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By Susie Poppick
February 29, 2016

To build a good credit score, there are a few things you need to keep in mind. One is that you have to actually use a credit card, and not a debit card. A debit card may have a “Visa” or “MasterCard” logo, but the money is coming directly out of your bank account. With a true credit card, you borrow money from the credit card issuer to pay for things, and you pay that issuer back later.

Another thing to keep in mind is that your credit score is affected by how much of your borrowing capacity you use. Spending more than 30% of your credit limit can hurt your credit score.

Advertiser Disclosure

The purpose of this disclosure is to explain how we make money without charging you for our content.

Our mission is to help people at any stage of life make smart financial decisions through research, reporting, reviews, recommendations, and tools.

Earning your trust is essential to our success, and we believe transparency is critical to creating that trust. To that end, you should know that many or all of the companies featured here are partners who advertise with us.

Our content is free because our partners pay us a referral fee if you click on links or call any of the phone numbers on our site. If you choose to interact with the content on our site, we will likely receive compensation. If you don't, we will not be compensated. Ultimately the choice is yours.

Opinions are our own and our editors and staff writers are instructed to maintain editorial integrity, but compensation along with in-depth research will determine where, how, and in what order they appear on the page.

To find out more about our editorial process and how we make money, click here.

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