I have 3 loans with a fixed 4.29% interest rate that add up to about $10,500. How much should I pay monthly to make the biggest positive impact on my credit score?
Not enough information. It is typically the current balance in relation to the initial balance that is a key factor. If you have 3 loans then each one will be at a different %. For the sake of your question, your total amount owed with 3 loans combined is irrelevant. However, since I can't directly answer your question, your best scores will be when 2 are paid off and 1 left open with less than 9% left on the initial balance. If the
last loan is your only open loan, your score will drop when it is paid off.
Do you have any other open accounts besides these loans? Credit cards? Mortgage? Auto?
making monthly payments on time while reducing the amount owed on the loans increases your credit score pretty much no matter what.
i would also add that lenders for car and home loans care less about the total of your student loans, and more about the total monthly payment you have to make. i have 90K+ in student loans, but when i bought my house and car, all the lenders cared about was my monthly payment for my student loans. i use REPAYE, so it's pretty low for me, and it didn't keep me from getting prime rates on my loans for a 20K car and 250K house (I make about 70K per year). since i pay off all of my credit cards in full every month, i didn't have any other DTI stuff to worry about.
it's always a unique situation for each individual. good luck!
Very sound advice stated by everyone.
I will add that if you are going for some kind of federal morgage (USDA or FHA), they will look at your total amount owed and use 1% of that as your monthly payment. It doesnt matter if you pay less via IBR or are in forebearance.
However, some lenders look at the actual payment amount shown on the credit reports. Or, as mentioned above, a mortgage verification letter from your servicer.
I'm looking at having 85K in student loans forgiven in a few years without a tax bomb due to being in public service. No brainer.
Speaking of tax bombs, if you are not in public service, the amount forgiven will be counted as income in the year it was forgiven. So prepare for it.