How Credit Works

Updates

We now have a Book Recommendation tab which will show books on financial topics with a short summary of each. This is a great resource if you’re looking to dive deeper into some of the topics from this podcast.

We have added a new member to the team. A Personal Financial Planning student at Kansas State, Thomas Meek will help create content and produce the episode recaps like this one.

The Good Stuff

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This week on “School Smart, Money Stupid”, Jack and Josh spoke about credit! Credit is simply borrowing money from someone that you have to pay back with interest. In the podcast, Jack and Josh discuss more about why credit is important for everyone, even at a young age.

Types of Credit

Installment Credit – borrowing a large amount of money up front and paying it back over time

Ex. Student loans, auto loans, mortgages

Revolving Credit – borrowing money on a month-to-month basis that you pay back monthly

Ex. Credit cards, store cards

Credit Report vs. Credit Score

Almost everyone has heard of a credit score and a credit report, but what are they?

Your credit score is like your GPA. It’s a number that acts like a snapshot of your current financial position. Your FICO credit score will range from 300-850. 660 is considered good, but you want to be around 720 to really benefit from your score. There's a graph of the 5 pieces that make up your credit score to the left.

You can access your free credit score at creditkarma.com. This will give you a fairly accurate estimate of your score, but may be slight below or above your actual score.

Your credit report is like your transcript. It shows your complete financial status, including personal information, open accounts, payment history, inquiries, and good or bad accounts you may have. This can be found at annualcreditreport.com. At this website, you can access 1 credit report a year from each of the 3 credit bureaus.

Money Tip of the Week

You should NEVER pay to get your credit score or credit report. Always use the two free resources we have provided here.

Final Remarks

We hope you learned something about credit this week, why it’s important, and how you can find out how your credit is. Don’t forget to share the podcast with friends and family and feel free to send us suggestions! See you next week.