What is a Perkins loan?

Answer: Perkins loans are a type of federal student loan that is awarded to undergraduate and graduate students based on financial need.

This is a campus-based loan program: the school acts as the lender using funds provided by the federal government.

The Perkins loan is a subsidized loan, meaning that the federal government pays the loan’s interest while you are in school. You will typically start making your payments nine months after you graduate or drop below half-time enrollment.

Perkins loans have no origination or default fees, and the interest rate will not change. Like many other federal student loans, the standard repayment term is ten years from the date of your first payment. 

The amount of your Perkins loan is determined by your school's financial aid office. The U.S. Department of Education’s Federal Student Aid website has the most up-to-date information on Perkins loan limits.

Ask CFPB provides general consumer information. It is not legal advice or regulatory guidance. The CFPB updates this information periodically.

Ask CFPB includes links or references to third-party resources or content. The CFPB does not endorse the third-party or guarantee the accuracy of this third-party information. There may be other resources that also serve your needs.

Read full answer Hide full answer