A person’s ability to purchase a home with financing is greatly dependent upon his or her net income after all monthly debts have been addressed. At Castle & Cooke Mortgage, we understand this and want to help all of our clients find the mortgage that works best for them and their families.

For that very reason, it’s key that people understand how credit cards — though both necessary and beneficial — when not used properly, can impact a candidate’s chances of qualifying for a mortgage. Simply put, credit cards shouldn’t be taken lightly, especially when home ownership is desired.

Carrying an outstanding balance on a personal credit card for long periods can be dangerous, and have a very negative impact on one’s overall credit score. The most important part of any balance is, obviously, the actual payment. Generally speaking, the larger the monthly balance on a credit card, the greater the monthly payment. Those who pay off their credit card balance each month are doing themselves a favor, as mortgage companies view this positively. If completely paying off a credit card balance is not possible, consumers should try to keep the balance below 30 percent of the available credit limit.

Zero percent credit cards aren’t always the best option either. If a person is in the market for a new home, it’s possible that first paying off higher rate credit cards is best, but only if the monthly payments are higher than those associated with zero percent credit cards. As stated by Patch.com, “Focus on the cards that have the highest monthly payment despite the interest rate because those are the ones that will help your qualifying ability the most.”

Nearly everybody understands the importance of good credit when buying a home. If one uses their credit card responsibly and maintains an impressive credit score, borrowing shouldn’t be a hassle.