Credit history and credit scores can be confusing. One of the most common questions is “What can I do to improve my credit?” The simple answer is that credit takes time to build. While there isn’t a quick fix to boost your credit score overnight, there are some actions you can take to increase your credit score over time. Below are four ways to help improve your credit:
1. Pay off your credit card balance every month
Credit cards can be one of the easiest ways to build credit. The key is to know your credit limit and pay off the balance every month. Paying off your balance reflects positively on your credit score and helps you avoid paying interest that you may have otherwise accrued.
2. Monitor your credit
Monitoring your credit score is a great way to make sure that you don’t have inaccurate information reflected in your credit score. It’s becoming more and more common for credit card companies to provide your score to you on a weekly or monthly basis, as well as alert you if your credit score has changed or someone checked your credit.
3. Manage your loan
Loans play a big part in determining your credit score and improving your credit. Much like with a credit card, if you have a loan you should make your monthly payments on time in order to show that you can effectively manage your commitments.
4. Pay your bills on time
Bills are another contributing factor that aren’t as commonly thought about. Paying, or not paying, bills on time can affect your credit score. Any delinquencies such as late bill payments or foreclosures can stay in your credit report for up to seven years.
To learn more about building and managing credit, visit Practical Money Skills. You'll find a variety of resources for building and maintaining credit, along with other money managing tips.