial aid for which they may be eligible). Another benefit of the Parent PLUS loan is the fixed interest rate. This means that even if interest rates in the country increase, the interest rate of the loan will be set at the level of the interest rate set at the time the loan was granted. A fixed interest rate can make it easier to plan monthly payments because the borrower knows exactly what to expect. Photo credit: jacoblund.

Refund possibilities

word-image-10154 There are also a number of flexible loan repayment options. For example, you can choose a standard repayment plan with fixed monthly payments for 10 years or an extended repayment plan with a fixed or progressive payment schedule for 25 years. Parent PLUS loans are not eligible for income-contingent installment plans unless combined with a consolidated direct loan. This is the consolidation of several federal loans into one direct consolidation loan. These loans are still federal loans and the new interest rate is a weighted average of the existing loans. Borrowers can choose the best repayment option based on the plans they qualify for and their repayment goals. Whether the goal is to keep interest rates low or pay off the loan balance as quickly as possible, borrowers can choose the plan that best meets their needs. In general, if you choose a repayment plan that allows you to pay off your loan quickly, you will pay less interest over the life of the loan. Photo credit:

Contra-indications to parenthood Credit

word-image-10155 Not everyone is eligible for the Parent PLUS credit. While this is not necessarily a disadvantage of the Parent PLUS loan, it is important to understand that you must meet all eligibility requirements to qualify. This involves undergoing a credit check. Negative credit indicators are late payments, foreclosures, debts discharged in bankruptcy proceedings, tax debts, wage extortion, or prior discharge of federal student debt. However, you can get a loan if you apply with a guarantor or a person acting as a guarantor. You must also be a citizen or national of the United States. Again, it should be noted that for loans with a start date of 1. October 2018 or earlier other loan fees apply. Photo credit:

Alternative financing options

word-image-10156 Fortunately, you still have other financing options if your application is denied due to bad credit or an unfavorable past history. Here are a few to consider: Photo credit: Vadzim Kushniarou/istockphoto.

1. Involving supporters

word-image-10157 If a parent cannot get a loan because of their own credit history, they can try to find a co-borrower, called an endorser, for the Parent PLUS loan. The endossessor agrees to assume responsibility for the loan if the borrower is unable to repay it, and the loan will appear on the endossessor’s credit report as his or her own debt. If you are applying with an endorser, you must complete the Credit Counseling PLUS form. Photo credit: designer491/istockphoto.

2. Search for free money

word-image-10158 It may be advisable to continue applying for scholarships, work incentives or grants. There are numerous ways to find reward opportunities, for example. B. contact the school financial aid office, federal agencies, state financial aid offices, or other organizations involving the student or parents. Since new opportunities may arise each year, it’s a good idea to keep your eyes open for funding opportunities. Photo credit: fizkes/istockphoto.

3. Application for unsubsidised federal loans

word-image-10159 If a parent does not qualify for a Parent PLUS loan, the student may be eligible for additional funding in the form of a Direct Unsubsidized Loan up to the Independent Student Loan ceiling. Federal student loans can be reliable loan options, as they often have lower interest rates and better repayment terms than other loans available to students. However, care must be taken to ensure that students do not incur more debt than they can handle after graduation. Photo credit: Chinnapong/istockphoto.

