All student loans start out on a Standard Level Repayment plan which is calculated at a fixed monthly payment amount over 10 years. We’ve listed a few of the most common repayment plans below. You can follow the link for each repayment plan type in order to learn the details of that plan. You can also estimate what your monthly payment would be on various plans using the Loan Simulator on StudentAid.gov.
- The Standard Repayment Plan is the basic repayment plan for the William D. Ford Federal Direct Loan (Direct Loan) and Federal Family Education Loan (FFEL) Programs. Payments are fixed and made for up to 10 years.
- The Graduated Repayment Plan starts with lower payments that increase every two years. Under this plan, you make payments for up to 10 years.
The extended repayment plan allows you to repay your loans over an extended period of up to 25 years as long as you meet the specific eligibility requirements.
- Income-driven repayment (IDR) plans are designed to make your student loan debt more manageable by reducing your monthly payment amount. If you need to make lower monthly payments or if your outstanding federal student loan debt represents a significant portion of your annual income, one of the following income-driven plans may be right for you:
Changing Repayment Plans
- Your loan type will determine which repayment plans you are eligible for. For example, Parent PLUS loans are not eligible for some repayment plan options.
- Extending your repayment term can cause you to pay down your principal balance slower, which will result in you paying much more in interest over the life of the loan.
- You can prepay your loan at any time without penalty. Learn more about this in the FAQ page under the “Your Information” section.
- If your loan has a variable interest rate, your monthly payment amount may change annually based on new interest rates set by congress.