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Wells Fargo Student Loan Reviews: Private Loans and Refinancing

Loans, Student Loans
Wells Fargo Private Student Loans Review
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Wells Fargo offers student loans and student loan refinancing, which it calls private consolidation. Wells Fargo has provided student loans since the mid-1960s. We review the Wells Fargo Collegiate private loan and its Private Consolidation loan in this article:

Wells Fargo refinancing review
Wells Fargo private student loan review

Wells Fargo Private Consolidation loan review

Wells Fargo offers student loan refinancing, which it calls private consolidation. By either name, it means replacing one or more student loans with a single lower-rate loan. Wells Fargo does not refinance federal loans. It’s best for existing Wells Fargo customers who can qualify for discounts. For refinance customers who later encounter payment hurdles, Wells Fargo has some of the most generous forbearance and repayment options available.

Wells_Fargo_4c
Type of loanStudent loan refinancing
NerdWallet rating4.5 stars out of 5
4.5 out of 5.0 stars
Interest ratesFixed: 5.24% - 9.49%
Variable: 4.74% - 9.49%

Rates updated April 2, 2018
Loan terms15-year and 20-year terms available.
Eligible loan amountsAt least $5,000 in private loans to consolidate. Each individual loan balance must be at least $1,000. You can refinance up to $120,000. The lifetime loan limit, combined with all other education debt, is $250,000.
Check Rates at Wells Fargo Student Loans

 

A Wells Fargo consolidation loan may be right for you if you:

  • Have private student loans
  • Have good credit, a stable income and a history of paying your debt on time

You’ll save the most money by choosing the shortest repayment term you can manage. Refinancing isn’t for you if you have poor credit, an uncertain job situation or have federal loans and want to pursue an income-driven repayment plan or loan forgiveness program.

» MORE: Compare student loan refinance lenders

Can you qualify?

You can consolidate only private student loan debt into a Wells Fargo Private Consolidation loan. You cannot include federal loans or any other debt that is not a qualified education loan into a new consolidation loan. Wells Fargo doesn’t disclose additional specific details about what it takes to qualify for its private consolidation loan, but you’ll likely be accepted if you:

  • Have good credit. Lenders typically look for borrowers with FICO scores in the high 600s, at least.
  • Consistently make loan payments on time. Wells Fargo will evaluate your payment history and debt-to-income ratio.
  • Meet employment requirements.
  • Are a U.S. citizen, U.S. national or permanent resident alien.
  • Attended an eligible school. Your loans must have been used to pay for a program at a Wells Fargo-participating school. You can find a list of schools on the application.

How to refinance with Wells Fargo

Before deciding on a student loan refinance lender, compare multiple options to make sure you’re getting the best rate you qualify for. In addition to interest rates, compare lenders’ repayment options and the flexibilities they offer for borrowers who are struggling to make payments.

If you’re ready to refinance with Wells Fargo, you can apply on Wells Fargo’s website. Here’s how:

  1. Complete an application. Fill in your personal details and information about your current loans. You’ll need:
  • Current lender’s name and address
  • Account number
  • Outstanding balance
  • Current monthly payment
  • Current rate and whether it’s fixed or variable
  • Social Security number
  • Employment and income information
  • Permanent U.S. address
  • Requested consolidation loan amount
  • Your co-signer’s information, if needed

2. Apply with a co-signer. Your rate will likely be lower if you apply with a co-signer. If you do, have your co-signer complete the application with you.

3. Agree to let Wells Fargo pull your credit. This may cause your credit score to dip slightly, but most lenders need to check credit history before approving borrowers for a loan.

4. Approval. You’ll see the rate you qualify for after you’re approved for the loan.

5. Finish the paperwork. Once you apply, the loan takes 45 to 60 days to process. During that time, you’ll need to continue making payments on all of your separate loans. You’ll also need to sign the loan documents and submit payoff statements from your existing lender to verify the loans you’re consolidating.

Check Rates at Wells Fargo Student Loans

More details

  • Loan servicer: Wells Fargo
  • Application or origination fee: None
  • Prepayment penalty: None
  • Late fees: Yes, $28 flat fee
  • Co-signer release available: Yes

Repayment options for struggling borrowers

You’ll save the most money by repaying the loan as fast as possible. Repayment on your newly refinanced loan begins immediately. If you have difficulty making payments, Wells Fargo offers several options, including forbearance. Wells Fargo does not offer deferment.

In-school forbearance: You may postpone payments on your loan for the length of time you enroll in school, up to a maximum of 48 months. You may qualify even if you are enrolled less than half-time.

Internship, residency or fellowship forbearance. While completing an internship, residency or fellowship program you may postpone payments for a maximum of 36 months.

Public service forbearance. If you’re volunteering for a qualifying public service organization, you may postpone payments for a maximum of three years.

