Is This RISLA Student Loan Refinance Pre-Approval a Good Deal?


Dear Steve,

I had asked you previously about refinancing Sallie Mae Student Loans (personal, not federal anymore).

We have looked around and decided on Rhode Island Student Loan Authority. However, my husband is cosigning to get a lower rate. Just under $40,000.00, and the loan we are settling on is:

Loan preapproved for 15 years:
Your application for a RISLA Refinance Loan has been preapproved. Based on the information submitted in your application, your interest rate is estimated at 5.54% (5.29% after the Auto-Pay discount)*. (Fixed for the life of his loan)

Here are the links to the documents we received:

Roughly, $370 per month, with interest paid approximately $17,000. He is a recent college graduate and working full time, but he felt this was the best option that he could afford to pay the six loans.

Have you heard of this organization? If so, rebuttable or not?

Thank you for your assistance!



Dear Julie,

If these are private loans, I’m curious why the loan disclosures seem focused on federal student loan issues. Odd.

Did Rhode Island Student Loan Authority (RISLA) spot something that gave some indication these might be federally guaranteed student loans? If so, that would make a massive difference in what you should consider.

To triple check, go to the NSLDS system and make sure any loans that might be included are not labeled as federal loans.

Please update me in the comments with what you find.


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7 thoughts on “Is This RISLA Student Loan Refinance Pre-Approval a Good Deal?”

  1. Thanks Steve. We looked at the federal student aid website and the loans are through DEPT OF ED/AIDVANTAGE and has a balance of $38,819.00, currently no interest and no payments.

    For the Sallie Mae loans, we have to go to their website. We are currently paying interest and making monthly payments, each loan separately. Their rate vary from 7.75 up to 9.0 %, and some keep adjusting up. They won’t consolidate the loans. That is how we found RISLA. Which is what we’ve decided to go with to consolidate the loans into one payment per month.

    Thank you for your advice!

    • Make sure these loans get consolidated in a Fed Direct Loan and elect for an Income-Driven Repayment so you can get credit towards the standard forgiveness. It would be a shame to consolidate in RISLA or another private loan and lose upcoming federal loan forgiveness. I’d hate to see you lose out on $10,000 of forgiveness on just a few percentage points.


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