The listings featured on this site are from companies from which this site receives compensation. This influences where, how and in what order such listings appear on this site.
BestMoney.com
PenFed Review
Reviews 1,175
PenFed
Visit Site
PenFed
PenFed
Excellent
Reviews 1,175
Alex Mcomie
Dec. 25, 2022
2 min read
Alex McOmie
PenFed summary
PenFed is one of the largest credit unions in the United States. It offers competitive student loans and student loan refinancing options for students, parents, and spouses through a partnership with Sallie Mae. With no prepayment fees, a variety of loan options, and a convenient online application, it’s one of the top lenders to consider in 2020.
Pros
  • No prepayment fees
  • Possibility to consolidate partner’s loan through spouse loans
Cons
  • May require a strong credit history
  • Not a direct lender

PenFed at a glance

4.2
Editorial score

Online experience

Has learning resources, access to rates, mobile app
5.0

Customer services and support

Multiple ways of reaching lender, wide range of hours
4.0

Repayment flexibility

Offers multiple repayment plans- but no special repayment programs
4.0

Loan Types Covered

Covers most student loan types
4.0

Eligibility

Doesn't cover bad credit, low income borrowers
4.0

PenFed  PenFed View Rates

Suitable For?

Whether you’re looking for a new student loan, a parent loan, or refinancing on an existing loan, PenFed provides affordable rates and an easy online application. It also allows partners to consolidate their own separate loans into a combined spouse loan with one easy payment.

Loan Features

PenFed offers a number of loan types through a partnership with Sallie Mae. Along with loans for parents and undergraduate students, they also provide targeted loans for graduate students attending business school, medical school, dental school, law school, and more. Many loans come with four free months of Chegg study, which includes solutions to textbook questions and 24/7 professional availability.

The Application Process

When you select a PenFed loan, you’ll be redirected to the Sallie Mae website to complete their online application. After choosing a loan type, the form will ask for some basic information including your status (student/cosigner/sponsor), the school you’re attending. From there, it will provide details about the available loans and ask if you want to continue.

All things considered, the application process is relatively seamless, and you’ll be able to receive a result in as little as 15 minutes. Remember that Sallie Mae is the creditor for PenFed student loans—you’ll be applying to, getting money from, and making payments to Sallie Mae rather than PenFed.

It's important to note, that while PenFed is a credit union, you do not need to be a member in order to apply. If you choose to accept the loan you will become a member for free. 

Loan Terms

PenFed offers a variety of loans together with Sallie Mae, and your loan may have different terms depending on what you’re looking for. That said, most new loans have flexible maximums, allowing borrowers to take out anywhere from $1,000 up to the full cost of attendance as certified by their institution.

Repayment Terms

The specific terms of your loan will depend on a number of factors including your credit and the type of loan you’re applying for. For refinancing loans, fixed rates range from 7.74% - 9.93%.

Furthermore, there are no prepayment fees, so you’ll have the opportunity to pay off the loan more quickly in order to save money on interest. Most loans run from between five and fifteen years, but again you can always pay it off more quickly if you have extra cash on hand.

Sallie Mae also offers deferments for up to 60 months for undergraduate loans and 48 months for most graduate student loans. Keep in mind that interest will continue to accumulate throughout the deferment, which could lead to greater total interest payments.

How Safe Is It? 

As mentioned earlier, PenFed offers student loans through a partnership with Sallie Mae, which is one of the largest and most well-known student loan providers in the United States. While Sallie Mae is a private lender, it’s still a safe option if you’re looking to borrow money.

Similarly, PenFed itself is one of the largest credit unions in the United States, and it has a strong reputation that dates back to the 1930s. Make sure to enable two-factor authentication on your account in order to keep your information as safe as possible. The platform’s secure messaging options will also enable you to contact support without putting any sensitive data at risk.

Help & Support

PenFed offers an informative set of 29 FAQ articles covering common questions about their services. There are also several ways to contact their team directly for additional assistance—you can call, fax, send an online message, or securely upload a support request. 

