Decently paid engineer – why is my credit low?
Disclosure: I created a new account for this post because it includes details of my personal finances. I'm a lurker but newbie here. Thanks for your advice
Background: I graduated undergrad four years ago, have a decent engineering job with adequate salary to meet my living needs in a high cost of living area and contribute ~8% to 401k, but have not built up significant savings as I am currently paying off extensive undergrad loans and putting myself through grad school.
My question is about my credit: it lists at the base of the "good" range despite having paid student loans religiously for four years, paying off my credit card every month, and a variety of utilities accounts in my name dating back ~8 years. I'd like to have more savings, but my finances are sustainable and my payment history is perfect.. shouldn't my credit be higher?
Should utilities accounts: gas/electric/internet/phone show up on my credit history? When, two years ago, I pulled my phone off of my parents' family plan onto my own plan the phone company asked for a copy of my social security card, citing lack of credit history.
Perhaps some of the following factors are negatively affecting me: -my credit card has a $1400 limit, which I somewhat regularly approach in paying for personal expenses over the course of the month, but I pay it off every month. I have only one credit card (was declined an application for a better one because.. lack of credit history) but have had this card for over three years. I use my credit card for most expenditures for the points: food, gas, flights, meals. Should I ask to raise the limit? Should I default to debit instead? -My father has a credit card on which I have been listed since I was 1yo for emercencies, but I don't know the details of the account or his credit.
Notations on my file: – Lack of sufficient credit history – Total of all balances on your open accounts is too high- I have 50k in student loans – Balances of bank cards/revolving accounts is too high compared to credit limits -v. Low credit limit- see above – Lack of sufficient relevant real estate account information – I don't own property
What should I change or fix to build better credit? Where do I find an affordable professional who is bound to advise me in my best interests for help me with my personal finances?