August 15th, 2012

How Your Credit Score and Banking Are Linked

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**Today’s guest post is contributed by Kristina.**

writing a check

Many people know that they need a bank account because they need somewhere for their pay to be deposited and they need to pay bills each month. Many people also know that they should have a credit card and use it responsibly because it helps them build a strong credit history and a good credit score; but not many people know that their banking relationships can also affect their personal credit score.

It’s true, the way that people use their checking account and other banking products is directly related to your credit score and it can affect you in a negative way if you aren’t careful and responsible. Some people think that only their credit cards and other credit products such as lines of credit, mortgage loans and overdraft protection directly affect their credit score, but unfortunately that is not true. Of course your credit products and how you use them on a monthly basis are the main factors that affect your personal credit score, but keep reading to find out how your banking relationships can also affect your credit score.

Banking Relationships That Can Affect Your Personal Credit Score

Non Sufficient Funds. If you write personal checks and they bounce because you don’t have enough money in your bank account to cover the cost of the check, you should definitely expect to see your credit score decrease. Banks actually report the number of checks that are returned due to non sufficient funds (NSF) to the three main credit bureaus (Equifax, TransUnion and Experian) on a regular basis.

Late Payments on Your Monthly Utility Bills. Many utility companies such as your cable company and your cell phone provider actually report account payment histories to the three main credit bureaus. If you are short on cash you may choose to pay your credit card balance in full and wait for your next payday before you pay your cell phone bills, but late bill payments can also affect your credit score. You may chose to pay off your credit card balance in full in order to save on interest charges, and you may chose to pay your utility bills a little bit late one month; but the truth is that you should make at least the minimum payments on your credit cards in order to keep your account in good standing and you should try to pay off your utility bills in full each month. This won’t help you save on interest charges, but it will help you maintain a good credit score.

Withdrawal Limits on Debit Cards and Credit Cards. The amount of money that banks allow you to withdraw per transaction and the amount of money that you are approved for as a credit limit can also directly be affected by your personal credit score. If you are approved for higher limits it usually means that your personal credit score is also high and this means that you are creditworthy.

Kristina is a Financial Services Professional with over 12 years of experience working in the Banking Industry. She helps people invest their money wisely and plan for their retirement at DINKS Finance. Kristina enjoys helping people plan their personal budget, pay down their debts, and enjoy their financial lives.

Disclaimer: All information posted to this site was accurate at the time of its initial publication. Efforts have been made to keep the content up to date and accurate. However, Credit Karma does not make any guarantees about the accuracy or completeness of the information provided. For complete details of any products mentioned, visit bank or issuer website.


  1. How can I raise my personal credit score if I already keep my bills paid on time, and don’t ever have on over-draft on my bank account?

    Cindy Ledbetter at 3:10 pm on March 9, 2013
  2. This is the first I’ve heard about utilities on my account. How come they don’t show up on Credit Karma or on my credit report?

    Bob at 10:03 am on September 23, 2014
  3. Mike

    Good question, Bob. There is no one standard way in which utility companies report activity to credit bureaus, so your accounts won’t necessarily show up on Credit Karma or other credit reports. Some companies choose to report all active accounts, while others might only send information to the credit bureaus when a payment is missed. Hope this clarifies things a bit!

    Mike at 8:50 am on September 24, 2014
  4. ANY POSSIBLE WAY TO DO THIS WITHOUT A BANK ACCOUNT TO BEGIN WITH…some ppl can not even open a bank account r they just hopeless at that point?

    JB at 8:23 am on January 19, 2016

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