Students have a lot of expenses that they need to cover, including tuition and other educational costs. Sofi, an online lender, offers instant loans to students to help them cover these costs. Sofi instant loans are a great way to get the funds you need quickly, without having to go through a lengthy loan application process.
In this post, we will discuss how to apply for instant loans in Sofi as a student. We will cover the eligibility requirements, the loan application process, and the repayment options. With this information, you will be well–equipped to take advantage of Sofi‘s instant loan services in order to get the funding you need.
SoFi is a financial company that offers student loan refinancing, private student loans, mortgages, personal loans, insurance and other financial products. SoFi’s private student loans for undergraduates and refinance loans include an online prequalification option and access to customer perks like free career and financial coaching. Interest rates, however, can climb comparatively high for borrowers without top credit scores, and forbearance maxes out at only 12 months.
Pros of SoFi Loans
- Access to SoFi member benefits, including career coaching
- No fees on undergraduate loans, including late fees
- Interest rate estimate available without undergoing a hard credit check
Cons of SoFi Loans
- Maximum annual percentage rate (APR) above 10% for undergraduate student loans
- Only 12 months of forbearance available
- No co-signer release available on refinance loans
Are SoFi student loans right for you?
SoFi student loans come with no fees, low rates and a high degree of flexibility. You could choose whether and how to make in-school payments in addition to selecting one of multiple loan terms.
Unfortunately, the lender known for refinancing is less forgiving during the application process. You’ll need especially strong credit (or a cosigner) and at least half-time class attendance, among other eligibility requirements.
To decide whether SoFi is right for you, take some time to think about your ideal loan, then see if SoFi fulfills everything you’re seeking. If it comes up short, you could always compare the lender to some of the other noteworthy private student loan options available.
Student Loans Offered by SoFi
SoFi Undergraduate Loans
SoFi offers student loans for undergraduates with no fees and repayment terms between 5 and 15 years. You can borrow as little as $1,000 with no specified maximum amount. At the time of borrowing, you also have the option of a fixed interest rate, which stays the same over the life of your loan, or a variable rate, which can fluctuate over time.
SoFi Graduate Student Loans
SoFi’s graduate student loans have similar terms as its undergraduate loans, though fixed interest rates start slightly higher (as of publication). You can borrow up to your school’s cost of attendance and choose repayment terms as long as 15 years.
SoFi Law and MBA Loans
If you’re pursuing your JD or MBA, you could borrow a SoFi student loan to cover your cost of attendance. As with its other student loans, SoFi requires a minimum borrowing amount of $1,000.
SoFi Health Professions Student Loans
Medical, dental, and other health professions students might opt for one of SoFi’s health professions student loans.
SoFi Parent Loans
SoFi also funds parent loans for parents or sponsors of college students. The interest rates start slightly higher than those of student loans (as of publication), but loan amounts and repayment terms are similarly flexible. Parent borrowers have the option of redeeming SoFi points to pay down their parent loans, which they can earn by logging in to the SoFi app, checking their credit score, or taking other qualifying steps.
SoFi Loan Eligibility and Approval
SoFi funds student loans in all 50 states and Washington, D.C. To qualify for a SoFi student loan, you’ll need to meet the following eligibility requirements:
- Be a US citizen, permanent resident, or non-permanent resident alien
- Be the age of majority in your state (or apply with a co-signer who is)
- Be enrolled at least half-time in a degree-granting program at an eligible institution; associate’s degree programs are not eligible
- Be employed or have sufficient income (or apply with a co-signer)
- Meet SoFi’s underwriting requirements, which consider your financial history, credit score, and debt-to-income ratio.
For private student loans in particular, SoFi says that borrowers who apply with a strong co-signer may be seven times more likely to qualify. When considering a co-signer, choose a person whom you trust, who has solid income from full-time employment and has good or excellent credit.
Co-signers take on a major responsibility since they’re obligated to make payments on the loan if you cannot. But SoFi offers co-signers a perk: they could qualify for a 0.125% interest rate reduction on other SoFi loan products. You could also get a 0.125% interest rate reduction if your co-signer is already a SoFi customer. The co-signer can be removed from the loan later if you’ve borrowed a private student loan, but there’s no co-signer release option for SoFi refinance loans.
Are Co-Signers Required in SoFi?
