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Credit Tips | Other Resources

What is a good or bad credit score?

Credit scores range from 300 to 850. Scores ranging from 300 to 550 are considered ‘poor,’ while scores ranging from 720 to 850 are considered ‘excellent.’ Lenders have different ideas about what is a ‘bad’ score is, but generally 640 and lower is considered ‘sub-prime.’ If you have bad credit, there are ways to improve your score, but it takes a bit of time and work.

How does bad credit affect you?

Having unsatisfactory credit can make quite a few processes difficult, including buying a home and sometimes even applying for a job. Your credit report is most often pulled by lenders to determine your ability to repay a loan, but can also be pulled by potential landlords, employers and the like before deciding whether to begin a financial relationship with you.

How can you turn your credit around?

The most obvious step you can take is to pay your bills on time and change your borrowing habits. More specifically, you should keep your credit balances at 30% or less of your available credit. It is also important to check your credit score at least once a year to look out for identity theft or fraud. Another good reason to check your credit score regularly is to make sure that all of the information is accurate and up-to-date. You can send dispute letters to the credit bureaus to get this information corrected.

Request for your free annual credit report www.annualcreditreport.com to see where your credit stands.  Pay down ay credit cards under 30% of the limit and payoff any collections that are less than one year old to build your score up about 90 days prior to getting pre-approved for a home loan.  You need good standing open accounts to build credit and a variety of accounts is best for an optimal score.  People with 700+ scores have multiple accounts open that they have little or no balances used.  You are graded on how old the accounts are so you may want to use them within a 2 year period to avoid the creditor from closing the account.  Just make sure to pay it off before the next billing cycle.  If you personally close a good standing account you can lose about 20 pts on average for doing so.

FHA:

HUDClips Handbook

County Mortgage Limits

FHA Approved Condos

Reverse Mortgage Approved Counselors

FHA 203k Approved Inspectors & Consultants

FHA UMIP Refunds

Conventional Private Mortgage Insurance:

MGIC Rate Finder

Radian Rate Finder

Loan Programs:

FHA 203k Repairs 

VA

USDA

Homepath Homes & Financing

FHA Good Neighbor Next Door

FHA $100 Down Purchase

Avoid Foreclosure

Freddie Mac Resources

Budget Worksheet
Building Better Credit
Consumer Credit Online Training
Buying a Home Guide
Understanding Mortgage Loan Documents Guide
Step by Step Mortgage Guide
Avoid Financial Traps
Choosing the Mortgage Option For You
Caring for your home
Pursuing Alternatives to Foreclosure

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