If you read this recent blog, you learned that sometimes when you apply for a loan, the credit score that the lender pulls up may not be a match for the one which you have tracked. Often, this is because you've been watching your FICO score, while the lender checked your VantageScore, or vice versa.
An unexpected difference in your credit score could also reflect a recent event which you did not account for.
Regardless, what should you do if you discover that your credit score is not as high as you thought?
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Hopefully, any drop in your score compared to your expectations is minor in nature. But even a small difference could significantly impact loan offers which are made to you.
Even if you are on a tight schedule, it's worth taking a few steps to try and figure out why there is a difference in your score and if there is anything you can do to give it a quick boost back up to what you had predicted.
- Order your credit report. The first thing you should do is order your credit report to see what data went into calculating your unexpectedly low credit score. Once you have that information in front of you, you may be able to figure out which unaccounted factors have produced the difference.
- Correct errors. You could discover that the unexpected drop in your credit score actually has nothing to do with you. Sometimes, incorrect data finds its way onto credit reports. This can be the result of a simple mistake in many cases. In others, something more nefarious might be at work, like identity theft. If you find any incorrect entries that are lowering your score, you can contact the credit bureaus and the reporting agencies and request removal of these negative entries.
- Take quick steps to raise your score. Along with contesting incorrect entries in your credit report, there are some other steps you can take to try and give your score a quick increase. For example, you can decrease your credit utilization. You can also sign up for Experian Boost to include your utilities and phone payments in your credit score calculation instantly.
- Protect your score (and identity) going forward. If you are still a few weeks or even months out from signing on a mortgage, you will want to make sure that you do not repeat any mistakes that could lower your score from here on out. If any errors in your credit report point toward possible identity fraud, immediately freeze your credit and take other steps to protect yourself. Also, make sure that you do not make any mistakes in the near future to further compromise your score. For example, do not apply for other loans through companies that run hard credit checks if you can avoid it.
- Ask your lender about programs like FHA, USDA, and VA. If your schedule is forcing you to take out a home loan before your credit score is back to what you thought it would and should be, you still may be able to qualify for an affordable loan. Along with conventional loans, you can check into government-insured programs such as FHA, USDA, and VA. Since government agencies back these loans, their associated risk levels are mitigated, making a less than perfect credit score less of a concern. VA loans are restricted to current or past members of the military or eligible surviving spouses. USDA mortgages are income-based. But FHA loans are broadly available to a wide spectrum of borrowers (and not just first-time homebuyers).
We Can Help You Qualify for an Affordable Home Loan in Indianapolis
Grandview Lending Inc. offers all the types of mortgages discussed above plus additional lending products. As part of the application process, Grandview will sit down with you and go over your credit with you and help educate the borrower on the behaviors which help improve the credit score.
We have helped many customers without perfect credit scores move affordably into homes that they love. To get started, please call (317) 255-0062.