Your credit score is also known as a FICO score. FICO in an abbreviation for the Fair Isaac Corporation, which created the system for credit scores. There are a number of factors that contribute to your FICO score. If you have the highest FICO score available it will create certain advantages for you in terms of credit products and services. There are certain actions you can take to increase your credit score and eventually you may be able to achieve the highest score.
Fico scores can range from a low of 300 to a high of 850. If you have the highest credit score you will be able to receive the best interest rates on mortgage loans, automobile loans, credit cards and other credit products. This allows you to save a significant amount of money by paying less in finance charges for your credit products. A lower rate of interest also means having a lower payment as well. Many companies will send you offers, in the mail, for credit products based on your credit score. A high credit score gives you the ability to pick and choose the offer with the best terms and agreements.
If you want to receive a high credit score it's important to know the five factors that contribute to your credit score. Your payment history is the first category that helps configure your credit score. This category represents 35 per cent of your credit score, which is the largest contributor. When you pay your debts on time you help increase your credit score. Your previous and current pay history is reviewed for this category.
The next category deals with the amount of debt you owe. Having too much debt can be harmful to your credit score. How much available credit you have is also a determinant of your credit score. If you close one of your accounts, you lower the amount of available credit and it can lower your credit score. Also, using too much of your available credit can lower your credit score. Once you use 30 per cent of your available credit your credit score can start to fall. Coincidentally, the amount of debt you owe contributes 30 per cent toward the calculation of your credit score.
The longer you have been on file with the credit reporting agencies the better. The length of your file contributes 15 per cent to the formation of your score. When you close out some of your older accounts and open new accounts you lower your score because the older accounts no longer contribute to the age of your credit file.
The number of new accounts you have contributes 10 per cent toward the creation of your credit score. Opening too many new accounts in a short period of time will lower your credit score. Don't open new accounts you will not need or use.
It's a good idea to have a variety of credit accounts because this contributes 10 per cent to your credit score. A credit file which has a number of accounts such as credit cards, automobile loans, mortgages, and home equity lines will have a higher score because of the different types of accounts. However you don't want to overextend yourself. This will lower your score. Another 10 per cent of your credit file is based on the types of credit that you actually use.