Refinancing with NaviRefi is no longer limited to borrowers with student loans from Navient and an invitation code.
- Could lead to lower interest rates or more repayment flexibility
- No fees to refinance your student loans
- Several repayment assistance programs for those experiencing financial difficulty
- Fixed and variable interest rates are available, but variable rates are restricted in 16 states
- Online portal allows you to check your rate for free without affecting your credit score
Established in 2017, NaviRefi set out to help borrowers manage their student loans more effectively. It’s a service from Navient, a student loan servicing giant known for managing federal and private student loans.
NaviRefi is a lending platform that provides a better repayment strategy for those grappling with high-interest student loans. The company offers student loan refinancing options, enabling borrowers to potentially lower their interest rates, consolidate loans, and restructure their debt repayment plan to suit their financial capabilities.
First an invitation-only service, NaviRefi broadened its horizons in 2023 to include more applicants. Keep reading to find out more about its rates and terms, repayment options, customer service reviews, and more.
Our take on NaviRefi’s refinance student loans
|Type of student loan||Best for||Editorial rating|
|Refinance student loan||No designation||No rating|
Our take is based on hours of editorial research into student loan refinance products. No two companies earn the same best-for designation; NaviRefi didn’t earn a best-for designation in our most recent rating.
Rates, terms, and more
NaviRefi’s student loan refinance terms fall within the industry standard. Its rates are competitive, and the range of repayment options can accommodate different financial situations. Here are the details:
- Loan amounts: $5,001 – $500,000 ($10,001 minimum for California residents)
- Fixed rates (APR): 4.99% – 9.74%
- Variable rates (APR)*: 2.00% – 5.62%
- Rate discounts: 0.25% autopay
- Repayment terms: 5, 10, 15, or 20 years
- Cosigner release: Not applicable (NaviRefi loans do not permit cosigners)
- Fees: None
- Unique features: Request to skip a payment once every 12 months and even change your monthly due date. Also, the grace match deferment option allows you to request to align the grace period of your NaviRefi loan with the loans you’re refinancing.
*Variable rates are not available in Alaska, Colorado, Connecticut, Hawaii, Illinois, Kentucky, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Mississippi, New Hampshire, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, or Virginia.
Who’s eligible to refinance student loans with NaviRefi?
Refinancing your student loans with NaviRefi can be a sensible financial move, but it’s not for everyone. You must first meet certain eligibility requirements. Cosigners aren’t accepted, so you’ll need a strong credit history and sufficient income to qualify.
In the table below, you’ll find a clear breakdown of these requirements:
|Citizenship||United States citizen or non-citizen permanent resident|
|State of residence||Available in 49 states and the District of Columbia (not available in Nevada)|
|Graduation status||NaviRefi may approve even if you didn’t graduate. (If you didn’t graduate and the separation from when you last attended school is 6 years, you might qualify. However, borrowers who attended a for-profit school are not eligible.)|
|Minimum credit score||650 (700 for nongraduates whose date of last attendance is longer than 6 years ago)|
|Minimum income||Not disclosed|
How do you repay NaviRefi refinanced student loans?
Repaying your NaviRefi student loan refinancing is straightforward. Each loan comes with specific terms, which may differ based on individual circumstances.
The repayment period, interest rates, and even the availability of repayment assistance programs can vary. It’s crucial to understand these factors before you sign any agreement.
When does repayment begin?
Repayment on your refinanced loan typically starts right after the loan disbursement. However, the exact terms depend on your agreement.
You don’t choose when repayment begins, but you can choose your repayment plan and term. The terms you don’t have control over include the loan’s interest rate and repayment start date.
How long does repayment last?
The repayment terms you agree to when you refinance determine the repayment length. With NaviRefi, you can choose a term of five, 10, 15, or 20 years.
The length of your term can influence your monthly payments, with longer terms resulting in smaller monthly payments but a higher total cost over time due to accrued interest.
NaviRefi does not charge any prepayment penalties, so you can pay off your loan early without incurring extra costs.
