COLLEGE SAVINGS 101

Can I consolidate while in school?

06/29/2006

QUESTION:
Dear Joe,

I'm currently enrolled as a Graduate Student and I'm borrowing money to pay my tuition. I have about $4,500 left to pay off from undergraduate loans. I'm wondering if I can reconsolidate my undergraduate with my graduate loans that I will not begin paying until I earn my master's degree next June. In all, I have about $15,000 borrowed right now (undergrad and grad). I'm confused about whether consolidation applies to my loans that are "pending" while I'm enrolled as a student and completing my degree. I hope this makes sense. Thank you.

-- Adam

ANSWER:
Dear Adam,

Yes, you should be able to consolidate your undergraduate and your graduate loans into one consolidation loan. Contact a couple of the student loan providers to see where you can get the best deal and good service. To consolidate your graduate loan you will have to be put into repayment status, but you can still request deferment so that payments won't begin until after you graduate.

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