Consolidating private student loans going into default

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It may take you a while to find out whether you’re eligible for such a program.

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Examples include serving in the Peace Corps or Ameri Corps; programs that allow a variety of healthcare professionals from doctors and nurses to dental hygienists and mental health workers to get a significant amount of their debt forgiven if they are willing to serve at least two years in an underserved community.

Unlike other types of consumer loans, which can be refinanced if interest rates drop (if you qualify), federal student loans are not as flexible. Typically student loans won’t hurt your credit scores if they are paid on time, and they can often help your scores.

If you fall behind, however, those late payments can cause your credit scores to drop significantly.

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For that reason, it is especially important to try to repay your student loans.

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