What Bills Help Build Credit?

what-bills-help-build-credit

You’re likely aware that skipping or forgetting about bill payments can cause your credit score to drop in the same way that paying on time can positively affect your credit score.

However, if you’ve never owned a credit card before you might be curious to know: What bills help build credit?

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In this article, I will cover some key information about credit scores. From exploring the types of credit to what bills help build your credit score, by the end of this article you should be aware of what could be impacting your credit score.

Keep reading to find out more.

From buying a new cell phone to getting a mortgage, credit reports and scores are used by companies to evaluate your creditworthiness and establish your borrowing terms.

Types of Credit

When it comes to your credit reports and scores, there are three major types of credit that you should know about:

Installment credit – Installment credit refers to debt that you borrow and pay back in fixed monthly installments. This can include loans such as personal loans, mortgages, student loans, and auto loans.

Revolving credit – Revolving credit accounts have a set credit limit that you can draw upon and pay back before you can draw upon them again. Credit cards are the most popular form of revolving credits, followed by lines of credit.

Service credit – Service credit is the type of account you have with anyone who provides you with a service and bills you monthly. Your utility and cell phone bills, for instance, are service credit accounts.

Bills That Help Build Credit

  • Rent payments
  • Cable, internet, or cell phone bills
  • Utility bills
  • Car payments
  • Mortgage payments
  • Student loan payments
  • Insurance payments
  • Credit card payments

However, only debts that have been reported to the credit bureaus can impact your credit score.

Some key things to remember about this process is: 

Credit reporting is voluntary – No service provider or lender has to report it.

What shows up on your reports might change –  A lender that didn’t previously report might begin to do so.

Not everyone reports to all three major credit bureaus – While there are many credit bureaus out there, the three major credit bureaus are TransUnion, Equifax, and Experian. Some creditors only report to one or two of these companies, and as a result, your credit report and score can differ with each.

Payments That Are Commonly Reported To Credit Bureaus 

The bills that are commonly reported to credit bureaus include but are not limited to:

  • Mortgage payments.
  • Credit card payments.
  • Student loan payments.
  • Car payments.

Payments That Are Not Always Reported To Credit Bureaus

  • Rent payments
  • Cable, internet, or cell phone bills
  • Insurance 
  • Utilities

While these companies don’t always report your payments to credit bureaus, you can opt to have your monthly bills added to your credit report by using a service such as Experian Boost.

Experian Boost allows Experian to connect to your bank account and, in turn, add on-time payments for utility, cell phone, and streaming service bills to your credit report.

How To Build Credit Without A Credit Card 

Pay all existing loans diligently – Payment history is the most important aspect of your credit score, so pay close attention to your existing debt.

Have your monthly bills added to your credit report – Although you may have a long history of paying bills on time, bills for your cell phone and utility bills won’t automatically help you build your credit score.

Installment loans can help you raise your score – If you don’t have a long credit history, an installment loan could be the option for you. You pay back installment loans through set monthly payments, which could help you build your score. Auto, mortgage, personal and student loans are all types of installment credit. 

What Payments Never Make It To Your Credit Report?

There are some payments that won’t generally make it to your credit report.

These include but are not limited to:

  • Parking tickets
  • Library fines
  • Medical bills

However, it is important to note that this isn’t always the case. Credit bureaus often implement changes and can add items back on to credit reports in response to laws and regulations that have been changed. 

Bearing this in mind, it’s important that you always pay bills and fines as soon as you are made aware of them to avoid them affecting your credit score.

In Summary 

Having an awareness of what can positively and negatively affect your credit score is important.

There are a variety of bills that can help you to build credit. Additionally, you don’t need a credit card to build credit, as there are other ways including paying all loans diligently that can help.

That being said, you should always make sure that you are staying on top of your bills so that you can maintain good credit.

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