The key to financial health is understanding credit. It affects not only your ability to qualify for a loan, but also the rate you will pay for the loan. Vermont Federal strives to help members establish and maintain good credit throughout their lives.
When you apply for any type of a loan, lenders want to understand the risk they are taking by providing you with the money. They take into account factors such as your income levels, current level of debt, and your employment history. One number that they often look at is your credit (or FICO) score. Learn more about this by viewing Understanding Your FICO Score.
Managing Your Debt
Managing your debt wisely is one way to ensure good credit standing. Vermont Federal now offers access to a tool called SavvyMoney. Answer just a few questions about your current income and debt and you will be provided with a personalized summary along with strategies for maintaining your debt. There is no personal identifying information linked to your financial information and the service is completely anonymous.
Free Credit Reports
Consumers are eligible to receive one credit report each year, free of charge.
Request your free credit report one of these two ways:
- Go to: annualcreditreport.com
- Call 1-877-322-8228
This is the only authorized source for consumers to access their annual credit report online for free. Be sure to order from the agency listed above. If you go directly to the credit reporting agencies, you may be charged.
Fixing Errors on Your Credit Report
If there are errors on your credit report, you have the following recourse:
- Write to the consumer reporting company and explain what information is inaccurate.
- Credit bureaus will review the documentation and if further investigation is required, they will provide a copy to the source that furnished the disputed information to them.
- The source will then review the information and report back to the credit reporting company.
Improving Your Credit Score
If you find that your credit score is lower than you would like, or is keeping you from qualifying for or getting good rates on loans, the following steps may help you to improve your score.
- Make your payments on time.
- Establish a long term account with a reputable credit card company.
- Don't take on more debt than you can handle.
- Don't get caught up in credit repair scams.
- Speak to a loan officer about our Credit Builder Loan.
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