Wealth Wednesday – Three Easy Ways to Start Repairing Your Credit Now
Three Easy Ways to Start Repairing Your Credit Now by Ela Kitchen
Repairing a damaged credit report requires time and effort, but here are three steps you can take to speed up the process.
Check your credit report.
Credit reports don’t always have it correct, and in fact 78% of credit reports reportedly contain errors according to Credit.com. Combing over your credit report can benefit your score if it is indeed being pulled down by someone else’s negative information or even duplicates of the same negative line item. Most versions of reports point out what items are particularly detrimental to the person’s score so even reviewing the report can begin the process of credit education.
Everyone is entitled to a free credit report from one of the major bureaus – Experian, Equifax or Transunion – each year, which can be obtained by visiting www.annualcreditreport.com. There are other services that can do this as well, but the point is to be aware of your credit report and the items it contains both good and bad.
Pay down credit card debt.
One of the only real ways to give your credit score a boost is to pay down any existing debt you may be carrying on a credit card. This will have an immediate and positive impact on your credit utilization ratio, which essentially involves how much credit you are using versus how much credit is actually available to you.
This technique will only work if you pay down the debt and then refrain from charging up a large balance on the card. Remember, creditors report current balances plus your payment status on a monthly basis so it won’t take long for these new charges to catch up to you.
Commit yourself to making all your payments on time.
You can really improve your credit score by making payments on time. An easy way to do this is to set reminders on apps available for smart phones or tablets or sit down with your computer calendar and add them all recurring to your calendar. Then sync the calendar with your phone or tablet, and you now have a way to be reminded each month. If that is still not enough, then it is time to enroll in auto-pay so you cannot miss payments. You may also be able to sync your bank account with your creditors and sign-up for online bill pay, which is a service many banks offer for free to their customers. This will also help you avoid missing payments.
A missed payment can cause a good credit score to fall 100 points or more. As long as you don’t follow-up a late payment with another late payment, you won’t see the full negative effect for the entire seven years it takes the line item to fall off your credit report.
Ela Kitchen – Bio
Ela is the founder and CEO of AxSys Financial Group, where she helps consumers repair their credit and mortgage situations as a certified HELP Specialist and Credit Coach. She has worked in the Financial Service Industry for over 17 years and has a thorough knowledge of how credit really works for and against people. She and her husband Lewis owned a mortgage company specializing in credit- challenged borrowers. Now, as a passionate consumer advocate, she works one-on-one with people to help improve their credit profile as well as companies to improve their employee productivity thru financial awareness and incentives.
There is a pressing need to provide financial education to the community at large. Ela’s mission is to strengthen her community and improve the lives of consumers by offering services that promote financial literacy, home-ownership retention, and a healthy economy.
AxSys Financial Group