Credit Scores and Home Loans – How Your Credit Score Will Affect Your Mortgage

Experian, a major credit reporting agency, recently launched a very interesting site. It's called Livecreditsmart.com and it lists the US cities with the highest and lowest credit scores. You can click on several states and view data for many major cities.

The cities they list with the highest scores are:
1. Minneapolis, MN – 787
2. Madison, WI – 785
3. Cedar Rapids, IA – 781
4. Green Bay, WI – 780
5. San Francisco, CA – 780

The cities with the lowest scores are:
1. Harlingen, TX – 684
2. Jason, MS – 698
3. Corpus Christi, TX – 700
4. Shreveport, LA – 701
5. El Paso, TX – 706

At first glance, it's good to see that even the city with the worst average credit score still reports a decent score with room for improvement. Regardless of what city you live in, it will affect your mortgage rate. A better credit score generally means you can qualify for a lower rate, which can save you hundreds of dollars a month and thousands over the life of your loan.

When you order your free credit report, really examine it. If there is anything that is wrong or simply shouldn't be there contact the lender reporting the error to clean up your report. An accurate and cleaned up report can translate into higher credit scores. Remember to pay down any outstanding balances that you can afford to pay before you shop for a mortgage. And never close any accounts before you buy or refinance as it may harm your credit score.

Read about:   How to buy a house with a 600 credit score

While credit scores are important, they are not the only thing a Home Loan Expert will take into consideration when approving a mortgage. If you have a large down payment, high cash reserves or an overall low debt-to-income ratio, you could qualify for a mortgage and possibly a rate that satisfies your needs. With our current market of record low mortgage rates, it's important that you never assume you can't qualify. Talk to a Home Loan Expert and evaluate your options with them. With so many great programs available today, you'll probably be pleasantly surprised.