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Understanding Credit: How to Build and Maintain a Healthy Score

Understanding Credit: How to Build and Maintain a Healthy Score

A credit score is like a financial report card that shows how well you handle your money. It's important because it can affect your ability to borrow money for things like a car or a house, and even influence the interest rates you'll get.

At Waterfront, we want to help you make your credit score as strong as possible. Here’s how you can do that, whether you’re starting from scratch or looking to keep your score up.

What is a Credit Score?

Your credit score is a number that lenders use to decide how risky it is to lend you money. It’s based on your past financial actions, like paying back loans and using credit cards. A higher score means you're seen as less risky, which can be good for getting loans with better terms.

Why a Good Credit Score Matters

A good credit score is key for many reasons. It can help you rent a place to live, get loans for big purchases like a car or home, and sometimes even affect job opportunities. Plus, a higher score usually gets you lower interest rates, saving you money in the long run.

Building Your Credit Score

If you’re new to credit or looking to improve your score, here are some steps to follow:

  • Start Small: Consider getting a starter credit card or a small loan that's designed to help build your credit.
  • Pay On Time: Always pay your bills when they’re due, as this shows you're reliable.
  • Keep Balances Low: Try not to max out your credit cards. Using less of your available credit is better for your score.
  • Apply for Credit Sparingly: Don't sign up for several credit cards or loans at once, as this can look risky and lower your score.

Keeping Your Credit Score High

To keep your score high, follow these tips:

  • Check Your Credit Report: Look at your credit report for free once a year to make sure there are no mistakes.
  • Mix It Up: Having different types of credit, like a car loan and a credit card, can be good for your score.
  • Stay Smart with Money: Keep an eye on your finances and adjust if things change, like if you get a new job or pay off a loan.

When You Hit a Bump

If your credit score isn't where you want it to be, don’t worry. Start by looking at your credit report to see what might be bringing your score down. And remember, you can always talk to us at Waterfront for advice on how to manage your credit and debts.


Keeping a good credit score is crucial for your financial health. By following these steps, you can build a strong score or keep your current score in great shape. At Waterfront, we’re here to help you every step of the way with advice and resources to manage your credit.