Laptop computer showing the words 'Credit Score' with notepad and pencil laying on table. Which factors affect your credit score?Your credit score is an important number that influences everything from which credit card you can get to how much your next mortgage will cost. While it’s crucial to know which factors affect your credit score, it’s equally important to know which ones don’t. You can rest assured that the factors listed below have no impact on your credit score.

Most personal details:

  • Race
  • Religion
  • Age
  • National origin
  • Sex
  • Marital status
  • Occupation
  • Income
  • Employment history
  • Any information not in your credit report

Most non-credit-related payments:

  • Rent
  • Insurance
  • Utilities
  • Subscription services
  • Child support
  • Alimony
  • Bank overdrafts

Exceptions: Accounts that are sent to collections will negatively impact your credit score. Some landlords do report rent payments for credit purposes, which would factor into your score.

Certain types of credit inquiries:

  • Consumer-initiated inquiries (e.g. checking your own score or report)
  • Promotional inquiries (e.g. credit card offers) – as long as you don’t authorize a credit inquiry
  • Administrative inquiries (e.g. lenders reviewing your account)
  • Employer inquiries

*Exact policies vary by credit score model.

While credit scores can still be a tricky topic, knowing that you can eliminate these items from the equation should be a relief. The most important strategy for building a strong credit score is simply to establish a history of making your loan and credit payments on time. For more information on the topic of credit scores, see our posts on checking your credit score and checking your credit reports.

*Disclaimer: this information is current as of April 6, 2018 and is subject to change at any time.