Experian, Equifax, TransUnion and their trade association (the Consumer Data Industry Association or “CDIA”) have all gone on record saying that employers do not receive credit scores on the credit reports sold for the purposes of employment screening. The use of credit reports for employment screening is allowed in all states, although some have passed legislation limiting the practice to only certain positions. Eric Rosenberg, director of state government relations for TransUnion, has also stated that there is no research that shows any statistical correlation between what’s in somebody’s credit report and their job performance or their likelihood to commit fraud.
But if you have fair credit, all hope is not lost. While lenders typically prefer credit scores to fall in the good to excellent range, people with fair credit scores are still considered viable applicants for many loans. Additionally, with some work, persistence and responsible credit usage, you can improve your credit score.
For others, the best way to establish credit may be to work with your bank or credit union to open an account with a small credit limit to get you started. Opening a secured credit card is another way to get started building your credit. Then, with time and good account management, a good credit history (and scores) will be within your reach.
Having good credit is important because it determines whether you’ll qualify for a loan. And, depending on the interest rate of the loan you qualify for, it could mean the difference between hundreds and even thousands of dollars in savings. A good credit score could also mean that you are able to rent the apartment you want, or even get cell phone service that you need.
Yeah, yeah, everybody’s a winner…we know. But seriously, what good is having your FICO score if you don’t know what the number means on the overall reporting scale? Maybe you have a 740 FICO score. If the maximum score is 750, you’re pretty much a credit genius. If the max is over 1,000 you’re sporting a “C” average – not really all that impressive.
If you continue to pay your bills on time, keep your balances low, and apply for credit judiciously, you will be able to maintain excellent credit scores and get the credit you deserve when you need it, at the best rates available – even though your score isn’t perfect
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Your credit report, however, does not include your credit score. You must pay to get that, generally $8 to $10. Instructions are included when you get your free report. If you’re checking your report and score for the first time in a long time, go with Equifax.
You can begin rebuilding your credit by ensuring all the information on your credit report is accurate. If any information is inaccurate, you may file a dispute. If negative information is accurate, you won’t be able to have it removed from your credit report until it cycles off. Meanwhile, you can take actions to improve any poor credit habits that caused the negative information to appear on your report in the first place.
The only time to ever consider carrying a balance month-to-month on a credit card is if you have a card that has an introductory offfer of zero percent APR for a given amount of time (usually 6-18 months). In this case, you can use it as an interest-free loan. For example, you could get a card that has zero APR for 12 months and put $1200 on it, knowing that you can easily afford to pay $100 per month. You diligently pay the $100 each month and, at the end of the year, it’s completely paid off and you’ve paid absolutely no interest on it. This only works if you don’t charge anything else to the card or, if you do, if you pay off whatever you charge in full each month, in addition to paying the $100. This isn’t a good habit to get into, and it certainly isn’t recommended for frivolous purchases, but it is a nice way to beat the banks at their own game.
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When you start analyzing the average credit score in relation to an individual’s income, you can see that the higher the income level, the higher their average score may be. Likewise, a lower income level may be indicative of a lower average credit score.
Consumers in their thirties are also showing an average credit score lingering around the 620 mark because this age group is more likely to need credit for major expenses and other debt that they had begun to accumulate.
Some have blamed lenders for inappropriately approving loans for subprime applicants, despite signs that people with poor scores were at high risk for not repaying the loan. By not considering whether the person could afford the payments if they were to increase in the future, many of these loans may have put the borrowers at risk of default.
Based on our data, there is a clear relationship between age and average credit scores. Generally speaking, younger consumers have lower credit scores on average. Take a look at this interactive chart to see what our data says about age and average credit scores.
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In Norway, credit scoring services are provided by three credit scoring agencies: Dun & Bradstreet, Experian and Lindorff Decision. Credit scoring is based on publicly available information such as demographic data, tax returns, taxable income and any Betalingsanmerkning (non-payment records) that might be registered on the credit-scored individual. Upon being scored, an individual will receive a notice (written or by e-mail) from the scoring agency stating who performed the credit score as well as any information provided in the score. In addition, many credit institutions use custom scorecards based on any number of parameters. Credit scores range between 300 and 900.
My credit was excellent and then I decided to get a new car, motorcycle & some of those cc’s with good points, rewards. That dropped my score down to bac down fair at the moment! I have quite a few cc’s and all are paid in full each month. So I know my score will go back up. Actually, I”m trying to raise it as high to 850 as I can. It seems after following these forums, you can see what you need to do to have an excellent score. I had a mortgage a couple cc’s. Not enough to get that “excellent” score. I’m starting to see they want you to be able to “handle” your credit very wisely. A higher cl but a very low utilization seems to do the trick with a various mix of loans. Thanks everyone for your input. I would be stuck in the 600’s forever if I didn’t start reading this forum!
Payment history has the biggest impact on your credit score. If you are behind on any bills, you should call the creditor and arrange to pay the past due amounts. After making your payments, you can request that the creditor rescind any reported delinquencies so they that will no longer show up on your credit report. While this may be the slowest step, it is essential to improving your credit score.
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Bankruptcies: Bankruptcies remain on your credit report from seven years (if you file Chapter 13 bankruptcy) to ten years (if you file Chapter 7 bankruptcy) and can significantly harm your credit scores.
It is always good to have a high credit score; however, it may take years to achieve a perfect score. We are talking about a lot of effort here. Of course, you can save money with an excellent FICO credit score. A good example would be a mortgage loan — with an excellent credit score, you can get low interest rates, thus you can save money on the interest that you pay back.
Ronald – Paying off an installment loan shouldn’t typically cause your credit score to drop significantly. Paid installment loans don’t get removed from your credit reports, so the payment history and age of the account still help. What service are you using to monitor your credit scores? Do you have other open credit accounts?
We just love to be judged. Who decided the rules? The banks? The credit card companies? Screw all of them and pay with cash. Get in line sheep and baaah for your “credit scores”. After all, we are all just a number.
The amount of credit you’re using compared to the total amount you have available is your credit utilization ratio, and is an important credit scoring factor. You can calculate your credit utilization rate by adding up your balances on your revolving credit accounts (such as credit cards) and dividing by your credit limit. Most experts recommend keeping your credit utilization ratio below 30% – so, for example, if you have a total credit limit of $10,000, you’d want to keep your balance below $3,000.