The start of a new year is an excellent time to review and improve your financial standing. Consider these solutions to raise your credit score and pocket the savings.
- Request a free credit check-up.
- Determine your credit score and take steps to improve it.
- Consider better loan alternatives.
- Reap the savings!
What are you currently paying on your loans and credit cards?
We want you to attain a worry-free financial life with our New Year Credit Refresh. Areas to consider are your credit score, monthly payments, and rates you’re paying on loan and credit card balances.
Understanding your credit score:
- It is a number that can range anywhere from 300 to 850. Scores below 600 are considered poor; scores above 720 are strong. When you have a strong score, you can save money!
- Savings may take the form of lower loan rates, better pricing on insurance, and other advantages.
- Errors are not uncommon on your credit report and can hurt your score — costing you money.
Start by reviewing your credit report. If you have a credit report on file with us from the past six months, we can examine it with you. Or you can bring in your own report. Another option is to visit www.MyCreditReport.com and obtain a free credit report. The three credit reporting agencies, Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion, can also assist.
Analyzing your score:
Your score includes several information points, including your payment and credit history, the types of loans you have, and how much debt you have. It is comprised of the following:
- Amount of Debt Owed (30%): The percentage of credit limits available.
- New Credit (10%): The number of credit inquiries and new line openings in the last 12 to 18 months.
- Length of Credit History (15%): The amount of time any given loan or credit line has been reported open.
- Credit Mix (10%): How responsibly a person handles a blend of credit accounts. Installment loans may raise scores; revolving loans tend to lower scores.
- Payment History (35%): The most weight in a person’s score is how timely bills are paid. Are payments made consistently on time, or are they late or delinquent?
A poor score can cost you money.
Perhaps you’re applying for an auto or home loan, but your credit is weak. While you may qualify for the financing, it may cost more because of a higher rate. But if you’ve handled your credit sensibly and your score is strong, you can usually qualify for a lower rate.
Scores can improve.
While there are many factors, everyone has a chance to boost their credit score. The first step is to verify your score and, if needed, set a goal to raise it.
Some factors to consider:
- Errors in your credit report can affect and even drop your score. By frequently verifying your report, you can watch for inaccuracies. We can help you look for and correct mistakes if you’re unsure where to start.
- Reducing outstanding debt, specifically credit card debt, can help your score. For example, your score can be poorly affected if you’ve maxed out your credit cards or applied for large amounts of credit. Ask us about a consolidation strategy if you have too much debt.
More tips for raising your credit score:
- Pay your bills on time. Set yourself calendar reminders, set up automatic payments, put a note on your fridge – whatever works, and stick with it. Timely payments impact your credit score in a big way.
- Don’t tap into all of your credit available to you. Try to keep 50% of any credit line open.
- Build credit earlier. The longer your history, the higher score you may have.
- Choose your credit sources wisely. Build good credit with our credit-building loan options, such as a share secured loan. Avoid unscrupulous payday lenders.
- Too many credit applications can lower your score. Be prudent as to where and how often you apply for credit.
- Look to have “good debt” reflected on your credit report. Good debt can include share secured loans, auto loans, and mortgages from reputable institutions.
Lower your monthly payments.
Consider what you’re currently paying on your loans and credit cards. We may be able to help you consolidate debt or streamline your loans to help you save. You’ll also reduce your interest expense.
Stop in for a New Year Credit Refresh. We can discuss your options and provide tips and money management tools to make staying on track easier.