Money·2 min read

Do Student Loans Impact Your Credit Score?

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Design: theSkimm | Photo: iStock
Jun 28, 2022

Student loans are installment loans. Because you borrow all the money at one time, then repay it in installments.And, like other installment loans (think: your auto loan and mortgage), they show up on your credit report. And, yes, they impact your credit score 

Tell me more. How do student loans affect my credit score?

Even though they’re considered good debt, student loans can bring your credit score down, if they’re not managed responsibly (read: paid on time, every time). Because payment history is a pretty big part of your credit score. If you pay late, your score can reportedly drop 50-100 points.

Yikes. Even if I miss one student loan payment?

Federal loan servicers don’t usually report you as late until you’re 90 days past the due date. But private loan servicers often report late payments once they’re 30 days past due. Psst…late student loan payments can stay on your credit report for up to seven years.

But my student loans will be forgiven, right?

Not sure.The Biden administration has already forgiven $6 billion in student loans for borrowers who allege they were defrauded by their colleges.And President Joe Biden has dropped hints that more widespread forgiveness is still on the table. But there hasn’t been an official decision made just yet.  

Anything I can do in the meantime?

You don’t need to worry about federal student loan payments right now (thanks, to a pause that’s set to end on August 31), but it helps to have a plan to reduce your debt.Just in case forgiveness is a no-go.Hint: Some states will help if you move there. And depending on your career, you can also try for Public Service Loan Forgiveness.


Student loans can have the same impact on your credit score as any other big loan.So it’s important to make payments on time. Unless they’re forgiven before the pause is up. 

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