Scoring Your Credit - How's Your FICO?

Raise your FICO score  to buy a home in Park City with Brown & Company of Park City, Inc. as your REALTOR - 435-649-5551

Most people assume that the home buying process starts with getting pre-approved by a lender or with choosing a real estate agent. The content of your wallet starts the home buying process. Saving your money for a down payment is a good idea, but if you don't have an acceptable credit score to reinforce it, you could find yourself renting longer than you expected in Park City until your score improves.

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 credit. Some of the pieces in summing up your FICO score include:

  • Types of Credit — Do you have a healthy mix of loans and credit cards?
  • Payment History — Do you pay your bills on time every month?
  • Credit to Debt Ratio — How much do you owe versus how much credit you have available?
  • Credit Inquiries — Do you have too many open accounts?

When you apply for a mortgage or any other loan, lenders want to make sure that extending a loan to you isn't a risk. Your credit score gives lenders an insight into what type of borrower you are based solely on your credit history. You'll need a score of at least 700 to get a decent interest rate. You'll still qualify for a mortgage with a lower score, but the interest accumulated over time could be more than double that of someone with a higher credit score.

We're used to working with all tiers of FICO scores. Contact us and we can help you get on the right track to the home of your dreams.

There are plans to raise your score. Building your FICO score takes time. It can be rare to make a large-scale change in your credit score with small changes, but your score can improve in a year or two by monitoring your credit report and by wisely using credit. The most important thing is to know your FICO score. Here are some ways you can improve your credit score:


Raise your FICO score  to buy a house in Park City with Brown & Company of Park City, Inc. as your REALTOR - 435-649-5551
  • Don't let your cards get dusty. Whether you have older cards, or are just getting started with credit, be sure to use your cards to make sure your accounts maintain an active status. But, pay them off in no more than two or three payments.
  • Pay on time. Delinquent payments drastically drop your credit score. It's one of the reasons people who have recently been unemployed see the biggest dip in their credit score. Yes, it takes longer to restore your credit with payment history, but it's the most reliable way to prove that you're responsible enough to make payments to a lender.
  • Ensure that your credit history is correct. If you find mistakes on your credit report, contact 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 pay extra attention to make sure the activity reported is correct.
  • Spread your debt around. At first, this doesn't seem like a good idea. But, you don't want to have one card that is maxed out and have the rest of your cards at a zero balance. It's better to have each of your cards at a smaller balance than to have the majority of your debt taking up the balance a single card.
  • Apply for gas station cards or department store credit. For those who have no credit or low credit, chain store credit cards and gas credit cards are ways to improve credit, increase your spending limits and have a solid payment history, which will raise your FICO score. You should always avoid maintaining a large balance for more than a couple of billing cycles because these types of cards traditionally have a larger interest rate.

Now that you know more about credit reporting, you'll be able to successfully take the first step in owning a home, and that is improving your FICO score. Know that when you're ready to apply for a loan to purchase a house, you'll want to keep your lender applications within a two-week window to avoid damaging your credit score. With the help of Brown & Company of Park City, Inc., the loan application process is sure to go more smoothly so you, too, can achieve home ownership.

Get more information by visiting myFICO.com, Fair Isaac's informational site and you can review all of your credit reports for free each year at annualcreditreport.com. And, for a small payment, you can get your FICO score from each bureau on their websites: equifax.com, experian.com and transunion.com.

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