5 Things to Do This Year for a Better Credit Score

The following is a sponsored post for CreditRepair.com

Just because your credit score isn't where you want it doesn't mean it has to stay that way! Here are five things to do this year for a better credit score.

For reasons I’ve never understood, it’s sometimes debated
whether having a good credit score is important. Sure, if you never need to
take out a loan, buy a house, refinance a mortgage, rent a house, or get decent
rates on insurance then yeah, you don’t need to worry about your credit score.

But for the rest of us, we
do.

Having a good credit score can save you tens of thousands of
dollars in interest on a mortgage. A good credit score can be the difference
between you and other applicants landing a rental.  It can also save you hundreds per year in
insurance costs. (I used to be an insurance agent and saw the HUGE effects a
credit score can have on rates.)

And these are only just a few of the reasons you need a good
credit score.

But, what if your credit score isn’t the best? While that
might suck right now, there are very practical and easy things you can do to
raise your score.

Here are five things to do this year for a better credit
score.

# 1 – Check Your Credit Reports (It’s Free and You NEED to Do It)

You can get one free credit report per year from each the
three major credit bureaus (Equifax, Experian, and Transunion.) Your credit
report will contain a list of information of all the credit you’ve ever had
including credit cards, car loans, student loans, mortgage, etc. Your credit
report will show how much you owe, your payment history, and when the loan was
taken out.

The first thing you need to do is go to
annualcreditreport.com and get a copy of your credit report from each of the
three bureaus.

#2 – Dispute Any Discrepancies on Your Credit Report

Now that you have your credit reports in front of you start
going through them and looking for any mistakes. If everything on your report
looks correct, then you can skip to the next step. However, if you’ve found
misinformation on your reports, you’ll need to have them corrected.

To have mistakes corrected you will need to send a letter and proof of the mistake to the appropriate credit bureau. (The FTC has sample letters you can use here.) The credit bureau will have thirty days to investigate your claim. They will notify you of the results in writing.

If you don’t feel comfortable doing this yourself, you can always use a service like this one.

# 3 – Always Pay Your Bills on Time

Now that you’ve verified the information about your credit
history it’s time to start bringing your credit score up.

The number one factor
that goes into your credit score is your payment history
!! If you do
NOTHING else, make sure that you’re paying your bills on time. If you’re always
sending payments in late consider using autopay.

# 4 – Be Careful with Your Available Credit

The second biggest chunk of your credit score is how much
credit you’re using. If you have a bunch of credit (credit cards, personal
loans, etc.) and they are all maxed out then you’re credit score will take a
hit.

A general rule of thumb is to keep revolving credit (such as
credit cards) at 30% or lower. This means if you have a credit card with a
$1,000 limit the balance should be no
more
than $300.

# 5 – Stop Opening New Credit

While you’re working on improving your score don’t take out
any new credit. (This is unless you have NO credit in which it would make sense
to open a credit card.)

Opening credit can show as a hard inquiry on your credit
report and lower your score.

Along those lines you also shouldn’t close any credit
accounts as they can shorten your length of credit history, which is another
factor used to compute your credit score.

When You Need Help..

Raising your credit score means following a few simples each
month. Once you’re on the right the path you’ll just need to give it time for
your credit score to increase.

If this all seems overwhelming to you there are places to
get help.

If you don’t feel comfortable checking and disputing items on your own, CreditRepair.com offers this service. They will consult with you, check your credit report, and challenge any questionable items. Average credit repair users have seen a 40 point increase past average in their credit score in four months.

You can learn more at CreditRepair.com

Just because your credit score isn't where you want it doesn't mean it has to stay that way! Here are five things to do this year for a better credit score. #personalfinance #creditscore #money

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