DRB has changed its name to Laurel Road. To read our most recent, updated review of DRB/Laurel Road, please visit our Laurel Road Review page.
Darien Rowayton Bank, or DRB, is a full-service bank which provides lending services as well as traditional banking services, such as free checking accounts, savings and CD accounts, and business banking options. While DRB initially only refinanced loans of professional students, they have now expanded their offerings to back undergraduate and Parent PLUS loan holders. For loans and refinancing, they boast a low-interest rate, no fees on loans, more loan repayment options, and unemployment assistance. DRB is headquartered in Connecticut. Although physical locations of the bank are in CT, they offer consolidation and refinancing of loans for students who live anywhere in the United States. There loans require students to have at least $5,000 in outstanding loans.
Highlights of DRB Refinancing
Darien Rowayton Bank offers appealing refinance options to early career professional who have a demonstrated history of strong credit scores, and who are currently employed. These loans are appealing to many students because of the low interest rates and the wide variety of options to repay the loans. The loan terms can be spread out somewhere between 5 and 20 years. Thus, early career professionals who have high earning jobs can opt for a shorter repayment plan if they would like to reduce their loan amount early in their career. Other early career professionals who are completing a residency, internship, additional job training, or for other financial reasons wish to have smaller payments, can opt to spread their loan payments over twenty years. The company does not penalize borrowers if they wish to pay off their loan early.
Who is Eligible for DRB Refinancing?
- U.S. citizens
- Permanent residents of the United States (must have an I-551 card)
- Those who have at least $5,000 of college loans outstanding (can be either private or federal)
- Students who have graduated from one of the following professional programs: MBA, Healthcare, Law, Dental, Computer Science, Engineering, or other graduate degrees
- Students who hold a B.A. or B.S. degree
- Parents who have taken out a Parent Plus loan or other loans to help fund their child’s education
What Does DRB Offer?
DRB offers a number of different repayment options. These include 5, 7, 10, 15, and 20 year repayment terms. Students who opt to make automatic payments using a DRB checking account are eligible for a 0.25% reduction in their rate. The company also offers borrowers the option to choose a fixed rate or variable rate APR. Below are the current interest rates for DRB student loans. Please note that the DRB checking account discount of 0.25% is already included in the below rates:
- 20-year interest rate is between 5.15%-6.99% for fixed ARP and 4.10%-6.42% for variable APR
- 15-year interest rate is between 4.90%-6.99% for fixed ARP and 3.97%-6.17% for a variable APR
- 10-year interest rate is currently 4.50%-6.75% for a fixed APR and between 3.87%-5.82% for a variable APR
- 7-year interest rate is between 4.05%-6.49% for a fixed APR and between 3.12%-5.62% for a variable APR
- A 5-year interest rate is between 3.95%-5.90% for a fixed rate APR and is between 2.99%-5.42% for a variable interest rate
All loans are fee-free, thus there are no fees at the time of loan origination or any type of penalty for paying the loan of early. Furthermore, the company offers loan forgiveness in the event of the borrower’s death or permanent disability. The amount of the loan varies and may cover up to the full amount of remaining federal and private loans.
What are the Benefits?
Darien Rowayton Bank offers students low-interest and fee-free refinancing options. In addition, they combine federal and private loans into one mega-loan, which can help borrowers save money. While the bank has historically only offers loans to working professionals who hold doctorate or professional degrees (i.e., dentists, lawyers, doctors, etc.), they now offer refinancing options to undergraduate students or to parents of college students who borrowed money to fund their child’s education. Additionally, since DRB does not rely on third party servicers, students are aware of who is managing their loan. This personal service adds peace of mind and helps students know who to contact if they have questions about their loans. DRB also offers very low rates, starting from just 1.90%. This low interest rate is especially appealing to students who plan to target paying off their loan soon after they start their career, as the lowest rates are variable. Students are permitted to have cosigners, but it is not required. Additionally, DRB provides $200 for students who refer friends or family to their bank.
What Do I Need to Apply?
DRB touts a quick application processing time and indicates that it will quickly determine an applicant’s eligibility. The application process begins with students filling out a pre-qualification form that can be found online. This form allows the bank to conduct a credit check which will instantly tell borrowers if they are eligible for refinancing their loans through DRB. If they are indeed eligible, the second step is to upload all required document. The documents which all applicants must upload include: proof of graduation, two recent pay stubs, photo ID such as a driver’s license or passport, and proof of remaining amount of outstanding loans from previous loan statements. Additionally, students in the healthcare field must show proof of malpractice and license insurance. After these documents are submitted, the bank will review applicant’s materials to determine rates and final decisions. Applicants will then be contacted and made aware of a final decision, rates, terms, and other options. If the rate and terms are acceptable to the student, the last step in the process is to sign a promissory note. After that, DRB will send payment to the student’s current loan manager. At that time, students will want to open a DRB checking account so that they can receive the 0.25% discount on their interest rate.