SoFi Reviews: Student Loan Refinancing and Private Student Loans

SoFi is a leader in the student loan refinancing space. It also offers private student loans for graduate students and undergraduates.
Anna HelhoskiSep 8, 2021

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Student loan ratings

SoFi
  • Student loan refinancing

  • Private student loan

The bottom line: SoFi is a legitimate online lender that offers student loan refinancing and private student loans. Its refinancing loan is best for borrowers who want plenty of benefits with their refinanced student loan. Its private loan is best for flexible repayment options and no fees.

Student loan refinancing review

Best Student Loan Refinancing for Doctors

SoFi Student Loan Refinance
Check Rate

on SoFi's website

SoFi Student Loan Refinance

5.0

NerdWallet rating 
Check Rate

on SoFi's website

Fixed APR

2.49 - 6.94%

Variable APR

2.25 - 6.59%

Min. Credit Score

650

Pros

  • You can refinance parent PLUS loans in your name.
  • You can see if you’ll qualify and what rate you’ll get without a hard credit check.
  • Additional perks like career planning, job search assistance and entrepreneurship support available.

Cons

  • No co-signer release available.
  • Loan size minimum is higher than most lenders.

Best for borrowers who want plenty of benefits with their refinanced student loan.

SoFi is a leading student loan refinance lender. In 2012, it became the first company to refinance federal and private student loans together.

The average income among approved borrowers is over $100,000. However, SoFi could also be a fit for borrowers with more modest lifestyles; it has no specific minimum income requirement and accepts borrowers whose highest education level is an associate degree.

SoFi in June that borrowers with federal student loans can lock-in an interest rate now and still benefit from the . Borrowers who do so will keep their federal student loans until Oct. 1 before they are officially refinanced with SoFi at the locked-in rate.

This student loan refinancing program will allow borrowers to cancel and stay with their federal student loans if they decide they don’t want to refinance.

SoFi, like other five-star lenders, isn't perfect. SoFi could improve by offering additional programs such as:

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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 flexibility they offer for borrowers who are struggling to make payments.

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If SoFi denies your refinance application, the lender will . Depending on the reason, you may want to consider other lenders or need a co-signer.

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

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How does this loan compare?

SoFi Student Loan Refinance
CommonBond Student Loan Refinance
Splash Financial Student Loan Refinance
NerdWallet rating 
NerdWallet rating 
NerdWallet rating 
Check RateCheck RateCheck Rate
Fixed APR

2.49 - 6.94%

Fixed APR

2.98 - 5.79%

Fixed APR

2.49 - 5.79%

Variable APR

2.25 - 6.59%

Variable APR

1.99 - 5.61%

Variable APR

N/A

Min. Credit Score

650

Min. Credit Score

680

Min. Credit Score

650

Private student loan review

SoFi Private Student Loan
Check Rate

on SoFi's website

SoFi Private Student Loan

4.5

NerdWallet rating 
Check Rate

on SoFi's website

Fixed APR

2.99 - 10.90%

Variable APR

0.99 - 11.33%

Min. Credit Score

Does not disclose

Pros

  • You can see if you’ll qualify and what rate you’ll get without a hard credit check.
  • Multiple in-school repayment options available, including interest-only and flat-fee, and deferred for undergrad and grad students.
  • Additional perks like career planning, job search assistance and entrepreneurship support available.

Cons

  • Does not offer bi-weekly payments via autopay.

Best for flexible repayment options and no fees.

SoFi began offering private student loans for undergraduates in April 2019. It's a solid option for borrowers who have exhausted their federal student loan options and need additional money to fund college costs. It also offers perks like career coaching, community events and no-fee investing.

Compared with the largest private student loan companies in the industry, SoFi stands out by offering personalized rate estimates without affecting your credit. This allows you to shop for the best rate without penalty. SoFi is also a good option for borrowers who want to pay off their student loan quickly — you can make greater-than-minimum payments via autopay.

SoFi, like other five-star lenders, isn’t perfect. SoFi could improve its private student loan product by:

Before taking out a SoFi student loan or any other private student loan, exhaust your federal student loan options first. Submit the Free Application for Federal Student Aid, known as the FAFSA, to apply.

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to make sure you’re getting the best rate you qualify for. In addition to interest rates, look at lenders’ repayment alternatives and the flexibility they offer to borrowers who struggle to make payments.

If SoFi denies your student loan application, the lender will . Depending on the reason, you may want to consider other lenders or, if you haven’t already, try applying with a co-signer.

If you don’t have access to a co-signer — or still aren’t eligible with one — consider or specialize in .

NerdWallet believes the best student loan is one you can repay at the lowest interest rate you can get. That's why NerdWallet’s student loan 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 .

Frequently asked questions