3 Steps to Building a Superhuman Credit Score

Guest Post by Jacelyn Thomas

With the economy still weak from the recent recession (though at least recovering), it is harder to impress credit lenders than it was ten years ago.  What would have passed for an above-average credit score in 2001 (680) is now considered on the lower side of average.  The reason for this new, higher definition of credit-worthiness is primarily that banks are still hesitant to loan money for fear of not making that money back.  They want as few liabilities as possible, so they are more stringent in their credit score requirements.

In light of the shifted credit score curve, it might be time to examine your own credit score, as well as your spending and credit usage practices, to ensure that you aren’t unfairly denied a loan for your next car, house, or business venture.  There isn’t much you can do to improve the economy, or lender’s expectations, but there are steps you can take to improve your credit score, so that you will impress even the shrewdest of banks and always get the best rates.

Step 1: Know Thyself (Or At Least Thy Credit Report)

There are a number of factors that influence your final credit score: Payment history, bankruptcy, credit card debt, length of credit history, type and number of credit cards, and hard inquiries that are made when you apply for loans and lines of credit.
At any point, it is possible that one or more of the three bureaus that track your credit usage or any involved party (banks, collection agencies, etc.) could make a mistake that might negatively affect your score. 

To avoid this, check your credit report every 12 months for errors.  You can obtain a free copy of your credit report (though your score isn’t on free reports) from; if you find any errors you can dispute them to have them resolved.  But be aware: it can take up to six months to fix an error on your report, so do it early, and be patient.

Step 2: Hold Steady

Especially if you’re planning to buy a new home or car in the near future (three to six months), don’t open any new lines of credit if you can help it.  Ultimately your credit score shows lenders your risk level, and will directly affect your interest rate — and applying for loans and credit cards temporarily lowers your score, so you might not get the best rate possible if you have any recent hard inquiries into your credit report. 

Instead of opening new accounts or transferring balances, make the best use of the credit you have.  The best way to prove to banks and other lenders that you will be a reliable borrower is to have a great revolving credit history.

Step 3: Be a Payment Superhero (Or At Least Pay Your Bills On Time)

Credit history accounts for 30% of your credit score, so it is imperative that you aren’t delinquent on any accounts you have.  The fastest way to delinquency is missing payments or due dates, so make your credit card payments with superhuman punctuality, and you’ll be on your way to a superhuman score.

But not missing payments isn’t really enough.  Ideally, you should be paying your entire balance in full (or at least more than the minimum amount due) every month, and should never exceed 30% of your total available credit. 

You won’t be bulletproof or be able to leap over tall buildings in a single bound, but if you follow these steps, your credit score will leap up, and will be as close enough to bulletproof that lenders will trust you with their lives (or at least their money, which is all that really matters). 

Author Bio:
Jacelyn writes about identity theft for She can be reached at: jacelyn.thomas @

No comments:


The documents distributed here have been presented on this blog in good faith. All photos are presented here via Flckr's "blog this" feature. This feature is enabled by each artist on Flckr. If you find material here that belongs to you and you would like to have it removed or credited please contact me and I will gladly follow your wishes.

Copyright and all rights therein are maintained by the authors or by other copyright holders. It is understood that all persons copying this information will adhere to the terms and constraints invoked by each author's copyright. These works may not be reposted without the explicit permission of the copyright holder.