Co-signers are not required to borrow a student loan from SoFi, but adding one to your application could help you qualify or get better rates. Most undergraduate borrowers apply for a private student loan with a co-signer, since they often don’t have sufficient credit history or income to qualify on their own. As mentioned, SoFi lets you apply for a co-signer release on an in-school student loan after 24 months of on-time payments.
Is Loan Pre-Qualification Available in SoFi?
SoFi makes it easy to pre-qualify for a student loan on its website. After entering a few personal details, you can check your rates on a student loan with no obligation or impact on your credit score. You can start the process by clicking “View Your Rate” on SoFi’s website. According to SoFi, pre-qualifying for a student loan only takes three minutes.
SoFi Length of Time for Loan Approval and Disbursement
You can apply for a SoFi student loan online within minutes and may receive an approval decision right away. Once your loan has been approved, SoFi will verify your information with your school. This process may take a few days or weeks, depending on how quickly your school responds.
After your school has confirmed your status and certified your cost of attendance, SoFi will send the funds to your financial aid office. Your school applies the funds to your tuition bill and sends any leftover amount to you. Generally speaking, the entire loan application process takes between four and six weeks.
SoFi Loan Fees
SoFi does not charge any fees on its student loans. You won’t have to worry about origination, disbursement, application, or late fees if you borrow from SoFi.
SoFi Loan Discounts
SoFi provides several opportunities for interest rate discounts. These include:
- Autopay: 0.25% rate cut for setting up automatic payments on your student loans
- Family: 0.25% rate discount if you’re a parent or sponsor who has already co-signed on a SoFi student loan and are co-signing on another one
- Continuing scholar: 0.25% rate discount if you’ve already borrowed a student loan from SoFi and are taking out another one
- Member: 0.125% rate discount if you or your co-signer are already SoFi members
SoFi Repayment Options
When you borrow from SoFi, you can choose terms of 5, 7, 10, or 15 years. Students have the following repayment options:
- Deferred: Postpone payments while you’re in school and for six months after
- Interest-only: Pay off the interest that accrues on your loans each month
- Partial (fixed) payments: Make fixed payments of $25 per month while you’re in school
- Immediate repayment: Start paying back your full principal and interest payments right away
Borrowers of parent loans can’t defer payments completely while the child is in school. Instead, they can choose between interest-only payments and immediate repayment of their parent loan.
SoFi offers a bonus of $100 for referring friends and family to any of its student loans or other financial products. Your friend or family member will need to use your unique referral link for you to earn the bonus.
SoFi Member Benefits
SoFi members are eligible for a number of benefits, including career coaching, community events, personalized advice from a financial planner, estate planning, and expedited entry to SoFi Stadium in Inglewood, California.
SoFi Loan Forbearance and Discharge Options
If you run into financial hardship, contact SoFi’s loan servicing partner MOHELA about your options for reducing payments. You may also qualify to pause payments completely through deferment or forbearance for other reasons, such as going back to school, serving on active duty, or experiencing a natural disaster.
How to Apply for a SoFi Student Loan
One of SoFi’s most valuable features is the ability to prequalify for a loan on its website. After entering some basic personal information, SoFi conducts a soft credit check. That means the company can make you a preliminary interest rate offer without your credit score being affected, and without the credit check appearing on your credit report.
If you wish to move forward with the application, SoFi will conduct a hard credit check—which can temporarily drop your credit score by up to five points—to view your full credit history and confirm your details. To fill out a full application, you will likely have to provide:
- Your and your co-signer’s Social Security numbers (SSNs)
- Proof of income for you and your co-signer
- Official ID
- Your planned graduation date, upcoming academic term and the amount of financial aid you will likely receive for undergraduate student loans
- A payoff statement for each of the student loans you want to refinance, including information like your current balance and student loan servicer, for refinance loans
- The amount you plan to borrow or refinance
For undergraduate student loans, SoFi will then verify with your school the information you provided, which could take up to a few weeks. SoFi estimates that from application to receiving funding takes about four to six weeks on average, but that will largely depend on your school’s process.
For refinance loans, if your application is successful, you’ll pick your preferred loan term and interest rate type: fixed or variable. SoFi says it will pay off your prior loans seven to 15 business days after you have successfully supplied all necessary documentation. Your first payment to SoFi will be due 30 to 45 days later.
What documents do I need for SoFi?
