Deciding on a coding bootcamp that will propel you into a new career is a huge decision on its own; figuring out how to pay for a bootcamp adds another layer to the search. Programming schools cost around $13,584 on average, and while scholarships may help ease the burden, you may need to borrow money to fund your education. In our latest research, we found that 23% of bootcampers are using external loans to cover tuition (that's up from 16% in 2017). We’ve compiled a handy infographic comparing coding bootcamp loan and financing platforms- and a list of questions to ask yourself- as you navigate your options.
OPTIONS TO PAY FOR A BOOTCAMP:
Does your dream school have a direct partnership with a lending platform?
Don't be afraid to ask about lending partnerships when talking to an admissions team. Nearly all coding bootcamps have some kind of relationship with at least one lender. These relationships mean less communication breakdowns, and more work done to ensure that loans are fair and flexible.
Is it important that the lending partner works with international students?
For international students, there are some limits because many of the lenders do not offer loans to non-US citizens. Luckily, both Quotanda and Earnest have no restrictions for international students, although Earnest is only available in certain states in the US.
How long will it take you to pay back your loan?
Think about how long it will take you to pay back your loan once you're employed after graduation. Set a goal for your starting salary and pay attention to terms and interest rates when making your decision. Need a refresher on APR, or Annual Percentage Rate? Here's a quick guide. In terms of interest rates, Earnest offers the lowest starting APR at 3.5% and Climb Credit is close behind at 5%. Most of the other lenders sit somewhere between 5-6%.
Remember that you will likely not be able to start paying your load back until after you graduate. In some cases, a lending partner may offer an interest-only loan. For example, Skills Fund and Bloc have partnered to pilot the first interest-only payment options for a part-time, online bootcamp program. That means students are able to make interest-only payments while in school and for three months after. Three months after graduating, students begin making full payments (tuition + interest).
For more information, check out our Live Panel Webinar on How to Pay for a Coding Bootcamp, featuring Shannon Burns of Hackbright Academy and Zander Rafael of Climb Credit. You can watch the video below or read the full transcript here. Here's what we cover:
Every bootcamp student has unique financial needs, and planning ahead will pay off!
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