If you're lucky enough to live in Florida — the state with beautiful sandy beaches and sunny weather — you should know what the state offers in terms of student loan relief. Florida, like other states, offer opportunities to cancel, or discharge, all or part of your student loans.
The state offers two programs, designed for two specific careers or fields that meet a need in the state. In essence, these programs give some Floridians a way out of their debt.
If you're a resident, here are the state programs offered to you.
Are you a nurse in the state of Florida? You may qualify for up to $16,000 a year in loan repayment aid over four years. The goal of this program is to reward those working with underserved populations and in low-income areas. Applicants must be licensed as an LPN, ARNP, or RN in Florida and must work full-time in areas designated to have critical nursing shortages.
Eligible sites for employment include:
Applications are accepted each quarter.
For lawyers employed at Florida legal aid and legal services organizations, this program offers up to $5,000 per year. This effort is meant to boost recruitment and retainment of legal aid and legal services staff attorneys at Florida Bar Foundation partner organizations.
This assistance program works a little differently in that, if you apply and qualify, the Florida Bar Foundation gives you a loan of up to $5,000 that you'll use to pay down on your student loans. Applicants must remain employed at least part-time for the entire year, and at the end of that year, the foundation will forgive its loan to you. If you keep working at the qualifying organization, you can get another loan.
More information is available at the Florida Bar Foundation website.
Loan forgiveness programs offered by Florida aren't the only way to cancel some of your debt. In fact, one of the best known is the Public Service Loan Forgiveness program, a federal program that forgives student loan debt if and after you make 120 qualifying payments.
Teachers, medical professionals and military personnel also have opportunities for loan cancellation.
If you don't qualify for student loan forgiveness programs, there are still other ways for you to pay down your debt without going broke. Consolidation and refinancing are two common ways that people use as a way to get a grip on their finances. Find out which option is best for you.
Works with 275+ not-for-profit community lenders for higher approval chances
LendKey operates student loan programs for over 275 not-for-profit and community lenders across the country. By partnering with these lenders, LendKey is able to give consumers direct access to the best rates available from the most borrower friendly institutions. As the servicer of all loans obtained through its platform, you can rest easy knowing your personal information will be safe and that the best customer service team will be ready to answer your questions from application until your final payment.
Offers unemployment protection and career/coaching/networking
SoFi, which stands for “Social Finance,” was created by a group of Stanford business students who found themselves with a mountain of debt after graduation. They set out to change the student loan industry and help borrowers like themselves to get lower interest rates. SoFi has some of the lowest interest rates and, unlike the other lenders we reviewed, it has no maximum amount you can finance. However, Nevada residents can’t currently refinance with SoFi. Minimum loan balances are higher in Arizona, Massachusetts and Pennsylvania due to state laws. Additional state restrictions may apply.
For every loan they fund, they contribute to the education of a child in need
CommonBond was founded in 2011 by three MBA graduates from the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School who wanted to help their peers escape from high-interest student loan debt. Its original focus was on grad students, but it has since expanded to cover undergrads as well.
Of all the companies we reviewed, CommonBond has some of the best customer service. The company prides itself on being easy to reach by email, phone, or live chat. It offers networking events, expert panels, insider newsletters, and even has a program help borrowers who lose their jobs to find new ones. CommonBond also makes you feel good about choosing to refinance with them by donating money to an education nonprofit for each loan they write.
Get a personalized review of your refinancing options with CommonBond today.
Earnest empowers people with the financial captial they need to live better lives.
Using technology, data, and design to build affordable products, Earnest's lending products are built for a new generation seeking to reach life's milestones. The company understands every applicant's unique financial story to offer the lowest possible rates and radically flexible loan options for living life.
Click here to apply with Earnest and to see how much you can save.
Operates in all 50 states; 2nd largest student loan refinancing lender
Laurel Road is a national online lender with customers in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico. Many of our non-bank competitors are not able to lend in all 50 states.Laurel Road has grown to be the second largest player in the student loan refinancing space in large part because of our reputation as the go-to low rate provider.
Special offers for medical resident and fellow refinance products
Splash Financial is a leader in student loan refinancing with new rates as low as 3.25% fixed APR which can save you tens of thousands of dollars over the life of your loans. No application or origination fees and no prepayment penalties. Splash Financial is in all 50 states and is intensely focused on customer service. Splash Financial is also one of the few companies that offers a great medical resident and fellow refinance product. You can check your rate with Splash in just minutes.
Click here to see more of Splash's offerings and to see how you can save money.