Are there repayment assistance programs?
While not universal, repayment assistance programs are becoming more common among student loan lenders.
These programs can temporarily relieve borrowers from their loan payments during financial hardship. However, interest often continues to accrue during these periods, which can increase the overall cost of the loan.
NaviRefi offers several repayment assistance programs:
- Rate reduction program: Provides reduced interest rate and lower monthly payments for a six-month period for those experiencing financial difficulty.
- Term and rate modification program: Extends the repayment term and reduces the interest rate.
- Forbearance: Temporarily suspends or reduces your monthly payments. (Interest accrues during the forbearance period.)
- Loan forgiveness and discharge: NaviRefi will work with borrowers and families in the event of disability, loss of life, and certain other circumstances.
- Postpone payments: If you return to school at least half-time or receive training through an internship, residency, or fellowship program, you may be eligible to defer your NaviRefi loan payments.
How can NaviRefi improve its student loan refinance?
NaviRefi offers several appealing features in its student loans but also leaves room for improvement. Here are areas where it falls short and alternative lenders to consider:
NaviRefi isn’t available in all 50 states, excluding Nevada.
Looking for more widespread availability? Consider these options available in all 50 states:
- ELFI: We determined best for those looking to transfer Parent PLUS loans to the child.
- Citizens Bank: Our pick for the best refinance option from a large bank.
NaviRefi doesn’t allow cosigners, which could be a setback for borrowers needing that support.
If you need a cosigner, consider these lenders:
- Earnest: Our top overall refinance lender that allows cosigners.
- Citizens Bank: Offers cosigner release after 36 months of consecutive on-time payments.
NaviRefi’s strengths include:
- Several repayment assistance options
- Willingness to consider borrowers who didn’t graduate
- Ability to check your rate without affecting your credit
- No fees
- Opportunity to skip a payment once every 12 months
How have NaviRefi student loans evolved over the years?
Since its inception, NaviRefi and its student loans have evolved. Let’s look at how it has reshaped its offerings:
- Focused beginnings: NaviRefi was established by Navient in 2017. It was geared toward borrowers with at least one loan already serviced by Navient.
- Exclusivity: Until 2023, NaviRefi maintained an invitation-only service. This exclusivity meant just a select few could apply for its loans.
- Expansion: In a major shift in 2023, NaviRefi broadened its horizon. It opened its service to more applicants, even those without Navient loans. Today, anyone can apply without an invitation.
These changes have made NaviRefi’s loan services more accessible, benefiting a larger pool of borrowers.
With NaviRefi’s shift to non-exclusive applications, more potential borrowers can now use its services. Keep an eye on the company as it continues to evolve and adapt to changing market needs.
Is NaviRefi a reputable lender?
As part of our research, we collect reviews from several customer platforms we consider reliable indicators of a customer’s experience. The Better Business Bureau (BBB), Trustpilot, and Google are renowned platforms for user reviews.
As you evaluate the ratings below, remember: They fall under the umbrella of the parent company, Navient. Most reviews and ratings are aggregated under Navient, and no separate page exists for NaviRefi on any of the websites we checked.
|Source||Customer rating (out of 5)||Number of reviews|
|Better Business Bureau||1.01||85|
Ratings collected on August 3, 2023.
A recurring theme across all platforms indicates dissatisfaction with Navient’s handling of federal student loans, with some users mentioning issues related to loan transfers from Sallie Mae to Navient. However, no specific complaints target NaviRefi.
The BBB recognizes a multistate settlement with Navient regarding allegations of deceptive practices, but this does not specifically pertain to NaviRefi. BBB’s rating for Navient, inclusive of NaviRefi, is A-, and it is BBB-accredited.
Trustpilot and Google reviews mirror similar sentiments but are based on fewer reviews, indicating less overall customer feedback.
Remember: Many reviewers use and respect these platforms for their objectivity and transparency. But reviews often capture extremes of customer experience, and the average customer may have a different, less intense experience.
