When it comes to financing a college education, such a significant investment may require the use of a student loan. Arrowhead Credit Union is a trusted institution which offers lending options for students.  Read on to learn more about how to secure a student loan with Arrowhead Credit Union.

When seeking out a student loan, Arrowhead Credit Union may be the best solution.

Established in 1949, a tightknit group of employees for San Bernardino County wanted to create a credit union. This credit union was to help the members access small loans for their families, and encourage basic savings.

As the credit union continued to grow in popularity, Arrowhead Credit Union became an institution available for providing checking accounts, investments, home loans, car loans, and student loans.

Arrowhead Credit Union offers membership to anyone who works or lives in the counties of San Bernardino and Riverside. People employed by the State of California and immediate family members of a current member can apply as well.

Not only does Arrowhead offer itself to its members as a financial cooperative that is non-profit, but Arrowhead additionally gives back to the community through volunteering.

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About Student Loans

When seeking financial aid to finance a college education, scholarships, grants, and savings might not be enough to cover the costs. When students need enough money to pay for tuition, housing, books, and food, a student loan is the usual option available.

Some student loans do not require that a student already has an established credit score so that a student loan can be thought of as "good debt."

Ideally, a student can be confident about taking out student loans because of the following reasons.

  • 1
    A student loan can be paid back over a period of years
  • 2
    Making payments on time to pay down student loan debt positively impact credit score and history
  • 3
    If the need arises, most student loans can be refinanced, consolidated, or deferred

A student loan is not without its risks. Ideally, upon graduation students should be able to secure a well-paying position to pay down their student loan debt in a timely fashion. However, there have been cases where students are unable to find a job that pays enough following graduation and may incur rising debt levels as a result.

Students should carefully review their income to debt ratio, as this will affect the credit score and access to other types of loans. If there is a struggle to repay student loan debt, a student should review any options available to manage their debt and income.

Loan Options Available At Arrowhead

At Arrowhead, students can sign up for a Sallie Mae backed Smart Option Student Loan.

If a student can apply with a co-signer who has quality credit, then a lower rate may be applied to their loan. Students can manage their account every day of the week and at all hours, and may enjoy interest rates that are competitive.

It takes only 20 minutes for a student to apply for a Smart Option Student Loan, and up to 100% of the cost of certifiable costs of education can be borrowed. A minimum of $1,000 must be borrowed. Additionally, borrowers with good credit standing may receive specific benefits, and interest rate reductions may be applied to accounts.

After leaving the Arrowhead Credit Union website, students are directed to a Sallie Mae site. The credit union works in a partnership with Sallie Mae to provide different types of student loans.

The Smart Option Student Loan is for students who wish to complete a bachelor's degree or ascertain an associate's degree.

Students can take advantage of receiving an interest rate reduction of 0.25 point if they enroll in an auto debit monthly payment schedule.

The projected term of the loan repayment measures from 5 years to 15 years, provided that principal and interest payments are made on time and in full.

The variable rate for the Smart Option Student Loan is 4.12% to 10.98% APR. The fixed rate of interest ranges from 5.74% to 11.85% APR.

Other loan options available on the partnership site with Sallie Mae include the following.

  • 1
    Parent Loans
  • 2
    MBA Loans
  • 3
    Medical School and Dental School Loans
  • 4
    Graduate School Loans

Each loan offered gives interested parties an overview of the rate percentage, projected timeline for repayments, and how the loan is to be applied.

The Application Process

If interested in applying for a student loan with Arrowhead as partnered with Sallie Mae, students can click on the selection of their choice.

Students will be first prompted to fill out their general identifying information, including their birth name, date of birth, citizenship status, birthdate, and social security number.

A second tab is available for a cosigner's information to be inputted as well.

application form

Following the information prompted to be completed, applicants must fill in their home address, and information regarding their school of attendance. Additionally, students must enter the academic period when they will be enrolled in their institution of choice, their enrollment status, type of degree being sought, and what type of coursework is being pursued during studies.

Applicants will also need to enter how much money they are seeking to borrow and note the amounts of other types of financial aid received to afford their education. If a student has successfully gained any scholarships, grants, or other forms of monetary awards for paying toward their education, it needs to be entered.

It is advisable to have a cosigner for this loan, as it not only may improve the chances of a more favorable interest rate, but there are rewards as well.

The loan application will need to have any current employment information, the gross income earned, and the name of the company who is the employer.

Any financial information regarding bank accounts, rent payments, and mortgage payments must be entered to calculate whether a student qualifies.

In case Sallie Mae needs to look into your credentials or make contact with you in the future, the contact information and names of two personal contacts must be included. This step is not required of cosigners.

Reasons To Be Denied A Loan


Applying for the Smart Option Student Loan as offered by Sallie Mae is a private loan. Since Sallie Mae is a private lender and has strict requirements to access whether a student is a viable candidate for a loan, they may be denied.

There are more than a few reasons to be denied a student loan from a private lender, and it doesn't mean that all is lost, and there is no way to fund a college education.

First, it may help to evaluate why a student loan was most likely denied, and make positive changes to improve acceptability by a lender in the future.

If a student has a lack of income or no credit history, they may be at an increased risk of being denied. The lender needs a way to evaluate whether a student can comfortably be able to pay back their debt, and not having any type of work history can hurt an applicant.

To be looked upon more favorably by a lender, it may help to have a co-signer. However, the co-signer should have good credit, sufficient income, and a good employment history. Students who use a parent or relative as a co-signer with poor credit, insufficient income, or poor to rocky employment history may be denied.

If a student has been denied a private student loan but is still able to attend school, picking up a job can help build employment history and income.

You Can Make An Appeal

Private lenders such as Sallie Mae will accept an appeal made by a denied applicant. Sometimes, specific information such as a late bill, temporary job loss, a medical emergency, or a disputed record may cause a lender to decide to deny access to a loan.

Depending on a student's unique situation, since loan appeals are handled as a case-by-case basis, the decision may be overturned.

Taking Care Of Any Outstanding Issues

Unfortunately, for students who have had a utility bill put in their name, any late bills may negatively impact their credit standing for a loan. Late credit card payments can additionally have a negative effect on a loan application, and negative items listed on a credit report can linger for up to 7 years.

Whenever possible, students should cleanup their credit history, consolidate and set up feasible repayment plans for overdue bills, and seek out a co-signer if possible.

If a suitable co-signer is found to help a student apply for a loan, some financial experts advise that a life insurance policy is taken out on the student, so that there will be enough monetary support to cover any remaining debt.

Make Sure To Fill Out The FAFSA

In addition to seeking out private loans to pay for college, a student should not neglect to fill out the FAFSA. Yes, the FAFSA may take some time to complete. However, it may offer other financial options to help pay for tuition, fees, and books.  Filling out the FAFSA can alert students to any grants which they can use for education, as well as being a candidate for Federal Work Study.

Staying flexible, being aware of all possible, feasible options to finance higher education, and having a plan of action for credit, and making payments on time is best. Education is an investment.

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