How to improve your credit score
Whoever said that growing up was easy couldn’t be more wrong. On top of having a job, a family, and a social life, we have to maintain our credit scores? That may seem like a daunting task, but there are a few ways to do so that aren’t too complicated at all!
Monitoring your payment history is key and always make your payments on time. Make at least the minimum payment (more if you are able) and contact your lender if you think you will have trouble paying a bill. Don’t skip a payment even if you are disputing a bill. Use your credit wisely and don’t go over your limit. Try to use less than 35% of all your available credit.
The length of your credit history with a lender matters too. The longer you have an account open and in use, the better that looks on your credit score. If you do happen to transfer an old account to a new account with a lower interest, the new account will be considered the new credit. Consider keeping the older account active even if you don’t use it. Use it occasionally- keep it active by using it every so often then paying it off responsibly.
Limit your number of credit applications or credit checks. If there are too many, lenders may think that you are urgently trying to get credit or that you are living beyond your means. There are two types of credit checks:
Hard Hits- appear on your credit report and count towards your score.
- Application for a credit card, mortgage, or loan
- Some rental applications
- Some employment applications
Soft Hits- appear on your credit report but only you can see them. These don’t affect your score.
- requesting your own report
- businesses asking for your report to update their records about your existing account with them
Keeping your credit healthy is easy. Use different types of credit such as a credit card, car loan, and or line of credit. Most importantly, don’t take on too much debt. It may seem like a good idea but stay within your budget and don’t get in over your head. A little perseverance and planning will go a long way to maintain and build a good credit score.
If you do happen to get into a bit of credit trouble, fixing your credit can take some time. A little known fact however is that a vehicle loan can reduce the time it take to repair your credit considerably! The reason is that a vehicle loan helps you in a couple of ways. First, your credit is comprised of several different factors but 35% is derived from your history of payments and another 10% from the diversity of your loans. Together with a credit card, a vehicle loan fills 2 of those criteria. Secondly a vehicle loan can be easier for someone struggling with credit to get because the loan is secured against the value of the vehicle. Getting yourself into a vehicle loan and ensuring that you make all of your payments on time can get you back on track to a healthier credit in as little as a year when done right!
A vehicle loan also shows lenders that you are able to handle longer term payment plans with higher payments when compared to a $1,000 credit card limit allowing you to establish your credit faster with a car loan. This is especially important for young people and people who are new to the country.
What’s more is that our Finance Specialists make the banks compete for your business often getting you a more favorable rate.
If you have questions about your credit or how you can build or repair your credit, talk to one of our finance specialists today at (604) 795-5771.