Clean Up your Credit Report
By law you are entitled to one free credit report a year. Go to AnnualCreditReport.com to request your free copy. Remember to save or print the report or you may at a later date need to pay for another copy.
The 3 largest credit bureaus are:
Once you have your report, examine everything carefully. In particular look for late payments or unpaid bills. If the information is inaccurate the report will tell you where to send a dispute.
Keeping your credit report clean is not only good for your credit score but it can also make or break your employment opportunities. Many employers can and will pull credit prior to hire new employees.
Keep Your Balances Low (Pay them Down)
According to FICO, 30 percent of your score is based on the amount you owe.
However, it’s not simply how much you owe that’s important. It’s how much you owe compared to how much credit you have. For example, if you have a $10,000.00 limit and you owe $5,000.00 then your credit utilization is 50 percent. The optimal amount owed on $10,000.00 would be $3,000.00 which is then 30 percent.
If you are above the 30 percent threshold then paying down your balance is a great way to boost your credit score.
Pay Twice a Month
If you are using a Rewards Credit Card for all your monthly purchases consider paying it twice a month rather than once a month. Let’s say you charge $1,000.00 per month and pay it off on a monthly basis. The credit bureaus will see that the limit is $1,000.00 and the amount owed is $1,000.00 which is 100 percent. Make payments twice a month to keep your running balance lower. If you make a large purchase on your card and have the cash available, pay it off immediately.
Increase Your Credit Limit
If you are unable to pay down your balances ask for a credit limit increase from your creditor.
If your limit is $1,000.00 and they raise the limit to $2,000.00 you are now at 50 percent. Just remember not to charge anything more.
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