A four-year college or university isn’t the only option for those who desire to continue their education after high school. For example, you can get student loans for trade schools. In addition, students who don’t want to go the traditional route but want to enhance their skills in a specific field to pursue their preferred career might attend trade schools.
Simply because a student is not seeking a traditional post-secondary degree doesn’t mean they are not eligible for the same financial help as college-bound students.
If you’re a student pursuing your education at a trade school, student loan options are still available to help you pay for your study. This guide will explore everything you should know about student loans for trade schools, including various options available to you.
What Is A Trade School?
A trade school, also known as a vocational or technical school or a vocational college, provides the necessary training and education for a specific occupation in information technology, automotive mechanics, nursing and other health-related fields, culinary, and cosmetology, to name a few.
These programs might assist students in obtaining a solid career much more quickly than they would if they attended a typical college or university.
Federal Student Loans For Trade Schools
While most federal student loans go to students attending four-year colleges, some trade school students are also eligible.
Eligibility is determined by whether the trade school you are enrolled in is accredited, implying that the school is officially recognized and meets and maintains minimum educational criteria.
You must be pursuing courses as a prerequisite to a degree program, teacher certification courses, or training for a specific professional path through a certificate program to be eligible for federal student loans as a trade school student.
Federal student loans are generally for students pursuing a degree of some sort. As a result, trade school students pursuing an associate degree through a two-year program are the most likely candidates. You can complete your program entirely or partially online and still be eligible for financial aid.
If you’re not sure if your trade school is accredited, use College Navigator to look it up or call your school’s financial aid office to enquire about your eligibility. If you meet the requirements, the next step is to complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).
Private Student Loans For Trade Schools
Students attending trade schools can also apply for private student loans. Private lenders have more flexibility in determining which programs are acceptable and may have fewer restrictions.
On the other hand, private loans may have higher interest rates and more stringent repayment restrictions. In addition, unlike some federal student loans based on financial need, these loans have specific credit and income limitations. Therefore, if you have low credit or no credit, you may need a cosigner to apply for a private loan and be approved.
If you decide to go ahead and ask for a private loan, don’t take the first one you come across. Look for loans tailored to your program and compare all terms, including interest rates and repayment options.
If you’re going to a trade school, you probably already know what you want to do after finishing the program. You might also have an estimate of how much money you’ll be making.
This essential information will help you determine your financial situation once you graduate and begin working full-time and finally clarify whether you will be able to make your student loan payments on schedule comfortably.
Specific loans for career training programs are available from some private lenders. It’s critical to think about and analyze the facts of these loans before deciding which one is best for you.
Student Loans For Trade Schools: Traditional And Trade Schools
Alternatives to typical four-year colleges and universities include trade schools. Both alternatives provide educational chances beyond high school, but each offers a unique experience.
Trade school programs often run two years or less, allowing you to complete your education faster and enter the job sooner.
Trade school programs are shorter because they skip all of the general education coursework required at most institutions, such as English, science, and history.
There are no optional courses required, just what you need to finish your training and become certified in your chosen field. A certificate or associate’s degree is generally awarded to trade school graduates. Attendance at a standard four-year college or university is required for a bachelor’s degree or higher.
Are Trade Schools The Right Option For You?
Trade schools, like an apprenticeship or a technical program at a community college, are meant to offer you the skills you need to get started in your career quickly. So it could be a good choice if you’re considering trade employment.
Why should you attend a trade school instead of a community college or university? Here are a few reasons why you might consider attending a vocational school:
Less time to graduate. A trade school program can be completed less time than a four-year degree because you don’t have to take the entire course load required for a four-year degree. Instead, you can concentrate on the courses and abilities required for your profession.
Less expensive: When compared to a regular four-year bachelor’s degree, trade school can sometimes be a less expensive option.
Job placement assistance: Many trade schools provide job placement assistance after a program. However, keep in mind that getting help is no guarantee of securing your desired job. After you’ve started in your area, it may take some time to climb your way up the ladder and increase your salary.
Trade schools offer some of the most popular educational career programs:
- Building maintenance
- Auto body and maintenance
- Aviation mechanic
- Culinary arts
- Diesel mechanic
- Real estate
- Truck driving
Best Student Loans For Trade Schools
There are two types of student loans available to trade school students. There are two types of student loans: federal and private student loans. They do, however, have their differences and quirks.
Private student loans have a strict payback plan, but government student loans have a flexible repayment schedule.
This is the most important reason to consider federal student loans, and if you’ve exhausted your other options, you may now turn to private student loans after conducting your comparisons.
It is also critical that you look for a loan choice that is relatively reasonable with superior options such as a repayment plan, low-interest rate, and forgiveness plan, regardless of how you go about getting student loans for trade schools.
1. Sallie Mae Student Loans From For Trade Schools
The maximum loan amount for this student loan choice is $1,000, up to the total cost of tuition. The interest rate variable runs from 2.87% to 10.75%.
You can also choose from various repayment choices while you’re still in schools, such as a fixed monthly payment, an interest-only payment, or an instant repayment plan.
2. Wells Fargo Student Loan For Trade Schools
You can borrow up to $15,000 here, with an interest rate that fluctuates between 5.91 percent and 11.65 percent.
Furthermore, you can delay payment while still in school and continue for an additional six months after graduation before considering payback, or you can choose the instant repayment option.
3. Dakota Alternative Loan for Education
This trade school student loan is determined based on credit history. It enables students to borrow up to 100% of their overall tuition costs.
