A low credit score can impact the number of options that you have available in so many areas. If you haven’t been paying attention to your credit report and aren’t sure what the big deal is, here are seven different times you’ll need to know what your credit score has to say to help you get the best outcome possible.
Reason 1: You’re on the job hunt
Some employers will want to look at your credit report to see if you’ll be a liability. Jobs in finance or related to high-level security clearances will want to know if you’re in over your head with debt. While that might seem arbitrary, to them, it means that you could be bribed to use your employment at the company for someone else’s advantage in exchange for money to pay off your debt.
If you are in debt, consider creating a plan to get yourself out as quickly as possible. You can use something like the avalanche method as a way to get out from under debt and stop having it affect your job opportunities.
Reason 2: You’re about to make a major purchase
If you’re about to spend a lot of money on something like home renovations or medical care, you should take a look at your credit report. If you’re in good standing and have a proven history of on-time payments, you can use that to your advantage to request a credit limit increase, be approved for a new line of credit, or obtain a lower interest rate.
Reason 3: You’re renting a new home
If you’re moving to a new apartment or rental home, it’s time to check in with your credit report. Your landlord may pull your credit history during the application process, so it’s a good idea to ensure they’ll like what they see. If you’re a homeowner, here are a few things you can do if your renters are behind on rent.
Reason 4: You’re buying a new car
Not only will your credit report affect whether you’ll be approved for a car loan, but it can also help save you money too. Having a good credit score will help you get more competitive financing offers with lower interest rates than loans offered to someone with less-than-stellar credit.
Reason 5: You’re buying a new house or refinancing
Like car loans, mortgages rely heavily on your credit history to see how well you pay off debts. If you’ve already got a mortgage and are looking to refinance or want to get a Home Equity Line Of Credit (HELOC), then you’ll also need to show a solid history of on-time payments with your lender.
Reason 6: You haven’t checked it in a while
Previously, you could only pull your credit report once a year from the major credit reporting bureaus (Equifax, TransUnion, and Experian). Thanks to software like Credit Karma and Mint, you’re now able to check your credit report whenever you like without lowering your score.
There’s no reason not to keep up to date with what’s going on on your credit report. So make it a priority to understand your financial situation now.
Reason 7: Something seems off
If you’re getting calls from collection companies, new credit offers, or letters from the IRS, it’s time to find out what’s going on. Even if you’re getting things for someone else, there could be an error that needs to be corrected ASAP. Don’t put off these things as just a fluke or a mistake because it can have a ripple effect on your finances.