How can I improve my SCHUFA score?

You rarely can improve your SCHUFA Score scores overnight. But you can can take some basic steps to help improve your creditworthiness over time if you:

  • Always pay your bills on time.

  • Repay your credit loans and close them. Even if they have zero balance they count: closing them improves your score.

  • If you have 3-4-5 loans running, especially for small sums, it affects the SCHUFA in a such a negative way that it may thwart your loan application. You should close them at least 2 month before the mortgage application to be on the save side.

  • Credit lines should definitely not be overdrawn.

  • If an invoice or instalment has not been paid in accordance with the contract, this should be remedied as soon as possible.

  • Keep balances low on credit cards. Keep the number of credit cards and revolving credits low. Close revolving credits if you can.

  • Pay instalments of any kind always on time, and in line with the contract.

  • Keep the overall amount of financial obligations proportionate to your income or assets.

  • Don't apply unnecessary for new credits, especially if there is a risk of rejection.

Before applying for a mortgage we do suggest that you obtain your SCHUFA report. You can buy it on-line at MeineSchufa.de but they will still send it to you by mail ! If you need one immediately you can buy and print it at a designated Postbank office and participating Volksbank locations. Note that the online version you get e.g. Immoscout does not help you for a mortgage application if you want to see any detail on the score the banks actually use.

In any case check the score and see if there are problems that may reduce your chance of a mortgage at the best interest rates. If you find incorrect information, you can request a correction in writing.

Note: In some other countries, where there is detailed information about the way the credit scores are compiled, the advice is typically to use your credit card regularly, and pay your monthly balance promptly or even early. This is seen as the quickest way to build up a positive credit score, while avoiding any negative items resulting from late or non payment. In Germany we have seen detailed scoring histories where the score went down at the opening of a new credit line but then actually improved beyond the original score upon closing of the credit line.

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