What credit score do you need to get a student loan?
The specific credit score you’d need to get a student loan is going to vary depending on the kind of loan you’re applying for.
When you apply for Direct Subsidized or Direct Unsubsidized Loans, your credit score doesn’t matter. You can have a very low credit score or no credit history at all and still be approved. These federal student loans are not credit-dependent and have many borrower benefits, including low fixed-interest rates, regardless of your credit history.
When you apply for a Parent PLUS loan, things work a little differently – but you still don’t need to meet any minimum credit score requirements. See, Parent PLUS loans aren’t available if you have “adverse credit,” but that’s not defined as having a score below any particular threshold.
Instead, you’re considered to have adverse credit if you have certain black marks on your credit history. These include, but aren’t limited to, a record of payments that are more than 90 days late, debt sent to collections in the past two years, or a bankruptcy, foreclosure, repossession, or tax lien in the past five years.
Credit score matters much more when it comes to private student loans. In online payday loans Mississippi fact, generally, you will need to have a credit score of at least 620 to be approved for a loan with most private lenders — and a credit score above 720 will be needed to give you the widest choice of loans at competitive rates.
If you do not have a credit score that enables you to qualify for a private loan, you may be able to apply for one with a cosigner who has a stronger credit history. You can visit Credible to learn more about private student loans and to compare rates and terms to see what loans you may be eligible for.
Can you still get a student loan with bad credit?
Eligibility for Direct Subsidized and Direct Unsubsidized Loans does not depend on your credit history. While there may be some changes to student loans under the Biden administration, this has always been the rule and will not change, as these loans are issued by the Department of Education to make it easier for anyone to fund an education.
Private student loans, on the other hand, can be more difficult to obtain. In fact, while interest rates are near record lows on these loans right now, many lenders are being more careful than ever about who they loan money to as a result of economic uncertainty caused by COVID-19.
If you do not have a credit score of at least 620, and ideally closer to 720 or higher, you may face difficulty getting approved for a student loan with bad credit. However, a cosigner could help you to apply for a loan and maximize your chances of approval. Credible allows you to compare student loan variable interest rates and fixed interest rates to see what rates you could qualify for – all without affecting your credit score.
How can I get a student loan if I have bad credit and no cosigner?
If you have bad credit and you do not have a cosigner, you will still be eligible to obtain federal student loans from the Department of Education. This includes Direct Subsidized and Direct Unsubsidized Loans. You will need to complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid in order to be eligible for this educational financing.
If you have exhausted your federal student loan limits, it may be more challenging to get private student loans if your own credit is poor and you don’t have someone to cosign for you. There are some lenders that look beyond credit history and consider factors such as future earning potential.