Your credit score influences a lender's decision to give you a single-family home mortgage loan – or not. The best way to earn and keep a high score is to pay debts (on credit cards and car or student loans, for instance) on time. These five additional tips can help you gain or maintain solid credit, according to a report by financial-education company Financial Finesse:
- Lower credit scores mean higher interest rates. As a result, a borrower with a lower score pays more over the life of the loan than one with a higher score.
- One and not done. Check your credit scores with all three of the main U.S. credit bureaus: Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion.
- A credit score between 661 and 780 is considered good, with 700 being in the sweet spot. An excellent credit score is between 781 and 850.
- Transferring credit-card balances to a card with a lower interest rate won't help you. In fact, it can hurt. Rather than opening new accounts, pay down your existing ones.
- Track your credit scores regularly to catch and correct any issues early.
Read MarketWatch's June 2, 2015, article for more details and a link to the report: "5 Things to Know to Improve Your Credit Score"
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