Phone support is available in the United States from 7 AM to 11 PM Eastern on weekdays, 8 AM to 11 PM on Saturdays, and 9 AM to 5:30 PM on Sundays. Their contact phone numbers are 724-473-6333 and 1-800-247-5626.

Summary

PenFed has everything most borrowers are looking for in a student loan provider: competitive rates, a reliable lending history, numerous loan and refinancing options, and an easy online application process. Whether you’re looking for a student loan, parent loan, spouse loan, or refinancing, PenFed is a good place to start—particularly if you have a strong credit history.

Physical Address

2930 Eisenhower Avenue

Alexandria, VA 22314

13220 Fort Street

PenFed  PenFed View Rates

Alex McOmie
Written by
Alex Mcomie
Alex serves as the Managing Editor for Money Done Right and covers personal finance topics for Eleven Writing. He’s particularly interested in the way seemingly small adjustments can transform a person’s financial outlook. He writes for BestMoney and enjoys helping readers make sense of the options on the market.‎
Top 5 Student Loans Refinance
Credible
Credible
Read Review|Visit Site
Read all reviews
Must Reads
Read all articles
Trustpilot reviews
See what some costumers are saying about PenFed
PenFed
Excellent
Reviews 1,175
on
Excellent
84%
Great
5%
Average
1%
Poor
1%
Bad
9%
consumer-image
gonzalo marquez
15 hours ago
Fue muy rápido aplicar
Fue muy rápido aplicar, me aprobaron rápido lo que me habían ofertado en la tarjeta de crédito.
consumer-image
tez
12 hours ago
I received a pre-screened offer for…
I received a pre-screened offer for PenFed Gold visa card that was supposed to give $100 bonus statement credit for spending $1,500 in first 90 days. I spent over $3k in first month to fulfill the requirement. I've had 2 call several times over the past several months & PenFed has yet to meet their obligation. I strongly recommend avoiding doing business w/ PenFed bcuz they don't honor their offers/ promotions & provide poor service. There are much better credit unions that provide quality services.
consumer-image
skyfall
19 hours ago
Promptness and Professionalism....
Promptness and Professionalism....
C
charles
a day ago
I recently applied for a credit card…
I recently applied for a credit card with PenFed and was shocked to find out that they required a letter from my employer to verify my annual salary. This was extremely insulting and I believe it was due to racism. I make a good salary and I am appalled that PenFed would not take my word for it. I have never had to provide such a letter for any other credit card company and I feel that PenFed is discriminating against me based on my race. I will not be using PenFed for any of my credit card needs and I would not recommend them to anyone.
S
superman
2 days ago
Excellent services and offers!!
Excellent services and offers!!
J
jeballc
3 days ago
Excellent organization
Excellent organization. Several family members have urged me to join for years. I’m not sure why I waited so long. However, I’m glad that I finally did! (You should too!) No - this is not a paid review.
consumer-image
artis johnson
3 days ago
Excellent Customer Service and Support…
Excellent Customer Service and Support easy to use App
consumer-image
craig hoberman
6 days ago
Penfeld is great
Helping customers get the most benefits they need
C
connie judd
6 days ago
PenFed application online was a normal…
PenFed application online was a normal application. The website gave enough detail that made it very easy for me to decide and follow through with the application. The rates are fairly good for this time in life. But when I was in need of confirmation that I did everything correctly online, I called and had a pleasant conversation with a nice man who walked through the whole online application. That one on one interaction is key to a successful business in my book of knowledge. I look forward to years of incredible service from PenFed Credit Union
consumer-image
hipolito vazquez
7 days ago
They make everithing easy
They make everithing easy
R
raymond irizarry
7 days ago
A giant when it comes to credit unions
A giant when it comes to credit unions, great products, great service and incredible rates!
J
j nicholson
7 days ago
PenFed is an amazing organization
PenFed is an amazing organization. Ease of applying and rapid approval to deserving people. Online registration is flawless too. So happy I joined!
consumer-image
jo turner
7 days ago
The ease of the experience
