How to boost your credit score in 10 simple steps
Low credit scores cause many negative effects. This is why people who deal with them should always strive to improve them. Although this is no easy task, there are certain things one can do to raise that figure. Here are some of the most essential tips for improving a bad credit score.
1. Don’t remove old debts from the credit report
Many people are happy when paying down debt because they can finally take it off their credit reports. However, why would you do that? Old debts that show up on the credit report just show that you have managed to pay the money back. The same goes for old accounts. As long as you have good payments on it, they are an additional proof that you are a good borrower.
2. Pay attention to credit card balances
The ratio between revolving credit and used credit may help boost your credit score if that ratio is 30% or less. To raise your credit score, pay down the credit card balances and don’t increase them again. Multiple credit card balances can be handled with a personal loan consolidation. This may also increase the credit score.
3. Don’t miss paying bills
Bills play a significant part in boosting the credit score. On-time payments on your monthly bills will show positive movement in your credit report, which will eventually increase the credit score. And if you thought the library book you haven’t returned has nothing to do with bills and credit score, think again. The library is a creditor in this case. It is free to report the unpaid bill to the credit bureaus.
4. Become someone else’s authorized user
When a friend or family member names you an authorized user on their credit card account, this shows you are a trustworthy person. Come up with an agreement with someone you know and write down the extent to which you are allowed to use the credit card and how you will share the bill. Use the credit card responsibly and watch your credit score go up.
5. Look for errors on your credit report
Ask for a copy of your credit report and study it thoroughly. Compare the figures to those you are aware of and dispute any possible errors. Contact the corresponding credit reporting agency – Equifax, TransUnion or Experian – and see how those mistakes are affecting your credit score.
6. Make payments twice a month
Remember the tip about being on time with all your payments? Well, perhaps you can do even better, like paying twice a month? The logic says that creditors repor the balances of their debtors once a month. A large balance on the credit card might create the impression that you are not handling the credit appropriately. Moreover, having the balance and credit limit equal means a 100% credit use rate, which doesn’t help your credit score. Making payments twice a month or even more often than that will keep the credit balance low.
7. Pay for Delete
Check your credit report for small debts or collections for small amounts. Contact the creditor or collector and inform them you want to Pay for Delete. This is precisely as it sounds – you agree to pay the debts in exchange for the collector/creditor erasing the negative account from your report.
DirectLoansLenders suggestion: Don’t forget to ask for Pay for Delete letters from the collectors or creditors. You must have the agreement to erase the debts in writing. If the creditor/collector doesn’t agree to erase the debt completely, don’t pay until they do.
8. Dispute the negative account in the credit report
The law says that once you have submitted a dispute request, the Bureau has 30 days to investigate the accuracy of the disputed balance. If by the end of that time they cannot prove that the negative balance, debts or late payments are 100% accurate, they must erase it from your account.
9. Dispute credit inquiries
We all know a traditional credit check harm the credit score. The hard credit checks stays on a credit report for two years and the credit score is affected by them for 12 months. These seem quite long periods. If you haven’t authorized a credit inquiry or the fact that you have authorized it cannot be proven, the credit check will be removed.
10. Don’t let your credit score drop too much
Last, but not the least – start improving your credit score before it is too late. You will rarely see a credit score drop by several hundred points at once. Things happen, and you might see a slight decrease in the credit score. Don’t ignore it; start working towards increasing it back right away. The lower the credit score gets, the harder it is to boost it back up.
The best advice would be not to let your credit score become that bad. However, it is never too late to start being financially responsible and have an adult approach to money.
References and Sources
1. Boost Your Credit Score Fast With These 7 Moves. Retrieved from https://www.moneytalksnews.com/7-fast-ways-raise-your-credit-score/
2. 4 tips to increase your credit score fast. Retrieved from http://money.cnn.com/2017/05/08/pf/credit-score-tips/index.html
3. 11 Ways To Raise Your Credit Score, Fast. Retrieved from https://www.forbes.com/sites/moneybuilder/2014/05/02/11-ways-to-raise-your-credit-score-fast/