The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

The Daily Campus

The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

SMU professor Susanne Scholz in the West Bank in 2018.
SMU professor to return to campus after being trapped in Gaza for 12 years
Sara Hummadi, Video Editor • May 18, 2024
Instagram

Good credit score matters

It is impossible to overstate the importance of a good credit score.

Many of us have budgets that are even tighter than usual in today’s economy, so it is important to have a thorough understanding of how your credit score can affect your future.

Credit scores are the primary criteria that any creditor looks at before doing business with a customer.

Moreover, credit scores provide creditors with an insight into a customer’s track record of financial reliability through the use of a credit report.

Creditors can offer better terms and lower interest rates to those with good credit standing; however, the opposite holds true as well.

A poor credit record can lead to frequent rejections from creditors.

There are three main U.S. credit bureaus that keep track of one’s credit: Equifax, Experian and TransUnion.

Since each is independent of the others, the bureaus may all have different scores for a person. It should be noted, however, that all three scores are taken into consideration, so maintaining good standing with each bureau will hold the

best results.

Finance professionals suggest taking several different actions to ensure your credit score is as high as possible.

First and foremost, control your spending.

According to Chase Bank, you should never borrow more than 20 percent of your annual income or let your monthly debt exceed 10 percent of your monthly income.

Second, pay your bills on time.

Always pay at least the minimum amount due by the deadline when paying off credit cards.

Doing so will prevent late fees and unnecessary harm to your credit score.

Next, do not go past your limit.

This may be hard for us college students, but if you continually do so, talk to your lender about getting a larger spending limit to give you the flexibility you need

Additionally, you can request an alerting service to contact you when you get close to reaching your limit.

Finally, spread your debt.

It has been proven that a smaller balance on several cards is better than a big balance on one card

However, be sure that you use all of your credit cards, because not using credit cards can be just as harmful to your credit score.

Credit scores can be accessed on AnnualCreditReport.com.

Too many inquiries, however, can hurt your credit score depending on what type of inquiry it is.

If the inquiry is what is considered to be a soft pull — when a company carries out a background check — it will not affect your credit at all.

But, if it is what is considered to be a hard pull, it will affect your credit score.

Every time you get a loan or a new credit card, the lender uses this type of pull on your credit report.

It is important to understand this before entering the real world, because starting with a good credit score is the first

step to being financially secure in college and beyond.

Happy crediting.

More to Discover