How to Get Good Credit
In the past few years, the importance of good credit scores has escalated tremendously. Your credit ratings influence many critical financial decisions in life. More and more people are now interested in knowing how to get good credit scores. If you have a low credit score, there are plenty of steps you can take to improve it.
- Get a Credit Card
If you already don’t have one, getting a credit card can help you get a good credit score. If you don’t get approved for a regular credit card, consider a secured credit card where the issuer sets the credit limit equal to the security deposit. Also, make sure the card reports to all reputable credit bureaus.
- Borrow What You Can Afford
Charging only what you can afford to pay back is an indication to the lenders that you are a responsible borrower – making it easier for you to borrow money and get new credit. Furthermore, borrowing only what you can afford helps to avoid excess debt.
- Use a Small Amount of Available Credit
Maxing out your credit card or even coming close to your credit limit makes you look irresponsible, especially if you are unable to pay the whole balance within given time. Don’t get close to your credit limit – it is advisable to use only 20%-30% credit of your total credit limit.
- Start With One Credit Card
If you are still learning how to get good credit score, you might assume that accumulating an assortment of credit cards in the first few years will help. This is a major misconception – the more credit you have available, the more you’ll be tempted to use and the harder it will get to pay it off. Moreover, too many inquiries about credit can adversely affect your credit score.
- Make Payments on Time
Delayed payments will get in your way of getting good credit. To ensure that all your bills are paid off on time, set automatic payments or reminders. Also try to pay more than the minimum payment – it will give a good impression.
- Make Payments in Full
What’s better than paying more than minimum, is paying your bills in full. This can be made possible by charging only what you can afford to pay. Your credit score largely depends on the timeliness of your payments – timely payments mean higher credit score.
- Let Your Accounts Age
After you’ve learnt how to get good credit, leave your oldest accounts open. A long credit history helps to get a good credit score – more experience with credit cards and paying timely bills gives lenders more information to determine whether you are a good credit risk.