Using a ScoreSense Credit Report for Better Financial Health

ScoreSense-CreditGetting a ScoreSense credit report is the first step toward taking charge of your financial health. Once you know what information is in your credit report, you can begin to use it to make the changes that will improve your score. With the help of ScoreSense, credit score health is within reach.

  • First, know what your credit report says. This is where a ScoreSense credit report comes in. Once you get your free credit report, examine it carefully for errors. Look for incorrect credit limits, late payments, collection items- anything that is not yours. Clear these up with the credit bureaus so that they do not reduce your score. Even though you can only check your credit report for free once each year, with ScoreSense, credit information is at your fingertips, so that you always have a current picture of your status.
  • Next, consider opening some lines of credit. You may want to get a credit card, so if your credit doesn’t allow this, get a secured card. Vary your types of credit; set up some store credit cards, some major credit cards, a car loan, etc., to create a credit history with depth.
  • Pay bills on time. This is perhaps the best advice, because delinquencies are the biggest cause of damage to your credit score. If you have a problem with forgetting due dates, consider setting up automatic payments, to ensure timely payments.  If you’re not comfortable using auto-pay, set up other types of payment reminders, such as on your smartphone or in an electronic calendar.
  • Keep your debt to credit ratio low. The amount of credit extended to you should far exceed your amount of debt; a good rule of thumb is to use only 30 percent of your credit limit. Whenever possible, pay off your credit card balances each month. If you cannot do that, at least pay as much as possible, and pay the balances as quickly as possible. One good way to do this is to make “snowflake payments” throughout the month, paying small amounts as often as you can, making sure that you keep enough set aside to make the minimum payment as well. Then, once you get one card paid off, turn your attention to the next card, applying the money you would have paid on the first card to the next one you’re paying. This will quickly reduce your debt, provided you don’t make additional purchases.
  • Don’t necessarily close old accounts. Even after you have paid an account in full, consider not closing the account. Having open lines of credit that are not being used means that your debt to credit ratio is low. In addition, lenders like to see history, so having an account for a long time looks better.
  • If you must shop for a loan, do it quickly. If you’re trying to get a mortgage or other large loan, you’ll want to shop around. However, the more times your credit score is pulled by a lender, the worse it looks – unless it’s a cluster of inquiries. If the inquiries come close to the same time, the system will not treat them unfavorably. One thing you should not do quickly, though, is open new accounts.
  • Protect yourself from identity theft. If you have a membership in ScoreSense, scams are less likely to impact your credit, because OTL ScoreSense tracks your account activity, and reports suspicious items immediately.

With ScoreSense, credit health is in your hands. Dedicated to helping consumers take charge of their finances and their lives, OTL Score Sense offers account monitoring, valuable credit information, and protection from identity theft.  If you need more information on identity protection, visit today.

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