How to Build Your Credit

I posted something on my instastory a few weeks ago about accomplishing another goal of mine. My goal was to get my credit score above 800. I had a few people reach out to me after my post asking how I did it and how to build theirs. Let me just say I was hesitant to make this post because I thought people would think I was bragging, but a good friend of mine gave me the push that I needed and if you don’t like it, leave.

When I first started trying to build my credit I was so confused on how to build it or why I had to put myself into debt to build it. Not everyone has parents who help teach them & we all know the school systems failed us in real world skills so hopefully this helps & let me remind you I’m not an expert. I started by getting a small car loan. If you are paying your parents and the loan is in their name, GET IT IN YOUR NAME! Get on your own insurance. Get on your own phone plan. Start making your own monthly payments. Taking on debt and slowly making your monthly payments proves that you are capable of paying someone back. We start small and next time you will qualify for more. Opening my first credit cards was the next step.

BEFORE YOU DO THIS :

  • Research to find the best card(s) for you. Ones that you can keep long term because closing accounts is not a good thing.
    • For me I found a card that has really good cash back benefits but a higher interest rate because I never carry a balance on this card which means that I buy all my regular stuff that I would use my debit card for but I just pay it off each month so I get the cash back rewards but never interest.
    • I also have a really low interest not really any benefits card that I use for emergencies or larger things I might not be able to pay right away.
    • Another card that works great for me is the best buy card, I love it because they have deals where you have no interest for 2 years or 1 year different things like that. I purchased my camera on it and re-calculated what my payments needed to be to pay it off before I started getting interest charged.
  • Set boundaries for yourself. Do not let yourself go past the limits you set for yourself & keep a level head because it’s not free money you have to pay it back. Trust me when I say I learned from watching other people’s mistakes & its not fun to dig yourself out of a financial mess.

OTHER TIPS

  1. Always make your payments on time. Set up bill pay. Set phone reminders. Automatic payments are amazing. Whatever you need to do.
  2. There is an ebb and flow when it comes to building credit which means your credit score will go down when you open a new credit card or when you get a new car loan but on the back end of things when you’re paying it back it will grow your credit far beyond where it was prior.

My last and final tip….

DOWNLOAD THE CREDIT KARMA APP

It will assess your situation and give you tons of stats based off of your current situation it looks at your total number of accounts, credit history, credit card utilization, payment history etc. If you’re not sure where to start with looking at cards, it will have suggestions for you & other things you can do to improve your credit. They make everything super easy to understand & color coordinate from Red on the bad end to orange, yellow, light green to dark green which is good. Shout out to credit karma for helping me reach my goals!!

*I decided to add one section explaining why building your credit is important especially when you’re young. INTEREST RATES. Being 21 I think a lot of people are surprised by the car I drive but for me it’s a super easy payment to make and one of the things that plays into it is that I qualified for the lowest interest rate they even make for car loans. Another benefit is being financially set up for those of you who want to get married or start a family one day. I have a high enough credit score I could buy a house when that time comes. I promise it will pay off and save you money by building your credit!!

Xx, Kennah

“The Advice Book”

I wanted to make a post about “The Advice Book” I made for my little sister for Christmas. It’s such a sweet & sentimental gift to give to someone you care about. I’m actually not that crafty when it comes to making presents like this, but this one was actually pretty easy. I bought a blank journal from Target and got to work. My opening page (which I cried writing) is pictured below to help give you an idea. I wrote lessons I have learned along the way about boys, self-confidence, money, friends and threw in some quotes that have stuck with me over the years.

Here are a few examples :

“Be content with the process & where you are. You may not be where you want to be one day, but you will get there. Don’t waste today wishing it was tomorrow because the time will pass you by.”

 

“When your heart hurts :
– Eat Ice Cream
– Go for a Drive
– Listen to Sad Songs
– Listen to Happy Songs
– Take a Bubble Bath
– Buy a new Outfit
– Play with a Puppy
– Take a Trip
– Have a Dance Party
– Re-Decorate
– Watch Me before You to remind you that your life isn’t THAT bad.
– Buy yourself flowers
– Spend time at the Gym
– Kiss a cute boy
– Cry with a friend”

 

“If it won’t matter to you in 1 year, let it go.”

 

“LOVE is not a reason to tolerate DISRESPECT.”

 

“Happiness is just a way of looking at life.”

 

“Growing up is a lot different than you think it is going to be. Don’t set unrealistically high expectations. Take things for what they are and just go with the flow. Life is so good & worth all the hard times you will go through.”

 

“You’re NOT a snack if everybody has a bite…. you’re a FREE sample!”

 

“Negativity in all forms will kill your happiness before anything else. Get rid of negative people & negative thoughts.”

 

“Credit cards will get you in trouble. PROCEED WITH CAUTION.”

