There are plenty of reasons to think about improving your credit score. A higher credit score makes it easier for you to take out loans, manage repayment, engage in transactions, and enjoy a greater degree of financial freedom.
But while there are plenty of reasons to improve your credit score, most people are unsure of how to go about it.
Your credit score can seem like a hard figure to understand at times. And because problems with your credit in the past can make it difficult for you to improve your score in the present, many people assume that some scores are beyond salvageable.
While everyone’s situation is different, it is possible to improve your own credit score by following a few simple steps.
Though they may seem basic, exhibiting these good habits in perpetuity can make it easier to improve your credit score.
1. Monitoring Your Balances and Paying Them Off
A poor credit score is often the result of small mistakes piling up over time. In many cases, letting the balances of your cards get too high for too long can lead your credit score to suffer. This means that to improve your score you should do the opposite.
While some people struggle to handle credit issues because their score has caused them financial issues in the present, monitoring your balances is still the first step to getting things under control.
Even if you can’t reduce your balances by much, getting them down over time is still better than simply letting them build up.
Resolving outstanding balances quickly means more than just paying off your cards over time. It means making fewer charges on fewer cards when possible.
Even if you make multiple small-to-medium sized purchases on multiple cards, outstanding balances can affect your credit score.
2. Understand the Value of Good Debt
When many people think about debt, they picture something that will always impact their credit score negatively.
Even though negative items will disappear from your report after 7 years, many people consider debt to be something that they want to take off their credit report as soon as possible.
But in some cases, debt can actually help improve your credit score. Provided the debt was paid off in a timely manner, having a record of it can come in handy.
These types of simple but consistent payments over time can work wonders for your credit score. This is why timeliness can sometimes play a bigger role than amounts when it comes to helping you boost your credit score.
3. Making Payments on Time Consistently
Paying off outstanding balances can certainly help your credit, but consistent payments in small amounts can sometimes be a better solution (when possible).
Obviously, balances from the past may cause you problems, but ensuring you can pay all current bills in a timely manner allows you to slowly but surely improve your credit score.
Even if you have a bit in your savings and are comfortable letting some current bills go late if it means handling old debts, you should be aware that something as simple as a history of consistent payments can be the key to bringing up your score.
A bad history of payments can cause your score to suffer. Credit scores are meant to prove you are reliable, and timely payments on a regular schedule can help prove this as well as anything.
Even if the payments are small, making sure you don’t miss deadlines can put you on track for better credit in the future.