LOS ANGELES - Attention class, there is about to be a major change in student loans.
As of Monday, some private loans will take much less time to pay off, which ultimately will save you money.
The bad news: Students will have to start paying those loans off -- by making monthly payments of at least the interest -- while still in school.
It's a radical shift for private loans offered by SLM Corp., better known as Sallie Mae, the nation's largest student lender.
Previously, nothing was due on these loans until graduation.
Under the new rules, students -- or their parents -- will be required to begin making interest-only payments about a month after the loan is funded, adding to the cost of college.
The payments could run as high as $550 a month on a $60,000 private loan while the student is still in school, said Mark Kantrowitz, who runs FinAid.org, a student financial Web site.
To avoid the payment while in school, a student would have to instead turn to a non-Sallie private loan, or a federal government loan, neither of which will be affected by the new rules.
Or they could make a change in educational plans.
"They might have to switch to a less expensive school or drop out," Kantrowitz said.