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Student Loans

No Credit Check Student Loans: Here Are Your Best Options

No-credit-check student loans can make borrowing easier for school when you have a thin or nonexistent credit file. First-year students seeking private student loans may consider Funding U, which has no credit or cosigner requirements. Ascent, meanwhile, is a solid option for juniors and seniors. 

However, we always recommend looking at federal student loans as a first step when you need money to pay for school. Federal student loans can offer some unique benefits to borrowers that private loans do not. 

The best no-credit-check student loan companies

  • Best for undergraduates: Funding U
  • Best for deferred payments: Ascent
  • Best for international students: MPower Financing
  • Best income-based repayment loan: Edly
  • Best borrowing limits: A.M. Money

You’re not alone if you need a student loan but have little to no credit history. 

An often-cited statistic from the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau estimates that more than 80% of 18- to 19-year-olds don’t have a credit score. A more recent survey conducted by FICO found that 29% of Gen Zers said they either don’t have a credit score or don’t know if they have one.

If you lack a credit history, you’re not completely shut out of borrowing to pay for your education. Getting no-credit-check student loans through the federal government and some private lenders is possible. We’ll walk you through the options. 

Ask the expert

Chloe Moore


Student loans impact your credit score like any other loan. Making on-time payments and keeping your total debt to a minimum is a great way to improve your credit over time. It’s important to be mindful of how much student loan debt you’re taking on and what income you expect to earn in your field after graduation.  

Compare student loans with no credit check

Loan programLoan ratesCredit checkCosigner required
Direct Subsidized Loans and Direct Unsubsidized Loans (undergraduate)5.5% fixedNoNo
Direct Unsubsidized Loans (graduate/professional)7.05% fixedNoNo
Direct PLUS Loans (graduate or parents)8.05% fixedNo, but borrowers with an adverse credit history will need to meet additional requirements to qualifyNo
Direct Consolidation LoansWeighted average of consolidated loansNoNo

How to qualify for no-credit-check student loans

When taking out student loans without a credit inquiry, it’s always best to start with federal student loans and then fill in the gap with private loans. The reason for this is simple: federal loans come with lower rates and additional repayment benefits.

You can follow a simple three-step process to get student loans with no credit check required: 

  1. Fill out the FAFSA
  2. Review your federal student loan eligibility
  3. Compare private student loans

Step 1: Fill out the FAFSA

Filling out the FAFSA, or Free Application for Federal Student Aid, should be the first step for all students looking for student loans. The Department of Education uses the information in your FAFSA to determine your eligibility for federal student loans, grants, and work-study programs.

You can complete and submit the FAFSA online at There’s certain information you’ll need to provide, including:

  • Your name and basic demographic information
  • Dependency status
  • Parents’ names and demographic information
  • Financial information
  • Information about the school(s) you’re applying to

Creating a Federal Student Aid (FSA) ID can speed up the application process when it’s time to sign and submit your form. Registering for an FSA ID and filling out the FAFSA is free. The deadline for filing a FAFSA is June 30 of each year. 


You must submit the FAFSA every year you enroll in college to review your eligibility.

Step 2: Review your federal student loan eligibility

Once you submit the FAFSA, you’ll receive a Student Aid Report (SAR) that includes a summary of your estimated eligibility for federal student loans and other aid. This is not a financial aid offer or award letter; you’ll get that from your school once you’re accepted. 

The U.S. Department of Education offers federal student loans through the Direct Loan Program to eligible undergraduate and graduate students, regardless of credit history. These loans include:

  • Subsidized Direct Loans: These are available to undergraduates with demonstrated financial need, regardless of proof of income or credit score. Interest is subsidized for students while they’re still in school, during the repayment grace period, and if loans are put into deferment after graduation.
  • Unsubsidized Direct Loans: These are available both to undergraduates and graduate or professional students. Income and credit score do not matter, nor does financial need for this type of loan. Interest is not subsidized and continues to accrue while in school.

While another type of federal loan—PLUS Loans—is available to graduate students and parents of dependent undergraduates, these loans require a credit check. Borrowers with an adverse credit history can still qualify if they meet other requirements. 

