Keeping up with your credit score - WKOW 27: Madison, WI Breaking News, Weather and Sports

Keeping up with your credit score


MIDDLETON (WKOW) -- John Brandenburg owns a house in Middleton. He wanted to buy it for months, but couldn't get anyone to give him a mortgage. The reason? His credit score was too low.

Now, finance is not exactly rocket science. Which is too bad for John, who really is a rocket scientist. But, like many people, John did not understand how credit scores affected borrowing ability. In fact, Brandenburg calls finance kind of bewildering.

Brandenburg was working for NASA and decided to buy a house when he moved to Middleton. He was shocked by the response from his mortgage lender.

"She basically said, how dare you even come here and ask for a mortgage with your credit the way it is."

That's when this rocket scientist knew he needed help. He worked with the staff at Premier Financial Services, a credit score improvement company. He got educated about credit scores and cleaned up his credit report.

"Unfortunately this is something that's not taught to everybody. Everybody doesn't get this on a day to day basis and you need to learn it. It's not, it's not a faux pax to not understand credit."

John Schneider owns Premier Financial Services. He continues working with Brandenburg and others to improve credit scores. What they've done so far is enough to get John the mortgage he needed for the house he wanted.

"We came up with a good plan. We went through it systematically and it was remarkable when we just showed what we had done to another mortgage lender they said great, we'll write you a mortgage."

There are a number of issues that impact your credit score. The two biggest: payment history and the amount you owe. Pay your bills on time. If you don't you can be prevented from buying a house you want, because your credit score is just too low.

Now John can work on his rocket science projects in a workshop in the basement of a home he owns.

When he learned how credit works it was like someone turned on the light to understanding. Brandenburg knows good credit isn't just about paying on time, it's much bigger than that.

Your ability to borrow increases your credit score, so when you pay off a credit card, don't cancel it, keep it open but don't run out and charge more stuff.

Remember, every time a business checks your credit, your score takes a dip. So when you want a big ticket item on credit find it first then apply for the credit you need, don't apply everywhere you look.

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