9 Unexpected Things That Could Affect Your Credit Score

If you’re in the market for a new home, it’s a good idea to keep an eye on your credit score to keep any surprises at bay.

Here are 9 surprising things that could mark up your pristine credit report:

1. Renting a car with your debit card

Whenever a business makes a hard inquiry on your credit report, it could result in a small drop in your score. Rental car companies may choose to make a credit check whenever you use your debit card to pay for your bill.


2. Overdue library books.

What? Library books? It may be a bit of a shock, but the library could send your overdue account to a collection agency, so make sure you bring those books back on time!


3. Unpaid parking tickets.

Again, it’s the collection agencies that can report your overdue account to the major credit bureaus.


4. Closing your old credit card account.

While it’s typically a good idea to get rid of a credit card that you no longer want to use after you pay it off, closing the account can cause your balance-to-limit ratio to increase. Generally, the impact to your credit score will be for a limited time, and the credit reporting bureau Experian recommends closing the account if you aren’t planning to use your credit for an application in the near future.


5. That new motorcycle.

Your motorcycle loan looks a lot like credit card debt to the credit bureaus, since it’s sometimes reported as “revolving credit”.


6. Unused credit cards.

We’re talking about utilization rate again– you’re a bigger lending risk if your utilization rate is high.


7. Finance plans for big purchases.

Sometimes, these loans are considered “last resort”, and this type of debt can impact your credit utilization rate.


8. Even one late payment.

Basically, the later your payment, the greater the impact on your credit score.


9. Signing up for cable TV.

Anytime a company runs a hard inquiry on your credit, your score can be impacted. While it’s not a huge ding on your score, it’s still an impact nonetheless.