Contact: Sandy Connolly, Director of Communications
Office of Higher Education
St. Paul, MN -- Refinancing student loans just got a little more affordable because of a decrease in the interest rates for the SELF Refi program.
The new fixed rates are 4.25% for a five-year loan, 5.5% for 10-year and 6.75% for a 15 year loan. Variable rates remain at 3.2%, 3.85% and 4.55% for the 5, 10 and 15 year loans.
"Minnesota ranks 5th in the country for student debt, with the typical college student leaving school with more than $31,000 in student loan debt," said Lt. Governor Tina Smith. "This is an opportunity to help lower the cost of student loan debt so recent graduates can get going with their lives. I encourage all Minnesota students to take full advantage of the real savings that may be available through the SELF Refi program. Governor Dayton and I are committed to working with the Legislature this session to make higher education more affordable for all students."
Since the SELF Refi program was launched in January, over $26 million has been disbursed to over 760 borrowers. The SELF Refi program is managed by the Minnesota Office of Higher Education (OHE) and patterned after the SELF Loan, an OHE loan program that has disbursed over $2 billion in loans since 1984 to help students pay for college. Neither program relies on public dollars, but is instead funded through the sale of bonds.
"The SELF Refi program can help some borrowers locked into higher rate private loans not only lower their monthly payments, but also lower their overall debt," said Commissioner Larry Pogemiller, Minnesota Office of Higher Education (OHE). "There are some scenarios in which a borrower could reduce their monthly payment by as much as $200 a month, or their overall debt by as much as $25,000."
To be eligible for the SELF Refi program, borrowers must be a Minnesota resident, have completed at least one postsecondary credentialed program, and either meet certain credit criteria or have a credit-worthy cosigner. The majority of all student loans qualify.