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Boost Your Credit Score

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Its one of the most important numbers in your financial life... your credit score.  But according to new numbers from credit rating agency FICO more than 1 in four Americans have scores of 599 or lower, making them a poor risk.

That's more than 43 million Americans.  And since banks are tighter with loaning money, it could mean more people will have a tougher time financing big purchases, like homes and cars.

FICO scores go as high as 850.  599 or below is a red flag.... as banks consider borrowers in that range a risk. So, what goes into your credit score?  These numbers are from FICO:

  • 35% payment history.  Most important thing is paying bills on time. Late payments can stay on your credit history for years.  Bankruptcies and foreclosures show up for 7 years.
  • 30% amounts owed.  The next most important factor is how much you owe.  Basically, the bigger the balance, the lower your score.
  • 15% length of credit history.
  • 10% types of credit.
  • 10% new credit.   Don't try to get around it by opening up new cards...  because multiple credit inquiries in a short period also dings your score.

  And keep this in mind... you can't fix your credit, if you don't know what's wrong.  So take a look at your credit report for negative information, and work on the things that could make your score higher.  To get a free credit report go to

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