Jack Falvey's Investor Education Briefs: Managing your credit score is worth the work
Somewhere in between 300 and 850 is where you live in the credit universe. Moving up in the world requires that you move your credit score as high as you can to not only make credit available to you, but also to make it available to you at the lowest possible cost. Your cost of money is determined by the risk your lender chooses to take.
Once you apply for a loan, credit data is mined from all sources and is made available to your potential lender in the form of a calculated credit score. A confidential nontransparent formula is used in the process. This is just about instantaneous.
The fact that you are totally financially transparent means that it is best to work hard on your credit picture.
If there is no place to hide, recognize that fact and act accordingly. It is critical that you do everything you can not to get overextended and damage your credit profile. This means that you have to consider this real cost each time you incur an expense and pay a bill.
There are rules to follow to increase your credit score. The biggest and best rule is don’t do damage to it. Do as you say you will do all the time. Financial integrity is essential to all financial plans.
Time and effort can repair a credit score, but not getting it into trouble in the first place is your challenge. Actions have consequences.
The financial world and your finances are totally connected. Knowing this fact and making it part of all financial decisions is your best strategy when looking at all other financial strategies.
Jack Falvey is a frequent contributor to the Union Leader, Barron’s and The Wall Street Journal. He can be contacted at Jack@Falvey.org.