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5 Easy Ways to Improve Your Credit Score

One of the most important things you can do is maintain a positive credit score. Credit scores will determine many aspects of your life including your insurance rates, home mortgage rates and even credit card rates to some degree. Too often, people do not understand how easy it is to improve their credit score. Here are some simple ways that you can put to use immediately:

 Watch your card usage.

Blog 5 Easy Ways to Improve Your Credit Score

Naturally the fewer debts you have the higher your credit score can be. However, there are some important things to keep in mind. First, the total outstanding balance of your credit card debt should be at 30 percent or lower of your available credit. Second, small balances on several credit cards can be a problem and finally, using more than what you normally “average” could also lower your credit score.

Opening and closing accounts.

One thing to be careful of is rolling your higher interest cards into a lower rate. Instead, pay the account off and do not make any moves to close it for the time being. Remember, having one or two cards with balances and two or three with no balances can increase your credit score. Another thing to keep in mind is opening lines of credit you do not need is always a bad idea.

Watch payment history.

One missed payment can put a flaw in an otherwise perfect credit score. If you have missed any payments the most important thing you can do immediately is start making payments again prior to the due date and do it regularly. Once you get back on track, you should see a slight improvement in your credit score. One of the options you should discuss with your Member Financial Representative at Oklahoma Central Credit Union is setting up automatic payments for your revolving credit lines.

Understand loan timeframes.

In general, if you are searching for a home or an automobile, credit bureaus will review multiple credit inquiries for the same type of loan as one inquiry. Keep in mind, inquiries (except your own) can lower your credit score. If you have multiple inquiries from credit card companies in a short period of time, chances are this will lower your credit score.

Pull your own credit report.

It's important to understand the difference between your credit report and your credit score. Your credit report details your credit history and is compiled by three major credit-reporting agencies: Equifax, Experian and TransUnion. Your credit score is the actual numerical value assigned to the information in your credit report by the three agencies and you have a FICO Score for each. Your score may be different at each of the credit bureaus. Federal law requires each of the three nationwide consumer credit reporting companies to give you a free credit report every 12 months. Visit annualcreditreport.com to obtain your free credit report.

Building a solid credit history is a powerful financial asset that will ensure you get credit and lower interest rates when you make large purchases, such as a home or automobile.

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