Now is a great time to begin implementing your New Year’s Resolutions. While it may seem like a daunting task, following these 7 simple financial tips will get you on the road to rebuilding your credit score so you can make your financial dreams come true.
“When it comes to your financial well-being, nothing is more important than maintaining a solid credit score,” explains Ralph D. Spencer, Jr., Suffolk Federal President and CEO. “A favorable score can affect every aspect of your life and significantly impact your future.”
According to Spencer, Suffolk Federal offers these 7 steps to help make your 2018 financial resolutions a reality:
- Check Your Credit Report Routinely to Make Sure Your Scores Are Accurate
Did you know you could check your credit scores as often as you like without being penalized? Visit a trustworthy resource and be proactive in managing your credit report. Look for errors and derogatory information and evaluate their recommendations for what action you should be taking. If you note any issues, make sure to dispute them as soon as possible. Negative information on a credit report does not disappear and can seriously impact your ability to obtain financing or open accounts.
- If You Are Delinquent, Speak with Your Creditors
If you find yourself in a situation where you have a delinquency, try talking with the creditor. Also, if you run into a financial situation and need more time to pay your debt, contact the financial institution.
- Schedule Payment Reminders So You Pay On-Time
Reduce your chance of making late payments by scheduling payment reminders in your calendar or, when possible, have yourself notified by e-mail. You can also consider paying your bills or the minimum due with the auto-pay option through your financial institution or through the creditor. This will minimize the possibility that you miss a payment and ensure you pay your bills in a timely fashion.
- Plan to Reduce Your Debt
Make a plan to pay down your debt and stick to the plan. Try to get rid of your high interest credit cards and transfer balances to a low rate credit card from Suffolk Federal.
- Raise Your Credit Limits
Do not use too much of your available credit limit. You can vastly improve your credit score by keeping credit card balances low.
- Do Not Max Out Your Credit Limits: Under Use Your Cards
Credit card utilization impacts your credit score. It is important to not max out your credit availability on any credit card. If you need more credit, consider asking contacting the credit company to request more credit however, keep in mind that it is important to not use all credit which you have available as this will negatively impact your credit score.
- Protect Yourself Using Technology
There are many great technological tools available to protect your credit history. For Suffolk Federal, technology which enhances member experience is a primary focus of the credit union. One of Suffolk Federal’s missions in 2018 is to continue to introduce new innovative technology tools to help protect members from fraud, credit and identification theft. Tools from the credit union presently available include:
- CardValet Mobile App
Provides real-time notifications when the debit card is used. Members can lock their card anytime.
- Card Lock Mobile App
Allows members to take an active role in protecting credit card accounts.
- Digital Wallet
Users can shop without carrying credit or debit cards. Proactively safeguards personal identity and cards using the latest encryption technology.
Use a service such as LifeLock—discounted through Suffolk Federal—which helps you spot and dispute errors and potential issues to keep your credit history accurate. LifeLock proactively safeguards your personal information and alerts you to potential threats on an ongoing basis.