Credible is a private student loan marketplace that allows you to compare rates and terms from multiple lenders at once. The website’s prequalification tool can save students a lot of time by allowing them to see personalized rates from up to nine lenders with one application. However, there are lenders Credible doesn’t check, so it won’t be the only tool you’ll use.

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Pros

  • Compare offers from multiple lenders at the same time

  • Single application to check your qualifications and rates at multiple lenders

  • Prequalify and check rates without a hard credit inquiry

Cons

  • Not all lenders are included

  • Not all terms and conditions are listed

Pros Explained

  • Compare offers from multiple lenders at the same time – Credible displays the offers for which you’re prequalified next to each other, so you can easily compare rates.
  • Single application to check your qualifications and rates at multiple lenders – Instead of filling out a prequalification check on every lender’s website, Credible saves you time by using one for all its lenders.
  • Prequalify and check rates without a hard credit inquiry – Comparing offers through Credible won’t affect your credit score.

Cons Explained

  • Not all lenders are included – There are a number of major private student loan lenders that Credible doesn’t check, including Laurel Road, Earnest, and CommonBond.
  • Not all terms and conditions are listed – Credible doesn’t include features in its comparisons. You’ll have to do your own research to see if the lenders you receive offers from have things such as multiyear approval, loyalty discounts, forbearance policies, etc.

Lenders Available Through Credible

Is Loan Prequalification Available?

When you check private student loan rates through Credible, it performs a soft credit inquiry to prequalify you at multiple lenders. If any of its partner lenders have loan options for you, you’ll be notified within minutes on your Credible Dashboard by email, phone, or text. You’ll only receive offers once every potential lender has responded, and your rates are subject to change at any time.

Does Credible Charge Fees?

Credible is completely free to use. It makes money through referral commissions if you apply to a lender through its website.

What’s more, you won’t find any fee-laden loans through Credible. It doesn't partner with lenders who charge origination fees, application fees, or prepayment penalties on their student loans.

Repayment Options

Repayment options and terms are dependent on the lender you choose. Most of Credible’s lenders offer up to four different in-school repayment options:

  • Immediate Payment – Full payments begin shortly after the loan is disbursed.
  • Interest-Only Payment – You only make interest payments while in school.
  • Flat In-School Payment – This is usually a partial interest payment of $25 per month while in school.
  • Full Deferral Payment – No payment is required until after the grace period is complete.

Terms are also dependent on the lender and range from five to 20 years.

Are Co-signers Required?

Co-signers aren’t required for all lenders, but Credible states that about 85% of its student loan borrowers apply with one. The website has a tool that allows students to see what rates they’d qualify for both on their own and if they added a co-signer. You can try the tool with different co-signers to compare how each one improves your rates. Co-signers can also use the tool to check their eligibility without affecting their credit score.

Forbearance and Loan Discharge Options

Forbearance is dependent on the lender you choose. All lenders Credible partners with offer forbearance of at least 12 months, up to 24 months over the life of the loan, and all will discharge loans if the borrower dies or becomes permanently disabled.

Is Student Loan Refinancing Available?

Credible is also a marketplace for student loan refinancing. Its lenders include:

Customer Service

Credible has a comprehensive FAQ section. For any answers you can’t find, it offers three ways to reach its customer service. You can email support@credible.com, call 1-866-540-6005, or use the “Chat with us” button at the bottom right-hand corner of every page of its website to immediately chat with a customer service representative.

Applying for a Student Loan Through Credible

If you decide to choose an offer from one of Credible’s partners, you can make your loan application through Credible.

  1. On your Credible dashboard, review the details of all your offers.
  2. Once you decide which option is right for you, click “Select Lender” on the right side of the dashboard. 
  3. You’ll enter some additional information with the lender you chose, and it will conduct a hard credit inquiry, at which point the lender may request additional documentation from you.
  4. The lender will then respond with its decision based on whether you still meet the criteria used to prequalify you, your ability or inability to provide the documentation requested or any other applicable criteria.

Prequalifying doesn’t mean you’re guaranteed approval for the loan. Lenders reserve the right to change or withdraw prequalified rates at any time.

Look For Federal Aid Options First

Before you pursue private student loan options, submit the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) to take advantage of any scholarship and grants available to you.

Additionally, check the interest rate of federal student loans and compare them to what you prequalify for through Credible’s partner lenders. Also compare forbearance, deferment, and repayment options to understand the whole package of your loan.

Verdict

If you’re unsure about which student loan lender is right for you, Credible is a useful tool to help you narrow down your options. Its prequalification tool saves you from entering your information on multiple websites and doesn’t affect your credit score.

However, there are plenty of private student loan lenders Credible doesn’t check, including CommonBond and Earnest. So if you want to be sure you’re getting the best rate, research other options in addition to using Credible.

Methodology

Investopedia is dedicated to providing consumers with unbiased, comprehensive reviews of student loan lenders. We collected over 45 data points across more than 15 lenders—including interest rates, fees, loan amounts, and repayment terms—to ensure that our content helps users make the right borrowing decision for their education needs.