Can your driving habits affect your credit score?

Many consumers have at least a passing knowledge of what activities could hurt their credit score. Failing to pay off credit card bills on time is at the top of the list. So is missing mortgage or student loan payments.

But most consumers probably don't realize that there are a number of smaller activities that they undertake that can also affect their credit score. 

Bad driving, for example.

As noted by a recent article on Daily Finance, there are a number of ways that our driving habits can hurt our credit without us realizing it.

Obviously, it's not a good thing to miss a car payment. Auto loans do affect credit, and the inability to pay them on time does not reflect well on a borrower. This is even the case for adults who have co-signed for auto loans that their teenagers take out to pay for that first car.

Irresponsible activity while on the road can also indirectly affect your score. Car accidents and DUIs can result in expensive repairs and often equally expensive tickets. If these are not paid for properly and on time, creditors will know about it. They also learn about unpaid tickets and fines, which can appear on credit reports if they are not taken care of.

Lenders should be aware that anyone applying for a loan could have a driving history that may actually indicate whether they will pay their debts back on time. For these cases, lenders should resort to risk assessment tools to make the best judgment. 

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