However, only students attending trade schools in North Dakota, Minnesota, Wyoming, or Nebraska are eligible for this loan.
4. Federal Direct Subsidized Loan For Trade Schools
The U.S. Department of Education will cover all interest for students who get subsidized loans while they are enrolled in school.
The loan amount is determined by the student’s financial need and the total cost of tuition.
5. Climb Credit Student Loan For Trade Schools
Are you aware that you can borrow up to the entire cost of tuition at an interest rate ranging from 9.3% to 17.5%?
A month after your loan is disbursed, you begin repaying it.
6. Chase Select Student Loan For Trade Schools
Low fixed interest rates and flexible repayment choices are available with the Chase Select loan program. Applicants must have a Chase bank account to be considered.
Income and credit history are used to determine loan approval.
7. College Ave Student Loan
This student loan for trade schools allows you to choose from various repayment choices while you’re still in school. Complete, interest-only, and total deferment are examples of such possibilities. In addition, when you make automatic payments, you save 0.25 percent on interest.
You might also request a grace period of six months.
8. Career Training Smart Option Student Loan
Low-interest rates, various repayment options, and bonuses for on-time payments are all available with this option. In addition, it will pay for up to 100% of your overall tuition fees.
This is also one of Sallie Mae’s newest loan products, designed to address the needs of trade school students.
Ways To Get Student Loans For Trade Schools
1. Apply For Federal Student Loans For Trade Schools
According to the College Board, the federal financial assistance program delivered $246 billion in loans, grants, and other types of aid in 2019, with the majority of it going to students enrolled in four-year programs.
This raises whether or not you can acquire a student loan for a trade school. It is debatable.
Some trade schools accept federal student loans, while others do not. You may be eligible for federal student loans if your school is accredited.
If any of the following apply to you, you may be eligible:
- First, you’re enrolled in classes that will help you get into a degree program.
- You’re enrolled in classes to become (or recertify) a teacher.
- You’re enrolled in a certificate program that will prepare you for a specific job.
However, if your program does not lead to a degree, you may not be eligible for federal student loans.
This lack of financial help for trade school is regrettable because direct federal loans offer some of the lowest interest rates on the market, as well as several protections and repayment options.
Take these two steps before dismissing the concept of federal student loans:
Find out if your program is accredited and qualified for federal funding using the College Navigator tool from the National Center for Education Statistics.
Contact your institution’s financial aid or student services offices to learn more about your possibilities.
2. Compare Private Student Loans For Trade Schools
Whether or not you qualify for federal student loans, you should keep in mind that they may not pay the entire cost of your program. That’s where private trade school student loans come in.
The conditions for private loans differ from those for federal loans. For example, you must also meet credit and income requirements in addition to being a U.S. resident or eligible resident.
If you’re apprehensive about getting a professional training loan because you have bad credit, consider applying with a trusted cosigner, such as a parent.
It’s simple to apply for private student loans, and most lenders accept applications online or over the phone. Just be sure you don’t borrow more than you need, or you’ll be saddled with high monthly payments for years after graduation.
To avoid taking on too much student loan debt, carefully assess the borrowing costs against the salary you intend to earn in your future employment.
3. Look For Flexible Repayment Terms
While getting a cheap interest rate is essential, don’t forget to think about repayment possibilities.
As previously stated, federal student loans come with various repayment options, including income-driven repayment and forbearance in the event of financial hardship.
A private lender is unlikely to offer income-based repayment, but some offer a range of multi-year periods. Sallie Mae, for example, does not expect quick repayment. However, you can make regular monthly payments or interest-only installments while you’re in school.
You’ll be able to pay down some of the interest and put off paying the big monthly bills until after you’ve graduated and started working.
Because many students can’t make total payments immediately, this flexibility is beneficial. Learn about your repayment alternatives before you get a loan, so you’re not caught off guard later.
Are Student Loans For Trade Schools Right For You?
Taking out a student loan to assist with trade school tuition is possible if your school qualifies for federal or private financing. Because trade school programs usually run shorter than two years, your overall costs should be lower than at a traditional institution.
You may not need student loans to cover tuition and other expenses if you have personal savings or have obtained private scholarships or awards.
Find out how much money you’ll need and whether you’re eligible for student loans for trade school. If federal loans aren’t enough, private student loans may be an option if your program is via an accredited university.
If possible, avoid taking out loans by talking to your employer about educational perks and asking your school about payment plans. These other options may be able to help you pay for trade school without incurring additional student loan debt.
When deciding between loans, pay close attention to the interest rate. A high-interest rate can have a significant impact on how much you owe over time, so browse around until you find the best deal for your financial position.
Your ability to get financial aid will not be harmed if you choose to pursue your post-secondary education at a trade school. The money is out there, and you have access to it.
Suppose you need assistance with the process of applying for trade school student loans. In that case, College Finance provides all of the required resources and information to ensure that you get the most out of your trade school experience and education.
When it comes to deciding which choice is best for you, free is always preferable, and interest rates should not be the only factor to consider. It’s usually a good idea to first look into trade school grants and scholarships.
When you’re ready to secure a loan, start with federal student loans for trade schools. They have lower interest rates than private loans, but they also provide more repayment options and other incentives, making them easier to handle, especially if you’re still in school. Examine the terms, grace periods, and total amount due to overtime. In the end, whether you want to be a chef, a mechanic, or something else, you can acquire a variety of financial assistance alternatives to help pay for trade school.