Articles on credit scores tend to be very ominous. A quick search confirms that most are about how to raise your score, with headlines like the one of this recent article, “Don’t be a millennial with a bad credit score.” I’ve even written a post on how you can automatically improve your credit score. And while it’s totally normal to be struggling with your credit score, it’s also totally normal to want to celebrate a good score.
Today’s post is all about steps you should take when you have a good credit score, featuring ways to maintain your status.
This post is contributed by Symon Rogers, a Seattle based financial writer. He has been closely working with Oak View Law Group as a digital social marketing manager. You can find him here: @SymonRoger Google+. Here’s Symon’s post:
Steps To Take When Your Credit Score Is Excellent
Congrats! So, you’ve finally entered into the prestigious “excellent” credit score club. Now, you can really say – “Yes, now I can hope for a rocking financial life.” But, wait a minute. Don’t get overjoyed and start dancing. You’ve got a fantastic credit score. Very good! Now, you’ve to maintain it throughout your life.
It really takes time and a lot of patience to reach into the elite credit score group. So, don’t make any of these 10 mistakes, especially when you want to have a good credit score. Rather, consider these 4 steps to maintain and increase your credit score in the future.
Like most things in life, many people are always hungry for a higher credit score. Till date, I haven’t found too many people who say, “I’m happy with my credit score. It’s pretty high”. People want more and therefore are ready to figure out the ways to improve their score. Here are the 4 steps that will not only help you maintain your present score but also allow you to pull it towards the 850 mark.
1. Consider the value of applying for new credit cards:
At this point, you can likely get all of the best credit cards with your score. But it would be wrong to misuse your power at this stage. It would only bite you later.
You’re likely aware that too many credit inquiries are not good for your score. Granted, this should only ding you a few points. The real issue is what new credit cards will do to your credit age. The older your average credit card history is, the higher your score. New cards will drop that average down.
Apply for credit cards rarely and always make sure you pay every credit card on time.
2. Mix and match various types of accounts:
Diversification is the key to a great credit life. So always try to maintain various types of accounts smartly. This would include mortgage, auto loans, credit cards, etc. That said, make sure you go for diversification only when you can maintain the new accounts. Otherwise, you’ll only invite a disaster.
3. Don’t give up your habit of paying on time:
You have to always pay on time no matter how excellent your credit score is. There’s no pass for prior success. Not only will late or missed payments bring late fees and penalties, but your credit score will run towards the 350 mark with each passing day. And when your score is really good, then it becomes all the more important to pay your bills on time. A missed payment could hurt you more than a person with an average credit score.
4. Have a regular credit health check up to track your progress:
Consistency is the key to a trouble-free financial life. So, if you really want to have the perfect credit score throughout your life, then repeat all the steps you’ve taken till this date for a better credit life. Try to avoid the mistakes that dropped your score and make sure you check all your cards are being paid on time.
You can also check your score regularly through a service like Mint.com (unofficial checks like these don’t hurt your score). This would help you get a fair idea about your progress and help you nip any potential issues in the bud.
What else you can do:
Help others who are struggling with their credit score: You’ve done well for yourself. Good. Now, it’s time to help others who have a low credit score due to some stupid mistakes. You can at least guide your friends and family members and help them avoid making those mistakes.
Apply for a loan to buy a house: If you were already committed to buying a house, now could be a good time to do so. Interest rates are low and with your score you can get a loan at the cheapest rate. That said, low income could leave you ineligible for some mortgages regardless of score.
Last but not the least,
Don’t lose the zeal to improve your credit score just because you’re the member of the “excellent” club now. Remember, there is always room for improvement. So, your next goal should be to reach 850 club now. Set attainable goals and be reasonable.