Tips for Improving Your Credit Score
January 22, 2015
A good credit score is one of the most important aspects of buying a home, so the higher your number is, the better. However, some get so excited about the prospect of buying a house that they forget about their credit score until it's time to make an appointment with the lender. If you're thinking of buying a home in Grand Junction at any point in the future, there's several ways to start improving your credit score now so you can get it in top shape by the time house hunting rolls around.
Find out your credit score
If you want to work on improving your credit score, the first step should be to find out what it is so you know what you're working with. You can obtain it through the three major credit bureaus: Experian, TransUnion, and Equifax.
Lower your credit card balances
Your debt-to-credit ratio should be 30 percent or less, and the amount of revolving credit you have compared to how much of it is unavailable plays a huge part in your credit score. Start now with lowering your credit card balances, and if possible, pay them off. When you're searching for homes for sale in Grand Junction, those low balances are going to be a huge asset.
Pay your bills on time
Not only is paying your bills late a detriment to your credit score, but it also racks up expensive fees. Do whatever you have to do – set calendar alerts, use automatic withdrawal, etc – to make sure your bills are paid on time every month.
Get late fees removed
If you've been a great client with a particular company, but you very recently incurred a late fee because you didn't pay the bill on time, see if you can get it removed. Some companies are willing to give their good clients a break, but only if you ask.
Check for errors
No one and nothing is perfect, but if you're checking your credit score so you can start searching through Grand Junction real estate, take a look through your credit report first for any errors. If there are any, make sure you dispute them and have a note put on your account about the mistake.
Bring your accounts up-to-date
If you're behind on any payments, whether it's for a credit card or even with a doctor's office, bring all your accounts up-to-date. For those on which you have limits, such as credit cards, pay more than enough so when you're next charged interest, it won't put you in the red again.
Don't close your credit cards
Even if you're not using your credit cards, don't close them out; leave them open. Your revolving credit is important, and closing even one credit card can knock everything out of whack. To make sure the creditor doesn't close the account due to inactivity, every few months or so, make a purchase using that card, just pay the balance off in full at the end of the month.
Leave time for it to get better
Don't start trying to improve your credit score right when you start looking at homes for sale in Grand Junction. Do it way beforehand so you can continuously improve your score as you get closer to buying the home. You need time to let your credit score get better before you put the number out there.
Your credit score is so important when it comes to buying a home, and it's vital if you're applying for a mortgage. Keep trying to better your score long before and while you're searching for real estate Grand Junction so you won't be considered a credit risk and you'll improve your chances of getting approved for the mortgage you want.