Founded in 2012, CommonBond has funded more than $2 billion in student loans. The lender offers undergraduate, graduate, medical, dental, MBA and student loan refinance loans.
To obtain a loan, the borrower or co-signer needs a good credit rating and at least two years of credit and job history. You need a co-signer to apply for most undergraduate and graduate loans. If you have a higher credit score, you may find better interest rates elsewhere.
The company’s website is easy to navigate, and the application process is straightforward. From application start to loan certification by your school, the entire process can take from five days to three weeks. Fees are generally low, though there is an origination fee for MBA, dental and medical loans.
- Co-signers are accepted for all loans.
- Borrowers can make up to full payments while in school or choose to pay interest only, a flat fee or defer payments.
- Online preapproval is available.
- Generous forbearance options are available.
- CommonBond charges an origination fee for MBA, medical and dental loans.
- A co-signer is required for undergraduate and graduate student loans, except for qualifying MBA programs.
- Loans aren’t offered in all states.
What Types of Student Loans Does CommonBond Offer?
CommonBond offers student loans and refinancing for all undergraduate or higher education levels. CommonBond’s student loan options include:
- Student and parent refinance
What Are CommonBond’s Loan Terms, Fees and Discounts?
CommonBond offers both fixed- and variable-rate student loans. You can apply for a loan amount of $2,000 up to the cost of attendance. Loan terms are available from five to 15 years for most loan types, but MBA loans only have 10- to 15-year terms.
There is no application or origination fee for co-signed undergraduate loans, but MBA, medical and dental loans are subject to a 2% origination fee. The late fee is 5% of the unpaid amount of the payment due or $10, whichever is less. The returned check fee is $5.
How Can You Qualify for CommonBond Student Loans?
CommonBond requires a minimum FICO score of 660 and a minimum employment and credit history of two years, but those requirements can be covered by a co-signer.
All student borrowers must be enrolled at least half time in a degree-seeking program.
Undergraduate and graduate loans require co-signers. Though CommonBond allows co-signers for MBA loans, they aren’t required. Preapproval and instant decisions are available.
What Are CommonBond’s Deferment and Repayment Options?
Repayment options for CommonBond student loans include:
- Full principal and interest payments while in school
- Interest-only payments while in school
- Flat $25 monthly payments while in school
- Deferred payment with no in-school payments required
What Are CommonBond’s Forbearance and Discharge Options?
Forbearance of up to 12 months for three months at a time is available with CommonBond student loans. Deferment due to financial hardship falls under the forbearance policy.
If the student dies or is permanently disabled and there is no co-signer, the loan will be discharged. It will be passed on if there’s a co-signer.
Customer Service and Reputation
CommonBond has an A- rating with the Better Business Bureau.
In 2020, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau received six complaints about CommonBond student loans.
Complaints included loan application denial, interest-rate problems and payment-handling issues. One person said that the company refused to approve a refinance loan based on self-employed status. Another complaint involved an unannounced interest-rate increase after the customer accepted a loan refinance offer. The remaining complaints were mainly issues with CommonBond’s servicers.
What Is the CommonBond Loan Application Process Like?
To apply for a loan, you’ll need to:
- Answer some basic questions about yourself and your school
- Provide documents that describe your financial situation
- Agree to a credit check
Once you’ve applied and are approved, it takes five days to three weeks for your school to certify the loan. CommonBond will then disburse the funds directly to your school.
CommonBond Student Loans Are Best for:
- Students who plan to use a co-signer to qualify for the loan
- Students who need a loan of at least $2,000
- Students with at least half-time enrollment