You may need to provide a photo ID, proof of address, proof of income, and other documents. If you’re approved, sign your loan documents. In all, SoFi says your personal loan will be funded within a week of when you start the application. Most loans fund the same day or the next business day.
Is SoFi Student Loan Refinancing Available?
Along with in-school loans, SoFi also provides student loan refinancing to qualifying borrowers. Fixed interest rates range from 4.49% to 8.99% APR and variable rates range from 5.09% to 8.99% APR. When you refinance with SoFi, you can choose repayment terms of 5, 7, 10, 15, or 20 years. The minimum student loan amount you can refinance is $5,000.
The requirements to refinance student loans are similar to the ones to borrow in-school loans, such as meeting residency and age requirements. You (or your co-signer) must be employed, have sufficient income, or have an offer for a job that will start within 90 days. You must also have borrowed the loans for an eligible, accredited Title IV school and graduated with your associate’s degree or higher.
Along with general student loan refinancing, SoFi also offers specific refinancing options for medical residents, parent PLUS borrowers, medical professionals, and law and MBA graduates. If you refinance as a medical resident, you have the option to make $100 monthly payments while you’re in residency.115
Be cautious about refinancing federal student loans with a private lender, as doing so means forfeiting federal repayment plans and forgiveness programs. If you want to retain access to programs such as income-driven repayment and Public Service Loan Forgiveness, avoid refinancing your federal loans.
Is refinancing student loans with SoFi right for you?
SoFi lender might be a good choice if you:
- Can show consistent monthly income and comfortably afford the payments
- Have a good-to-excellent credit score
- Don’t plan to use income-driven repayment or federal student loan forgiveness on your federal loans
- Have higher interest rates on your current student loans than what SoFi offers
- Want access to program perks like career coaching and wealth management
As you can see from our SoFi review, these loans come with many perks and advantages that student loan borrowers could benefit from.
But before you choose to work with SoFi, compare top student loan refinancing options. Carefully considering your circumstances and financial needs as you decide whether student loan refinancing can potentially save you a good deal of money in the long run.
How to apply for refinancing with SoFi
If you’re interested in refinancing your student loans with SoFi, you’ll be able to check your rates without going through a hard-credit check. To begin the application, you’ll need to provide the following:
- Your basic information
- Your contact information
- Your refinancing goal
- Information on your current loan(s)
- Information regarding your income
- Your credit score
From there, SoFi can provide you with an initial answer as to whether you qualify to refinance your student loans and what kind of rates you may receive. From there, you’ll need to verify your information and income with SoFi.
Once this is verified, you’ll have to officially accept the offer from SoFi. Afterward, your funds will be disbursed.
SoFi student loan refinance review
SoFi is one of the largest student loan refinancing companies in the industry. The online lender has refinanced over $30 billion worth of student loans for more than 375,000 members, while delivering many features not offered by banks, credit unions and other traditional lenders.
SoFi student loan refinancing is a good fit for borrowers with an associate’s degree or higher who seek a lower interest rate on their debt, while also maintaining access to a bevy of loan repayment options, including deferment and forbearance. It’s less advantageous, however, for borrowers who want to combine student loan debt with their spouse.
SoFi student loan refinance review: The basics
SoFi’s approach to refinancing student loans is different from those of many other lenders. Along with competitive repayment terms, the company also offers career support and wealth management services to its members. With these perks, SoFi offers you an opportunity for more than just repaying your student loans.
Here are some other features of a SoFi refinancing loan:
- Check your eligibility, rates without submitting to a hard credit check
- APR starting at 4.99% for variable loans and 4.49% for fixed loans
- 0.25% interest rate discount if you enroll in AutoPay
- Repayment terms of Up to 20
- Deferment and forbearance option for those who experience financial hardship, endure disability rehabilitation, go back to school or serve in the military
- No origination fees or prepayment penalties
- Minimum loan amount of $5,000, with no maximum borrowing amount
- Loan discharge in the case of the borrower’s permanent disability or death
SoFi also offers an additional benefit for medical and dental residents: They can refinance and make affordable $100 monthly payments for up to four years (although residency location loans aren’t eligible for SoFi refinancing).
Is SoFi legit?
Yes, SoFi is a legitimate financial technology company that, among other products, refinances and lends student loans. While every lender has hiccups, SoFi is a well-vetted lender that has more than 3 million customers.
