Information About Your Credit Report
What Goes Into Your Credit Report?
Without credit, most of us couldn’t make some of our everyday purchases, let alone such important ones like a new car or house. Consequently, most of us need to work to maintain a good credit rating. But do you know exactly how to keep your credit rating clean?
When considering extending credit to loan applicants, lenders refer to the credit ratings determined by three major credit bureaus – Equifax, Experian and TransUnion. Here are the factors those companies use to compile your credit rating.
Payment History – How promptly you pay your bills is a primary factor in determining your credit rating. If you are consistently 30 or 60 days late in your payments, this information will be reflected in your credit score. Needless to say, prompt payment is always best.
Open Credit Lines – How much credit you currently have available to you is another important factor. If you have several credit cards, potential lenders are likely to consider you a greater credit risk, since potentially you could go on a spending spree and max out all of your cards. Your best bet is to cancel all credit cards you don’t truly need for everyday purchases and emergencies.
Credit Inquiries – Each time you apply for a credit card or loan, you give a potential lender permission to make an inquiry into your credit history. Each inquiry is recorded by the credit bureaus, and frequent credit inquiries negatively affect your credit score. Thus you shouldn’t apply for credit simply because you have been pre-approved or have received an invitation to apply. Apply only for those loans or credit cards that you need and will use.
To obtain a free copy of your credit report, visit www.annualcreditreport.com.