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Repair my credit score now

There are many ways to hurt your credit score, such as increasing student loans. Fortunately, with a little diligence and hard work, there are plenty of ways to fix your credit, too. So if you’ve run into a bad situation and wondered, “Wow! How can I fix my credit score now?”, you’ve come to the right place.

The Beginning: What is a Credit Score?

This is a 3-digit number generated by an algorithm using information in your credit report. This number is used to predict risk. For example, it allows potential lenders to get an overview of your credit and make an informed guess about the likelihood that you will pay any obligation on time. Everyone has a credit score. In fact, they all have 3.

Everyone has a credit score for each of the major bureaus:

  • equifax
  • experience
  • transunion

The Medium: How Is My Credit Score Determined?

If you don’t understand all the factors that go into determining your credit score, this 3-digit number may appear to be random. Somewhere some guys are sitting around rolling dice to determine what everyone’s credit score is. However, in reality, these scores are based on some very specific factors. In order of most to least important:

  • Payment history – This includes late payments.
  • Amounts Owed: The amount of debt you owe.
  • History Length: How far back your credit goes (the longer, the better).
  • Types of Credit Used: Types of accounts you have (eg, revolving and installment).
  • Credit Inquiries/New Accounts: Are you opening a lot of new accounts? Are there a lot of questions coming up (this happens when you apply for new credit and sometimes when you look for a new job)?

Now that you know more about your score, we can finally answer the question “How can I fix my credit score now?”

When looking for ways to “fix my credit score now,” keep in mind that your credit is not chalk on a blackboard. You can’t take an eraser and just erase it in the blink of an eye. Bad reports on your score will generally stick around for seven years, and bankruptcies can reflect on your score for up to ten years.

The End: Helpful Tips to Fix My Credit Score Now

Tip 1: History is important

Unfortunately, this aspect of your score is somewhat out of your control. You can’t start building a credit history until age 18, and it takes years to be rated “good.” This means that it is important to open some credit cards as soon as possible, keep them open and in good standing.

The part you can control is how long a card stays open once it’s been approved. If there is a card that you no longer want to use, instead of closing it, simply save or destroy it. Leaving the account open, as long as you are not charged an annual fee, will allow you to continue building your credit history.

Tip 2: Don’t apply everything at once

Applying for many different types of loans (for example, credit cards) in a short period of time can lower your score… just like opening a bunch of loans in a short period of time. This is a fairly easy way to correct your score. Just stop applying for a bunch of loans and open new accounts.

Tip 3: Pay bills on time every time

If you’re having trouble remembering to pay certain bills, set up automatic payments so money is automatically withdrawn from your bank account each month. If this is not an option, set up automatic reminders on your phone or email program calendar.

Tip 4: Pay off debt

Lowering your debt/credit ratio by paying down debt is another way to improve your score. Paying off your debt on time (as mentioned above) is critical, but if you can, you should also pay off the debt ahead of schedule. Any small amount (even just an extra $10 a month) will help you achieve this goal and lower your debt-to-credit ratio.

Tip 5: Check your credit report 3 times a year

Doing this will help you catch errors and fraud such as identity theft.

You are entitled to 3 free credit reports per year (one from each of the major credit bureaus). You can claim your credit reports here: http://www.annualcreditreport.com.

Get a credit report every 4 months and review it carefully. Take any errors seriously…they could be signs of identity theft.

Tip 6: Negotiate with collectors

Paying off a past due account will not automatically remove it from your credit report. If you’re only slightly behind, your balance is extremely low, or you’re going to pay the debt in full, you may be able to negotiate with the collection agency to remove the item from your credit report.

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