Well

If you can’t find a lender that would work with you *without* using a FICO score, then it sounds like you’re going to have to get a credit card to keep your score up. I’d suggest using one for monthly expenses and then paying it off as soon as you get the bill, but, I’m not so sure that paying every month actually COUNTS to increase your score. Nobody is, because they won’t TELL us. Plus, you’d have to make sure you don’t get one of those cards that uses ‘average monthly balance’ to screw you out of interest…