While interest rates continue to rise, so do home values, so it may be the year where you decide to sell yours and look to move onto the next. Since the high interest rates are already adding quite a bit to the monthly payment, you don’t want your credit score to be the reason why your interest rate is even higher, not to mention not getting approved in the first place. By not only staying on top of your credit, but continuously looking for ways to improve, you will have lenders breaking down your down to take advantage of the best rate and terms, saving you the most money in the long run.
Check Full Report for Accuracy
These days you just never know when someone else may have access to your account information, whether it’s stealing your card info from the gas pump or a quick picture if you leave it out too long when paying a bar or restaurant tab, also even having your info being part of a large retail security breach. Either way, you can never be too careful when it comes to making sure all of your information and accounts are accurate, as it could cost you a credit score if someone either charges up or takes out new credit. By reviewing your full credit report at least once a year, you can stay on top.
Review Monthly Credit Card Statements
While pulling your full credit report may not give your credit score, unless you pay on top of the free report, you can review your monthly credit card statements, as your credit score is listed on the last page, and even a quick click when viewing your online account. By checking every month, you can make sure your score continues to trend in the right direction, and can investigate further if you see a sudden dip. Keep in mind that scores usually take a month or two to catch up with all of your accounts.
Schedule Payments in Advance
On-time payments is a large factor into your credit score, so while being a day late may cost you a late fee or even an interest rate spike, it’s when you reach thirty days late that will negatively impact your score, even taking up to seven years to wipe away, whether it was a mistake or not. While it can be overwhelming to juggle all of your payments, it’s important you stay on top of when every payment is due, even scheduling in advance to come out on the due date as a backup.
Co-Signing Affects Your Score
While it may not be a common occurrence, there may come a time when a family member may come to you to co-sign on a loan, perhaps they are just starting out and have not established credit yet, or they have had issues in the past and need someone else on the loan for approval, either situation can be risky. You may have heard you should not lend money to family, it only breaks them apart, and this is why, as you are putting your trust in them to make on-time payments. Any late payments can jeopardize your score, in addition to theirs.