LendKey is a Student Loan company that works exclusively through credit unions and community banks to bring the best possible interest rates with the best possible customer service experience.
Many people hear about LendKey through promotional offers at their local bank or credit union, but you can actually refinance using LendKey without an established banking arrangement.
LendKey offers a variety of products: student loan refinancing, private student loans, and even personal loans.
Should you refinance with LendKey? We’ll explain what the company offers, and whether it makes sense to pursue.
- Student loan refinancing, private student loans, personal loans
- Low costs: No origination fees or application fees
- Online application process is easy to use and fast
LendKey Video Review
Refinancing Student Loans With LendKey
LendKey allows (and even encourages) borrowers to refinance with a cosigner to get a better rate. Aside from spouse’s cosigning on loans (when the couple shares finances), cosigning is risky for the cosigner. If you default, your cosigner’s money and credit score is on the line. However, LendKey does allow for a cosigner release after you’ve made 12 to 36 on time payments.
Because of LendKey’s focus on refinancing with a co-signer, it was one of the few refinancing companies that really works well for recent grads who have limited credit history.
That said, many recent grads might continue to benefit from having their loans on Federal income-based repayment plans. It’s risky to refinance Federal student loans while you’re still getting established.
LendKey's Student Loan Refinancing Rates And Terms
Right now, LendKey offers loans with terms of 5, 7, 10, 15 or 20 years. Like most private loan refinancers, LendKey doesn’t charge any origination fees.
Rates on Fixed loans range from 5.23% - 8.97% APR. Rates on variable loans range from 2.70% - 8.77% APR. These are some of the lowest rates available right now. These rates are current as of January 8, 2019.
Remember, rates and terms are subject to change. Please check LendKey's website for the most up to date rates.
You must refinance at least $5,000. LendKey also allows borrowers to refinance Parent Plus loans. This includes allowing former students to refinance loans that are in their parent’s name into their own name. This is an important type of loan that many lenders don’t currently offer. If this is important to you, LendKey is likely to be the best place to find a great rate.
Sadly, LendKey doesn't currently have any student loan refinancing bonus offers to take advantage of.
LendKey Private Student Loans
In addition to student loan refinancing, LendKey also offers private student loans. You need an income of at least $24,000 to take out a private student loan without a cosigner. However, that's rare for most students and even the CFPB shares that 90% of private student loans have cosigners.
Rates on LendKey’s private loans start at 5.85% for variable rate loans, and 4.68% for fixed rate loans. Rates and terms on these loans will vary by lender, but LendKey generally requires in school payments of at least $25 per month.
LendKey is one of our top private student loan lenders because of it's low rates, no origination fees, and semi-flexible repayment terms.
Any Concerning Fine Print?
Aside from encouraging borrowers to take on cosigners, LendKey doesn’t have particularly concerning fine print. Borrowers seem to admire the fast application process, and especially appreciate refinancing to their current bank. Plus, you’ll get the best rate from a variety of local lenders.
However, unlike most student loan aggregators, LendKey actually requires you to pick a bank. If you get identical offers from multiple banks, you may need to do some extra research to decide whether you really like a bank or credit union before taking out the loan.
This is very similar to Credible, where you can compare different major lenders and eventually have to pick one.
With no application fee and no origination fee, LendKey is a solid choice for people looking to refinance. With LendKey, you’ll get the best possible rate from a local bank.
However, you may not get the best rate out of all lenders. It could pay to compare your rate offers to offers from top rate lenders on Credible or another lending aggregator.
Remember, refinancing student loans only makes sense if you lower your interest rate, and you’re confident that you no longer need Federal loans safety nets (such as income based repayment plans).
If you’re still looking to establish yourself financially, hold off on refinancing. On the other hand, if you’re in a solid financial position, look into refinancing your student loans if it lowers your interest rate.