The ease of my experience
A
alisa
8 days ago
Credit Easy
PenFed is GREAT to Consumers and Easy Application Process
consumer-image
glenette bruce
8 days ago
Willing to work with you
it was fast and easy the rate could be better it said 7.4% but no
J
james p faranda
10 days ago
Good customer service from a real person
The person I called was prompt and courteous in helping me finalize my credit card application. I believe it was about 1/23/23 but I am not exactly sure of the date.
A
aa
10 days ago
I was not able to finish my credit card…
I was not able to finish my credit card application because it would shutdown, cancel, or reload the page when I click "submit". Also, the same kind of thing happens when I try to connect my account to other bank/credit union accounts. So still not able to connect them.
C
clement williams
10 days ago
Faster application process.
Faster application process.
consumer-image
scott whitmore
11 days ago
Without A Doubt, That Best Rates Anywhere!
This is the best Credit Union so far! Their rates, offers, products. All go above & beyond any other financial institution!
E
eric
11 days ago
Awesome company and great customer…
Awesome company and great customer service.
M
mabel sanchez
12 days ago
It was good and fast
It was good and fast
C
c f b
12 days ago
PenFed great services
User friendly and easy access with navigating online. Quick response.
consumer-image
frank afenkhena
13 days ago
Smooth and easy
Smooth and easy
consumer-image
omar oliver
13 days ago
Excelente servicio
Excelente servicio
P
pama lyons
13 days ago
PenFed is a very good company and they are great to deal with.
PenFed is a very good company and they were there for me when I needed financial help with a loan. I have no complaints. I highly recommend PenFed to anyone who will listen.
consumer-image
edgar aviles
13 days ago
GREAT RATES AND SERVICE
GREAT RATES AND SERVICE
C
carolyn reynolds
14 days ago
This company is exceptional
This company is exceptional. From the products they offer to their customer service. I have been with them a little over a year now and I have no complaints whatsoever. They have come through for me in clutch moments and I appreciate the extra mile they go to assist their customers. PenFed is great!!!
C
chey dj
17 days ago
Hustle free when applying for a loan
Hustle free when applying for a loan, people were great and very helpful. I'll give you guys 👍👍👍👍👍🙂
P
pastor tantay
19 days ago
They're good on their promises
They're good on their promises
R
robert soto
19 days ago
I'm extremely satisfied with the fast…
I'm extremely satisfied with the fast approval and easy process.
A
amanda mcbride
19 days ago
Great service
Great service great customer service. Fast and easy application
A
alan meyers
20 days ago
Helped me out with what I needed
Helped me out with what I needed
B
brodz
20 days ago
PenFed is a excellent way to manage your money
PenFed gives me better interest rates, better products like saving account that generates interest by month. PenFed make me feel more confident with my accounts, overall PenFed is a great, exellent and secure way to manage your money.
N
natalie
20 days ago
I have excellent credit …
I have excellent credit 766 and they gave me a $1500 credit limit as if I'm a teenager and tell me it's going to take 5 weeks to get the card with the little limit. They have an offer to spend 1500 in the 1st 3 months and receive 15000 points, seriously I only have a $1500 credit line lol smh. I wouldn't recommend, they say you get approved with good/excellent credit so if I only had good credit what would be my limit $100. Lol again smh
12587
20 days ago
I couldn't be happier with the loan's I received.
I couldn't be happier with the experience. One of the best lenders that I've ever dealt with.
R
rosa mendoza
22 days ago
Easy to apply online and response was…
Easy to apply online and response was very quickly
J
john
22 days ago
PenFed is the best credit union in…
PenFed is the best credit union in America.
D
david batista
22 days ago
It's a good company.
It's a good company.
R
ronald wright
22 days ago
Trust and honesty
Great customer service---------precise application process----------quick response.
B
budai
23 days ago
Very fast and efficient
Very fast and efficient, hassle free process.
R
renee
23 days ago
The application process was very quick…
The application process was very quick and easy to use online. I've had very good experiences with PenFed and appreciate their support.
A
angel torres
24 days ago
