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More detailed credit reports
More detailed credit reports | Vladimir Kudinov/Stocksnap

More detailed credit reports

When you apply for a home loan, you provide so much financial information about yourself that it feels intrusive. Now lenders are digging even deeper into your bill-paying history.

Mortgage lenders are now looking at whether you pay off your credit cards every month or you carry balances from month to month. If you pay off your credit cards every month, you're more likely to qualify for the best rate and lowest mortgage fees. If you make minimum monthly payments and you carry over balances every month, you might end up paying more for your mortgage.

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The information about your credit card payment history is called trended credit data, and Fannie Mae's loan software has begun using the info when deciding whether to approve loans, and how much to charge in interest and fees.

The introduction of trended credit data will help borrowers "on the border, that are making more than the minimum payment each month," says Mindy Armstrong, senior product manager for Fannie Mae. Those loan applicants are more likely to be approved, she says.


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