Life’s not easy as a student. You have to attend classes, take (and try to pass) exams while not being paid. So it’s not a simple task to build your credit score while studying.
To help give you some “credit” peace of mind, we have created the list below of 4 simple ways you can build your credit score as a student.
1. Thanks Mom and Dad (Become an authorized user on your parent’s account)
One of the best and easiest ways to build your credit score as a student is to become an authorized user of one of your parent’s credit cards.
If your Mom or Dad has good credit, then it will help your own credit get a nice boost. Some people call this “piggybacking” and it comes with fewer risks associated with having your own credit card since your parents will be able to keep an eye on your spending. (So be careful with how you use it.)
2. Don’t procrastinate – pay your other bills on time.
It may sound obvious and simple to do but paying your bills on time really does help boost your credit. Today, many credit bureaus are giving credibility to bill payments.
So, make sure that you are getting all your bills sent to your phone via text or email so you can easily and quickly pay them when due.
Things that can seem insignificant can also matter, for example, parking tickets and library fees. Don’t let that accounting 101 textbooks be the difference between a good credit score and a bad one.
3. Don’t co-sign for your friends.
Friends – it was a great sitcom in the 90s and while on the show Chandler and Joey shared almost everything, it doesn’t mean you should do the same with your amigos.
The time may come when one of your friends asks you to become a joint account holder with them. DON’T!
That’s because when your buddy misses one or many payments it can affect your credit as the co-signee. As Edgar Dworksy, founder of ConsumerWorld.org explains:
“You not only become liable for everything charged if your friend decides not to pay, but it could blemish your own credit record,”
4. Use your student loan for your education, not your social life
It’s VERY tempting once you receive your student loan money to go out and buy things you have always wanted like a car, E-scooter, or keg for your big apartment warming party.
However, it’s best for your credit score and future spending habits that you only use your student loan for your educational needs. Avoid wasting your money on things unnecessary.
It’s also key to make at least the minimum payment every month and always pay it on time. Credit experts also recommend paying more than the minimum to pay the loan off faster and emphasizes that payments should be received by the creditor on or before the due date on the statement to keep the account in good standing.