The federal government imposes annual and aggregate federal student loan limits. If you’ve reached your limit without receiving enough money to cover your full cost of attendance, you’ll need to consider private student loans.

Step 3: Compare private student loans with no credit check

If you’ve exhausted your federal student loan options and still don’t have enough money to pay for school, private student loans with no credit check can help you cover the rest of your education costs. 

Your options will be limited, as most private lenders prefer creditworthy borrowers who will likely repay the money. Having someone cosign a student loan for you could make it easier to get approved and get favorable terms. If you find a cosigner, check out our picks for the best private student loans for an expanded list of options.

Here are five options if you’re looking for a private student loan with no credit check or cosigner.

Funding U

LendEDU rating: 4.6 out of 5

  • Rates (APR): 7.49%12.99%
  • Loan amounts: $3,001 – $20,000
  • Repayment terms: Up to 10 years

Funding U is the best no-credit-check student loan option for undergraduates. Unlike many private lenders, Funding U focuses not on your credit history but instead on whether your academic achievements suggest you’re likely to repay your loan.

Here are the eligibility requirements according to the lender’s website:

  • Must be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident over the age of 18
  • Must be enrolled as a full-time undergraduate student in a bachelor’s degree program at an eligible four-year college
  • Must meet a minimum GPA requirement
  • Your school must meet a minimum graduation rate threshold
  • Must be located in Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Louisiana, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, and Wisconsin

Students can apply online and prequalify for a loan in just two minutes without affecting their credit score. But, if you get approved and decide to borrow, the lender will check your credit report in the underwriting process to verify the debt and prevent fraud.

Here is a full breakdown of the Funding U student loan:

  • Fixed rates: 7.49%12.99%
  • Rate reduction: 0.50% automatic payment discount
  • Loan amounts: $3,001 – $20,000 per school year
  • Term lengths: Up to 10 years
  • In-school repayment options: Fixed or interest-only payments
  • Forbearance options: Up to 51 months of no payment while in school
  • Grace period: 6 months
  • Fees: None


Heads up: Ascent runs a credit check but offers loans that those without credit can apply for. We explain this process below.

LendEDU rating: 4.7 out of 5

  • Rates (APR): 13.05%15.08%
  • Loan Amounts: $2,001* – $20,000
  • Repayment Terms: 5, 7, 10, 12, or 15 years

The information above is for the Ascent Non-Cosigned Future Income-Based Loan.

*Minimum of $6,001 for borrowers with a Massachusetts permanent address.

Ascent is best for juniors and seniors who are looking for non-cosigned loans with deferred payments. Students can get pre-qualified rates without impacting their credit scores. However, if you apply, Ascent will run a credit check to gauge your eligibility for its credit-based non-cosigned loan. 

Eligible juniors and seniors who don’t qualify for the credit-based loan can then apply for a future income-based loan. To be eligible for a future income-based loan, you must be a borrower with no credit score.

If you have a credit score, you must meet the minimum requirement. There is an exception for those who meet the minimum credit score requirement but don’t meet the income or repayment requirements. In this case, you can still be eligible.

Here is a full breakdown of the Ascent Non-Cosigned Future Income-Based Loan:

  • Variable rates: 13.07%15.02%
  • Fixed rates: 13.09%15.08%
  • Rate reduction: 1% automatic payment discount
  • Loan amounts: $2,001 – $20,000
  • Term lengths: 5, 7, 10, 12, or 15 years
  • In-school repayment options: Depends on the loan
  • Forbearance options: Temporary hardship, administrative, and natural disaster/declared emergency
  • Grace period: 9 months
  • Fees: Late payment fee of 5% of the past due payment after ten days late. The minimum late fee is $5; the maximum is $25


Heads up: MPOWER checks a student’s credit history if available, but one is not required to apply.

LendEDU rating: 4.5 out of 5

  • Rates (APR): 13.98%17.08%
  • Loan amounts: $2,001 – $100,000
  • Repayment terms: 10 years

MPOWER loans are best for international students with no credit history, though U.S. citizens can also apply. The company can do this by focusing on students’ future earnings potential and partnering with select schools that borrowers must attend.

The company accepts any currency during repayment since loans are available to students from over 190 countries. There are no prepayment penalties for paying your loan off early.

