Don’t Get Discouraged: Even if you never reach 850, “merely” having excellent credit is an amazing achievement. It will save you boatloads of money over the course of your life. And it won’t ever stand in your way like a “bad” score. Plus, you may find consolation in the fact that having excellent credit means your score is higher than over 60% of people, according to WalletHub data.
Credit scores reflect the information in your credit report. To get good scores, you must take care of your credit report. Instead of focusing on the number, work to maintain a good credit history. You will probably never get a perfect credit score, but that shouldn’t be your goal.
The highest credit score you can have is 850. That’s the maximum credit score used by all of the most popular credit-scoring models today. While less than 1% of people have that highest possible credit score, according to score providers, far more of us can claim to have perfect credit.
Obtain a copy of your credit report – Request a copy of your credit report from each of the three reporting agencies: Equifax, Experian and TransUnion. Carefully review your reports for errors and file disputes over anything that does not belong to you.
Maybe mistakes on your reports have dragged down your score. If your information has been mixed with someone else’s, for instance, that’s a fairly easy problem to address. Simply dispute the errors with the credit bureau.
Maximize Your Available Credit: Credit cards are the best credit-building tool available because most people can get approved for one. They all report information to the major credit bureaus on a monthly basis, and they don’t have to cost you a thing. As long as you pay your bills on time and avoid spending more than you can afford, your credit reports will fill with positive information, and your credit score will improve. And you can help things along by keeping your credit utilization below 30% – or even below 10% if you’re really aiming for perfection.You should also consider becoming an authorized user on a family member’s credit card account. Assuming your relative has good credit or better, his or her standing will effectively rub off on you and accelerate your credit-score gains.
Americans are entitled to one free credit report in every 12-month period from each of the three credit bureaus, but are not entitled to receive a free credit score. The three credit bureaus run Annualcreditreport.com, where users can get their free credit reports. Credit scores are available as an add-on feature of the report for a fee. If the consumer disputes an item on a credit report obtained using the free system, under the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA), the credit bureaus have 45 days to investigate, rather than 30 days for reports obtained otherwise.
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Several factors affect individual’s credit scores. One factor is the amount an individual borrowed as compared to the amount of credit available to the individual. As an individual borrows, or leverages, more money, the individual’s credit score decreases.
I had a score of 800, paid off a loan early and the next month it was 780. I too have no missed payments and a credit card that I carry a low balance on because I was told a factor was showing you can make regular payments. A note: if you go to a car dealer and let them run your credit it actually will show multiple requests because they send them to a number of companies to try and get you the best rate. Instead I took s copy of my credit report and had them give me an estimate based on my score.
As someone with a 798 credit score, at the top of the population, you could potentially qualify for a no financing auto loan. In other words, you wouldn’t owe any interest at all. And in the event that the lender expects you to pay interest, it will be an extremely low rate averaging around 3.6%. This is true independent of the type of car, used or new, that you’re looking to buy.
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That is so true. I am proved to the Credit bureau that a billed is not mind. They still did not changed it. I did what Juanita suggested. I paid off everything then my score came down. Now I save up money and buy the items or use layaway. As I said before Operator head space. (JIJO). Creditors want your credit to be bad so that they can charge you higher interest rates.
Never borrow what you can pay back with a unemployment check. And if it’s not a emergency. Save for it. Don’t charge. You might not get your flat panel TV today but when you do it will actually cost you less so you can buy a bigger one. The banks broke your country by manipulating you into to having it now. So let’s break the banks by putting your cash in your pocket instead of thier pockets.
I had the same problem! I saw that my credit score was high so I was thinking hmmm why not go and apply for a credit card, thought I could manage it but then temptation got out of hand. So my credit score is EXTREMELY low, very shortly after opening up the accounts. Its good to know that if I just pay off the balances and keep the balance lower than 30% my credit will shoot back up 🙂
Don’t Rush Things: Credit-scoring models compare the types of accounts on your credit reports to those of people your age or folks with a similar financial profile. This reflects how well-rounded of a borrower you are and the extent to which your financial responsibility has been tested. But while demonstrating financial versatility is necessary to achieving a perfect credit score, rushing things is a recipe for disaster. So wait to get a car loan, mortgage, etc., until you’re truly ready.
