The $2 trillion coronavirus economic-stimulus package that went into effect last week offers relief to many of the nearly 45 million Americans with student loan debt.

But Matt Carpenter, co-founder of College Aid Pro, a college aid software company, points out that the offer applies only to federal government student loans, not private-sector loans. So the stimulus is only for anyone who has a direct government student loan or a Parent PLUS loan.

Carpenter explains that borrowers have the option to suspend payments for six months, without accrued interest during that time. “And, if we’re going into loan forgiveness—given this program for six months, the deferred payments will go towards our forgiveness plan,” he said in a video session titled, “Stimulus Package and Student Loans.”

Borrowers, he noted, will need to take some steps to take advantage of this development. They will need to contact their service provider, not the federal government, in order to pause their student loan payments. And when the loan goes back into repayment, after September 30, borrowers will have to be sure to re-enroll in the programs, he explained.

“This is not going to happen automatically. We need to take ownership of this,” Carpenter said, calling on financial advisors to ensure that they are coaching families on the stimulus offer.

However, Carpenter recommends that anyone who can afford to make payments should keep doing so. “Now is a great time to eat away the principal because the interest will be paused even if you’re making payments. So if you can do so great, if you’re like a lot of families where every dollar helps, take advantage of this program,” he said.

And while private loans are not a part of the stimulus package, Carpenter believes that a lot of private lenders are going to offer some type of plan flexibility they wouldn’t normally. But they aren’t going to be reaching out to lenders with it, so the lenders must be proactive. “You, as the borrower, need to seek out your particular lender and see what options, if any, you have the ability to take advantage of,” he said.

Additionally, Carpenter said with the pause button on the federal government student loans, those with private loans should take advantage of historically low refinancing rates.

“Hey, as we’re doing this evaluation in our overall kind of financial makeup, could we save ourselves some monthly cash flow by refinancing and locking in a great rate? This is something that we might want to take a look at,” he said.

Based in Dublin, Ohio, College Aid Pro software is designed to empower and help financial advisors deliver college planning strategies to their clients.