The role of good credit when applying to graduate school

Graduate school brings with it many new responsibilities – juggling jobs, family and school can often make it a busy, though rewarding, experience. However, good credit can also be a significant part of the graduate school experience, helping you and other students in a variety of ways.

Good credit can help students attain coveted loans
For example, according to Idealist.org, if you're considering applying for student loans, you also have to be able to demonstrate that you have a good credit score to be eligible for more coveted loans. One type of these loans is a private loan, while a federal PLUS loan is another type of loan that requires a display of good credit before it can be acquired. Federal loans can be perused on a site like the Federal Student Aid page on the website for the U.S. Department of Education. 

The source also noted a few other benefits that can come from having good credit while going to graduate school. One of these is the diminished debt that loans from good credit provides for you – this will open up funds for other essential purchases after you finish school, such as an apartment, or a car. So, given the many benefits that having good credit can bring to the graduate school experience, you're probably wondering about ways to get your credit up to par. Luckily, there are easy tips that the source helpfully provided to guide students through this next step in their lives. 

Tips on improving credit for graduate school
A fundamental step to improving credit, according to the source, is paying all bills on time. This is due, reported the source, to the reliability it shows you will have regarding paying off the loans you have taken out for graduate school.

By contrast, someone who has poor credit and is irresponsible with money is going to be viewed with aversion by the official in charge of dispensing loans for the school.

Keeping track of spending absolutely essential
Avoid this by being attentive to what you are spending money on. If you head to the same bistro for a coffee a few times a week, keep track of the amount of money you're spending. While this may seem unnecessary it will translate into discipline, at least where money is concerned, for more significant purchases, such as a mortgage or a car. Moreover, if you're headed to graduate school, you, like countless other students, are probably working hard to pay off debt incurred in your undergraduate years.

Keeping track of what portion of a paycheck that you need to pay towards your college loans will also help to cultivate a general sense of responsibility regarding money – responsibility that can go a long way toward producing a respectable credit score. 

Make sure that you keep old credit line
Another tip that the source suggested when grooming your credit for the graduate school experience is staying committed to paying off old lines of credit, as opposed to shifting debt to a new credit card, which might give you a reputation for frugality and responsibility when working on improving your credit. The source also suggested that numerous lines of credit can be an imprudent recipe, one that often results in a person defaulting on at least some of their debt. This is plausible, especially given the anxiety and chaotic structure that can follow from having debt in numerous places. It can make the levels of debt you have seem daunting, whereas a single source of debt is more easy to pay off and to deal with in day to day life.