Repairing Your Credit
Okay, so you’ve made some poor decisions regarding your credit; or maybe you found yourself in an unavoidable financial situation. Either way, it’s time to pull your head in the sand and repair the damage that has been done.
Let me begin by saying, I am not against credit repair companies, however I do not believe that they are as necessary as they once were. Repairing your credit is time consuming, so if don’t have the time or desire to stay committed to the process, then a credit repair company might be a viable option. For those of you who would like to save money and have the wherewithal to continue on the journey, then let’s get started.
Pulling Your Credit Report
Pulling your credit score is probably the most essential part of this process. In order to know what to improve, it is necessary to analyze the areas that are ultimately hurting your score. Equifax, Trans Union, and Experian are the heavy hitters when it comes to our credit ratings. They are the credit score gods, breathing life into every credit decision to be made from now until the end of time! Once a year, you are allowed to print full credit reports from all three bureaus for free, and you can access these reports on AnnualCreditReport.com.
Identifying Areas of Improvement
Your overall credit score is created and composed of various algorithms that calculate risk involved with doing business with a potential customer, but ultimately divided into these categories: Payment History, Debt Usage, Credit Age, Account Mix, and Credit Inquiries. Any negative impacts to any of these categories can adversely affect your credit score. Online tools such as Credit Karma, Credit.com, Credit Sesame are free (don’t you just love that word) online tools dedicated to helping you understand what areas are negatively impacting your credit score. Each category is represented in the form of a ‘report card’ grade, with tips and tasks to make improving these areas simple and manageable.
Disputing Inaccurate Information
If you see any inaccuracies on your credit report, you want to begin disputing these. All three bureaus will allow you to make disputes online, however be mindful of any memberships you may be asked to sign up for. Once the disputes have been made, each bureau has a limited amount of time to rectify the disputes on the account. After the allotted time, the credit companies will make the necessary corrections and changes to your credit report.
Only time will tell
Improving your credit score is not a quick fix. It takes times time, patience, and commitment. Bad habits and unfavorable situations may have played a role in the decline of your credit score, but the good news is, the damage is not permanent. By taking advantage of the free online tools available, and staying focused on obtaining a higher credit score, you are one step closer towards being the #bàus of your financial future.