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Credit Scoring – How important is your FICO score?
With more and more people having bad credit today, it s making it difficult for people to get loans to buy things such as automobiles and houses. Bad credit can even make it difficult to get a job. The lenders are afraid of lending to those who have bad credit, but many people are falling into that category today. When they do lend money to people with poor credit, they have higher interest rates in an effort to protect themselves. In some cases, these rates are outrageously high, but those who need the loans believe that can do little to change their situation. Fortunately, that s not the case. You can improve your credit and you should take steps to do it now.
Fixing credit is not something that is magical. It takes time and knowhow, but you can do it on your own. Even though it does take some time, it s not as long as one might imagine. The first thing that you must to before getting a loan is to make sure that you are paying your current bills on time. If you do not have the ability to pay your bills on time now, lenders will know that you aren t going to pay them either. You should also get a copy of your credit report so you can see and challenge any errors that might be causing your credit rating to drop. Take care of these with the credit bureau, and you will see that you can improve your credit rating.
Once you start fixing your credit, you are going to want to shoot for a score of 700 or higher. When you have a high score like this, you will be able to save thousands of dollars over the years. You can sometimes even negotiate with lenders for even better rates. Because they are starved for quality customers who are going to pay them back, they are often willing to negotiate. They will see you as a good risk to take. You will get more than just better interest rates when you fix your credit though.
You can also get better rates on your insurance. In some cases, you can even have deposits waived when it comes to utilities. Your cell phone pricing and service costs are going to be lower as well. Having great credit can help you save money in some surprising ways. It also gives you a good feeling inside to know that you can qualify for a fair loan when you need one.
How to Find a Good Credit Repair Solution?
Analyzing your credit report is one of the most important elements to start fixing your credit report. The first thing you should look at when analyzing your credit report is the state of your credit score. A credit score can range anywhere from 300 to 850. Remember that in terms of rating the lower the number the worse the score. If your credit score is low, you will need to examine the rest of your report to find out exactly what items are negatively impacting your credit score.
This could be the result of anything from not making your payments on time to having to file for a bankruptcy in the past. If you need to get credit repair, you will need to look through your credit report for any items that are inaccurate, incomplete, outstanding or incomplete. which you can dispute. If there is a mark made against you that you think is invalid, you can write a dispute letter to the credit bureaus, claiming that you should not have to suffer the consequences of the mark on your score. Removing bad marks will increase your credit rating right away. You should also remember that responsible credit habits are the best way to have a high credit score.
Surprisingly, with so much riding on this number, very few people understand how the FICO score is calculated, what the score means, or what they can do to improve their scores.
7 Tips That Can Help You Increase Your Credit Score
1. Dispute Errors and Inaccuracies
Recent studies show that as many as 80% of consumer credit files contain errors and inaccuracies. Chances are you might be 1 of those 80. Errors and inaccuracies, especially ones that are negatively impacting your credit scores, can lead to higher interest rates on loans and credit cards or denials for new credit. After you’ve obtained a copy of your credit reports review them carefully to identify any items that are negatively impacting your credit score and highlight everything you believe to be incorrect, inaccurate, errors or obsolete and using a credit repair software dispute those items. These could be inaccurate or outdated accounts, unauthorized inquiries, collection that are not yours, duplicate derogatory accounts and outdated or unknown public records and accounts listed as “settled,” “paid derogatory”, “paid charge-off’” or anything other than “current” or “paid as agreed” if you had in fact paid on time and in full.
One of the most important things you can do to have a high credit score is to pay your payments on time. Since your payment history alone makes up the 35% of your credit score making your payments on time is critical. Late payments that are 30 days or more past due will have a negative effect on your overall credit score. Late payments stay on your credit reports for seven (7) years.
Often, some creditors will not post your credit line on your credit report either by a human error or due to some other mistakes. Showing less available credit will result in a lower credit score. If you notice accounts that you have are not showing up on your credit report, you can request the credit bureau to report these accounts. Also, If there are past bankruptcies that are closed and should show up with zero balance make sure to they show a zero balance! In many cases, you need to file a dispute to request that the creditor reports the “bankruptcy as a charge off as a zero balance.
4. Pay Down Debt and Don’t Max Out Your Credit Cards.
The second largest factor impacting your credit score is how much you owe. This accounts for 30% of your score. The more you owe, the lower your score will be. Someone who owes $30,000 is riskier than someone who owes only $1000, all else being equal. So a great way to increase your credit score is to pay down as much debt as you can. Another factor in the credit score formula is your debt to credit ratio which should not exceed 60% of your total available credit.
5. Keep Old Positive Accounts Open
Length of credit history is another important credit score factor, so it can be to your advantage to keep open older accounts that are in good standing. While it is important to keep the total number of open accounts manageable, it may be more hurtful to your score to close an old account than to keep it open even though it increases the number of open accounts.
6. Keep Revolving Accounts Open
It is very helpful that you maintain a variety of credit accounts. If you do not have four active credit cards, you might want to open some. If you have poor credit and are not approved for a typical credit card, you might want to set up a “secured credit card” account. A secured credit card requires you to make a deposit that is equal to or more than your limit. This guarantees the bank that you will repay the loan and is an excellent way to establish credit.
7. Use Caution When Applying for New Credit.
Every time you apply for a credit card, line of credit, or other loans, an inquiry is made to your credit report. While new credit is the least important factor in your score, it is still an important issue to consider. When you are shopping for a new loan or credit card, do your shopping in a relatively short period of time. So to avoid these inquiries, apply for new credit only if you must.