Military forbearance. Borrowers on a period of active military service may be able to postpone payments for up to three years. Borrowers receiving loan repayment from the Department of Defense repayment program can postpone for up to 90 days.

FEMA disasters. When FEMA declares a disaster, Wells Fargo customers may defer payments for a period of time.

Grace period extension. If you had an in-school forbearance while attending school, you may request an additional six-month grace period.

Short-term payment relief. Borrowers who have consistently made on-time loan payments may receive up to two months of payment relief — a lower interest rate, lower monthly payment or extended repayment term.

Financial hardship payment relief. Up to six months of payment relief due to financial hardship.

Loan modification program. Borrowers may have their payment amount lowered temporarily or permanently.

Past due payment options. Borrowers may have options for loan repayment if their loans are already past due.

Wells Fargo Consolidation Loan extras

  • Interest rate discounts. Wells Fargo offers four interest rate discounts. All borrowers may take advantage of a 0.25% interest rate discount during repayment, but individuals can qualify for only one of the following discounts:
  • 0.25% discount for borrowers with a qualifying Wells Fargo consumer checking account
  • 0.25% discount for a prior federal or private student loan made by Wells Fargo
  • 0.50% discount for a Portfolio by Wells Fargo relationship
  • Student loan specialist. Borrowers work with a dedicated student loan specialist for the life of the loan. Borrowers with questions can email or call their designated specialists directly.
  • Loan forgiveness. In the event of death or disability of the primary borrower, the loan may be forgiven, unless the loan is co-signed.

Contact Wells Fargo

Call 1-877-449-2434

Wells Fargo Private Consolidation FAQs

  • Can I apply with a co-signer? Yes
  • Can I qualify if I’ve filed for bankruptcy in the past? Applications are reviewed on a case-by-case basis
  • Can I qualify if I didn’t go to a Title IV-accredited school? Yes
  • Can I qualify if I didn’t graduate? Yes

» MORE: Read more student loan refinancing FAQs


Wells Fargo Collegiate student loan review

Wells Fargo offers private student loans for undergraduate and graduate students, and parents who want to help their children pay for college. It also offers medical school loansbar loans for recent law school graduates and medical residency loans for recent medical school graduates.

This review focuses on Wells Fargo’s private student loan for undergraduates. The Wells Fargo Collegiate student loan is designed for undergraduate students who attend traditional four-year schools to pay for college. It’s best for existing Wells Fargo customers who can qualify for discounts. For struggling borrowers, Wells Fargo has some of the most generous forbearance and repayment options available. It’s also a good option for borrowers enrolled less than half-time in a college program since most other lenders require at least half-time or full-time enrollment status.

Wells_Fargo_4c
Type of loanPrivate student loan
NerdWallet rating5 stars out of 5
5.0 out of 5.0 stars
Interest ratesFixed: 5.94% - 11.67%
Variable: 4.34% - 10.84%

Rates updated April 2, 2018
Loan terms15 years
Loan amounts$1,000 minimum to $120,000 maximum for undergraduate
Check Rates at Wells Fargo Student Loans

Is a Wells Fargo private loan right for you?

A Wells Fargo private student loan may be right for you if you:

  • Have good credit or a creditworthy co-signer.
  • Need to fill a gap in the financial aid package you received after filling out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid, known as the FAFSA.

» MORE: NerdWallet’s 2018-19 FAFSA guide

Can you qualify?

  • Minimum credit score: No minimum
  • Minimum income: No minimum
  • Education requirements: You must be enrolled as an undergraduate student at an eligible school, seeking a degree, certificate or license. You may qualify even if you are enrolled less than half-time.
  • Citizenship requirements: U.S. citizen or U.S. national, or a permanent resident alien or an international student with temporary resident alien status and a current U.S. address.

Wells Fargo did not disclose average credit score, income or debt-to-income ratio of qualifying borrowers. Though income is not required, borrowers who do not have employment history and cannot meet credit and debt-to-income requirements will still need a co-signer.

The Collegiate loan is meant for four-year undergraduate students. Wells Fargo also has a Student Loan for Career and Community Colleges for students who attend a two-year school, career-training program or non-traditional school.

» COMPARE: Private student loans

How to apply for a Wells Fargo student loan

Before you take out a private student loan, compare your options to make sure you’re getting the best rate you qualify for. In addition to interest rates, compare lenders’ repayment options and the flexibility they offer for borrowers who are struggling to make payments.

If you’re ready to borrow with Wells Fargo, you can apply on Wells Fargo’s website. Here’s how.

1. Complete an application. Select the loan you’re applying to.  Fill in your personal details and information about the school you’re planning to attend, financial aid received, the amount you want to borrow, and your income. You’ll need the following to apply:

  • School information (school name, your major, grade and the school term for which you need the loan)
  • Social Security number
  • Permanent U.S. address
  • Employment and income information for the borrower and/or cosigner
  • Cost of attendance and estimated amount of financial assistance you expect to receive

2. Opt to include a co-signer. Your rate will likely be lower if you apply with a co-signer. If you do, ensure you have your co-signer’s employment and income information. Co-signers may begin the application process in advance of the primary borrower.

