Many people believe that having few, if any, credit cards and not having any debt is good for their credit…and theyre all wrong!
Credit scores do not improve unless you have credit accounts with some debt accumulated, with all of the required monthly payments paid on time. While it is true that you may not want to pay interest on any debts you may have, it is far better for your overall credit to have some debt instead of no debt.
The best credit scores come from consumers with established credit accounts, with a small portion of the available credit line in use. Your credit report is updated monthly with payment information on these accounts. If you make all your required minimum monthly payments on time, your credit score will rise.
The shorter the amount of time youve had accounts open, the larger the balances are on open accounts and any late payments can combine to negatively impact your credit score. If your total debt-to-income ratio is more than one-third of your monthly income, you may not even qualify for a mortgage loan
Never having used any credit may result in a loan disqualification also, simply because there is no repayment information to base your creditworthiness on.
Your credit score will directly influence the availability of mortgage loans with acceptable rate. The closer your credit score slips toward subprime territory, the more interest and fees youll likely end up paying for your loan. The difference between a standard mortgage and a subprime mortgage can make the difference in hundreds of dollars a month tacked onto a mortgage payment.
How you use your credit today will determine the mortgage opportunities that are present tomorrow. Use your credit wisely and the skys the limit. Use it poorly and mortgage opportunities will pass you by.
John Campbell is the writer and editor of CashBuzz, A financial portal for the rest of us. Check out cashbuzz.com for the latest articles on money management and tips and tricks that can help improve your finances. This article may be reprinted on your Web site if the copyright, author information, and active link are included.