Your credit score is the most important factor when it comes to a mortgage loan. A low credit score can make your mortgage a lot more expensive than it needs to be, and can even prevent you from being granted a loan. Applying for a loan when you have a good credit score will guarantee you better deals from the lenders. A lower interest rate will make a huge difference over time, meaning that you will save money and make the overall cost of the mortgage loan much cheaper. But you should be aware that this goes the other way around, too. Your mortgage will actually affect your credit score both in a positive and negative way during and after the repayment period.
How a Mortgage Affects Your Credit Score
A mortgage loan is your best friend at the point in life when you decide to become a home owner. Unfortunately, there are many factors involved in the mortgage process that will influence how much money you are going to have to pay for your new home. There is a very close relation between your credit score and your mortgage and, before we talk about what effects paying off your mortgage loan has on your credit score, let’s see how a mortgage affects it from the beginning.
- Even before you are granted a mortgage loan, your score will have to suffer a little. This slight decrease of maximum 5 points in your credit score happens because the lender that considers giving you a loan will have to pull your credit report in order to check if you are qualified for a loan. Each time your credit report is checked by a lender, your credit score is affected.
- You will notice a credit score decrease immediately after you buy a home using a mortgage loan. This decrease might be significant, and it happens because your mortgage loan will be added to your credit report. A mortgage loan is regarded as a large debt, and it will lower your credit score. You might encounter difficulties if you plan on applying for a new loan or credit card right after you have been granted a mortgage loan, because most lenders will consider you a risk for default.
- Six months after you are granted a mortgage loan and suffer the inevitable decrease in credit score, your score should bounce back to its original value. The only condition is that you make your monthly mortgage payments on time and don’t miss any.
- Your new mortgage can also have a positive effect on your credit score. Being responsible and making your payments on time reflects positively on your credit score, and will increase it slowly over time.
- If you stop making payments on time, or, even worse, if you stop making payments at all, your mortgage will have a large negative effect on your credit score. Your credit score could plummet by at least a hundred points in this case and you could go from a perfect credit score to a bad credit score in just a few weeks.
How Paying Off Your Mortgage Will Affect Your Credit Score
Whether the effect of paying off your mortgage will be positive or negative on your credit score depends on your individual circumstances. Your credit score may increase or decrease, but this effect will be minimal, and will be outweighed by the fact that you will be getting rid of your monthly mortgage payments. Another advantage of paying off your mortgage loan is that you won’t be running the risk of missing or being late with a payment anymore, which would put a large dent in your credit score.
Paying off your mortgage can increase your credit score if your ratio of available credit to what you have utilized is acceptable. Not using a lot of your available credit will put you in a favorable light, but the credit score increase will be a lot lower than if you paid off a credit card. It is actually recommended that you pay off your credit card loans before your mortgage loan, if you wish to increase your credit score. The positive effect that paying off your mortgage will have on your credit score will be minimal if your credit score is over 700, and insignificant if you have an excellent credit score, of over 760.
Paying off your mortgage can decrease your credit score in the case that your mortgage loan is the only type of installment loan that you have. FICO counts each variety of loans that you have as 10 percent, so your credit score will lose a few points if you pay off your only installment loan. This decrease will be minimal and can be countered by having a pristine payment history for a long period of time, or by taking out a new installment loan, such as a car loan.
Some experts believe that paying off a declining asset is not a good idea, and the money should be used to pay off other outstanding debts, such as credit cards. If, however, you have considered all your options and money is not an issue, then getting rid of those monthly payments might be a good idea. Paying off your mortgage will have a minimal effect on your credit score, so it should be a fairly easy decision to make.