Very professional
Very professional, friendly. Vest offers rates found.
m
maurice jamison
24 days ago
Easy application
Very easy to use processing can be slow but resolve quickly
E
emmanuel christopher ashong
24 days ago
Everything thing about this bank is…
Everything thing about this bank is absolutely amazing, the seamless transaction and application processes makes it a win experience and one wants to keep coming even if just to say hello!
consumer-image
eddie baltrip
24 days ago
I love being a member of Pen Fed
I love being a member of Pen Fed
R
roger brown
25 days ago
The nicest people!
I had to call PenFed due to being unable to pull up their email. Again, I talking to the nicest and most helpful member of their staff and the problem was solved. They are the nicest people with which to deal and offer competitive rates, fees and services. I which others could learn by their example how to keep customers!
M
mai
a month ago
Service members are greatly appreciated
Service members are greatly appreciated
S
sean l helms
a month ago
Ease of application
Ease of application. Fast response.
D
danny tran
a month ago
Good service
Helpful and great service
A
arturo sandoval
a month ago
grate card
I needed the credit to open new accts.
M
marc
a month ago
I JOINED BECAUSE THEY ARE A CREDIT…
I JOINED BECAUSE THEY ARE A CREDIT UNION. CREDIT UNIONS OFFER LOWER RATES AND BETTER DEALS FOR THEIR CUSTOMERS.
J
jamaal wilkins
a month ago
Great service
Great service never knew they exist
p
pardeep saini
a month ago
Customer service
Customer service
M
mike dawson
a month ago
Wow Zero annual fees
Handled promptly pleasant customer service.
consumer-image
robert bird
a month ago
no title
Easy Application Process
A
adrian ray
a month ago
Leigh
Smooth approval process
consumer-image
jamie petrone
a month ago
good deal
Company was very easy to deal with, low insterest rate what more can anyone want
consumer-image
alice j. english
a month ago
Time and effort efficient and great…
Time and effort efficient and great opening perks.
E
ethel
a month ago
Great Experience!
The loan process was quick and easy and the interest rate is very competitive!
B
barbara engen
a month ago
Online application was fast and…
Online application was fast and accurate.
K
kathleen s carrigan
a month ago
PenFed is exceptional in consistent…
PenFed is exceptional in consistent efficient customer service. I recommend highly even if not a veteran
R
rip d rebel
a month ago
The credit card application process was…
The credit card application process was quick and easy. Once I provided all of my information and documentation I was able to get an approval in minutes.
N
nestor sanchez
a month ago
La oportunidad de poder tener un buen…
La oportunidad de poder tener un buen crédito y también la amabilidad y la forma que te explican todo.
consumer-image
scott pianalto
2 months ago
I work on a navy base in Naples Italy
I work on a navy base in Naples Italy. I have been banking withe penfed since 1989. Penfed is failing me. I can't use my credit cards in Italy, merchants constantly denied. I can't do a wire to pay my rent, as they can't call international on my Italian phone. I tried to buy penfed CD and took me two hours on the phone to get it through the system since I have an Italian address. Stay away.
consumer-image
willy ward
2 months ago
easy to apply and rates are competitive
easy to apply and rates are competitive
K
kenneth
2 months ago
ACH Transfers originating at Penfed are limited to just one bank. You can't set up more than one bank.
ACHS transfers originating from your Penfed accounts are limited by Penfed to one banking institution. Penfed pays a low interest rate of 2% on the Premiere Savings Account. Sofi Bank pays 3.5% on their savings account. If you do in house transfers at Penfed, say from Premiere Savings to Access America Checking and and then transfer funds from Access America back to Premiere Savings, Penfed puts a 5 business day hold on your funds that are tranferred into Premiere Savings. In short funds moved electronically within Penfed that never leave the bank are held for 5 days. Customer service representatives go way above questioning when you call in for assistance. Most reps work from home and I doubt the safety and security of my data is maintained for home workers.
J
joshua moran
2 months ago
Always knowledgeable and helpful!
Always knowledgeable and helpful!
W
william frederick
2 months ago
Best Ever
