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Whether you’re planning to buy or rent, your credit profile can impact whether or not you’re able to get the home of your dreams.

Improving Your Credit to Buy a House

Before you apply for a mortgage loan, make sure your credit history is in order by thinking about the following factors:

  • Credit Obligations: Make sure you’re current on all of your accounts (credit cards, loans, etc.)
  • Credit Utilization Ratio: Using too much credit may negatively impact your score.
  • Credit History: A long history of on-time payments is ideal.
  • Account Types: A diverse mix of accounts (such as credit cards, student loans, an auto loan, etc.) shows that you manage a variety of credit obligations.
  • Debt-to-Income Ratio (DTI): While your income is not part of your credit report, many lenders will ask for income information to make a more informed decision.

Credit Scores and Your Home Equity Line of Credit

August 17, 2013

Dear Experian, Will using up your entire home equity credit line count negatively on your credit report and score even if you are never late on your payments? - GGI

Landlords Can Share Credit Reports with Tenants

August 13, 2013

Dear Experian, Can a landlord show a prospective tenant a copy of their credit report? Can a landlord give a prospective tenant a copy of their credit report? - REB

Reporting Rent Payments Can Help Your Credit Scores

July 31, 2013

Dear Experian, How can I report my rent payments? My landlord does not. - TCR

Violating Rental Agreement Could Ruin Your Credit

July 17, 2013

Dear Experian, Could a violation of a rental agreement ruin my credit even though I don’t owe any rent? - MST

Evictions Are Not Shown in Your Credit Report

March 13, 2013

Dear Experian, I have an eviction on my credit report which is inaccurate. I have proof that it was paid. Every time I apply for an apartment I am denied...

Consigning for an Apartment Could Help or Hurt Credit

January 2, 2013

Dear Experian, My grandson wants us to cosign for an apartment. Does this affect our credit score in any way or just if he doesn't pay rent? - MTP

Fraud Alert Should Not Cause Increase in Apartment Fees

January 2, 2013

Dear Experian, My apartment complex raised my fees because you reported, “APPLICANT: High Probability SSN Belongs to Another. There is an excellent chance that the Social Security number on the...

Allowing Late Mortgage Payments for Short Sale

December 19, 2012

Dear Experian, If I'm planning to do a short sale but have not yet gone behind on monthly payments, is there any advantage to not going behind on payments? In...

Eviction is Not Shown on a Credit Report

September 12, 2012

Dear Experian, How long does it take for an eviction to show up on your credit report? - PHF

Foreclosure vs. Paid for Less Than Full Balance

August 15, 2012

Dear Experian, Which has a more negative effect on my credit score, "Account Paid In Full For Less Than the Full Balance" or "Foreclosure"? - ZPT

Owner-Financed Mortgage Not on Credit Report

June 6, 2012

Dear Experian, I purchased a home in November 2011. The owner is carrying the note. I would like to get my payment history reported to you. What does he have...

Loan Modification Denied

May 23, 2012

Dear Experian, I recently applied for a loan modification on my mortgage, but they did not qualify my application saying that based on the information I provided they felt that...

Impact of Missed Payments and Mortgage Modification

March 28, 2012

Dear Experian, I'm considering entering into a six month reduced payment plan with my mortgage lender. I understand this will have a negative impact on my credit. Will this have...

Compromise Sale of Home Will Hurt Credit

March 14, 2012

Dear Experian, I am active duty military and anticipating a permanent change of station this year. I am considering doing a VA compromise sale on my home in Tucson, as...

Loan Modification and Credit Scores

February 15, 2012

Dear Experian, How will a loan modification affect my credit scores? I've never been late on my payments and have been approved for a modification without any late payments. - HBO

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