Here’s How To Build Your Credit When You Don’t Have Any
Whether you have no credit or need to recover from a bad score, here's how you can raise it.
Many young people use credit cards irresponsibly and find themselves in debt due to missed payments and interest rates. Even worse, they may be wreaking havoc on their credit scores without even knowing it — and jeopardizing their future chances at taking out a loan for a home or car.
It’s important to build credit — and start as early as possible — because one day you might need to show potential lenders how good you are at paying them back. If you have nothing to show them or have a history of late payments, you run the risk of having higher interest rates or not getting approved at all.
Here’s how to build your credit history if you don’t have any credit or need to make a comeback from a low credit score:
1. Choose The Right Credit Card
One of the best credit cards for those suffering from bad credit is the Indigo Platinum Mastercard. There is no security deposit required, there is only a small annual fee between $0 and $99, and it comes with a 23.9% APR. You can even qualify for this card if you have a previous bankruptcy.
Another option is the Credit One Bank Unsecured Platinum Visa. This card has a small annual fee between $0 - $99, a 16.99% - 24.99% Variable, and you even earn 1% cash back on everyday purchases.
2. Use Your Credit Cards Responsibly
Using a credit card is still the best way to build your credit profile. But you shouldn’t fall into the trap of treating your credit card like it’s free money.
Rather, you should try to treat your credit card as if it were a debit card, only charging what you already have in your checking account. That way, when your monthly bill arrives, you will be able to pay it off in full and on time with no problems.
3. Don’t Rely On Your Student Loan Payments To Build Credit
While you may be penalized if you miss student loan payments, you won’t necessarily get a bump in your credit score for paying them off on time. So you’ll want to stay current with your student loans, but you can’t rely on them the same way as paying your credit card payment in full each month.
4. Check Your Full Credit Report At Least Once A Year
You can request a free copy of your full credit report once every 12 months from AnnualCreditReport.com. This will allow you to look for any mistakes you (or lenders) have made and see what you can fix.
5. Check Your Credit Score Monthly
You can check your credit score on free sites like Credit Karma. While credit scores aren’t as thorough as full credit reports, they can still help you determine what you’re doing right or wrong based on how it fluctuates.
SHARE any tips you have on improving your credit score below!