Where are you getting the scores? If it is a free credit score from Credit.com, it should have letter grades that show you which factors are helping your scores and which may be holding it down. That would tell you where to focus your efforts. It’s also a good idea to check your free annual credit reports
Again, different models have different ranges, and lenders make their own decisions about what they consider acceptable. The scores typically range from 301 to 850, with categories from bad to excellent. Here’s how the credit tiers generally break down:
Criteria used: Credit needed, tools to track credit score, ability to improve credit line, rewards rate, rewards categories, sign-up bonuses, redemption options, promotional 0% APR periods, annual fee, other rates and fees, extra features and benefits, customer service, ease of application
Late payments and other negative information on your credit report can have a lasting impact on your credit score. If the information is accurate, you’ll have to wait for it to cycle off your credit report and try to build a more positive credit history in the interim. (If the information is not accurate, you can dispute it.) Usually, the impact of negative information fades over time.
Thanks for the link! that explains that. I should of just went for the full HELOC that I qualified for, and only borrowed what I needed. BTW The loan went into a garage and new roofing which gave me additional equity as well!
Pavelka said he always managed his money well as a bachelor but did occasionally carry a credit card balance. When he got married in 1987, “my wife kind of kicked me in line,” he said. Today, he said his wife still has veto power over his “fun” purchases. He defied her once – when he bought his Harley in 2005. (“To her credit, her concern was more my safety than expense,” he said. “So although I already had my motorcycle endorsement for 20 years, I took Harley’s Rider’s Edge training course.”)
It may seem like a no-brainer, but a 2015 study showed that 25% of Americans don’t consistently pay their bills on time. Why is that an issue? Your payment history accounts for 35% of your credit score, so every time you become delinquent on a payment, you’re lowering your credit score.
Here is my problem. Our credit history only dates back 1 year 10 months…We got 2 bad credit, credit cards when we started out. They have low lines of credit at $600 and $700. They charge us $75 a year for them. We now have good credit and way better cards and would like to drop the first two. They are only about 3 months older than our better cards. They hold us hostage with those fees because we are afraid to close them and drop our credit. We had a Kohls card for 3 months and decided to close it because we just didn’t use it and it dropped our credit by 15 points! How much will it drop if we close these 2 cards then?
He put part of his purchase on his new credit account and paid the rest with Bass Pro gift cards he bought at Giant Eagle (during a double Fuel Perks promotion). He bought the gift cards with his BP Visa credit card, which gives him gas rebates.
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Both of these scoring models, however, use much of the same information such as the consumer’s payment history, the length and type of credit they have, the amount of their credit usage, and how many recent inquiries they have on their credit file. However, if the length of your credit history is not lengthy, then you may want to more closely monitor your VantageScore because a FICO Score will require a minimum of six months of credit history as well as a minimum of one reported account within the last six months.
It’s not easy to just ‘quit living paycheck to paycheck’. Most people that do don’t have a choice because they don’t have the money to do otherwise. Granted, they are unlikely to be a safe bet to loan money to, but that’s the way it is. It is far too easy to talk about people just doing things differently when you don’t live the same way as they do. Paycheck to paycheck is *the* reality for a lot of people.
While the FICO score calculation doesn’t directly consider age, 15% of the score comes from the length of your credit history—putting younger people at a natural disadvantage. Likewise, 10% of the score is based on the mix of debt you have; it’s better to have a diverse mix—from a mortgage to student debt to car loans—than a single credit card. (And younger consumers are less likely to have a mortgage; the median age of first-time home buyers is 32, a report last year found.)
Credit History and Mix: Credit scores consider the type of debt you have (such as credit cards and loans) along with how long you’ve had it. Using a variety of credit accounts over a long period of time can improve your credit score.
