Sallie Mae Student Loans

There are many different Sallie Mae student loan options to choose from when planning for college. Here’s a look at Sallie Mae student loans.


Sallie Mae, whose formal name is the Student Loan Marketing Association, is the largest student loan provider in the United States. Not only does Sallie Mae originate its own loans, the company also purchases student loans from other lenders in the secondary market. The secondary market is where investors buy investment products from other investors, while the primary market is the place that the investment product originates.

Private Student Loans for College Students

The Smart Option Student Loan is Sallie Mae’s private student loan for students who are working toward a college degree at a college, university, or community college. Students studying abroad can also qualify for the loan. You can borrow up to 100% of your certified cost of school.

The Smart Option Student Loan has three repayment choices. The interest repayment option lets students pay interest while they’re in school, which results in a overall post-graduation repayment period. The fixed repayment option allows the student to pay just $25 a month while in school and also allows a shorter repayment period after graduation. Finally, with the deferred repayment option students aren’t required to make any payments while they’re in school, but this means a longer repayment period after graduation.

There are no origination fees or prepayment penalties for these Sallie Mae student loans. Rates on these loans will range between 2.00% and 9.88% + LIBOR. Timely payments are eligible to earn 2% rewards that can be credited to a Upromise account.

Student Loan Option for Trade School Students

Sallie Mae also has a student loan for students enrolled in trade schools, online courses, or continuing education classes. When you take out a Career Training Smart Option Student Loan, you can borrow up to 100% of your school-certified education costs at a rate between LIBOR + 7.75 and LIBOR + 12.50%.

This loan has just two repayment options – the interest repayment option and fixed repayment options which are both similar to the options available with the Smart Option Student Loan. Note that you don’t have the option of deferring your Sallie Mae student loan payments with the Career Training Smart Option Student Loan which means you’ll be required to pay at least something while you’re in school. No matter which option you choose, you’ll be required to make full loan payments starting six months after you leave school.

While there are no repayment fees on the Career Training Loan, disbursement fees with this type of loan may be up to 5%. There are no prepayment penalties.

Loans to Help Pay for K-12 and Tutoring Expenses

The K-12 Family Education Loan helps cover education expenses for grade school students. To get the loan, you’ll have to provide proof that the school is enrolled in a qualified school. Loan terms are between one and three years. You can borrow up to 100% of the cost of education. There’s no application fee, but you’ll be assessed a 3% disbursement fee. You must begin paying principle and interest within 30 days of the first loan disbursement. The interest rate is variable starting at LIBOR + 7.00% and going up to LIBOR + 11.50%.

To pay for the cost of enrolling your child in a tutoring or learning center, you might take out a Tutorial Financing loan which you can repay over one to ten years. Like the K-12 Family Education Loan, you must provide proof that your child is enrolled in an eligible tutoring or learning center. Rates vary from LIBOR + 7.00% to LIBOR + 13.50%. Disbursement fees range from 0% to 5%. You must begin making payments toward principle and interest beginning 30 days after the first loan disbursement.

Sallie Mae Student Loans for Grad Student Expenses

Sallie Mae offers loans for medical students in their final year to help cover residency and relocation costs. These loans allow you to borrow between $1,000 and $15,000 for a rate between LIBOR + 3% and LIBOR + 11.88%. No payments are required while you’re in school and you can begin paying your loan three years after graduation or nine months after you leave school or drop below half-time.

Bar Study Loans can help cover expenses related to the taking the bar and even cover some living expenses. You can borrow between $1,000 and $15,000 and make interest-only payments for the first two or four years. You don’t have to make any payments on this Sallie Mae student loan until nine months
after graduation.