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Picture this: You're at the car dealership. After months of online research and several test drives, you're ready to buy. Then the finance team delivers the bad news. Your credit score doesn't qualify for the advertised interest rate. The car no longer fits into your budget. Devastated, you leave the lot carless, wondering what went wrong.
Why your credit score matters.
Having a high credit score means having more options when you want to borrow and potentially qualifying for lower rates. A low credit score could mean not qualifying for a loan or having to pay higher rates, which could strain your budget and keep you from reaching your financial goals.
What's a good score?
Credit scores range from 300-850. Different institutions have different standards in approving loans, but generally you want your score to be near or above 740 to help ensure you get the lowest possible rate.
What determines your score?
There are many factors, but the most important are:
What else can you do to improve your score?
Monitor your credit history and adjust, if needed. You're entitled to one free credit report each year from each credit bureau: Equifax, Experian and TransUnion. You can request it by going to annualcreditreport.com.
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