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Your Credit Score: Stay on Top

Your credit score influences insurance & mortgage rates, car loans & more. Garrett B. Gunderson, financial expert & author of "Killing Sacred Cows" discloses novel ways to stay on top of your score

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Your Credit Score: Stay on Top
Your credit score and credit rating have an influence on insurance rates, mortgage interest rates and fees, car loans, and more. Garrett B. Gunderson, financial services industry expert and author of "Killing Sacred Cows", explains and discloses some novel ways on how you can stay on top of managing and improving your credit score.

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Video Transcript: Your Credit Score: Stay on Top, a Original video with Garrett. B. Gunderson:

Hi welcome to SpendLessTV. I'm Garrett Gunderson. I wrote a book called "Killing Sacred Cows" which is a New York Times bestseller, and what I'm going to talk to you today really impacts spending on all levels because it's your credit.

If you don't understand your credit you're probably over paying on your interest rates. Heck, in today's world you're probably overpaying on your insurance rates. It impacts your car insurance and your homeowner's insurance if you don't have the right credit score. But for most people, they don't understand how to improve their score.

So, let's begin by: Do you understand what your credit score is? And how it works? It might be 680. It might be 720. It might be 760, or a lot lower, like it might be 500. But the lower that score is the higher you're probably going to pay for anything as far as loans go or insurance goes.

So let's help you understand what it takes to pass the test of credit. Let's begin by looking at the statement.

You can go to Annual Credit Report, Free Credit Report, True any of those websites and figure out what your credit is, and when you see it you're going to find out #1) Are there errors on that report? Does it have your proper name from all three bureaus, Equafax and TransUnion? And if it doesn't you want to make sure that you write to them or call them and get it corrected because that impacts your score when you have inconsistencies. Does it have your same address on all three reports? If it doesn't that's going to impact your score. These are minor things that if you take care of are going help you improve your score.

Now there's the obvious things: You can pay your bills on time. Paying your bills on time definitely helps your credit score. But here are some of the things that might be a little more elusive, like: How many credit cards do you have? If you're getting offered department store credit cards all the time and you're taking them and all of a sudden you find yourself with 10 credit cards, that's too many, that's going to hurt your score. If you limit to maybe three personal credit cards and get the highest balance possible, as high as they'll let you have, the higher the balance the better that's going to look for your credit. But that doesn't mean that you go charge that whole balance. In fact, here's another tip: keep your loan balances under 30-percent; even better under 20-percent; and if you can pay them off each month, pay them off each month. But having a few personal credit cards is actually a good thing for your credit score.

Here's another tip: have an installment loan if you can. That could be a car loan or even a mortgage, but if you have a car loan and your paying it on time and even pay it off that's going to improve your credit score because it shows responsibility and longevity for that matter.

So here's some other things you can do with your credit, that ae very important - you can make sure - and this is really important that you do this - monitor on an ongoing basis, because what about identity theft? What about just these errors that can come up on an ongoing basis like showing an account's closed, that's not closed, but maybe your financial institutions aren't reporting your limits? It's kind of a dirty little trick that they do sometimes where they don't report your limits so it looks like you're maxed-out on your credit card where maybe you've got a $10,000 credit card, you've only charged $2,000, well those loan-to-balances are really good for your credit score, but if they don't report your limits they might say, "Hey that credit card is maxed out so we're going to lower some of those points."

So let me give you those tips again: 1) Make sure your credit score on all your reports is accurate and consistent. 2) Make sure that you're paying all your credit cards and loans on time 3) Make sure that you're getting the highest balances on a few personal credit cards, maybe 3, maybe 4, but three is really a pretty good number, and stop getting the department store cards and unnecessary cards that you're not using very often. 4) Now make sure that those upper limits are being reported, because if they're not, that's going to hurt you. 5) And you know what, if you're kind of in a damage situation where your credit's bad and maybe you haven't paid a bill make sure to get a "letter of deletion" before you pay anything off. Because that letter of deletion will take it off without hurting your credit score again. Interestingly enough, you pay it off, before that letter of deletion, it may actually lower your credit score.

Now good scores are maybe 680 that's okay, 720's even better, 760 or 780 and all of a sudden the whole world opens up to you, and you can get better rates. If you increase your credit score you can go re-negotiate car loans; re-negotiate maybe even your home loan, and do streamlines or refinancing or restructuring and definitely lower your credit card interest rates by being a responsible borrower. so now that you know some of the rules and some of the tips to improving your credit score, go out and do it!

Your credit score and credit rating have an influence on insurance rates, mortgage interest rates and fees, car loans, and more. Garrett B. Gunderson, financial services industry expert and author of "Killing Sacred Cows", explains and discloses some novel ways on how you can stay on top of managing and improving your credit score. Do More... For Less with the Money-Saving Tips & Videos on - Get More for Your Money, and Your Life!