Common financial advice warns you to keep a close eye on your credit score, keeping it as high as possible to avoid the repercussions of a “fair” or “poor” score. You’re expected to engage in habits that improve your credit score, such as making on-time payments, utilizing only a portion of your available credit, and having a good balance of credit (preferably from long-term accounts). But how important is your credit score to your long-term financial future, really, and how could it impact your daily life?
“It’s a frightening statistic that 47% of Americans would struggle to come up with $400 to cover an unplanned expense. Yet nearly half of today’s workers are living paycheck-to-paycheck, with no financial cushion whatsoever, and a big part of the reason boils down to living beyond our means.”
“Most people don’t put much thought into their credit scores until the time comes to apply for a loan. If you expect to need financing in the next few months and aren’t convinced your credit score is high enough to get you approved, you’ll need to act quickly to improve your chances. Thankfully, there are several things you can do to boost your credit score in record time.” (“4 tips to increase your credit score fast.” Maurie Backman. 8 May 2017. http://money.cnn.com/2017/05/08/pf/credit-score-tips/index.html?iid=Lead)
One way to increase your credit score? Ask for an increase in your credit limit. But read CNN’s article for more tips!
Buying a home — it’s a big decision; one that you should prepare for in advance.
“One of the most important things a first-time homebuyer can do is prepare their budget for this big financial event.” (“How to Prepare Your Budget for Buying Your First Home”. http://finance.yahoo.com/news/prepare-budget-buying-first-home-123000854.html)
And there’s a few key ways that you can get your budget in order:
Your FICO score is the yardstick by which most lenders measure your credit worthiness.
The major credit bureaus keep track of loans that you have taken out in the past and how well you managed this debt. A high FICO score indicates that you have been responsible with the credit extended to you and will reflect positively on applications that you submit, while a lower score indicates that you have had credit issues in the past. Continue reading →
Potential home buyers looking to acquire a home loan and make their dream of homeownership a reality can do a lot to ensure their credit scores are in good shape, as buyers will find it easier to get a loan with a few key tips. For example, it is advised that you keep your credit card balances within half of the allowed limit. If you have $10,000 as your limit, then it is wise to restrict your statement amount to $5,000.
Paying in full and on time are obvious steps to improving credit as well, as is paying high-interest and small loans first. Another step is if you know you will be unable to pay on time, negotiate with your bank.
Banks often will be willing to extend your loan period and reduce the equated monthly installment (EMI) if they see a genuine customer.