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Credit Education is the first step in a Credit Repair Fix. Learn the keys to good credit and how to fix credit easily.
Credit Education 101 - What is a Credit Score?
The majority of people understand the basics, like how failing to make a payment will cause your score to go down, but there are a number of complexities that trip up the average consumer. If you pay your debts on time, don’t carry too much debt on any one card, don’t close older accounts unless absolutely necessary and only apply for new credit when you have to you will generally be in good shape. However, it is important to keep yourself informed so you can maintain a credit score that accurately reflects your consumer status.
Lenders use your credit report in order to judge your reliability as a loan candidate. Your credit report indicates your ability to handle debt responsibly and will help banks decide if you are a desirable loan customer. A high credit score can help you lock in low APR rates or secure special deals on loans. A bad credit report may prevent you from securing loans and can damage your ability to buy a car, open a credit card or rent a home. A history of inability to manage your credit successfully will make lenders uncomfortable about trusting you with additional funds in the future.
You are entitled to a free copy of your credit report once a year, an offer you should take advantage of. When you do receive your credit report, check to ensure the figures are accurate and act quickly to correct any mistakes. This may include any clerical errors, identity theft issues or incorrect information. If your credit score is low, you should begin working on a financial rehabilitation plan, either on your own or with a certified debt counselor, to begin correcting your bad debt habits.
Do you know what your Credit Score is and what your Credit Score is comprised of? Our Credit Education is your Credit Repair Fix and the key to how to fix credit!
FICO Scores are calculated from various credit data in your credit report. This data can be grouped into five categories as outlined below. The percentages in the chart reflect how important each of the categories is in determining your score.
Please understand that in some situations, people who have not been using credit long, the importance of these categories may be somewhat different.
Payment History – 35%
- Account payment information on specific types of accounts; credit cards, retail accounts, installment loans, finance company accounts, mortgage, etc.
- Presence of adverse public records; bankruptcy, judgments, suits, liens, wage attachments, collection items, and/or delinquency (past due items)
- Severity of delinquency (how long past due)
- Amount past due on delinquent accounts or collection items
- Time since delinquency, adverse public records (if any), or collection items (if any)
- Number of past due items on file
Amounts Owed – 30%
- Amount owing on accounts
- Amount owing on specific types of accounts
- Lack of a specific type of balance, in some cases
- Number of accounts with balances
- Proportion of credit lines used (proportion of balances to total credit limits on certain types of revolving accounts) –
- Proportion of installment loan amounts still owing (proportion of balance to original loan amount on certain types of installment loans)
Length of Credit History – 15%
- How long your accounts have been open
- Since accounts opened, by specific type of account
- Time since most recent account activity
New Credit – 10%
- Number of recently opened accounts, and proportion of accounts that are recently opened, by type of account
- Number of recent credit inquiries
- Time since recent account opening(s), by type of account
- Time since credit inquiry(s)
- Re-establishment of positive credit history following past payment problems
Types of Credit Used – 10%
- Number of accounts (credit cards, retail accounts, installment loans, mortgage, consumer finance accounts, etc.)
Please note that:
A score takes into consideration all these categories of information, not just one or two. No one piece of information or factor alone will determine your score.
The importance of any factor depends on the overall information in your credit report. For some people, a given factor may be more important than for someone else with a different credit history. In addition, as the information in your credit report changes, so does the importance of any factor in determining your score. Thus, it's impossible to say exactly how important any single factor is in determining your score - even the levels of importance shown here are for the general population, and will be different with each credit profile. What's important is the mix of information, which varies from person to person, and for any one person over time.
Your FICO score only looks at information in your credit report. However, lenders look at many things when making a credit decision including your income, how long you have worked at your present job and the kind of credit you are requesting.
Your score considers both positive and negative information in your credit report. Late payments will lower your score, but establishing or re-establishing a good track record of making payments on time will raise your score.
It's important to note that your credit score fix is a bit like losing weight: It takes time and there is no quick fix. In fact, quick-fix efforts can backfire. The best advice, in how to fix credit, is to manage credit responsibly over time. See how much money you can save by just following these tips and raising your score.