It’s common knowledge that your credit score is one of the most important things that can adversely affect so many events in life. From buying a house (or renting an apartment) to purchasing a new car to being approved for a credit card, your credit score will directly affect all of these major decisions. Here are four easy ways to improve your credit score for your future tenant screening, some of which you can even start doing now.
- Request a copy of your credit report. Yes, it may seem simple, but many people have no idea what their credit history says or even what their credit score is. By checking it out, you can make sure that the history is correct. There are some cases that a person has found identity fraud or that their credit card number was stolen, causing unknown charges on their credit history. Identity fraud can wreak havoc on a person’s credit history, which directly impacts their credit score.
- Reduce your debt. Although much easier said than done, reducing the amount of debt that you owe is actually a very important step in improving your credit history and, ultimately, your credit score. First, make a list of all your credit cards and check what the balance on each one is, and also what the interest rates are. Then, set up a plan to start paying down on one that has the highest rate and don’t use any of them at all until they’re paid off. Once all your credit cards are paid off, you can continue using them if you can ensure that you pay off your entire balance each month. This will indicate that you are fiscally responsible with your spending, and it will increase your credit score over time.
- Set up payment reminders. Use a calendar to write down and track all of your credit payments, including credit cards, mortgage, vehicle loans, etc. By doing this, you can eliminate late payments, which show up on your credit history. Alternately, set up automatic payments, so that everything gets paid hassle-free.
- Keep credit card balances low. A high balance can adversely affect your credit score. Having a low balance with on-time payments can get you a better credit score and look good on your credit history as well.