Credit is required for financing for things like purchasing a home, car, vacation or paying for education. It can also be required for certain services, like getting a cell phone or a lease on an apartment. The list goes on and on and whether you are just starting to establish credit or rebuilding credit after a misstep or two, you may be wondering where the best place to start is.

Here are some tips and tricks to help you establish healthy credit habits.

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When you're establishing credit, using CUA's Microloan to finance items between $500 - $5,000 is the perfect place to start.

Learn more about the Microloan Program.

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CUAuthors are experienced and financially savvy CUA staff who are passionate about helping our personal and commercial members improve their confidence and knowledge of money matters.

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Questions and Answers

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What is the best way to start building credit? Expand/Collapse

Applying for a Microloan or low limit credit card is a great way to start building credit.  Use the credit card for regular purchases, and pay the balance off in full. Another great option is financing a large purchase - this could be a piece of furniture or even a vehicle. Without sufficient credit, you may require a co-signer. Be sure to choose someone you trust, like a parent or a partner.

How do I improve my credit in a hurry? Expand/Collapse

If you want to improve your credit, there is no quick and easy solution. Start by making regular payments on any debt you have and make sure you don't miss any existing payments. For a personalized solution to build your credit, contact a member of the CUA team at 902.492.6500.

If I miss a payment on my credit card or other loan, will this hurt my credit? Expand/Collapse

Yes, every time you miss a payment, this will appear on your credit report. If you know you're going to have trouble making a payment, call your lender ahead of time and see if there are other arrangements that you can make, like an interest only payment. Learn more tips for getting yourself out of the red.

How do I check my credit score? Expand/Collapse

You can check your credit score through Transunion or Equifax. Your Financial Advisor would be happy to chat with you about your credit score and the contents of your credit report.

Can I check my credit score anytime I want? Expand/Collapse

Through the above sites, Transunion and Equifax, you can check your credit score for free once a year. Keep in mind, there's a difference between you requesting a credit report and having a lender pull your credit score. The former is just for your own knowledge, but when requested repeatedly for lending, this can affect your credit.

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