With Fynanz exiting the US student loan market earlier this month there’s still room in the student loan market for a peer to peer player.
Lending Club requires a swift three-year repayment, and the interest is higher than some commercially-available student loans. Some students may want to turn to Greennote as a funding option. Greennote.com has a fixed interest rate of 6.8% and doesn’t require citizenship or a co-signer. (Prospective investors, take note.) Greennote is backed by Menlo Ventures and is based in Redwood City, CA. They launched in June 2008.
Another alternative for students is a mico-grant program found at CollegeDegreeFund.com. Students establish a profile and companies and individuals can provide a sponsorship of any amount towards his or her needs. Funders can contribute as little as $1.00. This is not an investment program, but a micro-grant program of essentially free money for college students. I’ve sent an e-mail off to the managing partners to see how many sponsorships have been funded so far as they reach the one-year mark of operation and I will update here when I hear back from them.