The higher your credit score, the better off you will be.

Your credit scores plays a big role in daily life. It can determine the interest rate you’ll pay for credit cards, car loans and mortgages.

That magic number plays a big part in your daily life.

Depending on your credit history, a 15- or 20-point shift could mean the difference between being approved or declined or better terms or on a loan.

The good news is that average credit scores are higher since the housing crisis about a decade ago.

FICO scores range from 300 to 850.

The best way to increase your credit score comes down to paying your bills on time or reducing your credit-card balance.

Your payment history and utilization rate typically account for 60% to 70% of a credit score.

Here are five tips from SuperMoney to give your score a boost:

1. 1. Check your credit report and dispute every error you find.

2. 2. Pay your bills on time. Late payments stay on your report for seven years.

3. 3. Pay off your credit card balances. This will reduce your credit utilization ratio, which will do wonders for your score.

4. 4. Stop applying for credit. Hard inquiries ding your credit for up to 12 months.

5. 5. Ask a relative or friend who has good credit habits to add you as an authorized user on their credit card. As long as their payments are made on time, your credit score will improve.

Todd Probasco is the VP of Mortgage Lending at Lakeside Bank. He can be contacted at 708.205.2983 or

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