In today’s day and age, it’s incredibly difficult, but not impossible, to survive with a bad credit history. Surviving with bad credit is definitely going to cost you monetarily. When you have a good credit score, you can finally start saving money and your financial situation will get a lot easier in the long run. But having a bad credit score can make purchasing something that should be simple, a complete hassle. It can make your life overall stressful and complicated.
Raising your credit score comes with some major benefits and can save your wallet in the end — but it can be a hard and confusing process to learn how to raise your credit score.
With that in mind, here are several tips on how to raise your credit and start making life easier on yourself:
1) Pay your debt down or off
Most people do not realize that 30% of their FICO score comes from the amount of money you owe on your debts. However, this score is also based on how much you owe in debt compared to how much credit you have established. By spending less on extra things and setting aside that money, selling your stuff that you do not need or want, and even picking up a second part-time job for a few months, you can start saving up cash that can go to paying off your debt which will help raise your credit score.
2) Negotiate your debts
You may have made some financial mistakes in your past that have continued to follow you around by leaving big fat low scores on your credit report. These mistakes could have been when you were not financially stable and you missed paying some of your bills, or you have things that had to go to a bill collector. Unfortunately, you cannot get rid of these past issues or get them off of your credit report, but you can start raising your score by settling these debts. In some cases, you may be able to negotiate your debt down and get an agreement with a company so you owe less, or they may take a cash settlement as full payment of your debt. Once the debt is settled, it will show up on your credit score by raising it up a few points!
3) Make sure your credit score is accurate
In today’s world, your credit score affects nearly everything you do. From being able to rent a home, buy a home, buy a car, or rent or lease something else that you have to make payments on, you need a good credit score report to make that happen. Since this number is so vitally important, you want to make sure that the score you have is accurate. A recent study showed that 1 in 5 consumers have errors on their credit reports which, when left unresolved, had a major negative impact on their credit report. Since your credit score is based on the gathered data on your credit reports, it’s vital that you always make sure everything on there is accurate by checking it at least once a quarter and refuting anything that is inaccurate. If there are any inaccuracies and you refute them as quickly as possible, then you’re able to knock those inaccuracies off of your report and raise your credit score up a few more points.
4) Build up your credit age
If you’re young and don’t have much of a credit history, then improving your credit score is not going to be any quick process. It takes time to build credit and raise your scores, but one way to possibly expedite the process is by being added to a family member’s credit account as an authorized user. If you’re able to do this then you can make charges and pay them off which will help build your credit history. In the end, it can boost your credit score up a few points until you’re in a place where you can branch off from their help and continue to build your credit on your own
5) Get a credit card.
Perhaps the easiest way to start raising your credit score is by getting a credit card. Using your credit card and paying the balance off on time every time gives you a start in solid credit history which will help boost your credit scores.
It will take time to fix your bad credit or build up your credit if it’s non-existent, but in the end, it’s worth it. Having a good credit score will make your financial life easier and get you to where you want to be in life in a much faster manner.
Photo Credit: cafecredit.com