SunTrust Suspends Private Student Loan Program

SunTrust, now Truist, no longer offers SunTrust funded student loans.

Anna HelhoskiJune 5, 2020

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Student Loan Relief Guide

Information on this page may be affected by COVID-19 relief. Know your options before any decision.

SunTrust, now Truist, stopped offering private student loans in May 2020. SunTrust private student loans will continue to be serviced by American Education Services, and borrowers’ repayment schedules will not be affected.

SunTrust offered multiple loan products nationwide including its Custom Choice loan and Start Student Loan. The Custom Choice Loan offered several in-school repayment options and a generous 36 months of interest-only payments once repayment began. The Start Student Loan offered one unique perk other lenders don't: no interest for the first six months of repayment. Both loans also had the benefit of a 2% principal reduction upon graduation.

If you're interested in private student loans, consider these lenders:

Ascent Private Student Loan
College Ave Private Student Loan
CommonBond Private Student Loan
Check RateCheck RateCheck Rate
Fixed APR

3.84 - 14.50%

Fixed APR

3.99 - 12.99%

Fixed APR

5.45 - 9.74%

Variable APR

2.73 - 13.01%

Variable APR

1.24 - 11.98%

Variable APR

3.31 - 9.29%

Min. Credit Score

540

Min. Credit Score

Mid-600s

Min. Credit Score

660

Or compare student loan refinance lenders by category to find the right one for you:

If you have a private loan with SunTrust

Existing SunTrust borrowers will still have their loans serviced by American Education Services. Here are repayment details for these loans:

SunTrust Custom Choice private student loan

In-school repayment options:

  • In-school deferment: You won’t make payments while enrolled at least half-time in an approved school; payments start six months after leaving school.

  • Immediate repayment: Payment of principal and interest begins 30 to 60 days after the final disbursement. The minimum monthly payment is $50. There is no grace period.

  • Interest-only: Pay interest-only while enrolled at least half-time at an approved school. Combined interest and principal payments begin six months after you leave school.

  • Partial interest: A payment of $25 per month is available on loans of $5,000 or more while borrowers are enrolled at least half-time at an approved school. Payments covering full interest and principal begin after the six-month grace period ends.

Post-school repayment options

  • Grace period: 6 months

  • Forbearance: Borrowers experiencing a financial hardship may receive forbearance for up to 12 months, in three-month increments. Interest will accrue during this time.

  • Additional deferment: Borrowers having problems making payments may be eligible for up to 36 months of interest-only payments. This must be made at the borrower's request.

  • Academic deferment: Yes, up to 48 months of additional deferment for re-enrollment.

  • Military deferment: Yes, up to 36 months if the student borrower and/or co-signer is unable to repay the loan while deployed on active-duty status in the armed forces of the United States.

  • Co-signer release available: Yes, after 36 on-time principal and interest payments.

  • Death or disability discharge available: Yes, in the event the student borrower dies or becomes permanently disabled, the loan can be forgiven with proper documentation and the cosigner won't be responsible for repayment.

Repayment preferences

  • Allows greater-than-minimum payments via autopay: Yes.

  • Allows biweekly payments via autopay: No.

  • Loan servicer: American Education Services.

  • In-house customer service team: Yes.

  • Process for escalating concerns: Yes.

  • Borrowers get assigned a dedicated banker, advisor or representative: No.

  • Average time for approval: A credit decision is made in under a minute after submitting an application. Loan approval will depend on the documentation provided.

SunTrust Start private student loan

Post-school repayment options

  • Grace period: 6 months

  • Forbearance: Borrowers experiencing a financial hardship may receive forbearance for up to 12 months, in three-month increments. Interest will accrue during this time.

  • Additional deferment: Borrowers having problems making payments may be eligible for up to 36 months of interest-only payments. This must be made at the borrower's request.

  • Academic deferment: Yes, up to 48 months of additional deferment for re-enrollment.

  • Military deferment: Yes, up to 36 months if the student borrower and/or co-signer is unable to repay the loan while deployed on active-duty status in the armed forces of the United States.

  • Co-signer release available: Yes, after 36 on-time payments.

  • Death or disability discharge: Yes, in the event the student borrower dies or becomes permanently disabled, the loan can be forgiven with proper documentation and the cosigner won't be responsible for repayment.

Repayment preferences

  • Allows greater-than-minimum payments via autopay: Yes.

  • Allows biweekly payments via autopay: No.

  • Loan servicer: American Education Services.

  • In-house customer service team: Yes.

  • Process for escalating concerns: Yes.

  • Borrowers get assigned a dedicated banker, advisor or representative: No.

  • Average time for approval: A credit decision is made in under a minute after submitting an application. Loan approval will depend on the documentation provided.

If you no longer wish to work with SunTrust, now Truist, consider refinancing with a different lender if you can qualify for a better interest rate.

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