The first thing you shouldn’t do is destroy old credit cards that are paid off. You get points from the credit card company just for keeping an account with them for a long time, whether you use the card or not. Plus, it looks good on a credit report to have a longstanding account.
Next, you shouldn’t spend all the limit on your card.
Truth is, your balance-to-limit radio is going to have a big effect on your credit. You want your balance (the amount you spend) to be only 20% of your limit (the amount that’s available). That means that $3,000 credit card should only have $600 on it if you want to keep your credit shiny clean.
Applying for too much credit will also hurt your credit score. Applications sent in to different companies in close intervals often means you won’t get any of the cards. The article advises keeping the same card for a long time, as sending in applications less than 6 months apart rarely pays off.
The article also warns against not paying late fees. If you just pay the balance every month, the late fee rolls over and is then considered 30 days late and you’re charged double the amount of the original fee.
The last piece of advice offered for consumers is to be sure to pay bills on time. This eliminates fees and benefits your credit score.
You know what date your bills are due. Set up online bill pay, write the due dates in big letters on your calendar, do whatever you have to do, but don’t rely on the postal service to get your bills to you on time.
If you have questions or concerns regarding the accuracy of your credit report, feel free to contact us.