Home Buying and Your Credit Rating
Now that you are interested in purchasing a home of your own, it is also a good time to review your credit report, checking closely for correctness. If you are married, you and your spouse will have separate credit files that contain much of the same information. You need to have a good credit rating to buy a home, but it does not have to be perfect! Your credit rating is the history of money you have borrowed and repaid.
It is important to have a good credit rating because your home mortgage lender will decide whether or not to approve your loan application primarily based on your credit rating. If you have not borrowed and repaid money, you will not have a credit history rating. You may be able to show your ability to make timely payments using nontraditional credit references like rent, utilities, childcare, child support and other large recurring payments to show the lender that you make your payments on time.
What is my credit report and where do I get a copy?
A credit report is a current and historical record of your credit activities and employment. It also shows action taken against you because of unpaid accounts, bankruptcy, judgments, liens filed against you plus former addresses and employers. Here are the three major credit reporting agencies that lenders pay to obtain your credit information. You too can obtain a copy of your credit report.
Visit www.AnnualCreditReport.com for information on how to obtain a FREE copy of your credit report.
Why should I obtain a copy of my credit report?
Avoid surprises! Errors on credit reports are not uncommon and they can be corrected by contacting the creditor. You can save time by reviewing your report for accuracy before you apply for a home loan.
What if I discover that I have a poor credit history?
If you have a poor credit history, no one can unconditionally guarantee to clean up your credit and that you will qualify for a loan. Credit repair fraud is a problem for consumers. Under the Fair Credit Reporting Act, credit repair companies cannot do anything that you cannot do for yourself at little or no cost. Although errors on your credit report can be corrected, a poor credit history cannot be erased. Your credit report can be improved over time by doing the following:
Consistently pay your bills on time;
Keep your overall debt at a reasonable level, relative to your income;
Actively and responsibly use credit cards.
Helpful tips for working through credit problems include developing a budget, tracking your expenses, defining your financial goals and identifying ways to cut costs and increase savings. If you need assistance, you can contact one of our certified consumer credit counseling providers in your area. Visit the Help For Texans page of our Web site for helpful resources.