Increasing your credit score doesn’t require blood, sweat, and tears—just patience and good behavior.
Whether you’re thinking about purchasing a home, shopping around for the best credit card rate, or simply taking a proactive approach to your financial health, you might wonder how to increase your credit score. The good news is that you can add points to your score with just a little patience and persistence.
Pay bills on time, every time
Do you know that payment history accounts for 35% of your credit score? Simply paying your bills on time is an easy way to increase or maintain your credit score. Schedule payments ahead of their due dates using Bill Pay and rest easy knowing your bills are taken care of and that your credit score won’t be affected by late payments.
Examine your credit utilization ratio
Simply stated, this is the amount of debt you hold compared to available credit. There are two ways to improve your ratio: either pay down the debt (preferable) or ask for a credit limit increase on one of your cards. The creditor might pull your credit when you ask for an increase, and that could lower your score by a few points. If you’re confident that you’ll be approved for an increase, that could negate the slight score decrease that comes with a credit pull. But beware—utilizing your extended credit will only make matters worse; your ratio will only become more attractive if you don’t max out your card again!
Check out Experian Boost
Experian Boost is a free service that lets you incorporate your phone and utility bills into the calculation of your credit score. There’s no guarantee, but some users see improved scores after registering. It’s worth noting that not all lenders utilize Experian and this service does not impact your Equifax or TransUnion scores. That said, it still might be worth a shot if you always pay your phone and utility bills on time.
As creditors see it, sometimes the best predictor of future action is past behavior. For this reason, some mistakes will stay on your credit report for many years to come and the only remedy is time and patience. Take a look at the chart below to see how long some of these missteps can continue affecting your score:
||10 years from the date you filed (or 7 years if you’ve filed for Chapter 13)
||7 years from the date your account was charged off
Sean Haver serves the community at the Maitland MIDFLORIDA Credit Union Branch. Sean has been with MIDFLORIDA for 14 years and Branch Manager for the past 7 years. MIDFLORIDA Credit Union specializes in Personal banking, Business banking, investments, and loans. They pride themselves as being Florida’s Community Credit Union. Being a member of the Maitland Area Chamber of Commerce has created opportunities for them to connect with local businesses and other members in the community.
For more information, please contact Sean Haver at the Maitland branch:
Sean Haver, Branch Manager - NMLS# 638589, Maitland
P: (407) 755 - 1329 Ext. 6201 F: (407) 539 - 0172