How Often Can You Refinance Student Loans?

As long as you qualify, you can refinance your student loans as many times and as often as you’d like. However, while refinancing multiple times can be a great way to score better terms, there are situations where it could hurt you more than help you.

Should I refinance my student loans?

Refinancing allows you to replace your existing student loans with a new one from a private lender, with the main benefit being the opportunity for a lower interest rate or monthly payment. You might consider refinancing if:

  • You took out a loan when interest rates were high.
  • Your you have a good credit score and a steady income.
  • You want to remove a co-signer from your loan.
  • You want to extend your repayment term to lower your monthly payment.

If you have all federal student loans and are having trouble making the monthly payments, refinancing shouldn’t be your first relief option. The federal government offers hardship relief, alternate repayment options and loan forgiveness that private lenders don’t offer, and all loans that you refinance will immediately become private.

However, if you have all private loans and a good credit score, refinancing could be a smart money move, especially if you have trouble keeping up with multiple loans or have a higher interest rate. You can refinance as many times as you’d like as you improve your credit score and qualify for lower rates.

The downsides of refinancing more than once

The biggest risk of refinancing multiple times is that it could slightly lower your credit score. While you can shop around with lenders risk-free using prequalification, most lenders will perform a hard credit check during the actual application process to see your detailed credit report and debt payment history. This allows the lender to determine whether you are considered a trustworthy borrower. Every hard credit check lowers your credit score by a few points.

The average age of your accounts also impacts your credit score. Credit scoring models prefer to see accounts that have been open…

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