Real Answers from Real Pilots

ATP Financing with poor credit

Hi everyone,

I’m new to this group and I must say, all of the discussions have been very helpful with making my decision to try and go the route of ATP.

I’m looking for any advice on how to get financing with poor credit. I understand the need of a cosigner, however I am still having issues. I have gone through both Sallie Mae and Wells Fargo and both have been an instant decline which makes sense if it’s based solely off my credit, however my mother is an 800 and makes very good money with a low debt to income ratio so we have been confused. So I call both, and each say that they take an average of both credit scores, along with telling me that it really only is beneficial if the applicant is on the edge of being approved or denied to have a cosigner. I’m confused what the point of having a strong co is even if this is how they are processing it?

To sum it up, my question to the group would be if anyone has run into this issue and overcome it, or if they have any advice for a lender that is a “Parent only” program? I spoke directly with the finance department of ATP and they said I can absolutely find outside financing options but I’m struggling with actually achieving that.

Also, if I go through another lender, will this change the tuition reimbursement in any way?

Thank you!


There’s clearly something going on with your credit but as finance said, I’d check with other lenders.

Regardless how you get obtain financing, it has zero to do with receiving Tuition Reimbursement. Just the method. See Chris’ response below.



I cannot speak to the financing companies decisions or why they make them, but I understand that if either of you has poor credit, it will be an uphill battle. Remember that these are unsecured loans, there is nothing that the lender can take away if you stop paying, so the threshold for approval is high.

There is a slight difference with tuition reimbursement, if you use an outside lender, your extra money received through the program will be paid directly to you instead of straight to the lender. It will in effect be extra income for you.


Hi Adam and Chris,

I appreciate the follow up. I suppose I’ll just have to continue my search elsewhere for strictly a parent only lender.

Thanks for the insight!


Hey Adam/@abelo,

Found this article which is fairly recent from Investopedia which may help your interest in finding loans such as an unsecured or parent-program; they have a video in there describing why banks charge higher rates or require a certain credit score. Unsecured Loan - Investopedia

Also Adam if you’re interested in building your credit score, I posted a pretty nice little blurb under another thread on how to establish some credit and furthermore an idea of how the credit bureau works behind closed doors with your credit reporting. I am not a licensed specialist; however, I do work daily with individuals in the financial work of retail/business banking and have some training regarding all types of loans from unsecured all the way to a mortgage; just not licensed to give you direct advice personally how to go about your credit. “How To Pitch To A Cosigner”



Adam B,

Just to give you an idea of how lenders are with different scores when I bought my house with my wife I was making ok money with fair credit and it was better for me to not be on the mortgage with her and lose my financial benefit vs having me on with my fair credit.

And that’s something with actual collateral.


Hey Adam, were you able to find a loan? I think I might have the same situation as you.

It has been a long time since Adam posted, so he might have left the forum. I would encourage you to call ATP and speak to Kirk in financing, he is the expert on all such things.