How long does it take to get a SoFi student loan?
Whether you’re applying for student loan refinancing or a new private student loan, SoFi reviews your initial information within minutes and promises instant credit decisions. You just have to create an account and enter basic details about your situation.
Actually receiving the loan, however, takes additional time.
- For refinancing, you can quicken the pace by promptly requesting debt payoff letters from your existing loan servicers and lenders.
- For private student loans, the entire process is more dependent on your school and can take four to six weeks to complete.
How to Contact SoFi
Customer support is available via online chat (when logged in to your SoFi account) and by phone. Service hours are Monday to Thursday, 5 a.m. to 7 p.m. PT, and Friday to Sunday from 5 a.m. to 5 p.m. PT. SoFi works with MOHELA, a loan servicer, to provide student loan customer service.
- Call 855-456-7634 for general application and loan questions, including those regarding the Unemployment Protection Program
- Call 877-292-7470 for questions about deferment and forbearance
What credit score do you need for SoFi?
SoFi does not disclose its minimum credit score requirements. But to apply successfully for a private or refinanced student loan, and to get the lowest interest rates available, it’s ideal to have a credit score of at least 670. If you don’t, consider adding a co-signer with a sufficient credit score to your application.
Does SoFi offer student loan forgiveness?
SoFi offers forgiveness if the borrower dies while in school or during loan repayment. But like most other private student lenders, SoFi does not provide student loan forgiveness in other circumstances.
Federal student loans, however, come with forgiveness programs for public service workers, teachers, borrowers who choose income-driven repayment and more.
Are SoFi student loans federal or private?
SoFi student loans are private, not federal. Private student loans are different from federal loans in that they come with interest rates based on your creditworthiness and typically have less generous repayment, postponement and forgiveness options. For example, due to the Covid-19 pandemic, federal loan borrowers did not have to make payments from March 2020 to Jan. 31, 2022. Federal loans for undergraduate students also do not require a co-signer.
Are SoFi student loans eligible for forbearance?
SoFi student loans are eligible for forbearance. The company offers up to 12 months of forbearance, which includes any time you postpone loan payments under the Unemployment Protection Program.
Other private student lenders may offer up to 24 months of forbearance, however, which can be crucial for borrowers who lose their jobs or experience hardship. Federal loans provide even more forbearance: It’s available in 12-month increments, and depending on your circumstances, there may be a 36-month limit or no limit at all.
SoFi student loans review
Since its April 2019 student loan product launch, SoFi has promised a seamless prequalification process to go along with competitive rates for undergraduate, graduate and professional students, as well as parent borrowers.
SoFi student loans are a good fit for borrowers enrolled at least half time who have good credit (or a cosigner who does) and value repayment flexibility while in school and after graduation. The lender’s slow-moving cosigner release policy, however, is a shortcoming.
SoFi Student Loans Reviews
Like other online-only lenders looking to disrupt the student loan market, SoFi offers a wide range of loan and repayment options.
|APRs||● Undergraduate loans: 4.99% – 14.75% (fixed); 4.49% – 13.82% (variable)|
● Graduate loans: 5.25% – 14.48% (fixed); 4.99% – 13.82% (variable)
● Law and MBA loans: 5.25% – 14.10% (fixed); 4.99% – 13.52% (variable)
● Parent loans:6.50% – 14.83% (fixed); 5.74% – 13.88% (variable)
|Basics||● Prequalify and check rates without affecting your credit|
● Borrow as little as $1,000 and as much as your cost of attendance
|Eligibility||● Must be at least 18 years old or the age of majority in their state of residence (if not, cosigner that is age of majority is required)|
● Must be a U.S. citizen, permanent resident or nonpermanent resident (such as DACA recipients and asylum seekers; )
● Borrower or cosigner must be employed or have income
● Loan must be used at an eligible institution
● Loan must be used for undergraduate, graduate, law or MBA degrees (not available for associate degrees)
● Must be enrolled at least half time
● Must meet academic standards (certified by school)
|Applying||● Option to apply with a cosigner|
● No application, origination or other fees
● No late fees
|Repayment||● Standard six-month grace period|
● No prepayment penalties
● Reduce your interest rate by 0.25 percentage points if you enroll in autopay
● Three in-school repayment options, as well as full deferment
● Repayment term option: 5, 10, 15 years
● Release your cosigner after 24 months of prompt payments (and meeting other criteria)
|Support||● SoFi offers economic hardship deferments and discretionary forbearances whether you’re going back to school or experiencing financial hardship|
● Forgiveness offered only the case of the primary borrower’s death
SoFi Refinance Loan Details
Loan Amounts and Terms
Borrowers can refinance a minimum of $5,000 in private and federal student loans (the minimum may vary depending on your state). The maximum amount you can refinance is the total current balance of your loans. You can choose to repay your loan over five, seven, 10, 15 or 20 years.
