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Sallie Mae Q&A

How does the monthly payment plan work?

Each May, the parent/student needs to establish a budget for the fall and spring semester. This budget may encompass all or any portion of your out-of-pocket expense required to cover tuition, room, meal plans, Commodore Cash, and various other expenses. Estimated costs are mailed to the undergraduate's address each May, and figures may be obtained from our website.

 Why do I not have a zero balance on my student account since I am making monthly payments to Sallie Mae?

 If you have a balance due directly to the school, it is due to a shortfall in the budget with Sallie Mae. Some expense was not fully budgeted for, and it is best to pay the money directly to the University.

 Why is only half of my budget showing on the bill?

 In order for Vanderbilt's billing system to keep accurate records, the budget is split in half. The first five payments are allotted to the fall term, and the last five are allotted to the spring. By doing this, your bill will show your fall and spring charges and the payments that are to pay for the expenses. If you know your expenses will be different for the fall and spring, you may call Sallie Mae and establish a budget for the fall, and one for the spring. By doing this, you should avoid having to send another payment directly to the school.

 How do I change my budget?

Please contact Sallie Mae at 1-800-239-4211, or online. During certain times of the year, Sallie Mae may require Vanderbilt approval. Sallie Mae will e-mail Vanderbilt seeking approval. There is no need to contact Vanderbilt.

How do I make sure that what I budgeted for will include my card selections and meal plans?

To include meal plans or Commodore Cash, you must also contact the Commodore Card Office. Depending on the time of year, they might require a payment with the request. If not, these items may be billed to your account and you may pay Vanderbilt directly. If you did budget a meal plan or an amount for Commodore Cash, you must communicate your intentions with the Card Office. Sallie Mae will not inform Vanderbilt of your intentions.


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