Can These Surprising Factors Hurt Your Credit Score?

Have you ever thought about what affects your credit? You might have a general idea of things that affect your credit score, but do you really know which factors mater the most? Do you know which items can affect your credit score the most? Your credit score can either help you or hurt you depending on its number. If you want to rent an apartment or even buy a house, your credit score matters. As you may know, high credit scores tell others that you have a history of being able to manage your debt. This information is helpful for you in the long run because it helps you by telling others you can stick to your payments. If you want to be approved for things like a nice apartment, good auto loan or even cash-back credit cards, you must have a good credit score. Below, we will discuss ways for you to improve your credit score.

Make Payments on Time

We all know making payments on time tremendously affects your credit, however, your payment history is more important than you may realize. Your payment history accounts for 35% of your credit score, so, if you are looking to improve your credit you can very easily do so by making one-time payments toward your debt. If you miss one payment because you missed a payment on accident, make sure you pay the minimum payment before 30 days pass your due date because that is typically when the creditor will report your late payment, which will drop your score. Another way to make sure your payments are boosting your credit score, instead of hindering it, is to make at least the minimum payment due on your due date. If you can, it even helps your credit to pay more than the minimum payment and pay before your due date. Lastly, talk to your creditor about a possible payment plan if you find that for some reason you cannot make a payment. This also lets them know that you are doing your best to make the payment.

Timeline of Your Credit

Unfortunately, a good credit score may not happen overnight. It can take time, and that is okay. You can start building your credit score today. The good news though, is that creditors not only look at your score, but also look at how long you have been building credit for. Your credit timeline does take time to build and there are no shortcuts you can take. So, if you are wondering how to keep your credit high and show good credit history, the only way to do that is to make your payments on time, every time. It even helps to keep your debt low and only borrow when you need. So, set reminders on your phone, calendar or whatever it is to make sure you are consistent with payments. Missing just one payment can hurt your rating.

Diverse Credit History

Now, I know we just told you to limit your debt, but we do not mean that you should only have one line of credit card debt. You should be smart about choosing to borrow or take out a second credit card. You will want to research different types of debt before applying. However, it is important to have a diverse range of open debt. You will want to have credit card, mortgage, line of credit, etc. By having a diverse portfolio of open accounts and making payments on time for each of these, it shows that you can manage multiple open accounts and pay them all on time. It shows that you can manage multiple lines of debt, which ultimately builds your credit.

Know Your Credit

Most importantly, make sure you are keeping track of your credit. Keeping track of credit allows you to know if the steps you are taking to improve your credit is working or not. You may have heard checking your credit score can hurt your credit. However, did you know that there are certain ways you can check your credit score that will not hurt your rating? You can pull your credit rating online to see your score. A website like can let you see your credit report for free. It will not affect your credit score because it will be a soft inquiry on your score.

If you do check your score and you have bad credit, do not worry. It is true that blindly applying to a bunch of different lines of credit is a bad idea. Often, these credit checks are a hard inquiry of your credit, thus hurting your score. There are still other ways that you can still build your credit that do not require a credit check. If you are looking to borrow money but are afraid you will not be approved, you may still be able to borrow money. For more on borrowing money with bad credit, or no credit, check out articles like this one

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