Building a good credit score doesn’t happen overnight – but killing your credit score can. Review these seven common mistakes that are true credit score killers.
Hello Marvelous Folks!
As you are purchasing new vehicles or any large ticket items, please pay attention to these credit score killers that I have listed for you.
Credit Score Killer #1: Avoiding Credit in the First Place
Some people have the misconception that it is just better not to have or use credit. But in today’s world, a good credit score is a must. You need to show that you can use credit responsibly. When you do, you build a positive credit history and score. If you never apply for or use credit, you’ll never build a history and score – which will make it very difficult for you to get the things that you need later, such as a job, a car, insurance, a place to live, or a job.
Credit Score Killer #2: Taking on Too Much Credit Too Quickly
If you open several accounts all one after the other within a short time frame, you are waving big red flags that can cause problems for you now and in the future – especially if you are young and don’t have much of a credit history. While it may be tempting to access all that available credit, be wise and take it slow. Your future self will thank you.
Credit Score Killer #3: Being Late on Your Bills
One of the first things a lender wants to know is do you pay your bills on time? Your timeliness in paying your current obligations is so important to lenders that it comprises a whopping 33% of your credit score. Pay your bills on time. Even a single late payment can negatively affect your credit score.
Credit Score Killer #4: Skipping Your Bills
Late payments are bad enough, but if you start missing payments, your credit score will nosedive. But a foreclosure or bankruptcy can drop your score by 100 points of more.
Credit Score Killer #5: Hitting the Limits on Your Credit Card(s)
Credit experts recommend that each credit cards’ balance should not be more than 30% of the card’s credit limit and ideally below 10%. That means if you have a card with a $10,000 limit, your balance should be no more than $3,000. Better yet, keep it below $1,000. Lenders want to see that you use credit, and use it responsibly.
Credit Score Killer #6: Withholding Payment on a Disputed Charge
Even if you are disputing a charge on your credit card bill you should still pay the entire bill on time, including the disputed amount. Don’t withhold the disputed amount when you make your payment – the credit card company will view that as an incomplete or late or missed payment – which will really hurt. Just make the payment and continue the dispute without putting your credit score at risk.
Credit Score Killer #7: Co-signing
Be careful! When you co-sign a loan for friends or family, if they are late on a payment or miss a payment, there will be consequences to your credit score, too. If you are a co-signer, make sure that the person you are helping can and will make those payments on time.
Some common sense advice here folks - take it to heart and avoid trouble down the road.
Peace, love, and gumbo!
Marvin LeBlanc, LUTCF, CNP
615 Central Ave, New Orleans, LA 70121
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