So many young people start out after high school or after college with either absolutely no credit or poor credit. Unfortunately this limits options on places to live, it increases interest rates on vehicles or emergency purchases. We have listed the following ways to start out with good credit so that you can maximize your money. Start improving your credit score today!
1) Get a credit card with a small limit and pay off each month; this can be a gas card from Quiktrip and you only put a couple tanks on each month. Make sure you pay the entire balance off every single month before the due date. Do this for several months. The key is to continue to pay this on time to build your credit.
2) Pay all your bills on time. If you are paying by snail mail, send it in early. Remember-the day they receive it is when it is counted received. Even better than snail mail? Put it on auto pay so that you will never be late! It automatically draws from your checking account. All of your bills are important, but utilities can be a real problem if you are late on those. Evictions from other housing follows you. If you have medical bills or student loans that seem insurmountable, make sure you are communicating with the lender so that they understand your plan. Stay the course. Keep chipping away at these large debts. Make sure you and the lender are in agreement on what you can afford to pay and then stick to it! No matter what…make sure this is priority!
3) If you are renting a home, make sure it is being reported to the credit bureau. At PMI Green Country Tulsa, we offer a program on all of our rentals where the on time rent is reported resulting in improved credit. Unfortunately, the late payments are recorded as well so you want to make sure you are paying your rent on time.
In summary, credit can help you or hurt you. It is up to you to control this situation and even if your credit is not where you want it to be today, there is hope and a method to increase your credit to improve your future!