When You Turn 18, Here's How to Get Started Building Credit

When you have a great credit score, you can get lower interest rates on car loans, credit cards, and mortgages.

Understand the Basics of Credit

Make sure you understand the basics of how credit works. Your credit reports are maintained by three major credit bureaus—Experian, TransUnion, and Equifax.

Monitor Your Credit Report and Credit Score

You can check your credit report for free annually with each major credit bureau. As you review your report, look for any negative or inaccurate information that could be screwing up your credit.

Sign Up  for ExtraCredit

ExtraCredit does more than show you your credit scores. Have you recently started paying rent or utilities? Build It will add them as new tradelines with all three credit bureaus.

Become an Authorized User

If you have a friend or family member willing to add you as an authorized user on their credit card, you can piggyback off their credit card activity to help establish your credit.

Maintain a Low Credit Card Balance

Most experts recommend keeping your credit card balances below 30% of the available credit limit.

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