How to improve your credit score
Your credit score is extremely important these days. Like your social security number, your credit score follows you wherever you go, whether it's to get a mortgage, apply for a car loan, or even to get a job. So naturally, if you know how to check your credit and if you're armed with tips on how to improve your credit score, you will be in better shape than someone who isn't.
Does your credit score seem low to you? There are some methods for improving your score listed below.
Ways to Improve Your Credit Score
- Review your credit report for any errors and correct glitches that may not be accurate (but are still hurting your current score). You can obtain a copy of your credit report by visiting www.CreditReport.com.
- Refrain from opening a lot of new accounts over a short period of time, especially if your credit history is on the shorter side to begin with.
- Pay your bills on time.
- Don't open any credit lines you probably won't use. For example, don't open a lot of store credit cards just to get the initial 10 percent discount.
- Instead of moving credit card balances to lower rate cards, try to pay them off. Transferring balances can change the ratio of your total credit card balances to your total available credit lines, hurting your credit score.
- Open a few new credit accounts, use them responsibly, and make your payments on time.
- Try to use your credit cards less. Even better, pay them off every month. The bigger the space between your total credit limits and the balance you carry, the better. Try to keep your balance below 25 percent (for example, $2,500 if your credit limit is $10,000).
- Contrary to what you may have heard, don't close old, paid-off accounts. Credit companies used to advise people to close old credit cards they were no longer using. But closing these cards shortens your credit report and makes you seem less credit-worthy.
- Avoid bankruptcy. Declaring bankruptcy is one of the worst things you can do for your credit score. It may seem like the easy way out in the short term, but over time it will cost you tons in the way of high interest rates.
Overall, keep in mind that negative items on your credit report are a lot more powerful than positive items. A late payment can affect your score in a month or two, while making payments on time can take six to 12 months to improve your credit rating.
Also remember that having too much credit can be as bad as not having enough, if your credit has been mismanaged.
For more information on how to check your credit report, or how to instantly get your 3 in 1 credit report, FREE credit score, and identity theft insurance, go to www.CreditReport.com now!