Considering these things, your credit score is one of the most important numbers in your life. It can affect every action you take, from the house you live in to the car you drive. Taking steps to improve your 798 credit score is the best way to save money and make your life easier down the road. There’s no excuse to not improve your credit score!
We try to use the blog as a place to help consumers get answers to their credit questions rather than a place to point fingers (in either direction). So I’d asked that we close this discussion so we can focus on answering questions for consumers to have them. Thank you.
Individuals with fair credit can still qualify for mortgages, car loans and some credit cards with a sufficient income. For example, many mortgages require a minimum credit score of 620. But keep in mind that with a fair credit score, you will more than likely pay a higher interest rate than if you had good or excellent credit.
Many people out there have struggled through this “depression” and their credit scores have gone down. Yet they have managed to survive and pay their bills. They have paid late, because of loss of jobs etc. Its been reported that 75% of the country have a 620 score or below. An now they are being tagged as poor credit. They are the ones who struggled to stay out of foreclosure, or bankruptcy. You are the middle class who are the victims. Start calling your congressman and woman to change the Dodd Frank banking laws.
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“I don’t know anybody who has a perfect credit score,” said Rod Griffin, director of public education for Experian, one of the three major credit bureaus, whose California company provided the basis for Pavelka’s score.
Common ways that consumers improve their credit ratings are by contacting the major credit bureaus (Experian, Equifax and TransUnion) and asking them to remove reporting errors, paying down credit card balances and paying off accounts that have been placed in collections. Another tactic is to ask for an increased credit limit on your credit cards. For people who carry credit card balances, an increased credit limit lowers the credit-to-debt ratio, a key factor in credit scoring.
Lenders may choose to use non-FICO credit scores to gain additional insight on consumers, especially those with limited traditional credit history who might be difficult to score. These scores may be added to the FICO score if they provide unique insights or used instead of the FICO score if they provide similar predictiveness. Most of these scores are based significantly on data not available through the national credit bureaus, such as rental, utility, and telecom payment data or public record information such as property deeds and mortgages, liens, personal property titles, tax records, and licensing data.
A 650 credit score on the FICO score scale of 300-850 is considered fair. People with this credit score may be considered subprime borrowers and may be offered higher interest rates or less ideal terms for credit cards and loans.
If you notice that your credit score is well below the American average of 695, or you’re constantly facing roadblocks to your financial goals because of your credit, it might be time to get help from a professional.
Payment history is the most heavily weighted factor in many credit scoring models. Typically, it can account for more than a third of your credit score. Paying all your bills on time per your agreement with the lender shows potential lenders that you are responsible about paying what you owe.
It is almost impossible to get a good credit score with TransUnion. I pay everything ahead of time and never late. My husband and I have a 6 figure job. We are never late, with any bill. It is being made harder and harder to keep your score higher with the changing in FICO, ADVANTAGE, or PLUS SCORE. Who knows which way a lender is going to choose. A person with a good job, who pays their bills on time everytime can still get screwed! Saddest part, we are far from being over extended! But you do have to keep an eye on your credit reports, because open and in good standing accounts can go to closed and derogatory. I am still cleaning up 3 student loans on all 3 credit bureaus that happened to me. I tried to fix it, had to hire someone to do it for me. Happened in January, dropped my score over 70 points. So you have to keep an eye on the credit bureaus. It’s all a game, they keep your scores low so businesses sell at higher interest rates and they get kick backs. Name of the game. You just have to be better at it than them!
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Many Midwestern states, for example, have the highest credit scores in the country. Minnesota tops the list with an average score of 701. At $67,244, the median household income is above the national average of $51,939, but Minnesotans tend not to spend beyond their means.
In general, a FICO credit score above 650 is considered good, although many people strive to be above 750. It is practically impossible to score a perfect 850 FICO score because there are a lot of different items from your credit report which go into calculating your FICO score. Keep in mind that different lenders (mortgage, credit card, automobile loan) will use different methods of credit scoring to assess your credit risk.