build credit from scratch
Understand the Basics of Credit
Before you can start building credit, it’s essential to understand how credit works. Credit is a system that allows you to borrow money or access goods or services with the promise of paying it back later. Your credit history is a record of how you’ve used credit in the past and how well you’ve managed it.
Credit scores, which range from 300 to 850, are a numerical representation of your creditworthiness. The higher your credit score, the more likely you are to be approved for loans and credit cards, and the lower your interest rates and fees will be.
Apply for a Secured Credit Card
A secured credit card is an excellent tool for building credit from scratch. Unlike traditional credit cards, secured credit cards require a security deposit, which acts as collateral for the credit limit. Secured credit cards are typically easier to qualify for, even if you don’t have any credit history.
To use a secured credit card to build credit, make small purchases and pay them off in full each month. This will show lenders that you’re responsible with credit and help you establish a positive credit history.
Consider a Credit Builder Loan
A credit builder loan is another option for building credit from scratch. With a credit builder loan, you borrow a small amount of money from a lender, and the lender puts the money into a savings account. You then make monthly payments on the loan, and once it’s paid off, you get the money back.
The lender reports your payments to the credit bureaus, helping you establish a positive credit history. While credit builder loans typically have higher interest rates than traditional loans, they can be an excellent option for building credit from scratch.
Become an Authorized User
If you have a family member or friend with good credit, you may be able to become an authorized user on their credit card. This means that you can use the card to make purchases, and the primary cardholder is responsible for paying the bill.
As an authorized user, the primary cardholder’s positive credit history can help you establish credit. However, it’s essential to make sure that the primary cardholder is responsible with credit and pays the bill on time, as any late payments or missed payments can also appear on your credit report.