If you’ve had problems keeping up with your bills, you have undoubtedly blemished your credit rating and are looking to repair the damage.
Liz Weston, a financial guru for MSN Money writes:
“You’ve got plenty of company. Tens of millions of people in the United States have credit blemishes severe enough (and FICO credit scores under 620) to make obtaining loans and credit cards with reasonable terms difficult….To improve your credit scores, it’s important to know where you stand now.”
Once you see where you stand, you can take positive steps to raise your score. In turn, raising your credit score makes you eligible to get the financing to buy that bigger house or more expensive car. Also, if you’re looking to move up to a higher paying job, having a good credit standing is definitely a plus.
So if you have bad credit now, you can take positive action to repair it. Here are some things Weston recommends:
- If you don’t already have one, get a credit card. You don’t have to carry a balance, but routinely using at least one credit card and paying off the balance at the end of the month can build up your score.
- Keep a low credit card balance. Potential creditors like to see a loan balance below 30 percent of the credit limit. If you pay down a credit card to about 10 percent of the limit, so much the better.
- Go easy on these credit cards and avoid building up big balances, which can hurt your credit scores.
- Include an installment or personal loan in your future. Faithful monthly payments can give you a quick boost in your credit score. Consider taking advantage of the best financing deals from your local community bank or credit union.
- Continue following up old credit disputes that may be holding down your score. Weston’s advice: “The older and smaller a collection account, the more likely the collection agency won’t bother to verify it when the credit bureau investigates your dispute.”
- Start using an older credit card if you have one. The older the card or account, the better, even if your charges are just occasional.
- Never let a significant error go unchallenged. The following are definitely worth getting cleared up right away:
- Any late payment, collection activity and charge-off that should not have been charged to your account
- Credit limits that were reported as lower than they actually were
- Accounts that are erroneously marked as anything other than properly paid in full or currently satisfactory
- Any account still listed as unpaid, but was included in a former bankruptcy
- Unsatisfactory or negative accounts older than 7 years (10 years in the case of a bankruptcy) — that should have automatically fallen off your credit report
The foregoing are just a few < a href=”http://supermoney.com/” target=”_blank”>tips for improving your credit score. The bottom line is that even if you don’t have an excellent credit rating now, you can get back in the game. Your credit rating, just like you as a person, is a work in progress. You can get out of your credit slump and back in the game.
About the Author: Devin Finley is a freelance writer and tax relief expert. Devin writes on a multitude of financial and legal topics. He enjoys collaborating and strategizing with other professionals to ensure tax & debt clients receive competent and beneficial representation. For more information Visit http://optimataxrelief.com/