Building a strong credit score takes the time and effort to make smart financial decisions. Credit scores range from 300 to 850, and the higher your score, the more likely you are to receive great rates and terms on lending options. Improving your credit takes time, and while there are no "quick fixes" to boost your credit score, there are a few simple methods you should utilize and continue throughout your life.
Keep Your Balances In Check: Try to keep your balance at no more than 30% of your limit on each credit card you own. This may mean paying down balances and keeping a closer eye on your spending habits. It is smart to budget your finances, come up with a payment plan and focus on paying off your highest interest cards first. While having a balance is not a problem, keeping it in check should be your main goal.
Always Make Your Payments: Did you know that your payment history accounts for 35% of your credit score? Late payments could decrease your score by up to 110 points! Tackle this by setting up payment reminders. You can choose to schedule payments through your bank or set reminders through mobile applications or a mobile calendar.
Build Your History: This can be more difficult for newer borrowers, but the length of your credit history accounts for 15% of your score. While it helps to have credit cards, it is important to manage them responsibly. It takes time and dedication to build your credit profile. Don't be afraid to begin your credit history when you know that you can properly build and care for it.
Be Careful With New Credit: While older credit cards carry more weight when calculating your credit score, new credit accounts need just as much consideration. Having too many open credit cards (even if you're paying them on time) can hurt your credit profile. Also, having several companies pull your credit score in a short period can hurt your score.
When thinking about your credit profile, it's important to always take the necessary action to raise your score. Understand the errors in your credit history and learn the guidelines on how to work toward maintaining a good credit history. Building good credit requires patience and discipline, but few things are more important to your financial future than having a good score. From car loans to your mortgage, every large financial decision in your life will be determined by your ability to repay debt. Call me today for a review of your credit so we can see if refinancing your mortgage can save you money, or if you are ready to buy a new home.