“Important Notice from Navient” – that email subject line, if you have Navient student loans, makes your heart skip a beat. And just before you open it, you’re filled with dread and stress.
Turns out it’s just a marketing email saying your qualify for an “Exclusive Offer”. And if you’re like me, your first thought is, F*ck You Navient.
You decide to take it a step further and find out, what possible reason Navient could have for stressing you out. Turns out it was just a refinancing offer.
Ugh. In this post I’m going to explain to you why you should avoid refinancing with Navient student loans.
1. Navient Student Loan’s Marketing is Sketchy
If that email subject line doesn’t seem sketchy to you, then what would? Scaring student loan borrowers, whose loans you are responsible for servicing is really really horrible. Like, there should be a special place in hell for companies that do this.
Not to mention the company is currently being sued for overall being shitty (though they deny the claims-obviously). Exhibit A:
Navient, the country’s largest student loan servicer, is facing several lawsuits by attorneys general accusing the company of, among other things, steering borrowers to payment options that cost them more money.Via The Washington Post
I only have federal loans with Navient. I’m currently taking advantage of the benefits of federal student loans, in the form of income based repayment. Accordingly, I should not be marketed to for refinancing (more on this in reason number 2).
Bottom line, Navient isn’t interested in helping you, they are interested in lining their pockets, often to your detriment.
2. Refinancing Federal Loans – Means You Lose Federal Student Loan Benefits (like Income-Driven Repayment)
As I mentioned above I take advantage of the benefits of Federal Student Loans. This means refinancing would cost me a ton of money and make it harder for me to make my monthly payments.
While Navient does mention this detail, it’s in the fine print on the offer page. You only reach that page after the email and after you click through to view more and sign in to your account.
So if you are utilizing the benefits available to you as a federal student loan borrower then you should avoid refinancing. At least until you are in a better financial position.
What constitutes a better financial position?
A solid income that you’re confident would allow you to make what would likely amount to standard repayment plant.
For example, if I were on a standard repayment plan I’d be paying over $2,000 a month towards my student loans, but I can’t afford that just yet, which means I’m sticking to my Income-Driven repayment plan for my federal student loans. Which also means I won’t be refinancing my federal loans any time soon.
If you have private student loans…
Then refinancing could mean you save money, but I still wouldn’t go with Navient student loans.
3. There Are Way Better Companies to Refinance Your Loans With
If you are in the position to refinance your loans either because you have private loans with high interest rates and a decent credit score or you can afford standard repayment on federal loans, then you could do better than Navient for your student loans.
The one private loan I have associated with my education is my bar loan, and after having the variable interest rate raised three times in six months, I opted to refinance for a fixed rate.
I went with SoFi, short for Social Finance, a company that cares about their customers. It’s such a novel concept, I know, but yes it does exist.
I refinanced my bar loan with SoFi and it was a great experience. Perhaps even more surprising it continues to be a good experience. They put together member events and have a good online community.
If SoFi isn’t your jam, then there are many more companies you can refinance with that beat Navient.
Navient student loans likes to scare it’s student loan borrowers with email subject lines.
Refinancing is likely not the best option for you if you rely on an income-driven repayment plan.
Even if refinancing is a great fit for you, there are better companies than Navient to work with, I like SoFi.
In conclusion, raise your hand if you’ve ever felt personally victimized by Navient Student Loans.