Credit Score

10 Shortcuts That May Improve Credit

Improve Credit By Taking Credit Repair Measures

They say that slow and steady wins the race. However, there are some credit repair measures that can yield benefits quickly. By following these tips, you may see your credit score start to improve.

1. Get Your Credit Report

You might be surprised by how many people don’t perform this simple task. Each of the three major credit bureaus allow you to get one free credit report per year. Checking your credit through each of these companies won’t affect your credit score. Since it’s important to check your credit often, it’s a good idea to space out your check from each bureau. Getting one report every few months will allow you to check it 3 times a year without paying.

Getting one report every few months will allow you to check it 3 times a year without paying. Click To Tweet

2. Correct Errors

Old, settled debts—or even incorrect personal information—that remain on your credit report can lower your score. Be sure to fix these mistakes as soon as possible by challenging them with the credit bureau. A credit repair company (like this one) can also assist you in correcting errors on your credit report.

3. Prioritize

Identify credit problems that you can address immediately: those that will require some work, and those that will take longer to fix. By figuring out your biggest issues, you’ll be able to better devise a strategy.

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4. Knock Out Those Small Issues

Even if paying down a small balance doesn’t affect your score right away, it will give you a sense of accomplishment. Additionally, paying a little at a time is still progress toward your end goal.

5. Open a Line of Credit

If you don’t have any credit cards, get one. If you don’t qualify for an unsecured card, consider a secured option. Secured cards still report, and it may only take a few months of timely payments to improve your creditworthiness.

6. Negotiate With Creditors

Instead of hiding from creditors, be proactive. Most companies are willing to work with you if you meet them halfway. Try to come to some sort of agreement that will allow you to repay the debt in exchange for the issuer agreeing to mark the debt as “paid in full” or “current” on your credit report.

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7. Take a Look at Your Credit Limits

Are your credit limits accurate, or do you have a higher limit than you think? You can ask your credit card company to raise your limit. Be careful though, a higher limit doesn’t mean you spend more. Keep your balances low enough to pay off each month. Having a low balance with a high limit improves your credit utilization ratio.

Having a low balance with a high limit improves your credit utilization ratio.

8. Manage Your Credit Usage

Your utilization ratio accounts for about 30 percent of your total credit score. This number represents your total available credit vs. your used credit. If you can keep your credit utilization to about 25% or less, you should be in great shape. This means you should keep your credit usage low.

9. Add Your Name to an Account

If you can become an authorized user of a parent or spouse’s credit account, this may help to improve your credit score. You want to make sure to partner with someone who has a higher score than yours.

10. Make Sure Your Accounts Are Current

If you have any back payments due, make paying them a priority. Once you do that, ask the card company to remove the late payment information from your report.

Believe it or not, it’s possible to improve your credit. If some of these steps seem overwhelming to you, you can also hire a professional to help you improve your credit score. Professional services are available to dispute credit errors and offer helpful advice on how to improve your score. Click here to find a credit repair professional.

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