Credit Score Got You Down? How to Improve Your Credit Score

how to improve your credit score

Approximately 30% of Americans have bad credit. You probably know how much a bad credit score affects your life. You’ll probably have trouble getting access to the credit you need and if you do qualify, you end up paying higher interest rates, making credit less affordable. It might mean you can’t afford to do things like getting a new car or new home, and you may not have access to funds in the event of an emergency. Luckily, with a little hard work, you can work to raise your credit score.

Missed Payments Are the Biggest Component of Your Score

If you’ve missed a payment on your credit card or loan, your credit score will take a hit. The greater the amount of missed payments and the later they are, the lower your credit score will be. That’s why it’s important to start making payments on time. This won’t remove previous late payments, but it will prevent further damage to your credit score. Think about automating your payments if you tend to forget about them. As time goes by, late payments start to have less of a negative impact.

Reduce Credit Card Balances

reduce credit card balance

Another way you can work on building your credit score is to pay off credit card balances, especially high balances. There’s an additional advantage to this: credit cards often have high interest rates so paying down balances can also save you some money in the long run.

The average American carries more than $6,000 on credit cards

Credit card debt has hit an all-time high. The average American carries more than $6,000 on credit cards, which can impact your credit score, especially if you have a small credit limit. If you can, try to pay down credit card debt. You can start small by trying to put more than the minimum payment due toward your credit card, even if it’s only $10 a month. It just may not be possible to tackle all your debt at once. But you can, try to pay more toward it to pay it down quicker. Another option would be consolidating your debt.

Strategizing Applications

Did you know that each time you apply for new credit, your credit score drops a little bit? The reason for this is that it creates multiple inquiries on your account. Too many inquiries in a short amount of time can indicate that you’re in financial distress. When you apply for new credit, be strategic about when you apply and how many accounts you open within a specific time period.

Keep Unused Accounts Open

keep unused accounts open

You might think that one way to reduce the amount of credit on your credit reports is to close any unused accounts you have. This strategy can actually backfire by raising your credit utilization ratio and decreasing the amount of time you’ve had credit. So long as the unused account isn’t costing you, it can improve your credit score.

Now That You Know How to Raise Your Credit Score…

You can start improving your credit today. It takes time, a strategy, and commitment but you can do it. If you’re not sure how to get started, or how to fix errors on your credit reports, call our credit repair experts. Get in touch today for a free credit evaluation to see if we can help you.

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