Here are the eligibility requirements for the MPOWER loan:

  • Be an undergraduate or graduate student within two years of graduating or about to begin a one- to two-year program
  • Be attending one of 350+ MPOWER partner schools

Here is a breakdown of the MPOWER student loan:

  • Variable APR: Not available
  • Fixed APR: 13.98%17.08%
  • Rate reduction: 0.25% automatic payment discount
  • Loan amount: $2,001 – $100,000
  • Term length: 10 years
  • In-school repayment: Must make interest-only payments while in school
  • Grace period: 6 months
  • Fees: Late payment fee


LendEDU rating: 4.4

  • Repayment: % of salary
  • Loan amounts: Up to $15,000 per academic year
  • Credit check: None

Edly is the best option for juniors, seniors, and grad students with limited credit seeking an income-based repayment option. Edly focuses on the school and program the borrower attends for approval rather than credit scores. By doing this, Edly can offer student loans to more borrowers from accepted schools than most private lenders.

You won’t receive an interest rate with an Edly loan, either. Repayment is based on your salary and only begins once you have an annual gross salary of over $30,000.

Here are some eligibility requirements for the Edly loan:

  • Must be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident who is a current college junior, senior, or grad student at a supported school
  • Must be enrolled full-time

Here is a full breakdown of the Edly student loan:

  • Minimum credit score: None
  • Cosigner requirement: None
  • Loan amount: Up to $15,000 per academic year, $25,000 lifetime
  • Minimum income before repayment: $30,000 annual gross salary
  • Cap on total payment: Earlier of 60 or 84 completed payments, 2.25x the borrowed amount, or 23% APR
  • Soft credit check: Yes

A.M. Money

LendEDU rating: 4.4

  • Rates (APR): 7.95%8.87%, depending on the number of months to graduation at funding date
  • Loan amounts: $2,001 – $50,000
  • Repayment terms: 10 years

A. M. is the best option for students who need to borrow up to $50,000 for school with no credit check. All borrowers qualify for the same fixed interest rate, which is based on how many months you have until graduation when your loan is funded. 

Instead of credit scores, A.M. Money uses your GPA and school transcripts to determine eligibility. You must also be a U.S. citizen and attend one of the schools that A.M. Money works with to qualify. 

There are no late fees or prepayment penalties, though there is an origination fee. A.M. Money offers free financial coaching to help you decide if student loans suit you. 

Here is a breakdown of the A.M. Money student loan:

  • Variable APR: Not available
  • Fixed APR: 7.95%8.87%, depending on the number of months to graduation at the funding date
  • Rate reduction: 0.25% automatic payment discount
  • Loan amount: $2,001 – $50,000
  • Term length: 10 years
  • In-school repayment: Deferment payments while enrolled
  • Grace period: 6 months
  • Fees: 4.5% origination fee

Ask the expert

Chloe Moore


Interest rates for federal student loans are the same for all borrowers and set annually by Congress. This rate is fixed for the life of the loan. With private loans, you can qualify for the best interest rates if you have a high credit score. Sometimes these rates can be lower than federal rates. Expect to pay a higher interest rate on a no-credit-check student loan. 

Recap of the steps to take out student loans with no credit check

No-credit-check student loans can help you pay for school, but they aren’t all alike.

Federal student loans are a good place to start, as they can offer lower interest rates and better repayment benefits, including the option for income-based plans and the possibility of qualifying for loan forgiveness. 

If you max out your federal student loans, then researching private student loans is the next step. Getting a cosigner could give you an advantage, though you can still find private loans with no cosigner or credit check requirement. You may, however, need to have a minimum GPA or be pursuing a certain career path to qualify. 

While in school, consider what you can do to build a credit score. For example, you might ask someone to add you to one of their credit cards as an authorized user or apply for a secured card. These small steps can help you build a positive credit history, which can help you qualify for loans later on.

Ask the expert

Chloe Moore


Look for ways to build credit early if possible. Two easy ways to do this are being added as an authorized user to a parent’s credit card (assuming they have good credit and make on-time payments) or getting a secured credit card. If you don’t have time to build your credit, consider federal student loans before no-credit-check private loans.