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If you’ve been trying to buy a house in this chaotic pandemic housing market, you know you could lose an opportunity from right under your feet in an instant.
The market is as competitive as we’ve ever seen it, and cash buyers are snatching up houses left and right. Bidding wars start within hours of a house being listed, and it’s not uncommon to see people offering $50,000 over asking price. Some things are just out of your control.
But there’s one thing that you do have control over — and that’s making sure you get approved for a mortgage, at a rate you can afford. Home sellers want to sell to someone who won’t give them any trouble during the closing process — and having a pre-approval for a mortgage loan is a great selling point. But without a good credit score, you might not stand a chance.
That means now is the time to improve your credit score and make sure there are no dings on your report holding you back. A free website called Credit Sesame can help you build your score, getting you one step closer to living in your dream home.
A Bad Credit Score Can Deny You a Pre-Approval — Or Cost You Thousands
If you’ve ever applied for a loan, you know that the lowest interest rate will save you the most amount of money. The same goes for a mortgage — and the only way to get the lowest interest rate is to make sure banks don’t think you’re a risky client (aka someone with a bad credit track record).
And with a poor credit score, you might not get a pre-approval at all — meaning just putting an offer on a home is out of the question.
A higher interest rate on your mortgage could cost you tens of thousands of dollars more over the life of your loan. In just 90 seconds, Credit Sesame will show you your free credit score, plus what’s impacting it. It’ll even tell you if there are any mistakes on your credit report — one in five people have one, according to the FTC. Then, they’ll give you customized advice to get your credit score back on track, which could make you more appealing to lenders — and home sellers.
Make sure your dreams of homeownership don’t get squashed by bad credit. Get your free credit score here (it only takes about 90 seconds) and see how much you could improve your score. You could be that much closer to getting the keys to your new home.
Kari Faber is a staff writer at The Penny Hoarder.
60% of Credit Sesame members see an increase in their credit score; 50% see at least a 10-point increase, and 20% see at least a 50-point increase after 180 days.
Credit Sesame does not guarantee any of these results, and some may even see a decrease in their credit score. Any score improvement is the result of many factors, including paying bills on time, keeping credit balances low, avoiding unnecessary inquiries, appropriate financial planning and developing better credit habits.
This was originally published on The Penny Hoarder, which helps millions of readers worldwide earn and save money by sharing unique job opportunities, personal stories, freebies and more. The Inc. 5000 ranked The Penny Hoarder as the fastest-growing private media company in the U.S. in 2017.