5 Ways to Boost Your Credit Score Quickly
When you’re in the need for a quick credit boost to qualify for a better loan or credit deal, delay isn’t an option.
After all, time is a commodity – just like cash, gold or other common financial assets. The more clever you are when leveraging time to generate a more robust credit score, the better your financial position is to land a better credit card, auto loan or other form of credit.
Case in point. Let’s examine two consumers looking to land a good home mortgage loan.
Consumer “A” has a FICO credit score of 700, while Consumer “B” has a credit score of 620. By and large, the borrower with a credit score of 620 can expect to land a mortgage with a 5.1% interest. Comparatively, the consumer with the 700 credit score can anticipate getting a mortgage loan with much lower rate, at approximately 3.7%.
That 1.4% difference in loan interest rates – all other financial factors being equal – means that Consumer “A” may likely save tens of thousands of dollars (about $60,000 in the above scenario) on his mortgage loan payments compared to Consumer “B”, who faces higher interest rates – and higher payments – as a result of a lower credit score.
“There are many reasons why you may need a sudden boost in your credit score,” says Michael Broughton, co-Founder and CEO of Perch, a credit score management mobile app. “You might be looking to buy a new car, get a new home, or to get a loan.”
What most people aren’t aware of is that a good credit score can also get you a better deal for a bill such as phone deals or your auto insurance bill.
“Consequently, you may be looking for a sudden boost in your credit score to take advantage of those benefits,” Broughton says.
Five Great Ways to Pump Up Your Credit Score – Quickly
With the ability to cut better deals with creditors and save significantly on interest payments and extra costs (like mortgage insurance and higher monthly loan and credit payments), the question now is how to get the job done.
The answer? Follow these five steps to turbo boost your credit score, and improve your personal financial experience.
Get help. One of the quickest ways to get your credit score up quickly is to partner up with an authorized user.
“The idea is to find someone you know and trust and who does a great job at maintaining their credit cards, add you as an authorized user on their account,” says Janay North, a credit specialist at Rise Up, a credit repair firm based in Los Angeles, Calif. “Being added as an authorized user allows you to inherit that person’s good credit history from that account. That person will be sent a card in the mail with your name on it, but they don’t have to allow you to have it if they don’t want to.”
“Most likely, since you’re only doing this to boost your credit score, you won’t need the card,” says North. “Better yet, you’ll be guaranteed to see results within 30 days of being added.”
Add your on-time payments to your credit score. A new and effective way to boost your credit score fast is through reporting your monthly expenses such as rent, Netflix, or your gym membership to your credit score. That’s where a credit scoring mobile app like Perch may come in handy.
“There are multiple apps that allow you to report these data points but most will cost you a fee or they will not offer the opportunity to report all your types of monthly payments in one app,” Broughton says. “Perch users have the ability to report each and every monthly expense, track their expenses to ensure they are spending responsibly and learn financial literacy, all for free.”
“Through reporting these expenses, users can see a boost in their credit score in as little as two weeks,” Broughton adds.
Bump up your credit. If you need to boost your score rapidly, one surefire way to help is to apply for increases to existing lines of credit on credit cards.
“In other words, if you have existing credit spending limits on credit cards, often, you can go to these companies and request higher credit spending limit availability,” says Riley Adams, a senior financial analyst for Google in San Francisco, Calif. Area. “This will boost the total credit made available to you, lower your credit utilization ratio, and ultimately boost your score in a short period of time.”
Check your credit report for mistakes. Obtain and carefully review a copy of their credit report from each of the three national credit bureaus (TransUnion, Experian, and Equifax – each offers a free copy of your credit score on their web sites.).
“Check those report for reports for any errors,” says Charlie Scanlon, president of Phoenix Credit Consultants in St. Louis, Mo. “In our experience, 25 to 30% of the credit reports we review for our clients contain errors.”
When you find an error on your credit report, report it immediately to the credit scoring agency. Often, the error will be stripped from your credit report and your credit score can rise significantly within 30 days.
Cut your credit utilization. Consumer looking for a quick credit boost should measure their level of credit utilization on their credit cards. “Credit utilization accounts for 30% of a FICO mortgage score,” says Scanlon. Consumers want to be certain that this utilization (the relationship of their cumulative credit card balance to their cumulative limit) is 30% or less of the limits on their cards.”
“Oftentimes, paying those accounts down to a favorable level will result in significant increases to their scores,” he
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Brian O'Connell has been a finance writer at TheStreet, TheBalance, LendingTree, CBS, CNBC, WSJ, US News and others, where he shares his expertise in personal finance, credit and debt. A published author and former trader, his byline has appeared in dozens of top-tier national publications.