So you’ve decided that it’s time to get your life in order and repair your credit. The problem is you don’t know where to start. You probably feel overwhelmed by your debt. If you have bad credit, chances are your finances are disorganized. You may be asking yourself, “How can I fix my credit score? Where can I find a free credit report? How much debt do I actually owe?”
Step back and take a deep breath. Repairing your credit can be quite simple if you know what to do and you remain calm. After all, the first step to repairing your credit is to decide to do so in the first place. So there you go! You’ve completed step one. Some people decide that they’ll just wait out their bad credit, believing that some companies will forget about them after a certain number of years. This isn’t true in some cases, and anyway, it’s awfully inconvenient to live with bad credit.
Always begin with checking your credit report. Federal law states that everyone is entitled to a free credit report once a year. Checking your report will help you decide what items you need to dispute, what areas you need to begin with to raise your credit score, and can even help you detect identity theft.
Next, realize that you cannot expect to dispute or settle everything on your credit report. Disputing too many items can show that you aren’t serious about getting your life in order. Many credit repair companies will encourage you to dispute everything. Hiring a credit repair company won’t save you time or money. In fact, it will cost you more and you’ll probably end up right back where you started. Buying credit repair software and doing it yourself is the best option.
Here’s an interesting fact that you may not know: closing credit card accounts can actually hurt your credit score. Simply paying off the balances can help improve your credit score. There is no need to cancel the accounts, even if you don’t use the card. Keeping the card you’ve had the longest on your credit report can provide you with history, especially if you’re in good standing with them.
Make sure you don’t skip some payments in order to make others. Contrary to what you might think, the most important payments to make are the accounts that are up to date.
Don’t declare bankruptcy in order to repair your credit. This will actually hurt your credit score, as it remains on your report for up to ten years. The wisest thing you can do is repair your credit on your own. You will learn a good lesson and save yourself time and money.