This post is sponsored by Lexington Law, thank you for supporting brands who support T20S. As always, all thoughts, opinions, experiences, and advice are my own.
Hey college students, yes – you! If you just graduated or are still in school – this post is for you. If you are familiar with T20S, you know that my main priority is to set you up for the future. So much of college is figuring out your life (which is no easy task, I know!). You are living on your own for the first time, figuring out your career, in addition to managing your time and money for the first time.
One of the things I did not realize that I should be caring about in college (let alone knew what it was while I was in school) was my credit score! Now you may be thinking: I’m a recent grad, how does credit score affect me now!? I’m here to tell you it affects you a lot! Or it could if you ignore it until later in your twenties.
WHAT IS CREDIT SCORE
Your credit score is a numerical score that defines how likely you are to repay debt. So if you need to take out a loan to buy a house or a car (or literally anything in San Francisco, lol), a bank will check your credit score to see the risk in getting a loan. It basically is a three digit number that defines your financial reputation. Your credit score will range from 300 – 850 and is based on your history with credit.
If your credit score is poor, your chances of getting approved for a loan, to buy a house, or even to rent an apartment can be slim.
THE FIRST TIME I HEARD THE WORD ‘CREDIT SCORE’, I HAD JUST GRADUATED COLLEGE
The first time I heard the word credit score was from a potential landlord. I was filling out an application for an apartment and the landlord said, “Make sure you include your credit score in your application”.
My what?! I thought. It turns out – this landlord wanted to make sure I would be a reliable payer for the apartment and was using credit score as an indicator for that. That was the first time I realized how important credit score was. Luckily, my parents had set me up with a credit card at the age of 15, so I was fine for this particular apartment. Phew!
It turns out, as you go through your twenties and beyond, people will continue asking for your credit score. Your credit score is a signal to others on how likely you are to pay them back – so as you make big purchases throughout life, this number is important.
The craziest part is, you may have no idea (especially as a student!) if you are doing something right now that affects your credit score. So if you ever have plans on buying a house, a car or any other big purchase, paying attention to your credit score NOW is so important.
THE MOST IMPORTANT THING FOR YOU TO KNOW
I think the most important thing for college students to realize is that even though buying a house, or a car, seems so far off right now – your credit score number is made up by history & consistency, so It’s important to start thinking about it now.
CAN MY STUDENT LOANS AFFECT MY CREDIT SCORE?
If you are a college student with student loans – this is perhaps the most important time to start thinking about credit score. Borrowing any large amount of money will have an effect on your credit score. If for some reason you end up behind on payments for your student loans, this could have a massive effect on your credit score.
No fear if this is you – so many students are in a similar position. The most important thing for you to understand is how making, and missing payments could affect your credit score as you pay off your student loans.
WHAT IF I’M NEW TO CREDIT SCORE?
If you are new to credit score, I would start by simply checking your credit score online. As a college or a new grad, this is something that you will run into as life goes on. So make sure you understand where you are landing right now.
Especially if you have student loans, make sure you are understanding how this will impact credit score. It is essential you don’t miss payments, so coming up with a plan to make sure you can pay on time is super important.
If you check your credit score and you notice it’s super low already, try reaching out to Lexington Law. They have so many resources that can help college students with their credit score. It really will help you for the rest of your life.
College students! I can’t wait for you to get to be the boss of your financial life by taking control of your credit score! If you need help with your credit score, you can always reach out to Lexington Law.
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