Repairing bad credit is often very difficult but not impossible. There are legitimate credit repair companies who claim that they have “quick fixes” to bad credit but they’re fraudulent. Repairing your credit is like quitting smoking or losing weight, it simply can’t be rushed.
What You Can Do
First and foremost, even though it’s not easy during these financially hard times, you need to make your bills a priority and cut expenses as necessary. Missing even one payment on your credit card can be enough to bring your credit score down a couple hundred points and late fees are piled onto the amount that you already owe. You would also do well to trek your credit report and check for any errors. Checking your own credit report won’t affect your score and be sure to order it from an accredited financial agency. There are many places that will let you check it for free. Errors on your credit report can also reflect badly on your credit score and put an unjust burden onto you. If you do find anything in your credit report that you think may be in error, then, contact the credit bureau as soon as possible.
Some banks have methods of distributing bill payment reminders so you may want to find out if your bank does, if so, use it to your advantage. If not, you can find your own method of trekking your payments and even your spending such as keeping a journal or asking credit counseling agencies if they have something like a Pocket Tracker. Signing up for automatic payments is an option as well but this only covers the minimum that’s owed and doesn’t really trigger a real sense that you’re the one who’s in control. If you don’t feel like you are, chances are, you’ll be completely blind as to how much you have and worse, you’ll probably be tempted to splurge.
It may be a temptation but another thing you don’t want to do is try to “move” your debt. Paying down your debts is more honest. Ideally you should use your credit cards when you’re either first building up your credit and otherwise, only when you have very little or no other choice such as when you need to rent a vehicle. Also, don’t give into the temptation to open multiple credit card accounts or “fixed” cards from stores that you don’t shop at on a regular basis. This usually backfires big time.
If you don’t use your credit card very often or at all, closing your account just because you’re afraid that you might rack up bad credit is not a good idea. Believe it or not, having bad credit is better than having no credit because especially if you’re planning to invest in a big-ticket item, such as a vehicle, anytime soon, your credit is one of the first things they check. If you don’t have any credit, they are even less likely to agree to sell you that vehicle or that home.
28 Jun 2015