How To Fix Your Credit Score - Report

How To Fix Your Credit Score

Could your credit score use some help? Maybe, you had a hardship in the past and you feel like it will follow you around for life. There are ways make it better on your own. Learn how to fix your credit score so you won’t pay through the nose in the future.

Beware of the claims to be able to fix your credit score overnight for a nominal fee. Most of these are scams that don’t produce any real results. Take advantage of these steps to fix your credit score on your own and watch is go up steadily.

Don’t sit around and feel bad about what you did in the past. It was in the past and what happened could not have happened any differently. It happens to the best of us. Keep in mind that it doesn’t have to be that way forever.

#1 – Where Are You Now With Your Credit Score

The first step to fix your credit score is to find out where you are right now. Everyone can get a free credit report once a year. Get a hold of your full credit report from the three credit bureaus.

Equifax, TransUnion, and Experian

You want to see where you stand with your FICO score or credit score. Find out where you are, where it’s heading right now, and make a plan to get it where you want it to go.

You can get your free credit reports by going to annualcreditreport.com. Also, there is a number you can call. 1-877-322-8228.

Credit Karma or Credit Sesame are other sources that can help you see what you are up against as well.

Once you get these reports, and I suggest you do, check out the chart below to see where you fit in. Hopefully, this makes you feel a little better about where you stand. If not, don’t worry. I will explain how to fix your credit score going forward.

How To Fix Your Credit Score - Chart

#2 – Are There Any Errors On Your Report

Now that you have the reports look closely to see if there are any errors. You will want to make sure all of your personal information is correct first.

Check your full name, address and Social Security Number.

Other errors to check for are loans or credit cards on your report that you don’t have, and missed payments you didn’t miss.

If there are any errors you will need to get proof that they are errors. You might be able to prove the errors with your previous bank statements.

Next, write a letter to all 3 of the credit bureaus explaining the errors and ask them nicely to fix them. Provide the proof with the letter and a copy of your report highlighting the error. What you are doing is disputing the report.

You can also go to the FTC (Federal Trade Commission) to get more information about disputing discrepancies from the credit bureaus.

The credit bureaus are allowed 30 days to respond to you from the date that they receive your letter so, don’t waste days getting this together. As you know, it’s important to have a good credit score.

#3 – Pay Down Those High Interest Credit Cards

I know this is easier said than done. Trust me, I have been there. When you look at your credit card statement it looks like a mountain you can never climb. Ideally, you will want your credit usage under 6%.

You have to find a way to get these balances down. Pay a little every week If you have to. When I had high credit debt, I would pay what I could twice a month. It felt like the balance would never budge but, I kept putting as much toward them as I could until the balance was gone.

Another way to deal with the credit card debt is, not to incur more. Most credit cards have an option to lock the card. When you lock the credit card it can’t be used by you or anyone else.

See if your credit card company has this option. Don’t close the account, lock it. If you know you are going to need it for something you can unlock it ahead of time. The point of doing this is so you don’t use it though.

I have one that is always locked because I know I don’t need to use it. This also helps me feel better knowing that no one else can use it in case of Identity theft.

#4 – Don’t Spend More Than You Make

Another one that is easier said than done. If you are in a position of having bad credit it might be time to change your ways. If you find yourself buying more than you can pay for then you are either buying too much or not making enough money. You need a budget.

You may have to change both problems to get where you want to go with your credit score. Find a way to spend less and make more money.

Maybe, this is a good time for you to start the side hustle or online business you have been thinking about.

Related: Multiple Streams of Internet Income

#5 – Pay Your Bills On Time

You don’t get credit for paying your utility bills on time but, not paying them on time can hurt you. If not careful, these bills could be sent to collection which will really cause you to go backward in your credit repair efforts.

Paying loans on time does give you credit with the credit bureaus though. Make sure that all loans like, mortgage, car payments and personal loans are paid on time, every month.

Once you get a positive payment history going your credit score will go up dramatically.

#6 – Don’t Incur Hard Inquiries On Your Credit Report

Don’t fall for new credit card offers! Every time you apply for a credit card or a loan it causes a hard inquiry on your credit report. If you have too many of these within two years it hurts your credit score bad.

These inquiries don’t go away for some time and will really stall your credit score from going up.

Don’t do it! Don’t take the advice that others give about applying for a credit card to fix your credit. This can be a way to increase a credit score by increasing your credit limit but, if your are trying to fix your credit it’s a bad idea.

Recap

Use these techniques for how to fix your credit score and get back on the right track.

1. Find out where you are right now with your credit score.

Got to www.anualcreditreport.com, Credit Karma or Credit Sesame

2. Dispute any errors on your credit reports.

Get advice from the FTC then send letters any of the credit bureaus that show an error.