PENFED is by far the easiest financial institution I have ever dealt with. If they had a branch that was closer to my location all my accounts would be with PENFED
consumer-image
mark brown
2 months ago
Day process
The application process was extremely easy!
M
mel kling
2 months ago
A true pleasure!
Easy access. Professional company. Competitive rates. Overall a great experience
D
donna (dee) hall
2 months ago
All was self explained I enjoyed that
All was self explained I enjoyed that. all of this was very clear.
M
mark crnarich
2 months ago
Hackers paradise & Quicken
We have many accounts across many financial institutions. PenFed is the only one that blocks Quicken Direct connect. They claim security flaws. PenFed is also the only account where our credit card is subject to frequent fraudulent charges. We have to get new credit cards from them at least once a year. I wonder if the two are related.
consumer-image
herman peoples
2 months ago
PenFed is a wonderful Credit Union and…
PenFed is a wonderful Credit Union and I like their products but most of all is the Professional Service that’s offered all the time
N
noel matos
2 months ago
Personal Loan
Easy Process and quick service
J
julie rice
2 months ago
Outstanding Service with PenFed Credit Union
If you have never worked with PenFed before, I highly recommend them. They make everything so easy, and if you run into trouble, they have excellent customer care. My hat's off to PenFed!
M
martha t.
2 months ago
BEST in every banking category - use PenFed!
I have moved all my banking to PenFed from USAA because they out-perform in all categories of savings and CD rates, credit card perks, and best mortgage. PenFed's website if the most user-friendly, making it so easy to mange my various banking functions. Most knowledgeable and pleasant customer service anytime I call!
D
denver mullins
2 months ago
Fastest service and approval for…
Fastest service and approval for personal loan. Would recommend.
S
sal monastero
2 months ago
Great experience every time I have…
Great experience every time I have contact with them.
B
brian oleary
2 months ago
Need
Thanks for any link u could send for auto pay.i downloaded the pen fed app did not take my password or username. any help appreciated
r
ricardo martinez
2 months ago
Helpful through all the process of my credit
Helpful through all the process of my credit application with positive results !
consumer-image
willie guyton
2 months ago
The timely matter in which my…
The timely matter in which my application was handled
consumer-image
jorge urquizo torquemada
2 months ago
Pen Fed Credit Union application…was very easy
Pen Fed Credit Union application precess make me feel a valuable costumer, thanks Pen FedCU.
consumer-image
james anthony
3 months ago
easy to fill out!excellent survey!
easy to fill out!
M
michael
3 months ago
Quicken online has been blocked
For many years all were good, till an year ago PenFed has started blocking Quicken online access to download transactions. It was on and off, but from September it's permanent issues. I wasn't able to use Quicken to download any transactions from Penfed CU. This is critical feature for me to track in Quicken all my transactions across all financial institutions.
D
daniel r
3 months ago
PenFed is a great choice!!
PenFed is honest and has the best interest of their customers at heart. I have only good things to say about this company and the fine people who run it.
J
jose
3 months ago
The security on personal information…
The security on personal information and making sure that I was the one applying for the credit card
M
marco a. chacon
3 months ago
Fast service
Fast service
R
ruvic ann lopez
3 months ago
Best credit union
Best credit union
M
matt
3 months ago
Now Blocking Aggregation Services
Starting in Jul 2022, Penfed started blocking aggregation, false claiming there is a security issue but not actually working with a major aggregation service (personal capital) to resolve any legitimate concern. When I called, PenFed customer service just said there was nothing that could be done and didn't care how long I had been with them and how much money I have with them (not a small amount--I was using them to manage my household expenses. Closing my accounts and taking my business elsewhere.
consumer-image
john tomarchio
3 months ago
Fed up! with PenFed.
