Understanding what is and isn't included on your credit report is essential for managing your finances and maintaining a healthy credit score. But do items like your internet bill affect your credit score? In this article, we'll explore what is not included in your credit report and help you better understand how certain financial decisions impact your creditworthiness.
What accounts are not included on my credit report?
Accounts like your internet, utility, and cell phone bills are generally not included on your credit report. However, it's important to note that if you fail to pay these bills and the account is sent to collections, it could then appear on your credit report and negatively impact your credit score.
What accounts are included on my credit report?
Your credit report typically includes information about your credit accounts, such as credit cards, auto loans, mortgages, and student loans. These accounts are reported by your creditors to the credit bureaus, and they include details like your payment history, account balances, credit limits, and the age of the account.
How long do old accounts stay on my credit report?
Most negative information, like late payments or collection accounts, will stay on your credit report for seven years. On the other hand, positive information, such as on-time payments and low credit utilization, can remain on your report indefinitely, contributing to a healthy credit score. And remember bankruptcies can stay on your report for up to ten years, depending on the type of bankruptcy.
What's the difference between a hard and a soft inquiry?
A hard inquiry occurs when a lender checks your credit report as part of their decision-making process when you apply for credit, such as a loan or credit card. Hard inquiries can have a small, temporary impact on your credit score. A soft inquiry, on the other hand, occurs when you or a potential employer check your credit report, or when a lender pre-approves you for an offer. Soft inquiries do not affect your credit score.
How do I improve my credit score?
You can improving your credit score, by keeping an eye on some of the following:
Making timely payments: Paying all your bills on time is one of the most important factors in maintaining a healthy credit score
Keeping low credit utilization: Aim to use no more than 30% of your available credit at any given time
Diversifying your credit mix: Having a variety of credit accounts, such as credit cards, auto loans, and mortgages, can positively impact your credit score
Limiting hard inquiries: Only apply for new credit when necessary to avoid unnecessary hard inquiries on your credit report
Regularly reviewing your credit report: Monitor your credit report for errors or inaccuracies and dispute them promptly
Understanding what is and isn't included on your credit report is crucial to making informed financial decisions. While your internet bill may not directly affect your credit score, it's essential to be aware of the accounts that do impact it and take steps to maintain a healthy credit history. By staying informed and managing your credit responsibly, you can work toward a brighter financial future.