Credit tips can help you make your credit score a good one. This means that you can get better rates on loans, and that you’ll look more responsible to prospective landlords and employers. Raising your score is really not that hard if you follow a few everyday tips. Here are just three that will help you get started on building a stronger credit profile.
First, only use your credit card when you know you can pay it off at the end of the month. A credit card shouldn’t be a way to make ends meet. If it is, then you need to cut back on your lifestyle by moving into a smaller home or apartment, cutting out unnecessary shopping trips, or even shopping at a discount grocery store.
If you use a credit card just for gas or other minor purchases and pay it off at the end of the month, you’ll have a low debt to credit ratio. This means that you won’t be carrying a big balance on your credit cards, and this can be very helpful for your overall credit score.
Second, make more than the minimum payments on your loans whenever possible. This is especially true of revolving debts like credit cards and lines of credit or home equity loans. These things need to be kept with the smallest possible balance. To do this, you simply need to pay as much as you can on them each month, at least until you’re carrying less than a 50% balance. This will seriously help your credit score. Plus, it can eventually mean that you have to pay lower monthly payments, which can free up some serious cash in your monthly budget.
Third, make sure that you’re paying all of your bills on time. Any organization from your utility company to your cell phone provider can report late and unpaid bills to the credit reporting bureaus. These are major strikes against you, especially if you already have a high credit score.
If you need to, set up automatic bill pay for all your bills so that you don’t have to worry about missing due dates. If you have trouble making payments on time because of the timing of your bills and paychecks, call your creditors and utilities companies. Many times they’ll work with you to create a new due date. Another option is to scrape together the cash to pay one month ahead at some point, then you can pay when your paycheck gets in without being late.