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How to Improve Your Credit Score

Credit scores have a huge impact on your everyday life. From lowering your mortgage rate to getting approved for a new credit card, life’s simplest tasks are often affected by your credit. No matter where your score stands now, there is always room for improvement. Contrary to popular opinion, there is more you can do than simply wait for that delinquent payment to be erased from your credit report. By taking a few easy proactive steps, you can improve your credit score in just a short period of time.

Pay Your Bills on Time
This is an easy one and while it might not explicitly increase your credit score, keeping on top of your monthly payments does prevent your score from going down any further. So before you do any extra spending, pay those bills to make sure you’re not hurting your credit.

Pay Down Your Credit Cards
Credit bureaus analyze how much available credit you have versus how much debt you carry. Try to aim for 30% or less. So, if you have a $10,000 limit on your credit card and owe more than $3,000, making extra payments to get down to that 30% will give a big boost to your credit score.

Consolidate Credit Card Balances
The credit bureaus also consider how many of your credit cards carry balances. Focus on paying down the smaller amounts you owe, so that you have fewer debts overall. Also consider consolidating your debt onto one card, assuming it comes with a reasonable interest rate and your debt is within that 30% range we talked about above.

Keep Loan Inquiries to a Minimum
Your credit score gets dinged every time you make a loan application because it indicates that you are trying to borrow more money and may be more of a risk. Get estimates from lenders before actually applying for a loan or credit card to decrease the number of inquiries into your credit history. If you’re making a major purchase like a home or a car, complete all of your applications within a few weeks of each other, because they will only be counted as one inquiry when made within a reasonable amount of time.

Use these four simple steps to take charge of your credit score and you’ll soon find yourself in a better credit range with access to better interest rates and loan products. Just remember that these moves must be followed consistently to maintain a lasting impact on your financial history.

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Grace Chen
Grace Chen - Writer & Editor
A graduate of the Haas School of Business, University of California, which is one of the top three (3) business schools in the U.S., Grace Chen has 10 years of experience in this field and have been delivering stellar business content through her written word. She’s the chief editor of Communicate Better and has written and edited thousands of content published in various online and printed media, including the NYSE-sponsored research studies and MEC Global. Connect with Grace on LinkedIn, https://www.linkedin.com/in/grace-chen-9254ab8/