Federal Perkins Loans

Federal Perkins Loans are fixed, low-interest rate loans for undergraduate and graduate students with extreme financial need.

The college student loan is made with government funds that come through your school – which means that your school is your lender, so you repay your school.

How much can I borrow through a Perkins Loan?

The amount that you can borrow is a factor of when you apply, your level of financial need and your school’s level of funding. The maximum amount you can borrow each year of undergraduate school is $5,500. Your total Perkins debt load at the end of school may not exceed $27,500, which allows for five years of study to complete your degree.

What are the terms of the Perkins Loan?

The Perkins Loan features a fixed interest rate of 5%. Interest does not accrue while you are in school, as long as you are enrolled at least half-time. When you leave school, you have a 9-month grace period before you must start repaying your loans, during which interest also does not accrue.

How is the Perkins Loan disbursed?

The federal government pays the full amount of your Perkins Loan directly to your school, which then credits the value of your loan against your educational expenses – and cuts you a check for any remaining amount.

How long do I have to pay back my Perkins Loan?

When your 9-month grace period is finished, you have up to 10 years to repay your Perkins Loan. The amount of your monthly payment will depend on the size of your total debt and the length of time over which you are repaying your loan.

If you return to school for graduate studies, or you find yourself suffering financial hardship, you may be able to put your loans on deferment, during which you do not need to make payments. Interest does not accrue during deferment. To apply for deferment, you must contact your school’s financial aid office directly.

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