Raise your hand if you were one of the millions of people who promised yourself you’d only use your credit cards for an emergency. Everyone who read this just raised their hand, and that’s because no one takes on a line of credit with the intent of falling into debt. It happens, though and then it’s all downhill unless you take the steps to fix your credit score. Here’s how you can do it.
Order a free credit report and comb it for any errors there may be. Making sure your credit reports are accurate is the easiest way to repair your credit since you put in relatively little time and energy for significant score improvements. You can order your credit report through companies like Equifax for free.
Your household bills are just as important to pay on time as any other credit source. When repairing your credit history be sure to maintain on time payments to utilities, mortgages or rent. If these are reported as late, it can have as much negative impact on your history as the positive things you are doing in your repairs.
Keep your credit card balances low. having a high credit limit on your card can seem like you’ve won the lottery, but using that entire limit will lower your score. Try to keep balances at a 50% maximum. 30% is more of a prime target. By doing this you are showing that you can handle your credit well, and that you don’t need every dollar that has been extended to you.
Do not fall prey to the seven or ten year bad credit “monster” so many creditors put forth. You can positively impact your history through diligence and effort. These time frames are by no means a set standard on how long negative reports affect your standing. Many times these are used as a scare tactic to keep you from being proactive in your efforts.
When trying to repair your credit, do not fall for the scams that tell you they will help you to create a new credit file. Creating a new credit file is actually fraud if you decide to follow through. Since it is fraud, you can face legal repercussions if you create a new credit file.
If you have bad credit, do not use your children’s credit or another relative’s. This will lower their credit score before they even had a chance to build it. If your children grow up with a good credit score, they might be able to borrow money in their name to help you out later in life.
If you do not understand why you have bad credit, there might be errors on your report. Consult an expert who will be able to recognize these errors and officially correct your credit history. Make sure to take action as soon as you suspect an error on your report.
At the end of the day, getting out of a bad credit situation is all about arming yourself with the proper information to do so. The net is riddled with misinformation and half-truths so heed this information wisely and use it to pull yourself up by the bootstraps so you can experience a life bereft of bad credit.