Earnest vs SoFi Student Loan Refinance

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Two of the popular names in student loan refinancing are Earnest and SoFi. With both companies advertising interest rates of about 2%, there is a big opportunity for savings for the borrowers. Apparently, there are far more similarities between Earnest and SoFi than there are differences. But, some differences are significant, and they could be crucial considerations for borrowers.

Earnest vs SoFi Student Loan Refinance Comparison

Earnest and SoFi are two student loan refinancing companies that offer fixed and variable rate loans, a 0.25% autopay rate discount, and certain unemployment protections to assist in the event of involuntary job loss, however they also have their differences.

Here is a comparison between Earnest and SoFi to help you make a great decision.

Ernest SoFi
Fixed rates from (APR)* Check with lender 2.74%
Variable rates from (APR)* Check with lender 2.25%
Loan terms 5 to 20 years 5 to 20 years
Loan amount $5,000 to $500,000 $5,000 to full loan balance of your qualified student loans
Cosigner accepted? No Yes
Cosigner release? N/A No
Minimum credit score 650 650
State restrictions Residents in Alabama, Kentucky, Nevada, and Rhode Island cannot qualify for a loan None
Perks You are able to select your own monthly payment with the Precision Pricing program You are going to get access to both career coaching and wealth management services

The Similarities Between Earnest and SoFi

Before you start picking at the little details which separate these two lenders, it is crucial first to explain why they both rank highly. Besides the low-interest rates, Earnest and SoFi companies offer similar terms that most borrowers should expect. First similarities, neither company charges any origination fee. Also, neither company charges any prepayment fee. The most obvious is that the contracts with both lenders have provisions for discharge of the loan in the event of disability or death. This is a term that not all lenders include, but one that the borrowers should demand.

Earnest Student Loan Refinancing

Acquired by Navient in 2017, Earnest is a refinancing lender with really comprehensive approval process, that may improve your chances of getting approved for a loan. With Earnest refinancing loan, you are able to have a loan repayment term from five to 20 years in length. Also, there are no origination fees or prepayment penalties.


  • Flexible application process

While some lenders just look at your credit score and income, Earnest has a more comprehensive view. It looks at some factors, including your bank and investment accounts and job history, to make a decision. That difference can increase your chances of getting approved for refinancing.

  • Precision Pricing

With Earnest, you are able to select your repayment term and what monthly payment you can afford. If you are only able to afford a small payment, Earnest will be a great option for you. You are going to pay more over time in interest, but choosing for a small payment now may give you relief when you need it.

  • Loans are managed in-house

Lots of loan companies do not actually manage the loans after they are disbursed, instead, they deliver you to a loan servicer. Earnest company works a bit differently. It manages the loans in-house, so you are going to work directly with Earnest if you have any questions or concerns regarding your account. However, you do that with help from Navient (the servicer).


  • Minimum credit score

Although Earnest looks at other factors besides only your credit history, your credit score still plays a big role in your opportunity of getting approved. Need to know that Earnest has a minimum credit score of 650. If you do not have a score that high, you will not be able to get a loan.

  • No cosigner offered

Once you have a lower credit score or smaller income, a cosigner will help increase your chances of getting a loan. Unlike most refinancing lenders, Earnest does not allow you to add a cosigner.

  • Location limitations

If you live in certain states, you are ineligible for an Earnest loan. Residents in Alabama, Nevada, Delaware, Kentucky,  and Rhode Island cannot qualify for a loan.

In addition, you are able to check out some Earnest review to learn more about their student loan refinancing.

SoFi Student Loan Refinancing

SoFi is one of the popular and biggest names in the refinancing industry, refinancing about $18 billion in student loans for over 250,000 members. SoFi focuses on assisting its members advance their careers and also expand their networks.


  • Career coaching

Once you refinance your loans with SoFi, you will be a SoFi member, making you eligible for free career coaching. Its services will help you polish your resume and even establish a personal brand.

  • Wealth management services

When you tackle your debt, you will increasingly look to building personal wealth. SoFi will help you on your journey, advising you on portfolio selection and diversification.

  • Deferment options

SoFi offers deferment options. It allows you to postpone making payments on your loans while you go to graduate school or if you are serving in the military.


  • Minimum credit score

Like Earnest, SoFi needs applicants to have a credit score of at least 650 to qualify for a loan.

  • No cosigner release available

Unlike Earnest, SoFi does permit you to include a cosigner on your application. But, you have to think long and hard before adding one, as SoFi does not allow cosigner releases.

In addition, you are able to check out some SoFi review to learn more about their student loan refinancing and personal loans.

Selecting a lender to refinance your student loans

If you are struggling to manage your student loans, while also juggling other debt, a student loan refinance will be a huge help. With refinancing, you are able to save money, get out of debt faster, and even reduce your monthly payment. Before submitting your application, you have to compare rates from multiple refinancing lenders to make sure you get the best rate.

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