There is no co-signer release program for SoFi refinance loans, so co-signers must stay on the loan for the entire term. However, you can choose to refinance your SoFi loan into a new loan as an individual borrower, if you qualify after a certain number of months or years.
Loan Costs and Fees
SoFi charges no application fees, origination fees or prepayment fees on its refinance loans, but it does charge late fees. Refinance borrowers can choose from fixed or variable interest rates, which range from 4.49% to 8.99%—including the 0.25% interest rate discount that’s available for making automatic payments each month.
Unlike SoFi private student loans, refinance loans do not come with multiple repayment options. Your full monthly principal and interest payment will be due from the start. SoFi will, however, honor any existing student loan grace period you have on your current debt.
Choosing a shorter repayment term—five years instead of 10, for example—will help you maximize any interest rate reduction you received by refinancing. Extending your repayment term after refinancing could mean losing out on potential interest savings.
Noteworthy Perks and Features
- Associate’s degree holders can refinance. SoFi allows associate’s degree holders to refinance their loans, which opens up refinancing eligibility to more borrowers. Some lenders require refinance customers to have a bachelor’s degree to qualify.
- Unemployment Protection Program. SoFi offers their forbearance program to refinance borrowers, too, and borrowers can receive job search and budgeting support from career and financial coaches for free.
Does SoFi give immediate approval?
With online lenders, like SoFi, funds should generally be available within a few days of approval. One of the major benefits of the online route is the fast application time.
Does SoFi require proof of income?
Alternatives to traditional proof of income documents include tax or bank statements. SoFi understands that a full-time job isn’t the only qualifier of financial stability. SoFi will also consider factors like your credit score, education, and whether you have a cosigner.
How long does SoFi take to approve loans?
The entire application process, including school certification of the loan, could take four to six weeks. Borrowers who need funds faster should contact SoFi at 855-456-7634.
How do I know if my SoFi loan is approved?
Where can I check this online? The primary applicant can check on his/her application by logging into his/her account on SoFi.com or by calling Customer Service at 855-456-7634.
Is SoFi easy to get?
Your SoFi approval odds are good if you have a low debt-to-income ratio and meet SoFi’s requirements to get a loan. Some requirements include being at least 18 years old, having enough income to make monthly payments and having a credit score of 680+.
Can non US citizen use SoFi?
To be eligible for a SoFi Invest account (Active, Automated, and Crypto) you must be at least 18 years old, a U.S. citizen or lawful permanent resident residing in the U.S. with a physical U.S. address, and have a valid Social Security Number (SSN).
Does SoFi give you a debit card?
Once your new SoFi Checking account has been approved, opened, and funded, you can expect to receive your Mastercard debit card in about 7-10 business days.
What is the limit on a SoFi card?
According to SoFi, the minimum credit limit for the SoFi Credit Card is $1,000. Reports from cardholders indicate credit limits can range as high as $25,000.
How many accounts can you open with SoFi?
SoFi members can have one Checking and Savings account. That means you can have an individual account or a joint account, but not both at this time.
How much cash can I deposit in my SoFi account?
A total of two (2) cash deposits are allowed per day. $500 per cash deposit transaction. $1,000 total Per Day. $3,000 total Per Week.
Does SoFi offer instant deposit?
Yes!Instant Funding allows new SoFi Money members to transfer up to $500 instantly by linking an existing Visa or Mastercard debit card. Simply select the ‘Transfer Instantly’ option and then enter your debit card information to instantly fund.
How do I receive money from SoFi?
SoFi App: Select the Invest Account you wish to withdraw from, tap on ‘Manage’, tap on ‘Withdraw’.
- Choose the amount you would like to withdraw (up to the amount of withdrawable cash available showing).
- Select the ‘From’ and ‘To’ accounts for transfer.