5 Factors That Decide Your Credit Score

Credit scores range between 200 and 800, with scores above 620 considered desirable for obtaining a mortgage. The following factors affect your score:

1. Your payment history. Did you pay your credit card obligations on time? If they were late, then how late? Bankruptcy filing, liens, and collection activity also impact your history.Credit Cards
photo credit: Andres Rueda
photo credit: Andres Rueda

2. How much you owe. If youowe a great deal of money on numerous accounts, it can indicate that you are overextended. However, it’s a good thing if you have a good proportion of balances to total credit limits.

3. The length of your credit history. In general, the longer you have had accounts opened, the better. The average consumer’s oldest obligation is 14 years old, indicating that he or she has been managing credit for some time, according to Fair Isaac Corp., and only one in 20 consumers have credit histories shorter than 2 years.

4. How much new credit you have. New credit, either installment payments or new credit cards, are considered more risky, even if you pay them promptly.

5. The types of credit you use. Generally, it’s desirable to have more than one type of credit — installment loans, credit cards, and a mortgage, for example.

For more on evaluating and understanding your credit score, visit www.myfico.com.

Properties in Braddock District

10570 Main St #419

Sun-filled condo is complete w/ a spacious open floor plan, crown molding, & easy access to tons of shopping and dining options. Hanging lighting over the table space, large window in living area overlooks pool & lawn. Kitchen w/ granite counters, & GE appliances. LG machines in-unit. Great amenities include fitness room, pool, lobby, & more. Close to Starbucks, Safeway, & tons more. Near 66, 495 [Main Street Green - $205,000]

4612 Twinbrook Rd

Charming split level w/ recent updates,stainless appliances, hardwoods, newer roof, windows & siding, Large fully fenced backyard w/ concrete patio, retaining wall & storage shed. Attached 1 car garage w/concrete driveway w/ ample parking. Located in sought after Woodson/Frost school district. Minutes from shopping, groceries and major commuter routes I495, I95, Little River Tnpk & Rt 50. [Surrey Square - $624,900]

7706 Kalorama Rd

Fantastic home in close proximity to major roads and employment center. This home really shows pride of ownership, 2 fireplaces, hardwood floors, gourmet kitchen and the list goes on! [Bristow - $499,000]

9526 Kirkfield Rd

FULLY REMODELED!!! MUST SEE!! All NEW ROOF, WINDOWS, CABINETS, GRANITE GRANITE,FLOOR, BATHROOMS and more. 4 level 4 Bed, 3 full bath. A fantastic opportunity in the sought after Lake Braddock neighborhood! Convenient to Burke VRE, shopping, Pentagon express bus, a few minutes walk to the pools, parks, & Lake Braddock High School. Kids play area, attached garage, fenced yard Plus more.... [Lake Braddock - $605,000]

11429 Lee Hwy

Minutes to 66 and 50.The shops and restaurants of Fairfax Corner and Fairfax Circle are just moments away from this new community. Do some afternoon shopping at Wegman's, then retreat to your luxurious Chef's kitchen to prepare a dinner party for 12. Receive Finished Rec Room w/Full Bath & $10K with use of NVRM through 1/31/18 [Avenshire - $974,990]

11465 Cranebill St

NV Single family homes in a prime Fairfax location. Modern open concept floorplans with infinity island, timeless exterior architecture, and generous bedroom sizes 40 homesites with community playground, parks and more. Less then 2 miles from FFX Corner, Fair Oaks mall and Wegmans. Receive Finished Rec Rom w/Full Bath & $10K with use of NVRM through 1/31/18 [Avenshire - $999,990]

4119 Grover Glen Ct

Gorgeous 3BR 2 Full 2 Half Baths. Well maintained home with bright open living spaces and stylish finishes. Modern kitchen with Stainless Steel appliances. New Paint. Open floor plan features separate LR, DR, Kitchen and Eat-in area/FR with SGD to large deck. Luxury MBA w/ sep soaking tub/shower. BRs vaulted ceilings. Rec Rm w gas FP. Mins to Wegmans. Close commuter Rts, Metro stop. [Ridge Top Terrace - $489,900]

