Poor Credit Student Loans
Your credit won’t keep you from geting a student loan and going back to school
There are plenty of financial options available to students with no or poor credit that want a higher education, from federal student loans to peer-to-peer funded loans.
Qualifications for Student Loans
- Must have a diploma or GED equivalent, or pass standards outlined by your state
- Demonstrate financial necessity (for most loans)
- Be a US citizen or eligible non-citizen
- Be working towards a degree or certificate in an eligible program
- Register with Selective Service, if required
- Once in school, maintain satisfactory progress
- Verify that you do not owe money on any federal loans or federal grants
- Verify that you will use federal aid strictly for educational expenses
Good credit makes you a more desirable student loan candidate. Student loan terms, such as interest rates, are usually based on your credit history. Improving your credit can help you get lower interest rates (and cheaper loans). Even if you have a low credit score, these loans can help you get the funds you need to continue your education.
Which Student Loan Option is Right For You?
Federal Student Loan
Federal student loans are funded and regulated by the government, resulting in more affordable loans and better repayment terms. Make sure to use your federal loan options first.
To begin the process for student loans, check out the Free Applicatio
Private Student Loans
Private student loans are not subsidized by the government, so there is less regulation that federal loans. Private loans are often more expensive because private banks set the rates, terms and conditions of the loans. Interest rates are usually higher and repayment options less flexible than with federal student loans.
Consolidation loans lump your student loans together to help make paying back your student loan easier - with just one payment.
Beware of combining a student loan with a high interest rate and a student loan with a low interest rate. If the student loan with a low interest rate has a significantly higher balance, it may be cheaper to keep the loans separate so you can take advantage of the lower rate on the larger debt. Consolidated loans usually use an average interest rate (so if you have a high balance on a low interest loan and combine it with a low balance, high interest loan, you will pay more money on the consolidated, higher interest rate loan).
Emergency loans are available at private and public lending institutions. Emergency loans offer small amount to help students who have already obtained funding to cover most of their expenses - and need a little more for unexpected expenses. Private and public institutions usually do not base interest rates and terms of an emergency loan on a student’s credit history.
Peer-to-peer student loans offer students low and fixed rates and flexible terms. Peer-to-peer loans typically have shorter repayment terms but do not require a co-signer. GreenNote.com is a peer-to-peer student loan site that does not look at your credit history when providing student loans.
A peer-to-peer loan may not get fully-funded, if funded at all, since it is based on using other people to fulfill your loan. If you need $3,000 and your peer-to-peer lender can only offer you $2,000, then you can get a loan for only $2,000.
Parent loans are available to the parents of students that are looking for funding. The parents can get a loan for the entire cost of their child’s education at a fixed rate. Parent student loans will be in the parents’ name, and they take on the responsibility of paying back the student loan. The student must be 24 years of age or younger.
Student Loan Cosigner
If you have bad credit, you may also consider a co-signer, or someone with good credit who will assume responsibility for the debt. The credit of the co-signer will be affected if you default on your loan, so make sure to pay back your debt on time.
Other Options for Financing Education
There are many scholarships available to fund a student’s educational needs. Some scholarships require you to maintain a certain grade point average, some do not. Research scholarships and apply for more than one.
Student grants are usually issued by the government to help fund student costs. They do not have to be paid back and are given to students that need financial assistance. A grant is gift! Get one if you can!
Working a part-time job is one way of affording educational expenses without taking on additional debt. It may be a way to supplement any other financial aid you obtain.
For information on student loans see the Free Application For Student Aid (FAFSA) at https://www.fafsa.ed.gov/.
If you're having trouble with your student loans, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has a student loan complaint system.