Should I consolidate my student loans?
I just graduated and do not have a job yet. I'm applying for an income driven loan payment plan.
While consolidation can lower your interest rates, reduce the monthly payments, and take stress off your budget, it can also increase the cumulative interest you pay over the life of the loan and generate fees that add to your total loan balance.
Importantly, since you mention you are currently in the process of applying for an income driven payment plan, you need to make sure the consolidation will not impact the repayment plan. As it says on the government's website, “Consolidation is not the right choice for all borrowers or all loan types. In particular, you may lose certain loan benefits if you consolidate a Federal Perkins Loan.”
Good luck on the job search.