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MPOWER Financing offers an opportunity for international students to borrow money to attend school in the U.S. or Canada without needing a co-signer. If you're a U.S. citizen or have a co-signer, though, you may be able to get better terms elsewhere.
- Pros and Cons
- Key Takeaways
- Company Overview
Offers loans to international students without a co-signer requirement
Gives significant interest rate discounts
Doesn't require a credit score or history for approval
Offers international student loan refinancing
Only offers one repayment term
Interest rates are relatively high
Charges an origination fee and interest-only payments in school
Not all schools are eligible
- MPOWER Financing offers student loans to U.S. citizens, DACA recipients, refugees, asylum seekers, and international students without a co-signer or credit score requirement.
- The lender offers in-school loans to eligible students at more than 400 select colleges in the U.S. and Canada.
- Borrowers must be within two years of graduating or about to begin a one- or two-year program.
- The lender charges an upfront origination fee and requires interest-only payments while in school, but borrowers can get up to 1.5% in interest rate discounts.
- MPOWER only offers a 10-year repayment term.
MPOWER Financing specializes in offering private student loans to college students who may have difficulty getting approved by other lenders. However, the lender has some restrictions that can make it difficult for otherwise eligible borrowers to get approved. MPOWER has a good reputation for customer satisfaction.
- Year Founded 2014
- Official Website www.mpowerfinancing.com
- Loans Offered Undergraduate, Graduate, International, Refinance
- Customer Service Online; Phone: (202) 417-3800
MPOWER Financing Student Loans: Quick Look
|Loan Type||Variable APR||Fixed APR*|
*Before interest rate discounts
If you're coming from abroad, compare several private student loans for international students to ensure you're getting the best deal.
- Offers loans to international students without a co-signer requirement: International students generally have fewer options when applying for student loans in the U.S., and many lenders require a co-signer who is a U.S. citizen or permanent resident. With MPOWER, international students can get approved on their own.
- Gives significant interest rate discounts: It's common for private lenders to offer a 0.25% interest rate discount for automatic payments, but that's it for many lenders. With MPOWER, you can get up to 0.25% in interest rate discounts for setting up automatic payments, making on-time payments, and providing proof of graduation and employment.
- Doesn't require a credit score or history for approval: If you have a credit history in the U.S. or your home country, MPOWER will review it for payment history but won't check your credit score. That said, it won't hurt your chances of approval if you don't have a credit history.
- Offers international student loan refinancing: College graduates can refinance U.S.-based and international student loans.
- Only offers one repayment term: While some private student loan companies may offer terms ranging from 5 to 15 years, MPOWER only offers a single repayment term of 10 years.
- Interest rates are relatively high: You may have an easier time getting approved for a loan without a credit history or co-signer at MPOWER, but you'll likely get better terms with a different lender if you have a good credit history or a creditworthy co-signer.
- Charges an origination fee and interest-only payments in school: Most private lenders don't charge upfront origination fees, but MPOWER adds a 5% fee to your balance upon disbursement (just 2% for refinance loans). Additionally, you'll need to make interest-only payments while you're in school and during your six-month grace period after graduation.
- Not all schools are eligible: MPOWER supports more than 400 schools in the U.S. and Canada, but your chosen school may not be on the lender's list, leaving you forced to look for other solutions.
Not going to one of MPOWER’s supported schools? See our picks for the best international student loans for some other options.
Student Loans Offered by MPOWER Financing
Undergraduate Student Loans
If you're a U.S. citizen, DACA recipient, refugee, asylum seeker, or international student, you may be able to get approved for an undergraduate loan with MPOWER. All loans come with an upfront origination fee, which is added to your balance. Note that international students will pay higher interest rates. You can only borrow up to $50,000 per academic term, but you can apply for multiple terms at the same time and qualify for up to $100,000 in total loans.
