Know the Score
In this post we are going to talk about a topic that can make most people shudder, something that is so important but can make some a little anxious or uncomfortable. Brace yourself, it’s time to talk about your credit score!
Your finances, including your credit score are very important in your day to day life but especially as you are considering large purchases like a home. There are minimum credit scores that are needed to acquire a loan, and having above average credit can many times save you money by making lower interest rates available to you.
Talking about financial issues of any sort can be hard or feel overwhelming. Talking about money seems like it should be a black and white, non-emotional topic, because it’s just numbers,right?!? It actually is just the opposite for many of us. Our emotions and our money are actually very connected. Money is something we work hard for, it is something we are afraid of losing because it provides for us and our families. It also provides us with the tangible things that we have and it brings us great joy to help others with our money, or give gifts. So, it’s natural to feel a little nervous or anxious when making big money decisions. That’s why it’s so important to get all the information you can to be prepared and also it’s important to work with a trusted professional who can take the emotion out of it and give you some great advice as well.
Do you know what your credit score is? If you don’t, you’re not alone, many people have no idea what their score is until they need credit. There are many factors that go into determining your score. Here are some of the things used to calculate your score:
*On -time payments
*How much credit do you have/ how much is available to you
*Length of your credit history
*Amount of outstanding debt
*Types of credit used
Each of these items has a different weight on your overall score, and before you make decisions about what to do to improve your score you should talk to a professional. I’ve heard many stories of people trying to make their credit score better and actually hurting it. One individual thought he had too many credit cards open, and never really used them, so he cancelled them all. This lowered his available credit and his length of credit, ultimately lowering his credit score. Yikes!!
There are many services that will tell you your credit score. Several credit card companies and banks are now making that service free to their customers. But, I would urge you to go a step further. Talk with a lender. They will not only be able to thoroughly look into your credit, but they can help you understand it and potentially help you improve your score by giving you ideas and information. They will also be able to help explain the loan options that are available to you, and you will have an idea of how much of a down payment you would need.
If you're thinking of buying a house or any other large purchase, it’s time to give your credit score a check up!