TransUnion – www.transunion.com

Equifax – www.equifax.com

Experian – www.experian.com

3. Pay down credit card balances.

Work hard to get your credit usage down. Try paying something every two weeks or every week.

4. Don’t spend more than you make.

Consider a side hustle or online business with a low start up to make more money.

5. Pay your bills on time every month.

Having a good payment history will do wonders for your credit score.

6. Don’t incur more hard inquiries on your credit report.

Don’t apply for any new credit or loans. This will follow you around for a long time.

Related: How to Build Your Credit – 4 Simple Ways

17 thoughts on “How To Fix Your Credit Score”

  1. Good to know that opening new credit cards can effect you your credit score. Is this just if you already have bad credit or a low credit score. Also, what is a “hard inquiry”?

    I sometimes feel like my entire generation (millennials) is basically living off credit. We’ve gotten pretty comfortable with the idea of being in debt. I don’t know, maybe the massive college loans we all had to take out was the start of it. Anyway, this is some well needed information letting us know there are options to improve things even after they’ve gotten bad. And yes, if anyone offers to make all your problems go away for a small fee, it’s probably a scam!

    Reply
  2. Hello Russ. This is a great article on how to fix credit score. Bad debt always have a way to hurt in the future and that is why your article is very important. As a professional Accountant, I understand very well the implication of bad credit score and the effect. Although we all get into debt at one point or the other, it is good to make effort to still maintain a good credit rating because of uncertainty in the future when one might need further financial assistance.

    Your article have outlined and explained ways to handle the situation and it will be very helpful for people to learn ways they can use to improve their situation. Great job. Cheers.

    Reply
  3. Wow! This is an amazing article you have got here. Fixing our credit score has always been a problem for many, however the one reason people are unable to fix their credit score is because they ignore this principle “Don’t spend more than you make”. My dad use to say; if you find your self in a pit stop digging. Always put out a little as savings. Where there is earning savings should be present too. 

    Thanks.

    Reply
  4. Thank you for sharing how to fix your credit score.

    I personally have a great credit score, I think the last time i checked it was 736.

    The tips you mentioned I’ve already been incorporating so it’s refreshing to actually see it structured in your post.

    One thing i learned about credit was to keep lines open at zero, not to close them down.

    Always on time on my payments, never missed over the years having credit cards and such.

    This will be good info for my friend who currently went through a bankruptcy.

    I will definitely share it with her.

    Thanks.

    Reply
  5. Great information here, I know by experience how credit cards can make you nuts with interests and the habit of spending with them is something that becomes unstoppable at one time. I luckily managed to get rid of the CC and now I am using the debit only.
    Equifax is a global database company, I am from South America, and there is equifax there too.
    I am sure mostly Americans can use the value of your post, but I got really good insights on general credit management from your info here.

    Thank you.

    Reply
  6. Thanks so much for sharing this informative post. 

    Good credit is very important for modern living society. It allows us to get lower interest rates, that means it will help us to pay off our debt faster.

    I actually have two hard inquiries on my credit report. One was due to refinancing our house. It’s been almost two years and they still don’t fall off. Do you think I should file a dispute letter? Is it worth a try?

    Reply
    • Ferra, Unless you see yourself going for a new big loan, I wouldn’t worry about the inquiry. As long as your are paying your bills on time I’m sure your credit is doing pretty good. 

      Reply
  7. Hello Dear, thanks for sharing this beautiful and insightful tips on how to fix a credit score. Having a good credit score is very advantageous in that good credit score is used for more than just getting a credit card or a loan, a cedit scores demonstrate your history of paying your debts to entities that loan you money. These tips listed here are really going to be helpful. 

    Reply
  8. Helooo dear, thanks for sharing these valuable content with us, I was actually doing some research online when I was doing some research online when I saw your post on credit score, Wow! This is an amazing article you have got here. Fixing our credit score has always been a problem for many, and the issue with them is that day don’t know the right step to take, thanks for the info, I’ll surely do some recommendations

    Reply
  9. I know that finding a good article does not come by so easily so i must commend your effort in creating such a beautiful website and writing an article to help others with useful information like this,when ever i am going through tough times or i am trying to correct a mistake i made,i love to bear in my mind how messed up i am or i try my possible best to know my current situation.The same thing applies here, when you are trying to fix your credit score you must first find out where you are.I cant help but to recommend this website to my friends.

    Reply
    • Wilson, Just make sure you understand that we all make mistakes. If you want to know how bad I have messed up in the past just ask. Just keep moving in the direction you want to go. 

      Reply

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