|Terms for Undergraduate Loans|
|Loan Terms||10 years|
Graduate Student Loans
Graduate students, including U.S. citizens, DACA recipients, refugees, asylum seekers, and international students, can take advantage of lower interest rates compared to MPOWER's undergraduate loans. However, there's still an origination fee, and international students will pay higher rates. Once again, you can only borrow up to $50,000 per academic term, but you can apply for multiple terms at the same time and qualify for up to $100,000 in total loans.
|Terms for Graduate Loans|
|Loan Terms||10 years|
Refinance Student Loans
If you've already graduated, you can refinance existing student loans with an MPOWER refinance loan, and that includes loans obtained in other countries. There's a lower origination fee compared to in-school loans, and the interest rate doesn't change for international borrowers.
|Terms for Refinance Loans|
|Loan Terms||10 years|
Loan Eligibility and Approval
Unlike many private student loan companies, MPOWER Financing doesn't require a credit score or history to approve your application. If you have a credit file in the U.S., Canada, or your home country, the lender will review it, but only to evaluate your payment history—your credit score won't be factored into MPOWER's decision.
With that said, MPOWER Financing loans are available to students at select schools in the U.S. (all 50 states and D.C.) and Canada. If you're not attending an eligible school, you'll need to find another lender. Check MPOWER’s list of supported schools to see if you're eligible.
Other eligibility requirements and limitations include:
- You can get approved if you're a U.S. citizen, permanent resident, DACA recipient, asylum seeker, refugee, or visa holder.
- You must be a student—parent loans aren't available.
- You'll need to maintain half-time enrollment at an eligible school.
- You must be the age of majority in your state of residence.
- You need to be in your last two years of school or just starting a one- or two-year program.
- MPOWER's in-school loans are not available for Canadian residents studying in Canada. Additionally, Canadian citizens and permanent residents are not eligible for the lender's refinance loans.
Are Co-Signers Required?
MPOWER Financing does not require a co-signer to get approved for a loan.
While co-signers aren't required, students with a creditworthy co-signer could get better terms with a different lender.
Is Loan Pre-Qualification Available?
MPOWER does offer loan pre-qualification, but not in the same way other private lenders do. Instead of a short pre-qualification application, MPOWER requires you to fill out a full application. If you're pre-qualified based on the information you provide, then the lender will run a credit check in the U.S. or Canada and your home country, if applicable.
Length of Time for Loan Approval and Disbursement
For in-school loans, it takes roughly 30 minutes to fill out the application. After that, the timeline can vary depending on the student. The lender disburses funds directly to your school.
For refinance loans, it takes less than 30 minutes to complete your application. After reviewing it, MPOWER will send you an email with the next steps within two or three business days. At that point, you'll undergo a credit check, provide the necessary documentation, watch an introductory video, and complete a short assessment.
Once you've completed that step, MPOWER will take another five to seven business days to perform a final review. After you're approved and agree to the terms, there's a four-day rescission period, and then it usually takes three to five business days to pay off your existing loans.
Loan Fees and Repayment Options
MPOWER Financing charges an upfront 5% origination fee on in-school loans and 2% on refinance loans. Instead of deducting it from your loan proceeds, however, the lender adds it to your balance.
There's also a late fee of 4% of the unpaid amount or $5, whichever is less, and if you have a returned payment, the fee is $5.
MPOWER Financing offers three interest rate discounts, which can add up to 1.5% in total discounts:
- Autopay: You'll get a 0.50% discount if you set up automatic payments from a U.S. bank account.
- On-time payments: You can get a 0.50% discount once you've made six consecutive on-time payments through automatic withdrawals.
- Graduation: You'll get a 0.50% discount once you provide proof of graduation and full-time employment.
Refinance loans do not qualify for the graduation discount.
MPOWER Financing only offers one repayment option, aside from full interest-and-principal payments. For in-school loans, students must make interest-only payments while they're in school and during the six-month grace period after graduation. Once you enter full repayment, your term will be 10 years.
For refinance loans, full repayment begins immediately, and your only option is 10 years.
Loan Forbearance and Discharge Options
MPOWER Financing doesn't disclose specific forbearance options publicly but says it's willing to help borrowers who are struggling with their payments. Contact the lender to learn about your options.