4923 Novak Ln

GREAT LOCATION*WOODSON HS*Private.84 Acre Home in a Country Setting Surrounded by Treed Views*Filled w/Nat Light Thruout*Kitch w/42"Maple Cabs, SS Appl, Granite, Tile Floor*Designer Light/Plumbing Thruout*French Doors W/O to Custom Patio w/Inground Pool*FamRm w/FP w/WB Insert*FRML Dining/Living Rms w/Crown Mold, Chair-rail*MABedRm Suite w/Walk-in*Mins to Wegmans/Fairfax Corner, Rts 29/123/286* [Novak - $749,900]

5914 Bayshire Rd #201


4947 Tibbitt Ln

This beautiful 3 bedroom, 2.5 bathroom home is a breath-taker! You will be greeted by the light-filled living room complete with a bay window when you walk in. The eat-in kitchen is complete with a breakfast bar and it will make you feel right at home. The master bedroom has a huge walk-closet and gorgeous bathroom with an updated vanity. This home is conveniently located right next to I495 [Lake Braddock - $349,888]

What to Know About Credit Scores

In preparation for buying a home, it’s a good idea to understand credit scores. Credit scores range between 200 and 850, with scores above 620 considered desirable for obtaining a mortgage. The following factors affect your score:

  • Your payment history. Did you pay your credit card bills on time? Bankruptcy filing, liens, and collection activity also affect your history.
  • How much you owe and where. If you owe a great deal of money on numerous accounts, it can indicate that you are overextended. However, spreading debt among several accounts can help you avoid approaching the maximum on any individual credit line.
  • The length of your credit history. In general, the longer an account has been open, the better.
  • How much new credit you have. New credit—whether in the form of installment plans or new credit cards—is considered more risky, even if you pay down the debt promptly.
  • The types of credit you use. Generally, it’s desirable to have more than one type of credit—such as installment loans, credit cards, and a mortgage.

Young Adults’ Finances May Be Hard to Repair

Young generations were badly hit in the recession, and it could have widespread effects on their lives, from delaying home ownership to starting a family and having children to even one day eventually retiring.

A new study from the Urban Institute shows that those under the age of 40 have accumulated less wealth than their parents did at the same age. That coincides with a time when the average wealth of Americans has doubled over the last quarter-century , according to the study.

“In this country, the expectation is that every generation does better than the previous generation,” Caroline Ratcliffe, an author of the study, told The New York Times. “This is no longer the case. This generation might have less.” 

Young adults are facing stagnant pay, a tough job market, soaring student loan debt, and some who did own a home may have faced lost equity or even foreclosure during the housing crisis.

Will younger adults ever be able to catch up?

According to the Urban Institute study, if a person delays buying a home to age 40 instead of age 30, that alone could result in a $42,000 loss in home equity by the time that person reaches age 60.

Still, “strong and sustained job and wage growth would cure many of the ills facing younger workers,” The New York Times reports. “But their delayed or diminished wealth accumulation might still have a lasting impact on their finances.”

Source: “Younger Generations Lag Parents in Wealth-Building,” The New York Times (March 14, 2013)

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Virginia ranks among states with highest credit scores.

Credit scores from online mortgage shoppers have risen four points since 2011, averaging 734, according to a study by MortgageMarvel.com, which analyzed nearly half a million online mortgage applicants.

Will and Julie Nesbitt of Nesbitt Realty.

Some states are averaging even higher credit scores, particularly among those states known for having high household earnings. The following are the states with the highest median credit scores among mortgage applicants, according to Mortgage Marvel.com:

  1. California: 774
  2. Hawaii: 771 / Oregon: 771
  3. Wisconsin: 766
  4. Connecticut: 765
  5. Delaware: 764
  6. Washington: 764
  7. Colorado: 763
  8. Rhode Island: 763
  9. New Hampshire: 762 / Virginia: 762
  10. Maryland: 761

The states with the lowest median credit score among mortgage applicants are Arkansas (691) and Mississippi (698), according to MortgageMarvel.com.

Source: “Link Between Credit and Mortgages: Not What You Think,” CNBC (Jan. 24, 2013)