HOW TO GET YOUR CREDIT SCORE BACK UP DURING TOUGH TIMES

You need to understand how your credit score is calculated. 
Complex algorithms take into account hundreds of factors and values. 

Here are a FEW SIMPLE STEPS you can take to make a difference

  • Pay your bills on time!  For a person with a high credit score, just one late payment can cause a significant drop in your score.  Paying your bills a few weeks early may help raise your scores faster.

  • Reduce your debt!  Of the credit cards you have do not use more than 30% of your available credit. That means if you have a credit card with a limit of $5,000 do not use more than $1,500.  To see the quickest improvement in your score only use 10% of your reported credit limit.

  • Do not open new accounts!  Those 10% off promotions can be so enticing but opening new accounts can have a significant impact on your credit score.  So saving $20 on your purchase probably won't be worth taking a hit to your score and thus increasing your chances of paying a higher interest rate on your mortgage loan.

  • Don't close old credit accounts!  Canceling old credit accounts can lower your credit score by making your credit history appear shorter and it will also show less credit available to you.  There is a lot of pressure on banks and credit card companies; they have loaned too much money and people aren't paying them back.  To fix this they are trying to get rid of their customers by raising interest rates or lowering credit limits...even if you've never been late!  It's very important to not fall into that trap and close those credit cards.  If you do then you are essentially erasing a portion of your credit history.  If you can you should try to pay off or pay down the debt or move that debt to an existing lower interest credit card but DO NOT close your credit card.

  • Check your credit report regulary at annualcreditreport.com!  You can obtain a free copy of your credit report (one per year from each credit bureau) to verify the accuracy.  If inaccuracies are found you can request the changes immediately online through annualcreditreport.com.  You do not need to pay for a credit score as the one you pay for online does not use the same scoring criteria that is used for mortgage loan qualification.

  • Keep a good mix of credit!  When possible your credit report should show different types of credit....installment loans and credit cards.