I came across this some time ago but thought I would post it as it provides a breakdown of what weight certain factors play in determining your credit score.
As you can see the largest overall factor in determining your credit score is your payment history followed closely by the amounts owed.
One thing that always seems to affect my credit is the length of credit history. Because I moved to the USA from another country my credit history is relatively short compared to that of most Americans the same age as me.
Here is another grahpic from Experian showing the “credit quality” of certain types of credit.
I currently don’t have a mortgage so that could be hurting my credit. I do have an auto loan though which is a type of installment loan. Obviously, I have some credit cards but also some retail cards like Walmart and Amazon.
I thought I would provide some details about which credit monitoring services I have been using to track my credit. I signed up ages ago to services from all three of the major credit bureaus.
Triple Advantage from Experian – Currently costs me $17.95 per month
Complete Premier from Equifax – Currently costs me $17.95 per month
TrueCredit from TransUnion – Currently costs me $19.95 per month
A lot of people think these services are a ripoff and they don’t even provide you with a proper FICO score. However, I enjoy keeping track of changes to my credit file and so for me it’s worth the monthly fee as I am always checking my credit file.
I have also previously used myFICO which is an excellent service (and website).
If you’re on a budget but want to improve your credit you don’t have to signup for all these services. You can usually get your credit report for free once a year from all three credit bureaus. Check out this website for your free yearly credit reports from Experian, Equifax and TransUnion.