2014 is here and you may be setting goals for the new year.
How about building a good credit score? This would be a huge financial accomplishment that would make it easier to borrow money, buy or rent a home and apply for jobs.
Building good credit might seem like a big challenge, but you can reach this goal in 2014 by following a few simple tips.
1. Never miss minimum payments.
To start the new year, take out your calendar and note when the payments are due on your credit cards and loans. This is the biggest part of your credit score.
If you make your payments on time, your score will keep going up. If you miss even one payment , your score will crash and erase months of hard work.
Remember you don’t need to pay off all your credit cards at once. Just make sure to at least make the minimum payment each month to help your score.
2. Pay down account balances.
Paying down your credit cards is another way to help your score. The rating agencies penalize you if your accounts are close to being maxed out.
If you currently are in debt, stop using your cards whenever possible and try to reduce your balances each month.
“Help your score while reducing
the amount you pay in interest.”
3. Keep old accounts open.
If you have an old credit card you don’t use anymore, it might be tempting to close the account. Don’t close it.
Part of your credit score comes down to how long your accounts have been open. Your old, out-of-date credit card actually helps you the most in this category.
Instead, use this card maybe once or twice in 2014, pay off the balance and put the card in a safe place for the rest of the year. You don’t need to use your old card any more than that for your credit score.
4. Take out different types of debt.
The credit rating agencies like to see a variety of different accounts on your credit report.
Someone with a car loan, a mortgage and a credit card looks better than someone who only has credit cards.
Don’t buy something you don’t need, but if your goal this year is to buy a new car or home, remember it will also help your credit.
Building your credit score will take some work, but if you keep these tips in mind, 2014 should be a great your for your finances. Happy New Year!
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