Your Credit Score
What Makes Up My Credit Score?
There are 5 area that comprise your credit score. new accounts, types of accounts, how much you owe, credit history, and payment history. Payment history is the most important piece making up 35% of your score.
What Can Drop My Score
- Missed or late payments
- Closing out credit card accounts
- Maxing out credit card limits
- Opening several loans or credit lines for a short period of time
- Excessive credit inquiries
- More credit card accounts than installment/personal loan accounts
- Taking out loans with finance companies ( This one is a HUGE red flag)
Where Can I Get My Credit Report?
There are three separate credit bureaus that serve the US in maintaining credit history and reporting.
Equifax primarily serves the southeastern US, TransUnion serves the northeastern US and Experian serves the western portion of the US.
Every consumer is entitled to one free credit report annually from each of the three credit bureaus.
It is important to check all three to protect yourself from fraudulent activity. You can request your credit report from www.AnnualCreditReport.com or via phone at 1.877.322.8228. In addition to the annual free report, you may also purchase additional copies from each reporting agency.
How Long Does Information Stay On My Credit Report?
Reported information typically remains on your credit report for a minimum of seven years. Recently reported information carries more weight when being reviewed for credit decisions.
How Can I Improve My Credit Score?
There are several steps you can take to immediately start improving your credit score.
- Pay your bill in a timely manner on or BEFORE the due date (This is the HUGELY important) .
- Don’t just close credit cards you aren’t using in order to raise your credit score.
- Don’t open so many accounts. It shows creditors you know how to manage your credit.
- Instead of carrying revolving debt (credit cards), move those balances to installment/personal loans.
- Keep credit card balances low.