Mistakes that are Lowering Your Credit Score
Credit and financial wellness can seem complicated and difficult to manage, but it affects a variety of important facets of your life. From buying a home to getting a job, your credit score can affect it all. In order to take control of your credit score, here are five common credit mistakes you could be making right now that might be lowering your score and what to do about them.
Closing old credit cards
While some might think closing out old credit cards they aren’t using will increase their credit scores, the opposite is actually true. Credit history plays a big role in your credit score. If your longest history of credit is a card you aren’t using anymore, don’t close it! Keep it open and pay one or two small bills with that card to keep it active, but automate the payment each month so you can set it and forget it.
Closing a credit card will also lower your available credit, which will impact your score. The more available credit you have, the higher your score will be. So keep your older credit cards open with little to no balances on them to maintain your available credit and credit history.
Maxing out your credit card
As mentioned above, the more available credit you have, the higher your score will be. If you have a credit card that is maxed out or close to being maxed out, your available credit will be lower, decreasing your overall credit score.
If you have a card with a high balance, consider opening a second card to reallocate some of the debt and open up more available credit to you. Then, pay each of them off as soon as possible to avoid accruing additional debt.
Not monitoring your credit report
Another common mistake that could be lowering your credit score could be that many American’s make is not monitoring their credit reports more closely. You might check your score here and there, but it is important to really review your credit report to make sure nothing on that report is inaccurate. There are a variety of resources you can use to monitor your credit, including annualcreditreport.com where you can request your credit report.
If you find mistakes on your credit report you can dispute it with all three of the major credit reporting agencies, Equifax, TransUnion and Experian.
Co-signing for multiple loans
Co-signing for a loan means promising to pay for that loan if the borrower cannot or does not pay. If that loan is not paid for it will affect your credit as well.
If you are thinking about co-signing for a loan here are four tips you can utilize to protect yourself.
Avoiding your debt.
Avoiding your debt and not getting help if you’re in financial difficulty is another common mistake that can extend your financial distress and get you further into debt. The Credit Care Company can help you with debt settlement, credit building programs, loan consolidation and more.
If you’re looking for help on why your credit score could be lowering, contact us today.