NaviRefi Review: Navient Student Loan Refinancing

NaviRefi is now available to all qualified borrowers.
Jan 20, 2022

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Our Take

5.0

NerdWallet rating 

The bottom line:

Best for borrowers who may need flexible repayment options.

Navient Student Loan Refinance
Navient Student Loan Refinance
Min. credit score
650
Fixed APR
2.50-5.79%
Variable APR
1.88-5.64%

Pros & Cons

Pros

  • More flexible repayment options for struggling borrowers than other lenders.

  • No late fees.

  • You can refinance without a degree.

Cons

  • You can't see if you’ll qualify and what rate you’ll get without a hard credit check.

  • No option to make greater-than-minimum payments via autopay.

Full Review

Navient is a servicer for federal and private student loans that was once part of Sallie Mae. Navient offers refinanced student loans originated by the online lender Earnest, branded as NaviRefi.

Previously, NaviRefi was available only by invitation to borrowers with loans serviced by Navient. Now, borrowers can apply even if they aren't existing customers.

Navient considers your earning potential and credit score when approving loans. It also offers multiple options for borrowers who can't afford payments. If you may need repayment flexibility, are looking for a lender that considers your earning potential and are offered a lower rate than you currently have, NaviRefi could be a good choice for you.

Navient is facing multiple lawsuits alleging that it harmed borrowers throughout the repayment process. The company has challenged the allegations.

Navient student loan refinancing at a glance

  • Borrowers struggling to afford payments have flexible repayment options.

  • No option to apply with a co-signer.

  • You can refinance without a degree.

How NaviRefi could improve

NaviRefi could improve its student loan refinance product by:

  • Conducting soft credit checks to give personalized rate estimates.

  • Allowing greater-than-minimum payments via auto-pay.

  • Letting borrowers refinance their parents' PLUS loans in their own name.

How much can refinancing save?

NaviRefi student loan refinancing details

Interest rates, fees and terms
  • Soft credit check to qualify and see what rate you’ll get: No.

  • Loan terms: 5 to 20 years, in one-year increments.

  • Loan amounts: $5,001 to $500,000.

  • Can transfer a parent loan to a child: No.

  • Application or origination fee: No.

  • Prepayment penalty: No.

  • Late fees: No.

Compare NaviRefi’s range of interest rates with other student loan refinance lenders. Your actual rate will depend on factors including your — or your co-signer’s — credit history and financial situation. To see what rate NaviRefi will offer you, apply on its website.

Requirements

Financial

  • Minimum credit score: 650.

  • Minimum income: Does not disclose.

  • Typical credit score of approved borrowers or co-signers: 700+.

  • Typical income of approved borrowers: $100,000+.

  • Maximum debt-to-income ratio: Does not disclose.

  • Can qualify if you’ve filed for bankruptcy: Yes, after at least seven years have passed.

Other

  • Citizenship: Must be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident.

  • Location: Loans not available in Nevada.

  • Must have graduated: No.

  • Must have attended a school authorized to receive federal aid: Yes.

  • Percentage of borrowers who have a co-signer: No option to apply with a co-signer.

Repayment options

Many lenders are offering relief related to COVID-19. Check this list of private loan relief options to see what this lender offers.

  • Academic deferment: Yes.

  • Military deferment: Yes.

  • Internship, residency or fellowship program deferment: You may be able to pause payments during a qualifying internship, residency or fellowship.

  • Forbearance: Yes, in three-month increments, for up to 12 months total.

  • Rate reduction program: Borrowers who experience difficulty making full payments may qualify for a reduced interest rate for six months.

  • Term and rate reduction program: Borrowers may also qualify for a reduced interest rate and extended repayment term to reduce payments.

  • Co-signer release available: N/A.

  • Death or disability discharge: Yes.

  • Loan discharge if co-signer dies or becomes disabled: N/A.

Repayment Preferences

  • Allows greater-than-minimum payments via autopay: No.

  • Allows biweekly payments via autopay: No.

Customer service
  • Loan servicer: Navient.

  • In-house customer service team: Yes.

  • Process for escalating concerns: Yes.

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

  • Average time from approval to payoff: 7 business days.

Before refinancing with NaviRefi

Before deciding on a student loan refinance lender, compare multiple student loan refinance 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 borrowers who are struggling to make payments.

If you aren’t eligible to refinance with NaviRefi

If NaviRefi denies your refinance application, the lender will let you know why. Depending on the reason, you may want to consider other lenders, including those that allow a co-signer.

NerdWallet recommends prequalifying with multiple refinance lenders before you apply. This will let you know which lenders you may be eligible with, without affecting your credit.

STUDENT LOAN REFINANCE RATINGS METHODOLOGY

Our survey of more than 29 banks, credit unions and online lenders offering student loans and student loan refinancing includes the top 10 lenders by market share and the top 10 lenders by online search volume, as well as lenders that serve specialty or nontraditional markets.

We consider 41 features and data points for each financial institution. Depending on the category, these include the availability of biweekly payments through autopay, minimum credit score and income requirement disclosures, availability to borrowers in all states, extended grace periods and in-house customer service.

The stars represent ratings from poor (one star) to excellent (five stars). Ratings are rounded to the nearest half-star.

Frequently asked questions