Blood pressure readings, resting heart rate, and cholesterol levels are examples of critically important numbers, as they are reflective of an individual’s physical health. There’s another number that is also very important, but it isn’t monitored by a physician. This number instead is key to a person’s financial health – and that’s their credit score.
Credit scores tell a lender the likelihood that someone will repay their loan on time. They are a key factor in determining not only if a loan request is granted, but what the cost of that credit (the interest rate) will be. Credit scores are also utilized outside of lending decisions, including in the insurance industry, and by landlords deciding whether to rent their property to a prospective tenant. Credit scores affect all of us, nearly every day.
Keeping your credit score high is a key factor in determining your financial health. A few tips to help maintain a healthy score include:
- Close accounts you no longer use.
- Pay all bills on time.
- Utilize a good mix of credit (installment, mortgage, and revolving).
Similar to your annual physical with a physician, you should review your credit report every year. The good news is that you don’t need to make an appointment, go to the clinic, or even pay for it. Be sure to monitor your credit annually by requesting a free annual credit report from www.annualcreditreport.com.
A few easy steps such as these can ensure that your credit score remains high and your overall credit health remains strong.