Your credit score impacts what you pay for car and home insurance which is why I invited Carol Ueckert, today’s guest blogger to write today’s post. Carol introduces us to the various ways our credit impacts us and some of the benefits of having good credit. Carol is the owner and founder of Accountable Credit Repair, a firm helping people legitimately repair their credit.
Credit has become more important than ever before. We are all judged by what people read about us on paper. Why should individuals care about what is on their credit report, and does it really matter?
Among other things, our credit scores and reports can determine our loan worthiness, our insurance rates and can even determine whether we get a new job or stay in the one we already have.
So, what are some of the benefits of maintaining good credit?
- Having good scores can help when you are wanting to rent. Most landlords will pull your credit report and look at your history to determine if they think you are likely to pay your rent on time and consistently.
- It can make it easier, and give you more options when it comes to purchasing or refinancing a home. When your credit is challenged, it can be difficult to find a bank who is willing to lend you money. Your income is important, but even if you make a lot, if your credit is weak, you could find yourself either paying a lot higher interest rate or not even qualifying for a loan.
- Utility and cell phone companies will pull your credit to see how much of deposit to charge. Sometimes you can avoid a deposit altogether if your scores are high enough.
- When your credit report is good, you’ll pay a lot less in interest when purchasing a car. Most auto lot finance people are quick to help individuals get a loan for an auto; in-house financing for “bad credit or no credit” may even be available, but if your credit is weak, beware and check the interest rate they are offering. What are you really paying for that car? To find out, (and before you sign anything), multiply the monthly payment amount by the number of payments, and don’t forget to add what you are paying for a down payment and/or trade-in.
- You’ll have an easier time getting a credit card. Having good credit can help you get a card with lower interest rates, lower fees and perks such as cash back, rewards and airline miles.
- You’ll see your insurance rates drop. Insurance companies pull your credit and if your credit profile has negative accounts, you can expect your rates for health, auto, home and other insurance to be much higher than if your credit was strong.
- You might get, or keep a job. Many employers are now requiring job applicants and even current employees to have and maintain good credit. This is especially true for government and municipal agencies, jobs requiring a security clearance, positions where an employee will be handling cash or A/R and A/P accounts, and companies that have employees who will be in their customer’s homes and businesses.
There are many benefits to having strong credit. Credit is like a muscle and needs to be worked and maintained. So, what is your credit saying about your situation? Why not pull your credit and see what is being reported on your behalf, and see if it is accurate?
There is only one source for truly free credit reports that is authorized by Federal Law. You will not receive scores, but you can receive a comprehensive credit report from each of the 3 major credit bureaus (Experian, Equifax & TransUnion) each year. Just go to www.annualcreditreport.com.
Carol Ueckert, Owner
Accountable Credit Repair