The Sallie Mae Smart Option Student Loan®

The Sallie Mae Smart Option Student Loan® For Degree-Granting Institutions

With college costs growing fast, it’s time to borrow smarter. The Smart Option Student Loan offers multiple repayment options and competitive interest rates to help you pay for college expenses not covered by scholarships and federal loans.


  • Low variable interest rates — 2.25% APR to 9.37% APR1.
  • Competitive fixed interest rates — 5.74% APR to 11.85% APR1.
  • New lower rates for graduate students — Low variable interest rates range from 2.25% APR to 7.27% APR. Competitive fixed interest rates are 5.74% APR and 8.56% APR1,7
  • No origination fees and no prepayment penalty.1
  • Borrow up to 100% of your school-certified education costs (minimum $1,000).
  • Pay now or later — Three in-school repayment options: Pay monthly interest; Pay $25 per month2; Defer payments.1
  • Applying with a creditworthy cosigner may help you qualify and/or receive a lower interest rate. You can apply to release your cosigner after you graduate and make 12 consecutive on-time principal and interest payments.3
  • Get a Smart Reward® in your Upromise® account of 2% of your scheduled monthly payments that are made on-time while in school4 (Not available with the Deferred Repayment Option).
  • Receive a 0.25 percentage point interest rate reduction while enrolled to make scheduled payments by automatic debit.5
  • Loan forgiveness in the event of a student's death or permanent and total disability.6
  • Graduated Repayment Period8 — Budget flexibility for graduating students.
Encouraging Responsible Borrowing

Sallie Mae has helped more than 30 million Americans pay for college since 1972. We encourage students and families to supplement their savings by exploring grants, scholarships, federal and state student loans, and to consider the anticipated monthly payments on their total student loan debt and their expected future earnings before considering a private education loan.


This information is for borrowers attending degree-granting institutions only. Credit criteria and eligibility requirements apply.

You must attend an eligible school and be enrolled in an eligible program. U.S. citizens enrolled in eligible study abroad programs or studying at medical schools outside the United States are also eligible. International students are eligible with a creditworthy cosigner (who must be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident) and appropriate U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Service documentation. You must meet current credit and other eligibility criteria.

1 Interest rates for the Fixed and Deferred Repayment Options are higher than for loans with the Interest Repayment Option. Variable rates may increase after consummation. Interest is charged while you are in school and during the 6 month separation period. Any interest that remains unpaid when you enter full repayment will be added to your loan balance.

2 This informational repayment example uses typical loan terms available to a freshman borrower who elects the fixed repayment option and has a $10,000.00 loan with two disbursements and a 7.21% variable APR: 51 payments of $25, 119 payments of $140.28 and one payment of $114.17, for a total paid of $18,082.49. Variable rates may increase after consummation.

This informational repayment example uses typical loan terms available to a graduate borrower who elects the Fixed Repayment Option and has a $10,000.00 loan with two disbursements and a 7.12% variable APR: 27 payments of $25, 59 payments of $216.41, and one payment of $200.75, for a total paid of $13,643.94. Variable rates may increase after consummation.

3 Only the borrower may apply for cosigner release. The borrower must provide proof of successful completion of school, be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident, be current and have made 12 consecutive on-time payments of principal and interest immediately before applying, and pass a credit check including income verification when the release request is processed.

4 Primary borrower can earn a reward into his or her active Upromise account of 2% of the scheduled loan payment amount for each on-time payment during the in-school and separation periods. Loan payments must remain current to be eligible for the reward. The Smart Reward Benefit and Upromise membership are subject to the terms and conditions of the Upromise service, as may be amended from time to time. Terms and conditions apply to the Upromise service. Participating companies, contribution levels and terms and conditions are subject to change at any time without notice. Go to to learn more. Upromise accounts are not FDIC insured, carry no bank guarantee and may lose value.

5 The rate reduction benefit applies only if the recurring payment is successfully deducted from the designated account and is suspended during forbearances and certain deferments. For multi-party loans, only one party may enroll in auto debit.

6 Loan forgiveness is not available to borrowers residing in Alaska or Montana.

7 Graduate student pricing on the Smart Option Student Loan is limited to students enrolling in a Masters/Doctorate level degree program. Graduate Certificate/Continuing Education course work is not eligible for graduate student pricing.

8 Available for loans that first disburse on or after July 1, 2013 to finance academic periods that begin on or after July 1, 2013 at a degree-granting institution. Graduated Repayment Period (GRP) requires interest payments for the initial 12 month period of repayment when you would normally begin making full principal and interest payments (which typically begins six months after graduation) or during the 12 month period after your request is granted, whichever is later. At the time you request GRP, you must have graduated with no interruption in enrollment, be current on payments, and not be more than 30 days late on payments on any student loan. You may request GRP only during the two billing cycles immediately preceding and the two billing cycles immediately after your loan would normally begin requiring full principal and interest payments. GRP does not extend the term of the loan. If you are approved for GRP, your principal and interest payments will be higher than if GRP did not apply, and your total loan cost will increase.

Information advertised valid as of 3/25/2014.

The Sallie Mae logo, Sallie Mae, Sallie Mae Bank, Sallie Mae Smart Option Student Loan, Sallie Mae Insurance Services and Smart Reward are registered service marks of Sallie Mae, Inc.

Upromise and the Upromise logo are registered service marks of Upromise, Inc.

Smart Option Student Loans are made by Sallie Mae Bank® or a lender partner.

*We are compensated by Sallie Mae for the referral of Smart Option Student Loan customers.