Does NaviRefi have a customer service team?
NaviRefi has an in-house customer service team in the U.S., ready to assist with your queries. They can help guide you on various topics, from understanding loan terms, rates, and repayment plans to addressing any concerns.
NaviRefi services its own loans, meaning there’s no need to worry it will pass on your loan management to an unknown third party.
All services under the NaviRefi brand are managed by Navient Solutions LLC. This adds an extra layer of security and convenience: You’ll deal with the same team throughout your loan journey.
Here are the ways you can get in touch with the NaviRefi team:
- Phone: If you’re in the U.S., call 844-381-6621. For those living abroad, the number is 317-598-4024. Lines are open Monday through Thursday from 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. Eastern and on Fridays from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Eastern.
- Fax: You can fax 844-653-8823.
- Mail: Write to NaviRefi, P.O. Box 8000, Fishers, IN 46038-8000.
How to apply for a NaviRefi student loan refinance
With NaviRefi, the application is straightforward. NaviRefi’s application process is intuitive and uncomplicated, and it doesn’t require a mound of paperwork or jumping through numerous hoops.
Here are the steps to apply for a student loan with NaviRefi:
- Start your journey: Begin by clicking “Check your rate” on NaviRefi’s homepage. This will initiate your application.
- Complete your prequalification: Follow the prompts and fill out the required information.
- Apply: If you’re happy with the rate NaviRefi offers and want to proceed, complete your full application, and supply any requested information, such as an ID or a recent pay stub.
- Sign your loan: Once NaviRefi confirms your identity and information, you can sign and wait for the lender to disburse payment to your school.
What if I’m denied a student loan refinance from NaviRefi?
If NaviRefi doesn’t give your application the green light, consider taking the following steps:
- Understand the reason for denial. Lenders are obligated by law to give you a reason for denial. By understanding this reason, you can make the necessary improvements for future applications.
- Consider reapplying. Once you’ve addressed the issues that led to your denial, you can reapply with NaviRefi. But first, assess your overall financial situation and credit health.
- Explore other lenders. If reapplying with NaviRefi isn’t an option or doesn’t result in approval, consider other student loan refinancing lenders, such as Earnest, which we deemed the best overall for student loan refinance, or ELFI, noted as best for transferring Parent PLUS loans to a child.
If you’re feeling overwhelmed, check out our resources on student loan refinancing options:
- Best student loan refinancing options
- Refinance Parent PLUS loans
- Best medical school loan refinance options
Does NaviRefi offer private or federal student loans?
NaviRefi specializes in private student loan refinancing, a method of consolidating your private or federal student loans into one new private loan.
Does applying with NaviRefi hurt my credit?
Applying with NaviRefi initiates a soft credit pull, which won’t affect your credit score. This allows you to see the rates you might qualify for. However, if you decide to continue the loan process, NaviRefi will perform a hard credit pull, which can lower your credit score by a few points.
Does NaviRefi require a cosigner?
NaviRefi does not allow using a cosigner for its student loan refinancing. The approval of your application depends on your creditworthiness and financial stability. Having a solid credit history and sufficient income is crucial when applying with NaviRefi.
How long does it take to receive funds from NaviRefi?
Once you’re approved for student loan refinancing with NaviRefi, completing the refinancing process takes a few weeks to a month. This includes NaviRefi paying off your old loans and setting up your new loan.
Is NaviRefi responsible for paying off my current student loans?
Yes: Once your loan refinance with NaviRefi is approved and finalized, NaviRefi pays off your student loans with your original lenders. You then make your new, ideally lower, monthly payments to NaviRefi.
Can NaviRefi student loans be forgiven?
NaviRefi’s student loans are private, which means they aren’t eligible for federal loan forgiveness programs, such as Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF).
NaviRefi may offer relief options for borrowers facing financial hardship, but these aren’t comparable to federal loan forgiveness. Always consult a financial professional before refinancing federal loans into a loan with NaviRefi or any other private lender.