Brandon Harris from Perennial Mortgage Group is here to answer a few common questions about credit scores.

1. Why are credit scores important to the loan process? Credit scores give the lender a history of your past, including how you pay your bills and how you work with other lenders or credit card companies. Your credit score lets the lender know if you are reliable enough to be approved for a mortgage.

2. What is the best credit score you can have? You can have a credit score as high as 900. However, any score over 760 is an excellent credit score. Also, if your credit score is higher than 760, it won’t necessarily impact your interest rate any further; 760 is a great score on its own.

3. What kind of credit score do you need in order to obtain a loan? A lot of people think that you need a credit score of 780 or above to get a home. However, you can actually have score in the low 600s and get a home. Typically, your score should be around 640, but Brandon has worked with clients in the 620 range before.

4. What are some reasons for a low credit score? Late payments will bring your credit score down, as well as not using your credit card enough. Medical collections can also drag down your credit score; on the bright side, medical collections are fairly easy to remove from your credit report.

“Medical collections are fairly easy to remove from your credit report.”

5. How can you raise your credit score? First of all, catch up on your payments. Once you have a strong history of making those payments on time, your score will improve. You can also speak with a credit repair agency. Sometimes, if you have a friend or family member with a great credit score, you can become an authorized user on their credit card in order to build good credit for the future.

6. How often can you check your credit score? There is no real limit on the number of times you can check your credit. Brandon recommends going to once a year to check your score for free. However, if you go to several different banks in a short amount of time to check your credit, you can get a hit on your credit score. Technically, you should still be allowed to shop around if you are looking for a lender. Just don’t look at too many.

7. When does a lender check your credit score, anyway? That is always going to be one of the first things that your lender does. After the lender collects all of your information, they will get your credit score so they can put together a pre-qualification letter for you.

If you have any other questions about your credit score or the loan process, you can reach Brandon at 919.848.4748 or As always, if you have any real estate questions, please don’t hesitate to reach out to us. We would be happy to help you!