Parent Loans for Undergraduate Students (PLUS) are available to parents for their dependent, undergraduate students who are matriculated in a degree program and enrolled in at least six (6) credits. Parents of dependent students may borrow up to the cost of attendance minus any other aid through this credit-based loan program each academic year. Each parent who intends to borrow through this loan program must complete a separate application.
Timeline for 2020-21 Parent PLUS Loan Processing
- The application is available beginning May 1, 2020.
- Students can verify on BU BRAIN that a PLUS Loan application is on file beginning mid-May 2020. Go to the Eligibility section to verify application was received and the date.
- Completed loan requirements are viewable in BU BRAIN, beginning mid-May 2020.
- Approved PLUS loans will be added to a student's 2020-21 financial aid award offer beginning mid-July.
- If a refund is generated on the student's account due to the disbursement of the Parent PLUS Loan, it will be issued to the parent borrower unless the parent chooses (during the application process) to have the refund go directly to the student.
- The credit check will be valid for 180 days.
- If a Parent PLUS loan is approved with an endorser or appeal, PLUS Loan Counseling.
Note: No money will be disbursed until all requirements are complete.
Interest Rate/Origination Fee
Effective July 1, 2019, the interest rate is 7.08%, and interest begins to accrue upon disbursement. Interest rates are updated July 1 of each year. Parents may choose to set up payments while the student is attending or defer payments until the student graduates (see "Choose When to Pay Back" for more information).
Parent PLUS Loans with a first disbursement on or after Oct. 1, 2019 but before October 1, 2020 will have a loan origination fee of 4.236%. You will pay back 100% of what you borrow (plus interest); however, only 95.764% of the gross loan will be disbursed to the account.
View Amount Parent May Borrow
Dependent students must file the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) to receive a financial aid offer. Students will be sent an email award notification from Financial Aid Services directing them to BU BRAIN. If eligible, students will see a message on the "Awards Overview" tab that includes the Federal Parent PLUS Loan maximum borrowing amount. Note: Parents may borrow any amount up to the maximum borrowing amount calculated and displayed in BU BRAIN.
Step 1- Determine the actual amount needed
Using the student's financial aid award offer and the anticipated charges associated with the current academic year, determine how much is needed to help fund the cost of a student's tuition bill and other expenses.
Step 2- Apply for a PLUS
The parent borrower will need their FSA ID and password to sign in. Once signed in, go to "Start PLUS Application Process," then select "Parent PLUS." Contact Customer Service at 1-800-557-7394 for online application assistance.
Once the application is completed, you'll receive an instant credit check.
Adverse credit history may cause your credit check to be denied. This can include bankruptcy, foreclosure, tax liens, default determination or one or more debts which are 90 days or more delinquent, in collection or charged off during the previous two years and the total combined outstanding balance of those debts is greater than $2,085.
Step 3- If approved
If the application is approved, first-time parent borrowers must complete a PLUS MPN for Parents. Notification of your approval will be sent to Binghamton University.
If your application is denied
If the application is denied, the parent has three options that will be displayed after completing the online application:
- Not pursue the PLUS Loan -- If the borrower is not interested in the following other two options, a borrower can select the option (while completing the application online) for their son/daughter to be offered additional Federal Direct Unsubsidized Loans. Additional loan limits are available up to $4,000/academic year for first- and second-year students (55 or fewer credit hours earned), and up to $5,000/academic year for third- and fourth-year students (56 or more credit hours earned). Note: Once Binghamton University receives information from Direct Loan Applicant Services that you have chosen this option (allow 2-3 business days), the additional Unsubsidized Loan will be offered to the student based on class year and eligibility.
- Provide an endorser -- The endorser must pass a credit check and sign a promissory note. An email with the Loan Reference ID and an endorser packet will be mailed to the borrower. The endorser will need the Loan Reference ID to complete the paper packet or complete Endorser Addendum. The endorser must create an FSA ID and password to sign in and go to "Endorse a PLUS Loan."
- "Credit Appeal - I want to provide documentation of extenuating circumstances" option -- A package of additional information will be automatically sent to the borrower and the parent will be prompted to send an email with contact information to applicant services. *If you obtain a loan with an endorser or through an appeal you will need to complete online credit counseling.
Choose when to pay back
Repayment begins 60 days after the last disbursement of the loan for the academic
year. Parent borrowers may choose to pay interest monthly, quarterly or choose to
have the interest capitalized. A parent may request deferment of payments until 6
months after student graduates or falls below 6 credits. Contact the Loan Servicer
to discuss repayment options.