52°F
weather icon Clear

Seven benefits of improving your credit score this year

This article first appeared on GoBankingRates.com on Jan. 12.

No doubt about it, having good credit keeps more money in your pocket and gives less to banks, credit card firms and other creditors.

Even so, many Americans don’t know their own credit scores, and that can be a big omission for consumers who otherwise could be benefitting from good credit.

A 2013 survey from the Consumer Federation of America and VantageScore Solutions found 40 percent of U.S. adults don’t know credit card issuers and mortgage lenders base credit decisions on consumer credit scores.

The moral of the story? Don’t let that happen to you. Knowing your credit score is an all-important first step in establishing good credit, and having good credit means enjoying the following seven personal financial benefits.

7 Reasons It Pays to Have Good Credit

1. You’ll get speedier loan approvals

Having great credit means getting loan and credit approvals faster. Once retailers, financial institutions and other creditors see your solid credit, you’ll get approvals for loans and credit instantly, in many cases.

2. It’s easier to purchase a new home

With good credit, it’s much easier (and less expensive) to buy a house. You’ll get approved for a loan faster (see above) and you’ll pay less in interest rates attached to a home loan with good credit. Even a reduction in interest rates of 1% or 2% can mean thousands of dollars in savings on a home mortgage.

3. You can rent the house you want

If you’re renting a home, having good credit separates you from other renters looking at the same home or apartment. Landlords often make decisions on who gets to rent from them based primarily on an applicant’s credit score.

4. You can land your dream job

These days, hiring managers are increasingly relying on credit checks to determine a job applicant’s character and financial habits. A good score can be a “green light” to getting the job you want, with better perks and more pay.

5. You can get an auto loan

Good credit not only allows you to get a loan for a new car, truck or SUV, it also allows you to get that loan with a lower interest rate. Creditors are all about risk, and they charge more (via higher rates) for borrowers they deem to be a higher risk. In short, the better the credit score, the lower the risk and the lower the interest payment.

6. Get a credit card

Credit card providers like American Express, Visa, MasterCard, and Capital One will be much more likely to give you a credit card (with a higher credit limit and a lower interest rate) if your credit is sterling. If not, you might have to make do with a pre-paid card or a secured card, with an upfront deposit, lower credit limit and higher interest rate.

7. More negotiating leverage

With a higher credit score, you can negotiate with credit card companies, banks and retailers for a lower interest rate, thanks to your strong credit. That gives you more bargaining power, and often leads to better terms from creditors who want your business. If you do not know your score, I recommend using CreditRepair.com’s Score Estimator. It will give you a free estimated score, based on ten quick questions regarding your credit usage.

The above benefits aren’t the only examples of living a better financial life with good credit, but they’re certainly at the top of the list. It’s a list you’ll want on your side throughout your life — and it’s all possible thanks to great credit.

Brian O’Connell is a credit expert with CreditRepair.com. O’Connell boasts 15 years covering business, as pertaining to the health care, career management and financial sectors.

Don't miss the big stories. Like us on Facebook.
THE LATEST
Angel Trees out in Pahrump community

Thanksgiving has come and gone and the Christmas season is officially upon the community, bringing with it the opportunity for residents to help spread a little holiday cheer by participating in the Salvation Army’s annual Angel Tree program.

California Lottery

Because of early holiday deadlines at the Pahrump Valley Times, winning lottery numbers for the Wednesday night drawing of the California Super Lotto were not available but will be published in the Wednesday Dec. 2 issue with the results of Saturday night’s Super Lotto.

Turkey divan makes Thanksgiving leftovers divine

One of the best things about the Thanksgiving holiday is enjoying the wonderful leftovers. Now, I don’t know about your post-turkey-day turkey, but mine usually has no legs, or thighs but lots of leftover breast. If that happens to your turkey too, then you’re going to love this week’s recipe, Turkey Divan. We’ve got turkey, broccoli and mushrooms smothered in a cheesy creamy sauce, topped with crunchy, buttery breadcrumbs to make a classic casserole.

Pahrump’s Community Christmas Tree Lighting to be held virtually

The Thanksgiving festivities are at an end and the community is now turning its attention to the Christmas season, which for the town of Pahrump always includes the placement and lighting of the enormous Community Christmas Tree.

COVID surge leads to adjustments in Pahrump Justice Court operations

As the number of COVID-19 cases continues to swell in the Silver State, Pahrump Justice Court is taking action now to curb any potential spread of the disease in its courts, which were shut down for two weeks earlier this year after an employee tested positive for the virus.

Murder suspect convicted in jury trial

The man arrested and charged with the first-degree murder of a child more than three years ago, was found guilty following a jury trial this week.

Economists urge Congress to approve more relief checks

With stimulus negotiations stalled and millions about to lose unemployment benefits, 127 economists pressed Congress to send Americans a second round of stimulus checks.

Social Mobility Index shows solid improvement by UNLV

Even as the COVID-19 pandemic continues to create economic uncertainty, UNLV is working to advance the social mobility of its students, a new ranking of higher education institutions finds.

Salvation Army receives money, turkeys from Cox

Cox Communications recently presented $100,000 and 100 frozen turkeys to the Salvation Army to help the nonprofit provide support to Southern Nevada families in need.