How to Establish Good Credit While You’re in College
Establishing good credit during your college years is a matter of knowing what to do and what not to do. It is a good idea to start using credit. A positive payment history will be advantageous later on. At times, your experience at Berkeley University may be a little easier, especially if you need to make a purchase before a paycheck comes in. By managing your credit in college well, you can find yourself with a good credit rating throughout school and after you graduate.
Thinking about good credit now will pay off later. You may choose to consolidate your student loans after graduating, and interest rates may be more in your favor with a good credit report. Potential landlords and even a dealer you may buy a car from will check your credit. Establishing good credit now means less of a struggle later.
Once you choose a credit card that meets your needs, pay off your balances every month. Do not charge for things you wouldn’t be able to buy anyway. Make sure your balance doesn’t grow such that interest builds up. You shouldn’t avoid using your card either. It is crucial to make payments on time, especially since 35 percent of your credit score depends on payment history.
Don’t apply for too many credit cards at once. Every time there is a credit inquiry, your credit score is lowered slightly. Look to your parents as well. If they have a good credit history, then you can build off it. Their responsibility can give you a boost in terms of your credit score.
You should also focus on having responsible roommates, especially if you live off-campus while attending Berkeley University. Their missed rent payments can hurt your credit because your name is on the lease. You shouldn’t co-sign on credit with a buddy either. Your credit will be hurt if they miss a payment, no matter how responsible you always are.
View Your Credit Report Often
Seeing your credit report allows you to find suspicious activity and report it to the credit card company. Sometimes companies falsely report payments as late. You can protect your credit and identity by checking your score. Being diligent can also make you better at running a business later. Maryland offers an online MBA program that will build your ability to manage your business assets and finances.
Also, keep all your information up to date. If you move, notify any account or bill you pay, and make sure you have mail forwarded. You do not want to miss any payments, which will tack on late fees and put negative results on your credit report.