Coping with bad credit is an ongoing struggle, and one which doesn’t have to limit your options in life as much as you might think.
For example, it’s perfectly possible to secure a private student loan to pay for the education and training you need to expand your horizons; you just have to know where to look and how to go about it.
To that end, let’s explore what’s involved in finding and acquiring a student loan from a private provider, no matter your financial background.
Understanding the credit history conundrum
Everyone has a credit report with their name on it, and several agencies assign scores based on your history of repaying loans, as well as according to the amount of debt you’re dealing with right now.
A range of other factors can be considered when your credit history is concerned. For example, if you’ve ever declared bankruptcy, or been hit with a lawsuit, these may weigh on your record.
The problem is not just that your credit score can suffer if you fail to keep up with repayments, but also that if you don’t have much history under your belt, you could be penalized by lenders. It’s a bit of a Catch 22 scenario, and one which we all have to face up to at some point.
Considering the reality of rates
We all need to get better at managing money, and finding affordable loan packages is important in this context.
It’s not just the loan amount that matters, but the rate of interest you’re charged by the provider. That’s why looking for low-rate loans offered by SoFi and other lenders that are attuned to the needs of student borrowers is sensible.
Bad credit typically means your rates will be higher. This is down to the way that lenders hedge against the chances of you defaulting on the loan.
This makes finding a lender who’s amenable to your circumstances, rather than one which is actively attempting to put off customers with an imperfect credit score, a must-do.
Exploring additional financial avenues
Another aspect to take onboard if you have bad credit but you want to use a private student loan to support your studies is that you don’t necessarily need to cover all your costs in this way.
For example, you may be eligible for a scholarship or a grant from the school you plan to attend, or another organization set up to aid people in your position. In this case, a private loan could be ideal for bridging the gap between the size of the grant and the costs you expect to incur on top of your tuition fees, such as for food and accommodation.
The less you need to borrow, the smaller your repayments will be, and the lower the impact of your bad credit history on the process of acquiring a student loan.
Improving your credit score
Lastly, it’s always possible to reverse your financial fortunes and push your credit score upwards, even if you have previously been hampered by missed payments and other unhelpful factors in the past.
Paying off any existing debts is a good way to get started, and if you’ve got several separate loans, it may be wise to consolidate these under a single private loan.
If you’re in the position to do so, delaying the start of your studies until your credit score is on an upward trajectory could save you a lot of cash in the long term.
Comparing loan packages and looking for sympathetic lenders with products built around people in your circumstances is always advisable.