Earnest Student Loan Refinance Review

Rating: 9.7 / 10 (Excellent)
Disclosure: We receive advertising revenue from this partner. 
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Earnest is a technology company using cutting-edge data science, smarter design, and software automation to rebuild financial services. Founded on the belief that financially responsible people deserve better options and access to credit, Earnest's lending products are built for a new generation seeking to reach life's milestones. The company uses data and technology to understand every applicant's unique financial story and offer the lowest possible rates.

Founded in 2013, Earnest is headquartered in San Francisco and backed by Maveron, Andreessen Horowitz, Atlas Venture, Mohr Davidow Ventures, First Round Capital and others.

Loan Limits

Earnest does not place any ceilings on the maximum amount of student loan refinancing for graduate and undergraduate school. This could be used to consolidate your federal and/or private student loans.

  • Undergraduate School – No limits
  • Graduate School – No limits

*** $5,000 minimum balance


Loan Terms

  • Anywhere between 5-20 years
  • Earnest Precision Pricing gives maximum payment flexibility. It allows you to create a payment schedule plan that can help you save thousands of dollars in the course of your loan. Earnest Precision Pricing lets you a get a rate anywhere along a curve instead of having to choose one rate at either 5, 10, 15, and 20 year buckets which can end up costing more unless it is at the exact amount you want to pay per month.

*** 5-20 year terms, customizable by month



Fixed Rates (with autopay): 3.25% - 6.32%  APR
Variable Rates (with autopay): 2.57% - 5.87%  APR

Earnest offers some of the best savings of any lender in student refinancing with $17,936 saved on average -- nearly $4,000 more than the nearest competitor. This is done by taking a more data-driven approach to client evaluation rather than just considering a credit score.

*** “Refi-your-Refi” switch between fixed and variable rates to take advantage of future changes in interest rates.



No FICO minimum, NO income minimum

Earnest takes a more complete approach to evaluating a client’s credit worthiness by incorporating other financial behavior such as savings, investment, retirement and payment history. Applications only takes a few minutes and a quick rate estimate in under 2 minutes.

Earnest takes a different approach to lending by considering your education, employment status, income to debt ratio and payment history among others. This makes it ideal for clients who are just starting to build a credit history.

  • You are at least 18 years old.
  • You are a U.S. citizen or permanent resident alien.
  • Your debt is from paying for a Title IV accredited school.
  • You graduated or will graduate at the end of this semester with a degree.
  • You are employed or have a written job offer.
  • You are currently the primary borrower on the student loans you would like to refinance, and you will remain the primary borrower after refinancing.
  • You are not requesting new loans for future schooling.


Save with auto payments

Yes. Earnest offers a 0.25% rate discount for automatic payments.


Unemployment protection

Unemployment protection for 3 months when in between jobs, for up to 12 months total over the life of the loan.


Loan Related Fees

  • Origination fees
  • None
  • Prepayment Penalties
  • None. Earnest does not penalize you for paying your student loans early.
  • Make extra payments for free
  • Change payment amount and payment date anytime


Student Loans at Earnest

By helping save $4,000 more compared to its nearest competitors and $18,000 on average in student loan refinancing, Earnest helps provide better access to higher education by making student loans more affordable. Earnest lets you restructure your student loans by offering student loan refinancing.

Earnest offers a highly flexible loan program that lets you determine your payment schedule. It makes your student loan even more affordable by not charging any origination, prepayment and other hidden fees.  Other interesting features includes switching between fixed and variable rates at no charge. Overall, one of the best student loan refinancing services in the country today.  



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Customer Comments & Reviews

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Absolute fraud in STERIOD, they want your bank account and the password, literally the password to withdraw, transfer money from your back account. I hope no one falls for these criminals. They should be in jail, period.

They require your DOB, SS #, Name and Address which I understand. What seems crazy is they want you to give away your bank account and the bank account password. Now this seems like asking a thief to hold your wallet full of cash for next 10 years or whatever the loan term is. Most crazy part is all is done on line. I have never seen this kind of craziness in my entire life. The whole process is a scam, Identity theft in STEROID. Someone should report to BB bureau immediately about this scam.

Esvin S
Seymour, Tennessee
(Earnest - College Debt Consolidation) The application process is easy. Although mine took a bit longer than expected so make sure to call them to check on your application status if you suspect it is taking longer than usual (a couple days to a week to respond with approval/denial/requesting more information. Also, definitely use my referral code https://www.earnest.com/invite/esvin to get an easy $200 off when your loan is approved. Here is another link of Earnest's info: https://www.nerdwallet.com/blog/loans/student-loans/earnest-student-loan-refinance-flexibility/ - Thank you in advance -

Coeur d'Alene, Idaho
Started the process to get a rate for my astronomically high 2 year loans from college, but appears they only deal with people who have a degree not people who have stopped because they had to pay for their loans. Unfortunately trapped by Sallie Mae. Students beware.

Top Rated
Our Partner
9.7 / 10
  • Saves you $21,810 on average for student loan refinancing
  • More rates to choose from = more flexibility
  • Earnest has no fees of any kind
  • Unemployment protection
  • Pick your own monthly payment and Earnest matches you with an interest rate and term
  • Get a quick rate estimate in 2 minutes
  • Exceptional customer service for the life of the loan. Call, email or text them anytime
  • Must have at least a 680 FICO Score and $40K income