3. Agree to let Wells Fargo pull your credit. This may cause your credit score to dip slightly, but most lenders need to check credit history before approving borrowers for a loan.

4. Approval. You’ll see the rate you qualify for after you’re approved for the loan.

5. Finish the paperwork. You’ll need to sign all loan documents in order to receive the loan. Funds will be disbursed to your school.

Check Rates at Wells Fargo Student Loans

More details

  • Grace period: 6 months
  • Loan servicer: Wells Fargo
  • Application or origination fee: None
  • Late fees: Yes, $28 flat fee
  • Prepayment penalty: None

General repayment options

Wells Fargo student loan borrowers can choose to start making payments while they’re in school or defer payments until after they graduate.

Immediate repayment: Begin making payments on your debt as soon as it is disbursed. This option will save you the most money.

Deferred repayment: You won’t be required to make any payments until your grace period ends, but you can choose to make payments if you’d like. Interest will continue to accrue while you’re in school, even if you don’t pay. The interest will capitalize, or get added to your principal balance, at the end of your grace period.

Repayment options for struggling borrowers

Throughout the life of your loan, you might run into situations where you need to take a pause. Wells Fargo says less than 2% of its customers encounter difficulty during their repayment years, but it does offer multiple options for struggling borrowers. Wells Fargo does not offer deferment.

In-school forbearance: You may postpone payments on your student loan for the length of time you remain in school, up to a maximum of 48 months. You may qualify even if you are enrolled less than half-time.

Internship, residency or fellowship forbearance. While completing an internship, residency or fellowship program, you may postpone payments for a maximum of 36 months.

Public service forbearance. If you’re volunteering for a qualifying public service organization, you may postpone payments for a maximum of three years.

Military forbearance. Borrowers on a period of active military service may be able to postpone payments for up to three years. Borrowers receiving loan repayment from the Department of Defense repayment program can postpone for up to 90 days.

FEMA disasters. When FEMA declares a disaster, Wells Fargo customers may defer payments for a period of time.

Grace period extension. If you had an in-school forbearance while attending school, you may request an additional six-month grace period.

Short-term payment relief. Borrowers who have consistently made on-time loan payments may receive up to two months of payment relief — a lower interest rate, lower monthly payment or extended repayment term.

Financial hardship payment relief. Up to six months of payment relief due to financial hardship.

Loan modification program. Borrowers may have their payment amount lowered temporarily or permanently.

Past due payment options. Borrowers may have options for loan repayment if their loans are already past due.

Wells Fargo Collegiate loan extras

  • Interest rate discounts. Wells Fargo offers four interest rate discounts. All borrowers may take advantage of a 0.25% interest rate discount during repayment, but individuals can qualify for only one of the following discounts:
  • 0.25% discount for borrowers with a qualifying Wells Fargo consumer checking account
  • 0.25% discount for a prior federal or private student loan made by Wells Fargo
  • 0.50% discount for a Portfolio by Wells Fargo relationship
  • Student loan specialist. Borrowers work with a dedicated student loan specialist for the life of the loan. Whenever borrowers have questions, they can email or call their designated specialist directly.
  • Loan forgiveness. In the event of death or disability of the primary borrower, the loan may be forgiven, unless the loan is co-signed.

Contact Wells Fargo

Call 1-877-566-6733.

Wells Fargo student loan FAQs

    • Can I apply with a co-signer? Yes
    • Can I qualify if I’ve filed for bankruptcy in the past? Applications are reviewed on a case-by-case basis
    • Can I qualify if I don’t go to a Title IV-accredited school? Yes
    • Is co-signer release available? Yes

STUDENT LOANS RATINGS METHODOLOGY

NerdWallet believes the best student loan is one you can repay at the lowest interest rate you can get. That’s why NerdWallet’s private student loans ratings reward lenders that offer a variety of loan terms, limit their fees and penalties, and extend borrowers multiple options to avoid default. Points are also awarded for soft credit checks, underwriting transparency and other consumer-friendly features. Use these ratings as a guide, but we encourage you to shop around for the lowest interest rate you can qualify for. NerdWallet does not receive compensation for its reviews. Read our editorial guidelines.

5 stars out of 5 — Among the very best for consumer-friendly features

4.5 stars out of 5 — Excellent; offers most consumer-friendly features

4 stars out of 5 — Very good; offers many consumer-friendly features

3.5 stars out of 5 — Good; may not offer something important to you

3 stars out of 5 — Fair; missing important consumer-friendly features

2.5 stars out of 5 — Poor; proceed with great caution