Struggling with your credit is an experience as American as hot dogs and apple pie. Worse, if your credit score falls below 550, you can struggle to access phone plans, housing, cars, and even job offers.
Trying to fix credit is difficult when you don’t have money to spare for higher payments. Worse, some less than scrupulous credit repair companies exploit those who need help the most.
So, what can you do when you need credit restoration ASAP? Here are seven helpful tips that can help you fix your credit.
1. Know Where You Stand
Ignorance might be bliss, but it’s not helping you with your credit repair, Houston. Your first priority when you decide to fix credit should be to figure out where you stand. To do that, you need a complete credit report.
You’re in luck because getting a complete credit report is easier than ever nowadays. You can find any number of credit report websites that can show you your scores, open accounts, and more. Whether you get your report through one of the many credit repair services or a simple score checker, you can use it to get a better idea of your full credit profile.
Understanding Your Credit Report
If you opt for a complete credit report over a simple credit score, you might find yourself baffled by all the numbers on it. Here’s a breakdown of the information each credit report contains:
- Credit utilization rates: How much of your total credit lines do you use?
- Credit history: How old is your oldest account?
- Payment history: Are there payments that haven’t been made?
- Credit inquiries: How many times have you applied for credit recently?
- Types of credit accounts: Installment loans, open accounts, and revolving credit lines count towards this.
Make sure you look over this information thoroughly, as there may be errors present. If you need assistance understanding it, our team of experts will be glad to help you conduct a full (and free) credit review.
2. Make Sure to Keep Your Bills Paid On Time
One of the easiest ways that you can tank your credit score is by failing to pay your bills on time. So, if you want to fix credit in a hurry, paying any outstanding balances and keeping your bills paid is a good start! Most credit repair companies will recommend that you tackle this step first, as overdue bills leave negative marks on your credit report as long as they remain past due.
Plus, some credit card companies allow you to link your monthly bills to your credit report, allowing on-time bill payments to help you rebuild or build your credit payment history!
3. Remove Any Credit Report Inaccuracies
This may come as a surprise, but almost twenty percent of Americans have some kind of error in their credit report. The most common credit errors include:
Incorrect Personal Information
While it may seem trivial, you should make sure to update your creditors with any changes in your name or address. If you don’t, this can lead to confusion and potentially drag your credit score down. This holds especially true if you recently got a divorce and had joint accounts with your former spouse.
Incorrect Reported Information
Sometimes, credit card companies don’t give accurate reports of your payment history. Or a creditor might place a debt that’s over seven years old on your report, even though such debts should be discharged. Accounts that are open could be reported as closed, and vice versa.
Unauthorized or Mistaken Accounts
This is the most terrifying kind of credit report error, as it could imply that your identity is at risk. While it could be the result of a simple clerical error, you need to report any accounts you did not open or authorize yourself right away.
4. See About Becoming an Authorized User
While you’re searching online for “credit repair near me”, don’t be afraid to reach out to those around you with good credit. If one of your friends or relatives has decent credit and trusts you enough, they might let you become an authorized user on their card. This can help boost your credit score since you’ll benefit from theirs as well.
5. Keep Your Cards Open, Even If You Don’t Use Them
If you want to fix credit, you need to keep your revolving accounts open, even if you aren’t using them. Keeping accounts you no longer use open can improve your credit utilization rate, which can help boost your credit score. Tempting as it may be to cancel the card once it’s paid off, the best credit repair companies will tell you to keep them open, as it can lengthen and improve your credit history.
6. Be Careful About Applying for Credit Accounts
Some credit repair services may try to get you to apply for new lines of credit to help improve your score. However, you need to be careful about doing this, as if you apply for too many accounts in a short time, you can damage your credit score. Applying for a new account to help decrease your utilization can only help you if you fix the spending habits that got you in credit card debt, to begin with.
7. When All Else Fails, Consult the Experts
Figuring out how to fix credit on your own can be daunting. That’s why, when all else fails, you shouldn’t hesitate to consult the experts. While you search for the best credit repair company, make sure to check credit repair reviews, as there is no end to the number of credit scammers out there.
Reviewing the Best Ways to Fix Credit
Let’s talk credit repair, Houston. Some of the best ways to fix credit include keeping your bills paid, minding the information on your report, and reaching out for expert assistance to better understand your credit standing.
If you’ve been struggling with your credit for far too long, don’t hesitate: Reach out to us today. Our team of helpful credit experts is on standby to help you reach your credit restoration goals.