How to Boost Your Credit |

The first step toward boosting credit is simple: Check your credit score at annualcreditreportcom to know where you stand

Look closely for errors in personal information, account statuses and balances Dispute mistakes by writing to the reporting credit bureau Be specific and be prepared to provide supporting documentation The results of your dispute, along with a corrected report, should arrive within 30 days Now that you've cleaned up those mistakes, you're well on your way! The next step in boosting credit is understanding your FICO score – the rating used most by major bureaus and lenders

35% of your FICO score is based on payment history Did you pay on time or were you late? Pay in full or just the minimum? 30% is based on the amount owed For instance, owing almost as much as your limit allows can hurt your score 15% is the length of your credit history It's best to have fewer cards with accounts open longer

10% deals with new credit Recent applications will slightly affect your score And another 10% is based on types of credit use Cards aren't the only way to build credit The next step in our series on boosting credit is a simple piece of advice: Set your credit card accounts to autopay

Most credit card companies will allow you to enroll in autopay Simply connect your bank account to your credit card with an amount set to be taken out each month On top of that, make additional payments if and when you can afford to This will help you pay down your debt faster and while you're paying down debt, be sure to leave your cards alone There's no sense working against the progress that you're making to improve your credit score

Up next in our series on boosting credit is a key to paying down debt: Pay off the largest debts first! It might seem easier to settle small accounts but a big part of your credit score is based on revolving debt That's just what's there, lingering on credit cards that aren't paid off yet The smaller revolving debt that you have, the better Ideally, you should keep your credit card balance under 30 percent of whatever your credit limit is and to really improve your credit, try to keep it at 10 percent or less Wrapping up our series on boosting credit is a great rule to live by: Don't be late! Missing a payment can happen to anyone for a variety of reasons so, if you're late on a payment, don't just sit there! Call the credit card company and explain your situation

It can never hurt to ask politely to remove the missed payment flag and waive any late fees If you're late, be sure to make up for the missed payment as soon as you can and always pay more than the minimum balance, if possible We hope you've enjoyed our series on boosting credit Thanks for watching! For more credit– and finance-related information, be sure to bookmark CardGurucom