Home | Work & Business | Credit & Debt | Credit Ratings | How to Get a Credit Rating When You Don't Have Credit

How to Get a Credit Rating When You Don't Have Credit

by Donna Wallace
  • Overview

    Establishing a credit rating is the first step to securing your financial future. The three main credit bureaus--Equifax, Experian and TransUnion--keep detailed records of your credit cards, mortgages and loans, outlining your payment history and balances due. Banks use this information to determine whether to approve your loan and credit card applications.
 
  • Step 1

    Order a free copy of your credit report from each of the credit bureaus. If a credit report does exist, you can verify the accuracy of the information. The Fair Credit Reporting Act requires credit bureaus to provide one free copy each year.
  • Step 2

    Visit your nearby bank and open a checking account or a savings account. When the account representative asks you to apply for overdraft protection, complete an application. The overdraft protection is a loan, and it will help you to establish a credit rating.
  • Step 3

    Apply for a credit card account with a gas station. Even without a credit rating, you still may qualify for these low-risk credit cards. The banks know that your expenditures are limited to the gas station, and are unlikely to overspend.
  • Step 4

    Gas, electric and phone bills can also help establish a credit history. Put the account in your name, and make sure that you pay the bill in full each month.
  • Step 5

    Ask a relative or friend to co-sign a small loan. You are responsible for paying the debt, but the co-signer is promising to pay if you default on the loan.
  • Step 6

    Take advantage of big store sales. Department stores, home improvement stores and electronic stores will offer a special payment plan during major sales. Purchase a small item using their store's credit line, and pay every month.
  • Step 7

    Once you have established a credit history, make regular payments to maintain a positive rating. In addition, keep your accounts open for a long time; banks look favorably upon long-term customers.
  • 3
  • Driver's license Social Security card Credit report
  • Driver's license
  • Social Security card
  • Credit report
  • You can obtain a free copy of your credit report at annualcreditreport.com.
  • You can obtain a free copy of your credit report at annualcreditreport.com.
  • Once you have opened a credit line, keep your balances low and pay in full each month. Banks look favorably on applicants with a small amount of debt, which is paid in a timely manner. When someone co-signs a loan, be careful to keep the account current. Financial matters can affect your personal relationship, so make sure you maintain their trust.
  • Once you have opened a credit line, keep your balances low and pay in full each month. Banks look favorably on applicants with a small amount of debt, which is paid in a timely manner.
  • When someone co-signs a loan, be careful to keep the account current. Financial matters can affect your personal relationship, so make sure you maintain their trust.
  • USUnited States

References & Resources