Tips to Improve Your Credit Score

September 15, 2009

Improving your credit score isn’t something that happens overnight but by following the suggestions below you should be able to raise your credit score over time.

Don’t Pay Your Bills Late

Your payment history is the most heavily weighted factor that goes into your credit score so make sure you’re at least making your minimum payments.  If those are more than you can afford sometimes the companies you owe money to are willing to put you on an extended payment plan.

Maintain Low Credit Card Balances

The next most important factor making up your credit score is the percentage of your available credit that you borrow.  If you’re constantly using up over 30% or 40% of your credit available you will be deemed a higher risk.

Build Credit History

The average age of your credit accounts is the next biggest component of your credit score.  If you add a bunch of new credit and cancel old cards this will drag down the average age of your credit accounts and your credit score along with it.

Use a Mix of Debt

This matters because companies look at the different types of debt that you have and weigh some more heavily than others.  For example, your credit card debt carries more weight than your mortgage or car loan.

Reduce New Credit Lines

Credit reporting agencies Experian, Equifax, and TransUnion monitor for attempts to open new lines of credit.  Each time a lender does a hard pull on your credit report that credit inquiry is noted and the more you have the worse an effect it can have on your credit score.


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Ben Edwards, the founder of Money Smart Life, saved up enough to buy a Nintendo back when he was 12 years old. When he used the money to buy shares of Wal-Mart stock instead, he knew he wasn't like the other kids... His addiction to personal finance has paid off for his family and now he's helping you to afford the life that you want. Check him out on the web at Google Plus, Twitter and Facebook.

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2 Responses to Tips to Improve Your Credit Score

  • Jen

    Using your Credit Cards indiscriminately can lead to several complications, one among which is a poor credit score. An alternative to using a Credit Card or paying by cash is using Debit Cards. They are safe, and they make you spend more responsibly, because every time you use your debit card, cash is debited from your account.