Big Bend Community College encourages students to apply for grant, work study, and Federal Direct Loan assistance prior to alternative loans because the rates and repayment options are normally better. Although alternative loans can provide an additional source of funding for students, they can have much higher interest rates than Direct Loans. Please carefully consider exhausting all Federal loan options before borrowing an alternative loan. Be sure to compare your options before applying, as you will be working with that lender for the duration of the loan. Contact your lender for more information.
Important information to consider before making an application for an Alternative Loan:
- The maximum amount you can borrow will be determined by the Financial Aid Office, in accordance with federal and state regulations. Your costs will be determined by adding up your college related expenses (tuition, fees, cost of living, books, etc.) then subtracting any financial aid (grants, scholarships, work study, agency funds, Direct Loan funds, and any other assistance not previously mentioned) you have to help pay for college. The difference is the amount you can borrow in an alternative loan. Alternative loans are considered a resource for your education, and therefore cannot exceed your cost of attendance.
- The borrower/student chooses the lender for this type of loan, and alternative loans are not guaranteed funds.
- A co-signer is often required, and borrower and/or co-signer credit checks may be required.
- Loan periods should match our regular academic terms of enrollment (summer, fall, winter, and spring).
- Contact your lender directly for all status updates and information regarding your alternative loans.
- Borrowing maximums and minimums, interest rates, and fees vary with each lender and change often. Your credit rating, academic level, employment status, and status of co-signer can affect these as well.
- Research all applicable fees, as some lenders to not have up-front fees, but add fees once the loan is disbursed or goes into repayment.
- Understand the terms of your alternative loan, how the interest rate is calculated, repayment timelines, and deferment options prior to taking out an alternative loan.
- Big Bend Community College does not recommend lenders or use preferred lender lists. Choose your lender and complete their application process.
Big Bend Community College Title IV Code of Conduct
- The Financial Aid Office at BBCC will process loans in a timely manner. BBCC will not refuse to certify or delay certification based on choice of lender.
- The Financial Aid Office does not contract with any lender and does not receive any staffing assistance from lenders.
- Students are advised to borrow loans through the federal student loan programs. Alternative loans will not be packaged or offered from any specific lender.
- Employees in the Financial Aid Office are prohibited from receiving gifts from lenders or loan servicers.
- Big Bend Community College does not have revenue sharing arrangements with any lender. Advisory boards will not receive compensation from any lender. BBCC prohibits the offer of funds for alternative loans.