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ACU Blog  / 3 Ways Personal Loans Can Improve Your Credit Score
22 February 2022 / 3 minute read

3 Ways Personal Loans Can Improve Your Credit Score

Personal Loans can actually improve your credit score when handled correctly. Find out how to stay on track and avoid hurting your credit score.
Woman laying on her bed smiling at her higher credit score on her cellphone after opening a personal loan.

When hard-working community members suffer financial hardships or lack cash-on-hand resources, Personal Loans remain a go-to solution. Personal Loans, also known as Unsecured Loans, can be put to work resolving the little curves life throws at all of us. But one of the things that makes some responsible people apprehensive about applying is that they believe a loan could lower their credit score. When the repayment process is managed well, taking out a Personal Loan can actually improve your credit score. If that seems counterintuitive, consider the following.

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What Are Personal Loans?

Personal Loans are set amounts of money that people can borrow for wide-reaching purposes. Credit Unions, Banks and online lenders offer secured and unsecured loans that can be put to immediate use and paid back over time. Personal Loan, also known as Unsecured Loans, can help everyday people resolve financial setbacks, improve quality of life, or streamline things such as high-interest credit card debt into a single monthly payment. These rank among the common reasons community members apply for Personal Loans.

  • Relocation Expenses
  • Credit Card & Debt Consolidation
  • Necessary & Elective Medical Procedures
  • Weddings, Graduations, & Special Events
  • Home Improvements & Repairs
  • Funeral Expenses
  • Paying for a Dream Vacation

Unlike home mortgages and secured loans, many of the products lenders offer are unsecured loans driven by credit scores. The interest rate a borrower earns is usually based on an average credit score, ability to repay the long- or short-term loan, and other factors. It’s also essential to distinguish Personal Loans from Personal Lines of Credit. The latter typically functions like a credit card that borrowers use incrementally over time. Personal Loans are lump-sums that are repaid over years in static monthly payments. When paid on time, they can help people improve their credit.

A Personal Loan Can Help Your Credit

It’s not uncommon for fiscally responsible people to view borrowing as a credit score negative. It may sound odd, but the exact opposite may be true. Credit scores are calculated by hard-and-fast metrics that include debt and repayment. Unless someone incurs and repays a debt, their credit score may not necessarily have the legs to climb into the upper rankings. That being said, these are three ways that Personal Loans can help boost your credit score.

  • Better Credit Mix: A healthy credit mix typically includes credit cards, secured and unsecured loans that are paid back on time. One of the credit score metrics looks at borrowing and repayment diversity. If someone has one credit card or the only loan they take out is to buy an automobile, their credit score may not be equal to their actual ability to borrow.
  • Demonstrate Repayment Ability: The second aspect of a credit score calculation involves a person’s repayment history. Missed or late bill payments typically cause credit scores to decline. By that same token, on-time payments and completion of a Personal Loan generally improve a credit score.
  • Reduce Debt-To-Income Ratio: When borrowers leverage a Personal Loan to bring multiple credit cards and loans under one roof, they can more easily reduce their debt-to-income ratio. This strategy involves transferring high-interest debt and numerous bills into a single manageable monthly payment. Personal Loans can fast-track people out of debt.

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Beware: Personal Loans Can Also Hurt Your Credit

Although Personal Loans can boost your credit score, it’s essential to keep in mind that when used incorrectly, they have the potential to do the opposite. These are three things to remember when you are considering securing a Personal Loan.

  • Credit Pulls Can Affect Your Credit: One of the lesser-known facts about credit scores is that repeated hard inquiries tend to lower your rating. Applying to a variety of lenders can result in a lower score which reduces your ability to borrow and reduces access to more reasonable interest rates. Limit your loan applications to realistic options.
  • You Need A New Plan: Taking out a Personal Loan is most effective when you manage spending responsibly. For example, securing a loan to consolidate debt is only a fruitful strategy if you don’t keep swiping credit cards. It’s crucial to have a debt management plan when taking out a Personal Loan so you stop creating more debt.
  • Excessive Fees: Borrowers would be wise to read the so-called fine print. Some predatory lenders charge exorbitant application and processing fees. Reasonable lenders charge only nominal fees or none at all. Even if your credit isn’t the best, make sure you check with your local lender before reaching out to Payday Lenders.

When Are Personal Loans Helpful?

Personal Loans can be game-changers for people struggling with credit card debt, needing emergency resources for medical procedures, or are experiencing a financial shortfall. It’s also not uncommon for people to use Personal Loans to fund weddings, graduations and replace an HVAC system that suddenly fails. In essence, Personal Loans are a go-to resource that can help get you through good times and bad.

Where Can You Get A Personal Loan?

There are wide-reaching resources available to people who are considering applying for a Personal Loan. Your local lender may have the perfect product to fit your needs. Online lenders have evolved in recent years, and their ability to compete with traditional institutions makes them worth considering. If you are looking for a Personal Loan to help your financial situation, ask your local Allegiance Credit Union loan representative to take a look at your finances and go over the pros and cons to see if it is the right solution for you. Once your decision is made and you are ready to move forward, complete the fast online Personal Loan application, make your payments on time, and enjoy the potential bump your credit score may receive.

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Your credit score is only one aspect of your financial future Personal Loans can help with. For more information, review our "Personal Loans Revealed: Bust The Myths and Get The Money You Need" Guide.