4. Handling of personal loans

word-image-10160 Finally, if all else fails, some families may consider private loans. These loans are offered by financial institutions such as banks, credit unions and online lenders. Keep in mind that private student loans generally have less flexible repayment terms and higher interest rates than public student loans. For example, private lenders may require you to begin payments before your child starts school. In contrast, a Parent PLUS loan allows parents to wait to make payments until their child graduates from high school. Moreover, when applying for a personal loan, the interest rate usually depends on factors such as the borrower’s income and credit history. If you think you might need to take out a private loan, don’t despair, but find out what options are available to you. First, it’s helpful to shop around and compare lenders for private loans. Lenders’ terms vary, so it’s a good idea to ask for several quotes and find out about the interest rate (fixed or variable), repayment terms and what happens if you run into financial difficulties that make it difficult to stick to the repayment plan. Read more: This article was originally published on and syndicated by External pages: Information and analyses provided through hyperlinks to third party websites cannot be guaranteed by SoFi, although we assume they are accurate. References are provided for information purposes only and should not be construed as an endorsement. Mention of third party trademarks None of the brands or products mentioned are associated with, endorsed by or sponsored by SoFi. Third-party trademarks mentioned herein are the property of their respective owners. Private student loans SoFi Please use credit responsibly. SoFi private student loans are not a substitute for federal loans, scholarships and work-study programs. You must have exhausted all federal student aid options before you can consider private loans, including ours. Read our frequently asked questions. SoFi private student loans are subject to program conditions and restrictions, and applicants must comply with SoFi terms and conditions. See for more information. Click here to view payment examples. SoFi reserves the right to modify the admission criteria at any time. This information is subject to change. Photo credit: AlertMeIf you are a parent with a child in college, you might be considering applying for a Parent PLUS loan. These loans are offered by the federal government and are the only loans available for parents of dependent students. Typically, students need to be dependent for you to qualify for a Parent PLUS loan. They must be either a first-time borrower or have no outstanding balances. If you are considering applying for a Parent PLUS loan, you might have a few questions about the process.. Read more about when can you apply for parent plus loan 2021-22 and let us know what you think.

Frequently Asked Questions

Do you have to apply for parent PLUS loan every year?

One of the many loans offered by the federal government is the Parent PLUS loan. These loans are offered to parents who want to help their children pay for college, but do not make enough money to afford the tuition. However, most lenders require that the parent applying for a Parent PLUS loan reapply each year. So, do you have to reapply each year? Most parents take out a PLUS loan to pay for their children’s college education, which can help make higher education affordable.  (When you fill out the FAFSA, you are automatically considered for a PLUS loan.)  However, for PLUS loan purposes, your child is considered independent once they graduate or leave school.  This means that you no longer have to apply for a PLUS loan every year for them.  While it may be hard to let go, your children will need to take responsibility and repay their own loans.  If you are concerned about covering the cost of college, consider applying for a parent loan as early as possible, getting another job, or saving more.  At the same time

Do you have to apply for parent PLUS loan every semester?

If you have children attending college, you probably know that you need to apply for a Parent PLUS loan every year. (Parent PLUS loans are federal student loans that is designed to help parents besides the student. They come with fixed and variable interest rate.) However, not all Parent PLUS loan applicants have the same experience. If you are a parent who is going back to college or university, you will probably be eligible for a new loan each semester. However, if you have been in school for a while and do not have a new credit, you will not be eligible for a new loan. Parent PLUS loans can be a great financial aid option for families of undergrad students, but they can also be tricky to navigate. We talked with Jason Alderman, a personal finance expert and VP of financial education nonprofit, GetBanked, to clarify some of the misconceptions about parent PLUS loans. Alderman cautions that while parent PLUS loans can be a great help in financing your student’s education, student loan debt should not be taken lightly.

Is there a deadline for parent PLUS loans?

For parents who are trying to pay for their children’s college education, borrowing money is often the only option—and the U.S. government offers a number of loans to choose from. These loans come with a variety of benefits, like loan forgiveness and low interest rates, but they also have a few drawbacks, like a strict lending calendar. The most common government loan available to parents, the Parent PLUS loan, is available to parents of dependent students. While PLUS stands for “Parent Loan for Undergraduate Students,” you can use it at any point from when your child is a freshman in high school to when they are in a post-graduate program. Thus, if you are struggling to pay for your child’s education and want to be able to The Parent PLUS loan is a loan for parents to pay for their children’s college education. It is a great option for parents who are unable to pay the full cost of college.  The parent loans comes in two parts, the parent loan, and the student loan. The parent loan can be used by itself or in conjunction with a student loan.  The student loan is usually the smaller of the two loans, the parent PLUS loan being the larger of the two loans.  The parent PLUS loan has a fixed interest rate of 6.84%.  On the other hand, the student loan interest rate is either the rate offered by the Federal government or the rate the school offers you.

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