If you need to borrow to finance your education, federal student loans should be first on your menu. Congress and the U.S. Department of Education regulate federal student loans, setting maximum interest rates, borrowing limits, and other important loan terms. These loans come in loads of different flavors. Here’s a taste of what you might borrow:

Perkins Loans are for borrowers demonstrating “exceptional financial need” and can be used for undergraduate, graduate, or professional school. These loans are made through schools’ financial aid offices, and schools get help with funding from the government. Perkins Loans are delicious if you can get them, because they have no fees and low interest rates.

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