Choosing a lender isn't the first step in becoming a homeowner. The quality of your wallet begins the home buying process. To make your goal of homeownership realized, considering your credit score is a must along with the type of loan for which you'll qualify in Sayreville.
A FICO score is a collection of your years of credit history based on an instrument developed by Fair Isaac and Company. Most people traditionally have a score of 650, but scores range from 300 to 850. Job loss has been common in the last few years, but FICO scores aren't necessarily adjusted "on a curve." A low score is a low score and that often means you can't get a loan. Some of the factors in summing up your FICO score include:
- Credit Inquiries — How many times has your credit history been accessed by someone other than you?
- Types of Credit — Do you have a healthy mix of loans and credit cards?
- Payment History — How many times do you make late payments?
- Credit to Debt Ratio — How much do you owe versus your available credit?
Lenders want to be positive that giving you a loan is a safe move. Your credit score gives lenders insight into what type of borrower you'd be based solely on your credit history. You'll need a score of at least 700 to get a decent interest rate. If your score is lower, you can still qualify for a loan, but the interest accrued over time could be more than double the amount of someone having a higher FICO score.
Getting your credit in order is the first step in purchasing a home. Contact us and we can help you get on the right track to the home of your dreams.
You want a stronger score, but how do you get it? Improving your FICO score takes time. At Dineen Realty, we know it's difficult to make a large-scale change in your number with small changes, but your score can improve in a few years by keeping tabs your credit report and by wisely using credit. The best way to do this is to know your FICO score. Here are some ways you can improve your credit score:
- Ensure that your credit history is correct. If you find incorrect items on your credit report, write to the bureau asking that the item be removed. If you have a common name or the same name as a family member, you'll want to give extra care to make sure the activity reported is correct.
- Even out your debt. At first, this doesn't sound like a good idea. But, you don't want to have one card that is holding the maximum and have your remaining cards at a zero balance. It's better to have each of your cards at about less than 40% of their credit limit than to have all of your debt taking up the balance one card.
- Apply for service station cards or chain store credit. For those who have no credit or below average credit, chain store credit cards and gas credit cards are ways to establish your credit history, increase your credit limits and keep up your payments, which will raise your credit. Simply avoid carrying a too-high balance for more than a couple of months because these types of cards more than likely have a larger interest rate.
- Don't let your cards get dusty. Whether you're just getting started with credit, or if you've got older cards, be sure to use your cards to make sure your accounts stay active. But, pay them off in one or two payments.
- Keep up with payments. Late payments hurt your credit history. It's where people who have recently been unemployed see the biggest dip in their credit score. Yes, it takes longer to build up your credit with payment history, but it's the surest way to prove that you're responsible enough to make payments to a lender.
Knowing the ways you can build your credit score, you're one step closer to becoming a homeowner. Remember that when it's time to apply for a loan to purchase a home, you'll want to keep your lender applications within a two-week window to avoid damaging your credit score. With the help of Dineen Realty, the loan application process is sure to go more smoothly so you, too, can achieve home ownership.
To learn more, visit www.myFICO.com, Fair Isaac's informational site and once per year, for free, you can review all three of your credit reports at www.annualcreditreport.com. And, for a small payment, you can get your FICO score from each bureau on their websites: www.equifax.com, www.experian.com and www.transunion.com.
At Dineen Realty we don't judge you based on your credit and can help you settle into home ownership with the right lender for you. E-mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 732-613-9300 for more information.