Borrowers may be tempted to skip student loan payments and instead spend their money on gifts, meals and decorations for the holidays. After all, the pressure to give and entertain grows only more intense as Christmas and New Year’s draw closer.
But doing so could ding your credit score, experts warn.
The Biden administration promised borrowers an “on-ramp” through Sept. 30 so those who don’t make payments aren’t reported to credit bureaus, considered in default, or referred to collection agencies for late, missed or partial payments. But it also noted that “we do not control how credit scoring companies factor in missed or delayed payments.”
So, while it’s true that nonpayers are shielded from the harshest consequences of late, missed or partial payments, they need to remember that interest will continue accruing and swell their balances. That growing balance is what could depress your credit score, experts say.
“If the increasing outstanding balance on that loan is reported to the credit bureaus, that could result in a modest negative impact to the score,” said Tommy Lee, senior director of analytics and scores at credit scorer FICO.
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How exactly is your credit score calculated?
Though each credit scoring company has its own formula to calculate credit scores, they all consider five factors:
- Payment history: The most important information any credit scoring model considers is whether you pay your bills on time. For…