The lender also doesn't provide details about whether it offers discharge if the borrower dies or becomes permanently disabled.
Is Student Loan Refinancing Available?
As mentioned above, MPOWER Financing offers refinance loans for U.S.-based and international student loans, up to $100,00.
Loans are originated by MPOWER or its partner Bank of Lake Mills. If you have questions about MPOWER Financing, you can submit your information online and request an email response or phone call. Alternatively, you can call (202) 417-3800. The lender doesn't disclose its operating hours, however.
The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau did not receive complaints about MPOWER Financing in 2021. It has an average rating of 4.6 out of 5 stars over more than 1,000 customer reviews on Trustpilot.
Applying for an MPOWER Financing Student Loan
If you are a U.S. citizen or permanent resident, start by filling out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) to exhaust all federal and other forms of financial aid before you apply for a private student loan.
If you’re an international student or DACA student and ineligible for federal aid, consider shopping around and comparing multiple loan options before submitting an application.
To apply at MPOWER, you'll provide the following details:
- List of school expenses
- Resume or CV (for graduate students)
- Standardized test scores (for graduate students)
- English proficiency exam scores
- College admissions letter
- Past transcripts or diploma
- Secondary photo ID (from your home country)
- Supporting evidence of funds (such as bank statements or pay stubs)
- References (such as family or friends)
Once all of your information is submitted, MPOWER Financing will review your application. If approved, the lender may run a credit check in the U.S. or your home country. Then, it will conduct a final review and work with your school to certify the loan.
|Loan Types Offered||Undergraduate; graduate||Undergraduate; graduate; parent; medical||Undergraduate; graduate; parent; professional|
|Undergraduate Fixed APR||10.91% or 14.98% (before discounts)||4.79%–13.03%||5.49%–14.99%|
|Undergraduate Variable APR||N/A||4.79%–11.69%||5.87%–15.12%|
|Origination/Administrative Fee||5% for school loans; 2% for refinances||None||None|
|Repayment Options||Interest-only; full payment||Deferment; fixed; interest-only; full payment||Deferment; fixed; interest-only; full payment|
MPOWER Financing offers international students and U.S. citizens an easy way to get financing without needing a co-signer. However, the lender's interest rates are high relative to other private lenders, and if you have a creditworthy co-signer or you can get approved for federal student loans, consider those options first.
MPOWER won’t be for everyone. See our picks for the best student loans overall for the top lenders on the market, or the best international student loans for more specialized lenders.
Investopedia is dedicated to providing consumers with unbiased, comprehensive reviews of student loan lenders. We collected thousands of data points across 30 lenders—including loan types, interest rates, fees, loan amounts, and repayment terms—to ensure that we help readers make the right borrowing decision for their education needs.
MPOWER Financing. "Funds to Achieve Your Study Abroad Dreams."
MPOWER Financing. "How Can I Qualify for Interest Rate Discounts?"
MPOWER Financing. "Loan Repayment Examples."
MPOWER Financing. "What Is the Repayment Term?"
MPOWER Financing. "Credit Requirement General Information."
MPOWER Financing. "Refinance Your Student Loan with MPOWER."
MPOWER Financing. "What Is the Origination Fee to Refinance My Loan?"
MPOWER Financing. "What Is the Origination Fee?"
MPOWER Financing. "Schools We Support."
MPOWER Financing. "How Much Can I Borrow?"
MPOWER Financing. "How Long Does it Take to Get a Loan with MPOWER?"
MPOWER Financing Support Center. "What Is the Application Process?"
MPOWER Financing Support Center. "When Will My Refinance Loan be Disbursed?"
MPOWER Financing Support Center. "What Can I Do If I Won't be Able to Afford the Full Monthly Payment Amount?"
MPOWER Financing. "MPOWER Financing Extends Student Loan Program to All 50 States Through Partnership with Bank of Lake Mills."
Trustpilot. "MPOWER Financing."
MPOWER Financing. "International Undergraduate Student Documents."
MPOWER Financing. "Domestic Undergraduate Student Documents."