Secrets to great credit

Talk to anyone and they will have advice on what has helped raise their credit score.  Everyone’s “great ideas” may sound dandy, but you need some solid, trustworthy advice.  Here are some ways to achieve an 800+ credit score.

FICO scores range from 300-850 and your score is used by a number of lenders to determine whether you are a good candidate for loaning money to.  It also determines how much money they will lend you as well as the interest rate they will charge. Having a high score will help with your big purchases tremendously by saving you hundreds of dollars in finance charges.

What are some basic, real life tips you can use to help raise your score:

  1. ALWAYS, pay your bills on time.  It has been said that the “high rollers of the 800+ credit score group,” immediately pay their bills.  As soon as it comes in, the minimum or the balance is paid in full.  No waiting around, risking an oversight.
  2. Keep your balances low, while having higher credit limits.   The balance relative to the credit limit is an important measurement in credit scores. If you can keep that percentage as low as possible, less than 10 percent preferably, your credit scores will reward you.
  3. Apply for credit only if you need it.  Too many inquiries show that you are trying to get a bunch of credit approvals from different sources.  When shopping for a car loan, keep it short and within a week.
  4. Don’t ever co-sign for anyone…. EVER. The reason someone needs a co-signer is because they have a high risk of defaulting. Then guess who is stuck repaying the loan?  Yes….YOU! I f you co-sign for anyone, that debt becomes your responsibility.  If that person misses a payment, it will hurt your credit score.

There really is no “secret way” to improve your credit.  Just practice self- discipline, stay on top of your bills, and live within your budget.  If you consistently take your credit seriously, you will increase your credit score.

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My firm has 3 goals – be cost effective & efficient, make complicated things simple, and change the way people think about attorneys. We do this by offering flat rates with payment plans, educating our clients, and by encouraging everyone to ask us questions to better understand what we do & why we do it. I am a credit attorney and I love helping people with debt and credit legal issues.

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