Launched in 2019, LendGrow is an online marketplace that takes the guesswork out of student loan refinancing. It can connect people with lenders and help reduce loan terms, interest rates, and monthly payments. Plus, it offers a unique 0.10% APR discount each month for three years. So, LendGrow could be a good way to get out of debt faster.
In just a short time, LendGrow has built a reputation as a valuable resource with many benefits for borrowers. In this review, we’ll examine everything you need to know to decide if LendGrow could be right for you.
Pros and Cons of LendGrow
- Prequalification doesn’t impact credit score
- Network includes both big and local lenders
- None of the lenders charge origination fees
- Payback Rewards program (monthly .10% APR cashback for 3 years)
- Not a direct lender
- Supports a limited set of financial services as of April 2021
What Does LendGrow Offer?
LendGrow matches student loan borrowers with banks, credit unions, and specialized financial institutions that refinance student loans. As of April 2021, there are more than 1,100 partner providers in the LendGrow program. And many of them are smaller local banks, credit unions, and medium-size regional financial institutions.
This emphasis on local banking has several advantages for borrowers. Since smaller institutions tend to provide more attentive customer service, it can be easier to get help. Local lenders also offer more flexibility when it comes to terms, as they usually aren’t beholden to rigid planning like many national banking conglomerates.
Which Student Loans Does LendGrow Handle?
Borrowers can use LendGrow to shop for refinancing deals on:
- Federal student loans
- Parent Direct PLUS loans
- Private student loans
What Rates and Terms Are Available?
The following terms apply as of April 2021:
- Refinance loans ranging in value from $5,000 to $500,000
- Variable annual percentage rates (APRs) starting at 1.89%
- Fixed APRs starting at 2.95%
Lenders in the LendGrow network offer repayment terms of 5, 10, 15, 20, and 25 years. Technicalities vary, depending on the lender’s terms and conditions. So, considerations like early termination fees will vary from one provider to the next. However, none of the lenders that LendGrow partners with charge origination fees.
When you find an offer you want, LendGrow connects you directly with the bank or institution offering it. You can then follow up with the lender to learn more about the details that apply.
LendGrow also says its model offers several more distinct advantages:
- All offers are exclusive to LendGrow, so borrowers can access excellent deals they can’t find anywhere else
- LendGrow doesn’t promote certain offers based on the commission paid by the lending institution, so they offer neutrality
- Loan offers are tailored to the borrower’s needs and goals
Additionally, LendGrow says it’s launching an aggregator tool that’ll make it easy to do side-by-side comparisons of more than 300 lenders. So, LendGrow will be adding another helpful tool to its website soon.
What To Expect on the Site
Borrowers can get quotes and see custom offers quickly. The process involves four easy steps:
- Enter basic details about your current loans to access available rates. LendGrow returns results in just 60 seconds.
- Choose the offers that interest you most.
- Proceed with the offer you want by completing the application process through the lender.
- Make your payments. Borrowers who pay on time gain entry to LendGrow’s Payback Rewards program, which can significantly reduce costs.
You don’t need to authorize a credit check to view your available offers. So, getting a quote from LendGrow doesn’t affect your credit score. However, the lender will likely run a hard credit check before finalizing with you.
Additionally, LendGrow doesn’t have a minimum credit score requirement. Since borrowers with higher credit scores pose less risk to lenders, though, those with higher credit scores often get lower interest rates. Either way, the process can help lower your student loan payments.
In order to make your experience on the LendGrow site as easy as possible, you should have the following information on hand:
- The total amount of money you currently owe
- The interest rate(s) that apply to your current loan(s)
- The total amount you are currently paying per month on your student loans
- The repayment periods attached to your current loan(s) (in years)
This makes it easier for you to compare your current loans against the offers you receive from LendGrow’s partners.
LendGrow’s lenders set loan terms and rates, so the ultimate cost varies based on your:
- Loan amount
- Credit score
- Repayment period
LendGrow doesn’t charge users for its services. Instead, the company earns revenue by collecting commissions from lenders. So, if a borrower uses LendGrow to get a quote and then finalizes a loan that originated on LendGrow, the financial institution pays LendGrow a commission fee.
Additionally, LendGrow’s Payback Rewards program can reduce costs. Each time you make a monthly payment on time, LendGrow deposits 0.10% of your APR cost back into your loan account. This offer is available for the first three years and can result in hundreds of dollars in annual savings.
The Bottom Line
LendGrow’s broad lender network offers flexible repayment plans and refinancing deals on up to $500,000 in debt. Furthermore, since the site doesn’t have a minimum credit score requirement, it can help a wide variety of people. Additionally, LendGrow’s Payback Rewards program may be able to help you get out of debt faster.
Because LendGrow focuses on small and medium-sized, regional financial institutions, it can help you find deals from local lenders. So, unlike many marketplaces that only work with national lenders, LendGrow connects borrowers with local banks and credit unions.
Given these points, LendGrow should be on your radar as you compare top student loan refinance companies.