LendKey Review 2019: Student Loan Refinancing and Private Loans

LendKey helps you connect with community banks and credit unions to work on student loans and refinancing, as well as personal loans.
4 minute read | 1/2/19Jan. 2, 2019

Why LendKey

☑️ LendKey helps borrowers navigate student loan refinancing, in addition to providing private loans

☑️ They offer extended forbearance and interest-only payment options for longer-term loans

☑️ It’s fast to get started – LendKey offers a 2-minute rate check with no impact on credit score


  • Loan types: Student loan refinancing for college graduates and private loans for both undergraduate and graduate students
  • Loan amounts: $5,000 to $125,000 for undergraduate degrees; up to $175,000 for graduate degrees; up to $300,000 for medical, dental, or veterinary degrees
  • Loan terms: 5, 7, 10, 15 and 20 years
  • You can apply with or without a cosigner. Some borrowers add a cosigner to meet eligibility requirements or qualify for lower interest rates
  • There’s no origination fee, so it’s easy to shop around without committing until you’re ready

LendKey: What is it and how does it work?

LendKey is a marketplace lender that works with over 300 community banks and credit unions to provide refinancing loans for college graduates, as well as private loans for undergraduate and graduate students.

By connecting borrowers with lenders nationwide, LendKey helps you find the best loans you’re eligible for from hundreds of potential lenders in over 45 states, saving you the headache of having to figure it out on your own.

Both benefits and drawbacks exist when deciding to refinance student loans, but perhaps the biggest relief is being able to replace your existing loan with a new loan and new terms – ideally at a lower interest rate. Qualifying for a lower interest rate could save you thousands in interest over the life of a loan!

Do You Qualify?

The vast majority qualify for a loan from LendKey, but applications must be submitted by:

  • Undergraduate or graduate students
  • Parents of undergraduate or graduate students
  • Undergraduate or graduate degree holders
  • Parents of undergraduate or graduate degree holders

Applicants also need to meet the following criteria:

  • Be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident. This also applies to your cosigner, if you have one.
  • Be employed with steady monthly income of at least $2,000.
  • Graduated from an approved degree program that participates in the federal government’s Title IV federal student aid programs.
  • Be an existing member, or become a member, of a participating credit union before receiving final loan approval.
  • Do not live in: Maine, Nevada, North Dakota, Rhode Island, or West Virginia. LendKey is unavailable in those states.

How to Get Started

The application process can be done in 4 easy steps, taking just a few minutes each to complete.

Step 1 – Determine the amount you think you’ll need to borrow and specify the state you live in.

Step 2 – Compare the rates and offers available to you and determine what works best for you

Step 3 – Finish inputting your details into LendKey’s secure application platform

Step 4 – Verify your identity, income, and school by uploading screenshots or pictures to the application. This step will likely take you the longest to complete (about 10 minutes).

Once you’ve completed this step, it can take between 1 to 3 business days to be notified by email on if you’ve been conditionally approved for a loan.

Get Started With LendKey

Is LendKey safe?

Information shared with LendKey is safely stored on the company’s secure interface. Since founding the company in 2009, more than 68,000 consumers have had their financing needs met through lenders that partner with LendKey with a high customer satisfaction rate. They offer US-based customer support 7 days a week from 9AM to 8PM EST by phone, chat, and email.

How much can I borrow from LendKey at one time?

Loan amounts vary by degree and other factors, ranging from:

  • Undergraduate degrees – $5,000 to $125,000
  • Graduate degrees – $5,000 to $175,000
  • Medical, dental, or veterinary degrees – up to $300,000

If I sign up with a cosigner, are they liable for the entire duration of the loan?

After successfully making 12 to 36 consecutive monthly payments, you can apply for a cosigner release, effectively releasing them from the loan. This grants you full ownership over the remainder of the loan and your cosigner no longer has any liability associated with the loan.

What rates am I looking at if I sign up with LendKey?

As of publication, rates with a variable APR are a low as 2.47%; fixed APR rates as low as 3.49%. Both of these rates are based on repayment through AutoPay, but gives a good idea of what you can expect.

Is there an origination fee I should know about?

There are no origination fees with LendKey.

What repayment terms does LendKey provide?

Repayment terms range from 5 to 20 years in the following increments: 5, 7, 10, 15 and 20 years

What if I become unemployed during the repayment period?

In the event on losing your job, or if you’ve just finished school, LendKey can provide borrowers with unemployment protection, meaning loans may be placed on a temporary hold while you get back on your feet.

How can I contact LendKey?

You can call their customer service number at (888) 549-9050 or email customer support at customer.care@lendkey.com.

You can also find LendKey on Facebook and Twitter.

Where is LendKey available?

LendKey is currently available in 45 states and Washington, D.C.

It is not available in the following states: Maine, Nevada, North Dakota, Rhode Island, and West Virginia.

Disclaimer: This content and the opinions expressed here are the author’s alone and have not been provided, commissioned, or endorsed by any financial institution. All information was accurate at the time of publication but terms and conditions may change at any time.

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