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Tips On Improving Your Credit Score

  1. Request and check your own credit report and your own FICO score once a year. This won’t affect your score, as long as you order your credit report directly from the credit reporting agency or FICO. While having credit cards and managing them responsibly can lead to a high credit score, having no credit cards can make you seem like a risk.
  2. Keep your balances low or, if possible, pay them off completely each month.
  3. Pay off debt instead of moving it around. Owing the same amount but having fewer open accounts may lower your score.
  4. Don’t open credit cards that you don’t need just to increase your available credit or because you want it to look like you have a better mix of credit.
  5. If you have only had credit for a short time, don’t open a lot of new accounts at the same time. New accounts will lower your average account age, which will affect your score if you don’t have a lot of other credit information.
  6. Shop for auto or mortgage loan rates for within a set period of time. FICO scores distinguish between a search for a single loan and a search for many new credit lines by the length of time over which inquiries occur.
  7. Don’t close credit cards to try to raise your score. Closed accounts show up on your credit report.
  8. Repair your credit history if you have had problems. Open new accounts responsibly and pay the bills on time.