 

“People can’t read your mind, you have to learn how to communicate your feelings in a nice way. AND it will be different with every boy you date or every family member/friend you have.”

 

“Assumptions make an (ASS) out of yo(U) & (ME). *if you’re confused it spells assume.”

 

“DON’T :
– Push away the people who care about you.
– Stop learning
– Rely on others for your own happiness
– Do anything that doesn’t make you happy
– Beg for anyone’s attention
– Stop until you’re proud”

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Xx, Kennah

 

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20 things I’ve learned by 20

  1. Life goes on. No. Matter. What. Even if you think “how can I possibly make it through” or “there’s no way” guess what? You make it through. The world will never stop turning and you WILL make it through and you WILL be fine. Time truly heals everything.
  2. Learn to be content with what you have and where you are. This one I’ve struggled with in the past, but I feel like I get better and better everyday. I have a hard time with looking forward to the future too much instead of being content with where I am. I often found myself thinking if I just had the job I want ect. I’ve learned that everything is part of the journey and you should enjoy the whole thing, so even though I’m haven’t reached my goals yet I can still be happy with my progress and the process.
  3. Working hard IS hard mentally, emotionally, physically and any other way you think it could be hard, but it pays off and your victories are so much sweeter.
  4. It’s okay to cry. Crying is healing.
  5. Life will never be perfect or fair, but it is still good. You could be the best person in the world or you can plan something so strategically and think everything is going to be fireworks and unicorns, but a lot of times it won’t be exactly what you had in mind and that’s OKAY!! Don’t get worked up about the smalls things. Life happens to everyone.
  6. Taste buds change!! Growing up I was the pickiest eater ever, I hated anything healthy or green and wouldn’t try anything new. As I’ve grown I’ve become more brave in trying new things and learned they weren’t as bad as I thought they were as a kid. I even like tomatoes, onions, and salad now (except sushi, it will always be gross).
  7. Be proud of who you are. It does not matter what other people think (validation is for PARKING not people!) as long as you like who you are that is what’s important. So be weird, be silly, jump on your bed or dance like a psycho. Embrace everything that you are.
  8. High School is most certainly NOT the best years of your life (It is also not like High School Musical which is disappointing). I mean sure it was nice to not have to pay for your own things, but now you get to decide what you are going to do with every aspect of your life. You get to travel, you get to have your own life and family, you get to experience the real world and even though you have to work for your stuff now it means so much more than it did when it was just handed over (independence feels so good!).
  9. Friends are important. You will lose some, but this will only reveal who your true friends are and you get to build those relationships so much stronger. I still have my  best friend since 6th grade forever and some amazing others I’ve picked up along the way and that makes the luckiest girl in the world.
  10. Stepping outside your comfort zone is a good thing and can actually be fun. It takes some bravery to do this (and sometimes that extra push from someone who loves you) but it helps to build your character. You get to do things you never thought you could and you may even end up liking them, but it can only build upon from that first step.
  11. Taking time for yourself is essential in mental and emotional health. While it is fun to spend time with friends and family and make new memories it is also important to take time for yourself so you never lose that person. Take time to relax and unwind and just do absolutely nothing.
  12. Don’t stress. Put everything into the 5×5 frame. If it isn’t going to be important in 5 years don’t spend more than 5 minutes being upset over it. Accept the things you cannot change.
  13. “It’s the small things” you’d think after about 1/2 the US population says it you’d believe it, but seriously it is. The things that end up meaning the most to me are the simple and unexpected things people do for you. Someone helping you load up your groceries at the store, opening a door a door for you, or even when your boyfriend tucks you in at night and turns on your favorite show for you like mine does. It’s the things nobody could plan the ones that just fall into place.
  14. Happiness IS a choice. I always thought this was just something people said and didn’t really mean until this year. Happiness absolutely 100% is a choice.
  15. Your happiness is more important. I’ve always been a people pleaser, but I’ve learned very quickly that people will take advantage of that. It’s not selfish to put your own happiness first because it is your life. Do what you want to do what what will make you happy, not what other people want you to do.
  16. Grocery shopping is a close 2nd to Disneyland. Never did I think growing up I would love grocery shopping as much as I do, but I’m constantly asking my boyfriend to go to Target, Harmon’s, Costco, or Smith’s with me. Maybe it’s because I have such a good shopping partner, but we love going up and down every aisle looking at and trying new things.
  17. Pay off your credit cards every month.
  18. Mom does know everything. As much as you don’t want to believe it 99% of the time she is right. Call it mother’s intuition, but I’ve been proven wrong almost every single time.
  19. Compromise is huge. You can’t win every argument and you aren’t always right. Try putting things into perspective and ask yourself if the topic at hand or if the person is more important. Then agree to disagree.
  20. Life is too short to waste time with anything. Make the changes you need to TODAY, quit waiting for tomorrow.

Xx, Kennah