Frequently Asked Questions

Q: What phone number should I use to reach TERI?

(800) 837-4FAO. Our Priority Service team is available to help you Monday through Thursday, from 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m., ET and on Friday from 8:00 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. ET.

Q: Can I use the Internet to get student or school-specific information?

Yes, you can get instant access to school reports covering all TERI guaranteed loan programs, certification of TERI loans, and disbursement options. Go to Online School Services to get started.

Q: How quickly are loan funds disbursed?

With TERI’s downloadable credit agreement and fax-back option, disbursement can be made in as few as 5 business days. As soon as an applicant is conditionally approved, a credit agreement is available online for completion. We also notify you electronically of your student’s preliminary approval and ask you to certify information about the student’s enrollment. Once we receive the completed paperwork from you and the applicant, disbursement will follow.

Q. Can a student pay off his/her loan early?

Yes, a student can pay off a loan at any time, even if still enrolled in school. There is no prepayment penalty.

Q. Can a foreign student attending a U.S. school apply for a TERI loan?

Yes. To qualify, the student must apply with a credit-worthy co-signer who is a U.S. citizen or a permanent resident and who meets TERI’s other credit criteria.

Q. Does a student need to know what school s/he is attending to apply for a TERI loan?

Yes, specific school information is an important and necessary part of the student’s application.

Q. Who is the primary borrower on a TERI guaranteed loan?

The student is the primary borrower on a TERI guaranteed loan even if there is a co-signer. This simply means that correspondence from the lender or servicer is sent to the primary borrower, unless the loan is delinquent, in which case correspondence is sent to both the primary borrwer and the co-signer. The exception is an elementary or secondary school loan in which case the parent is usually the primary borrower. In the case of all cosigned TERI loans, the primary borrower and the co-signers are jointly and severally liable for repayment of the loan.

Q. Will a student need a co-signer?

If a student is applying for a TERI guaranteed loan that requires a credit-worthy borrower, s/he must be credit-worthy or must apply with a credit-worthy co-signer (see definition of “credit-worthy” below). If the student is a graduate student or a health professions student, s/he may apply without a co-signer as a credit-ready borrower (see definition of “credit-ready” below).

Q. What does “Credit-worthy” mean for the purpose of TERI’s loan programs?

An applicant is “credit-worthy” if s/he:

  • Has a satisfactory credit, residence, and employment history of at least two years;
  • Has proof of current income (if self employed, has been in business for at least two years); and
  • Is a U.S. citizen or permanent resident who has resided in the U.S. for the previous two years.

Q. What does “Credit-ready” mean for the purpose of TERI’s loan programs?

Certain of TERI’s loan programs (for graduate students and health professions students) allow the student to qualify for a TERI guaranteed loan even if s/he does not meet all of the criteria of credit-worthiness. An applicant is “credit-ready” if s/he:

  • Satisfies certain credit criteria, although an established credit history is not required; and
  • Is a U.S. citizen or permanent resident who has had a stable residence in the U.S. for the past 2 years.

Q. Why would a student who could qualify as credit-ready apply for a loan with a credit-worthy co-signer?

TERI loans to credit-worthy applicants generally carry lower rates and fees than those made to credit-ready applicants. So, if a student is credit-worthy or can apply with a credit-worthy co-signer, the cost of his or her loan will be lower.

Q. What if our school is not listed on the TERI-approved school list?

You can contact our Priority Service team at (800) 837-4FAO and confirm the status of your institution. If your school is not approved, our dedicated Priority Service Representatives can provide detailed information about our school approval process.

Q. Why does a student need to know his or her enrollment status?

Enrollment status may affect the type of loan for which a student is eligible. The eligibility requirements for each type of TERI guaranteed loan can be found at Loan Programs.

Q. How much can a student borrow from TERI?

To find the borrowing limits for each loan program, click on Loan Programs.

Q. How can a student determine what their monthly payments will be and what their loan will cost them over the course of the repayment period?

The student can use our Monthly Payment Calculator to estimate their monthly payments and the total cost of their loan.

Q. What is TERI’s reconsideration policy for denied loans?

We have a one-time reconsideration request policy for denied loan applications. All reconsideration requests must be submitted in writing and include a detailed letter from the student. We will notify the student of our decision in writing approximately one week after reviewing the request.

If your question is not answered above, our Priority Service Representatives are available to assist you with any questions you may have. You can reach us at (800) 837-4FAO.