PenFed has been worse to deal with than the Federal Government. All impersonal communication and phone robotics. All "sir" and no service. They have been running me around for a month about my application to remove PMI from my mortgage, and now I get an anonymous letter, with no contact info. for that "division", telling me that I never qualified in the first place because of a 5 year "seasoning" requirement. I've been on the phone dozens of times with a dozen reps for over a month, I have exchanged a dozen emails with a case manager (with no telephone contact for her), I have sent a professionally prepared property valuation, and it was all a waste of time from the start! Hours and hours of preparation and frustration for nothing! PenFed made me pre-pay by phone (big phone ordeal!) for an appraiser of their choosing--a company with a one-start customer rating and a dead-end web address--and their feckless appraiser neglected to include a comparable sale 3 months ago on my own street in my own housing development. Instead, he reached back 12 months to a low sale that was part of a estate liquidation, for one of only 4 comparables, and he put a value on my house $30,000 less than the real estate's estimate based on 14 comparables in the last six months. Talk about incomptence, talk about negligence. But it doesn't stop with the appraiser. I sent the real estate agent's report to my Pen Fed case manager, and she has kept me waiting a week on the "form" to "process" my challenge of the appraisal. "Process" is all I get, and now an anonymous letter I just called to complain to Pen Fed Customer Service, and they gave me a 3-day window for a supervisor call-back! It's all robotics: the computer doesn't let me; I have no access; wrong department; the process requires a form; you can't call them, I can't call them, they have to call you--within a week. Worse than the Federal government. It's even in the name, PenFed. Well, I am: fed up
J
james chance
3 months ago
Penfed has given me everything I asked for!
Penfed has given me everything I asked for, with a fare cost. I was in business for a long time and my succes came from caring more about my people than I did my wallet. Sense I retired I've had customers come to my door wanting me to help them, because they trust me. Caring about the people that put food on the table is always more important than your needs.
N
nancy van
3 months ago
The positive reviews on here are true
The positive reviews on here are true! Penfed really does offer competitive rates and they are nonsense free. They are transparent and competitive. The best part is their customer service. Every representative has been patient, helpful and kind. They have spent time explaining my statements to me when I've had questions. I would say their customer service is comparable with Discover.
w
walter marhelski
3 months ago
The application was very easy
The application was very easy, and I had in answer in less than 24 hours. The interest rates are very good also.
S
steeven sunderraj
3 months ago
the wallet amount refund not now happiness is not fetch
Not fetch my amount
M
mark
3 months ago
Customer Service
On line excess and very forward on documents
j
janice avant-gaffney
3 months ago
The application process is seamless.
The application process is seamless.
J
jared
3 months ago
Untrustworthy
I will preface this with the fact I went through a learning curve with this institution, as other banks I refinanced a vehicle with did most of the work, requesting title transfers from the other bank, etc. With them you do most of the legwork, or you pay an insane APR, which they tried to do, causing my payment to increase almost 50%. They straight up lied to me about my direct payment for their GAP policy, and raised my monthly rate from 517 to 539, which at 62 months, more than doubles the cost of the policy itself. After I had proof of payment on my end (which they have to had seen on theirs), they acknowledged the payment, but then tried to sneak back in that $22 monthly increase. They sound less like a CU and more like a penny thieving institution that banks on you messing up the process, so they have an excuse to jack up your payment and keep the money.
J
josé diaz
3 months ago
very good card
very good card
consumer-image
maria roof
3 months ago
Online transactions quick and efficient
Many account transactions can be completed online quickly and efficiently. I've been a member for many years and have been 100% impressive with their customer service and competitive rates.
J
jonathan nave
3 months ago
A well balanced institution!
This company invest in good people and treated me better than family.