You may or may not care about getting good grades in school. But credit is a kind of grade that follows you way past middle school, high school, and even college. It is your shadow for the rest of your life, so you'd better learn how to make it work for you, not against you. We're going to lay out why this silly grade is actually crazy important, how it can help you, and why a bad score can really be a buzzkill.
FICO is the head honcho that sets the score ratings. Based on your score, they decide what category you fit in.
*300-579 is Very Poor*
580-669 is Fair
670-739 is Good
740-799 is Very Good
800-850 is Exceptional
This is a super easy way for lenders to decide who to give money to and who not to give money to, because the score kind of tells them how dependable a person will be when they have to repay something. It's like with school. You turn in all your assignments in on time, you generally try hard to learn, and you show up to class. Because of all the past work you have put in, your teacher probably feels they can trust you. So when one time you ask for an extension on a paper or to redo a quiz, they are going to be more lenient and willing to help you out. If you're skipping class, failing assignments, and generally not trying? That will be a hard pass, and probably a major #fail.
So why is this score more important than any other score you'll get? What kind of impact will it have on your life? Well first, here's a big list of who checks your credit score:
Credit card companies
Departments store card applications
Car loan applications
Student loan applications
Cell phone companies
Personal loan applications
Home buying applications
Dude. These people are your lifeline to adulting. Getting an apartment? Buying a car? Trying to get cable or a phone or water or electricity? All of these things you need to live your best life. And all of these things may rely on your credit score to decide if you are reliable enough to take care of these bills.
So a good credit score will get you: more money on a loan, a lower interest rate, better chances for credit card and loan approval, higher credit card limit, better home approvals, lower insurance races, reduced or no deposits on utilities, better chance at qualifying for personal and business loans. Sound like the good life yet?
And on the flip side, a bad credit score can cost you more money. More money in interest, more money in deposits, increased insurance payments. You may get less money for loans when you need them, less chance of getting the apartment or house or you want, and a smaller credit limit.
Long story short? Work hard to make this credit score freaking awesome. Your future self will be stoked. Now let's chat about how to get the credit score of your dreams.