Whether you’re in the position to pay off your mortgage today, or you’re wondering what will happen when you’re eventually able to hold your house debt-free, someday you might not owe anything on your house anymore. When that happens, it will likely have a long-lasting impact on your credit.
The Lifespan of Your Mortgage
Your mortgage starts getting reported when you first open the account and have your loan funded. Once you pay the loan off, your credit report will continue to reflect how the account was handled for 10 years. Additionally, the 10-year limit is more generous than the seven-year limit generally applied to negative information.
Your Mortgage’s Impact on Your Credit Report
Your mortgage, whether you’re still paying it or not, is part of your credit history for as long as it appears on your credit report, and will be included when your credit report is checked. Given the large amount of money that most mortgages represent, it may either be the foundation of a high credit score if you have solid payment habits or the primary contributor to a low one if you haven´t made payments consistently. Furthermore, your mortgage history may undergo especially careful scrutiny if you’re seeking a new mortgage loan, since that lender may weigh your mortgage-payment history above other credit items in its underwriting process.
To Pay Off Your Mortgage or Not
While the impact to your credit score is a part of the calculation, a bigger factor is probably whether or not you have a better use for the money. If you’re okay with continuing to make payments and you can, for instance, invest the money that you’d be using to pay off the mortgage at a higher rate of interest, you may choose to keep your mortgage in place. You might even consider refinancing your home if you´re looking for better terms or you have a better use for the funds you could save. On the other hand, when your mortgage interest rate is high or when you aren’t comfortable with having an ongoing monthly bill, paying off your mortgage, may be the best choice for you instead.
When Mortgages Drop Off Your Credit Report
When a positive mortgage finally drops off your credit report, your score could go down since it’s no longer there to impact your score. However, the impact may not be very significant.
About the Author
Solomon Poretsky has been a writer since 1996, with experience in the fields of financial services, real estate and technology. Poretsky holds a Bachelor of Arts in political science from Columbia University.
This article is provided for general guidance and information. It is not intended as, nor should it be construed to be, legal, financial or other professional advice. Please consult with your attorney or financial advisor to discuss any legal or financial issues involved with credit decisions.
Published by permission from ConsumerInfo.com, Inc., an Experian company. © 2014 ConsumerInfo.com, Inc. All rights reserved.