Credit scoring is a basic concept in the developed world. Although it’s still not that popular in the Philippines, the average Filipino is becoming more aware of it and its value.
A high credit score can open a world of financial opportunities for you, such as a more affordable residential house and lot in Cavite. However, not all Filipinos have credit scores. If you do have one, building it up takes time, effort, and discipline.
To make sure you’re as creditworthy as possible when taking out any loan, do the following.
Pay Your Bills on Time
Punctual and complete payment of bills is the bedrock on which good credit scores are built. Don’t play favorites, for picking which bills to pay on time and in full can taint your overall payment history.
Living in a country where financial credit data sets remain fragmented, it’s imperative to be responsible for handling every bill under your name. You never know when a late or missed payment can pull your credit score down, so make sure you repay whatever you owe.
Use a Credit Card
Credit card issuers are data furnishers. In other words, they submit consumer data to credit bureaus, the companies that generate credit reports and calculate scores.
If you’re allergic to plastic, you probably don’t fully understand how it works. The notion that a credit card can ruin your finances is a myth. In most cases, you may not even have to shoulder any interest when you use plastic to buy goods and pay for services. As long as you pay the full balance on or before the due date, you will not be charged extra.
Credit card usage comes with many other practical benefits. Apart from building your credit, it allows you to earn rewards, track your expenses, and push the deadlines of your financial obligations.
Don’t Rely on ‘5/6’ or ‘ATM Sangla’
When it comes to lending, avoid informal sources of funds. More often than not, they don’t report your payment history to credit bureaus, rendering your good pieces of credit information practically useless.
Instead, seek financing from the mainstream banking system. Thanks to the fintech boom, you can borrow money from non-traditional lenders through mobile apps.
Like bankers, insurers are active members of the financial community. They constantly collaborate with credit bureaus to assess the risk of doing business with different customers. Building credit is another reason to buy insurance and pay your premiums on time.
Reach Out to a Credit Bureau
Most importantly, request a copy of your credit report from a credit bureau. This document should give you the full picture of your creditworthiness. It explains where you stand financially, informs you about your credit score, and reveal incorrect information attached to your name that needs fixing.
Whether you’re planning to seek financing soon or not, you should take your credit score more seriously. The sooner you pay attention to increase it, the more you can benefit from it over the long term.