To Cosign or Not to Cosign? Your Questions Answered

Adding a cosigner to private loans may help students get approved and access better rates.

Since many undergraduate students are still building their credit history, they may need to add a cosigner to qualify for a private student loan. Learn more about what a cosigner is and how they can help you get a loan. Nicole Straub, Senior Vice President of Discover® Student Loans, helps debunk some popular myths.

Student Loan Myth: If I don’t have a cosigner, there’s no chance I’ll get a private student loan.

Nicole: It doesn’t mean you can’t get a private student loan, but your chances of being approved and getting a lower rate are better if you have a cosigner.

Student Loan Myth: My parent must be the cosigner for a private student loan.

Nicole: Cosigners are adults who are willing to take equal responsibility to repay the loan. Oftentimes, that is a parent—but it doesn’t have to be. It really just needs to be an adult who you know well that you are willing to have conversations about finances with.

Student Loan Myth: I have to take federal loans before I can get a private loan.

Nicole: You don’t have to. Compare your options and choose what’s right for you. Your award letter may include a federal loan option and you should look into that. A couple things to keep in mind when you are comparing the options are fees, rates, and repayment options to make a decision that’s right for you in the long term.