- Centurion Member
- Posts: 1141
- Joined: Sun Jan 26, 2014 3:55 am
- Location: US
Welcome, Volthian! That's a perfectly fine score for someone with a very limited history. It takes time to establish a strong score, and when your credit history is as short as yours the score honestly isn't that meaningful. The most important thing you can do for your credit is manage everything your have responsibly, and you'll build a good credit profile over time. Make sure you make 100% of your payments on time. Even one 30-day late payment will hurt you, and it will stay on your profile for years. Pay your credit card bills in full, too (it won't hurt your score to pay less than the full balance of each statement, but just from a personal finance perspective it will keep you from paying interest unnecessarily and keep you in the habit of only using credit as a payment method - it should never become a way to finance everyday expenses). Don't allow any derogs or collections to pop up.
If you want to focus on improving your score, I agree that getting another account (or a few at least over time) will be best for you. You may also be able to get a credit limit increase from BofA. Your student loans are installment accounts; presumably you don't have to pay anything on them yet, which is good while you're in school, but also means the proportion of outstanding balances to original amounts of these loans will be high for the foreseeable future. That is a factor that will hurt your score, but there's nothing you can do about it now. The length of time your accounts have been established will be a factor that hurts you for a while, and the only way out of that is time. Getting more accounts now will mean that there are more accounts in your credit profile to start aging and building a good history for you. You don't even have to use them if you don't want to, but using them will mean you have more records of positive payments building up in your history. Put a single recurring charge on them, like a cell phone bill, and pay if off after the statement cuts to show that you use them and pay them on time.
If you want advise on what cards to go after, the people on this forum will only be too happy to help. For a college student, another simple cash back card will probably be best. Credit card rewards are a great thing, but keep them in perspective: they should be completely secondary to good financial habits. If you don't let credit cards drive your spending you can get a lot of value out of them. You may not need to hear this, but it is important to keep in mind (if you spend a lot of time on various forums you can get egged on into applying for things and treating credit cards as a competitive sport, which will only harm you in the long run). Personally, I think store accounts are a good tool for establishing credit (*edited to add: I agree that they aren't keepers*). They have lousy terms, but if you pay them in full they don't cost you anything. If a store card and a secured card are one's only options, I'd rather have a store card than an account that requires you to tie up funds. You may be past that already, however. You've already got a good rewards card, so another rewards card may be attainable for you.
Hope this was helpful. Good luck!
EX - 804 (9/16) | TU - 803 (10/16)
American Express EveryDay - $20,000 (10/14)
Discover it - $23,000 (2/14)
AU on Barclay Sallie Mae - $10,000 (8/15)
plus several store accounts of varying usefulness now