How's Your FICO?
Most people assume that the home buying process starts with getting pre-approved for a loan or with choosing a real estate agent. The content of your wallet begins the home buying process. To propel your dreams of homeownership forward, considering your credit score is a must along with the type of lender for which you'll qualify in DuBois.
A FICO score is a collection of your years of credit history based on a model developed by Fair Isaac and Company. The score ranges from 300 to 850, with the majority of people normally having a score of 650. Job loss has been common in the last few years, but FICO scores aren't necessarily adjusted "on a curve." A low score is just that and often means you can't get a loan. Some of the pieces in reviewing your FICO score are:
- Credit Inquiries — Do you have too many open accounts?
- Types of Credit — Do you have a healthy mix of credit cards and loans?
- Payment History — Do you pay your bills on time each month?
- Credit to Debt Ratio — How much do you owe versus your available credit?
When you apply for a mortgage or any other loan, lenders want to make sure that extending a loan to you isn't a risk. Your credit score gives lenders a view of what type of borrower you are solely because of your credit history. You'll need a score of at least 700 to get a satisfactory interest rate. If your score is lower, you can still qualify for a loan, but the interest paid over time could be more than double that of someone with a higher credit score.
We're used to working with all levels of credit history. Call us at 8143712100 and we can help you get on the right track to the home of your dreams.
You want a better score, but how do you get it? Improving your FICO score takes time. It can be difficult to make a large-scale change in your credit score with quick fixes, but your score can improve in a few years by monitoring your credit report and by wisely using credit. The best way to do this is to know your FICO score. Here are some ways you can improve your credit score:
- Ensure that your credit history is correct. If you find mistakes on your credit report, write to the bureau requesting that the item be removed. If you have a common name or the same name as a family member, you'll want to give extra care to make sure the activity reported is correct.
- Even out your debt. At first, this doesn't seem like a good idea. But, you want to avoid of having one card that is at the maximum and have your remaining cards at a zero balance. It's better to have each of your cards at an even balance than to have the most of your debt transferred to one card.
- Apply for gas cards or store credit. For those who have no credit or below average credit, retail credit cards and gas credit cards are ways to get credit, increase your spending limits and have a solid payment history, which will raise your credit. You must always avoid maintaining a large balance for too long because these types of cards more than likely have a steeper interest rate.
- Use your credit. Whether you're just getting started with credit, or if you've got older cards, use your cards so that your accounts stay active. But, be sure to pay them off in no more than two or three payments.
- Stay on top of payments. Late payments hurt your credit history. It's one of the reasons people who have recently been unemployed see the biggest hit in their credit score. Yes, it takes longer to restore your credit this way, but it's the surest way to prove that you're able to make payments to a bank.
Now that you know more about credit reporting, you'll be able to successfully take the first steps to homeownership, and that is improving your FICO score. Keep in mind that when it's time to apply for a loan to purchase a house, you'll want to keep your credit inquiries within a two-week window to avoid adverse effects on your credit score. With the help of Hoffer Realty Associates, the loan application process is sure to go more smoothly so you, too, can achieve home ownership.
Get more information by visiting myFICO.com, Fair Isaac's informational site and review your credit history for free at annualcreditreport.com. And, for a small payment, you can get your FICO score from each bureau on their websites: equifax.com, experian.com and transunion.com.