Whether you’re looking to buy a house, a car or even a smartphone, there are three things that you’re going to need to have: a solid job, a steady income and a good credit score. Yet unfortunately, while there are a lot of individuals who have the first two things, sometimes they are still not able to purchase what they desire due to the fact that their credit is less than impressive.
If you can relate to being in this kind of a situation and you’d like a few tips on things that you can do that will help you to improve your credit score within a matter of weeks, here are five tips that can get you to where you want to be, and soon.
Check your credit reports for errors. If you can’t remember the last time that you looked at your credit reports, it’s definitely been too long. So take the time out to go to a website like Annual Credit Report so that you can view them for free. As you’re in the process of reviewing the reports from Experian, Equifax and TransUnion, look carefully for any errors. If you happen to see an account that you don’t recognize or a charge off that you don’t recall, contact the credit bureau that listed it in order to dispute the potential error. You can learn how to properly dispute errors on your credit reports by going to Consumer.FTC.gov and put “disputing errors on credit reports” in the search field.
Pay your bills on time. One thing that’s important to keep in mind is a lot of creditors report if you pay your bills on time or not. That’s why it’s vital that you always make sure to pay your bills on, or preferably even before, your due date. You might even want to set up automatic bill pay for your accounts. By making consistent payments, you show that you are responsible when it comes to keeping up with what you owe.
Pay off past due balances. If after getting your credit card bills in the mail or after looking at your credit reports, you see that you have some past due balances, don’t ignore those. The sooner that you pay those off, the quicker you can raise your credit score. That said, if you happen to have some balances that are higher than you can afford to pay in full, do your best to at least put something towards them on a monthly basis. That will indicate that you have intentions on getting the balance back down to zero.
Keep your balances low. When it comes to your credit cards, if you have a balance that represents 35 percent or more of your overall limit, it’s ultimately going to hurt your credit, even if you make regular payments. That’s why you need to make sure that you keep your balances as low as possible. So, for instance, if your credit card has a limit of $1,000, try and maintain a balance of no more than $350. If you do, you’ll see a world of difference on your credit score.
Speak with your creditors. Say that you went to a website like Credit Sesame to read a couple of articles about how to improve your credit score. One of the things that they might tell you is if you are having trouble with your credit score and you see a charge off or judgment on your report, you should speak with your creditors (or the agency that now has your account). By reaching out to them directly, you may be able to work out a payment plan with them. That way, once the account is paid off, the blemish on your credit report can be removed. For tips on how to negotiate with creditors, visit Nolo and put “debt settlement and negotiating with creditors” in the search field.