Mother and two daughters enjoy time at Family Day


There are several types of loans available to Bluffton students, both federal loans and private student loans.

Students may qualify for one or more of the loans discussed below unless the student is in default on a previous student loan or has borrowed the maximum amount allowed. Undergraduate students must have a minimum of six credit hours per semester to be eligible for loans. Students must also complete the FAFSA to determine what type of loans and the amount they may be eligible to receive.

William D. Ford Federal Direct Loan Programs

All first-time direct loan borrowers at Bluffton must complete both Entrance Loan Counseling and a Master Promissory Note at before loans can be disbursed to their account.

Federal Direct Subsidized Loans

    • Need based loan
    • No interest while a student is registered for at least six credit hours
    • Fixed interest rate of 4.29%
    • 1.073% origination fee
    • 1.068% fee for loans disbursed after 10/1/15
    • Repayment on the principal begins six months after completing program of study or dropping below six credit hours
    • The U.S. Department of Education pays the interest on a Direct Subsidized Loan
      • while you are in school at least half-time
      • for the first six months after you leave school (referred to as a grace period), and
      • during a period of deferment (a postponement of loan payments).
    • If you received a Direct Subsidized Loan that was first disbursed between July 1, 2012, and July 1, 2014, you will be responsible for paying any interest that accrues during your grace period.  If you choose not to pay the interest that accrues during your grace period, the interest will be added to your principal balance.
    • More information about federal direct loans, including income-based repayment options 


Federal Direct Unsubsidized Loans          

    • Non-need based loan
    • Interest begins as soon as the loan is disbursed
    • Students may choose to make interest only payments while in school or choose to have the interest capitalized
    • Fixed interest rate of 4.29% for loans disbursed on or after July 1, 2015
    • 1.073% origination fee
      1.068% origination fee for loans disbursed after 10/1/15

    • Repayment on the principal begins six months after completing program of study or dropping below six credit hours
    • More information about federal direct loans, including income-based repayment options 

Federal Direct Parent PLUS Loan

    • Parents of dependent students can take out loans to supplement their dependent student's  aid packages.  The Federal Parent PLUS loan lets parents borrow money to cover any costs not already covered by the student's financial aid package, up to the full cost of attendance.  There is no cumulative limit.
    • Parent PLUS loans are the financial responsibility of the parents, not the student.  The parent must pass a credit check to qualify for a PLUS loan.
    •  If a Parent Plus loan or an estimated Parent PLUS loan is included on the award letter, there are additional steps that need to be taken in order to secure that loan.  One parent must complete both the application and the Master Promissory Note (MPN) at .
    • A new application must be submitted for each academic year.  The parent may apply anytime after May 1.
    • Repayment on the principal and interest begins within 60 days after the second disbursement, with a 10 year repayment period. Deferment of repayment is an option.
    • Fixed interest rate of 6.84%
    • 4.292% origination fee
      4.272% origination fee for loans disbursed after 10/1/15

Federal Perkins Loans

Perkins Loans are awarded to students that have demonstrated need as determined by the FAFSA and Bluffton University. Students who are awarded a Federal Perkins Loan for the first time will be required to complete an Entrance Interview and Master Promissory Note with the business office. The interest rate is a fixed 5%, but no interest will accrue during the in-school period and during the 9-month grace period. There is no origination fee for this loan.

Private education loans

Private education loans provide students an option for funding their education. For private education loans, please see FASTChoice for lender information and selection.