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Can It Work for You

22 September, 2011



IBR is a repayment plan offered for most federal loans. The standard 10 year repayment plan calculates monthly payments based on the amount of your loans, but IBR is different because it is determined based on your ie. If you have a high debt to ie ratio, then IBR can help to lower your monthly payment amounts.

IBR is available for all federal loans except for Parent PLUS, and Parent PLUS consolidation loans. Eligibility is determined by ie, and family size. Below is a chart for determining monthly payments. The amounts shown are the maximums, and an individuals monthly payment could potentially be lower.

IBR Monthly Payment Amount

Annual IeFamily Size 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 $10,000 $0 $0 $0 $0 $0 $0 $0 $15,000 $0 $0 $0 $0 $0 $0 $0 $20,000 $46 $0 $0 $0 $0 $0 $0 $25,000 $108 $37 $0 $0 $0 $0 $0 $30,000 $171 $99 $28 $0 $0 $0 $0 $35,000 $233 $162 $90 $18 $0 $0 $0 $40,000 $296 $224 $153 $81 $9 $0 $0 $45,000 $358 $287 $215 $143 $72 $0 $0 $50,000 $421 $349 $278 $206 $134 $63 $0 $55,000 $483 $412 $340 $268 $197 $125 $54 $60,000 $546 $474 $403 $331 $259 $188 $116 $65,000 $608 $537 $465 $393 $322 $250 $179 $70,000 $671 $599 $528 $456 $384 $313 $241

If your IBR repayment amount is lower than if you were on the 10 year plan, then you are eligible. But if you notice the bottom left of the chart, numbers can start to get high. In these situations, a standard repayment plan would have lower monthly payments, and therefore, a person would be ineligible for IBR.

While some of the benefits are obvious others might not be. Here are some other perks you may not be aware of.

  • Interest Payment– If your loan payments do not cover interest accrued, the government will pay any unpaid interest for up to 3 years.
  • Cancellation– After 25 years of repayment, the remainder of the loan can be cancelled.
  • Forgiveness– Like most federal loans, public service employees can have their loans forgiven after 120 consecutive payments .

While IBR can initially seem like a great option, there are a couple of downsides I should mention. Because your monthly payments would be lower, the overall term of the loan would be longer. This is an issue because a longer term means more interest accruing, and therefore, you will pay more money in the long run.

Another downside is that IBR requires yearly documentation to be provided to your lender. Each year your loan is adjusted based on your ie, so if you get a raise, this will be reflected in your monthly payments.

To apply for ie based repayment, you need to contact the servicer of your federal loan. For Direct loans, this would be the Department of Educations Direct Loan Center.  If you do not know who services your loan, go to www.nslds.ed.gov andplete a financial aid review.

Personal Loan

by Gemma Maddock



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