Swap out debt: Pay off credit card balances with a new personal loan or home equity loan. While the total debt you owe is still the same, you won’t get dinged by FICO for having high credit card balances. Instead, it will look like you use none of your available credit. Another win? Loan rates are often lower than interest rates on credit cards, so you save money on interest.
While the best credit repair company is the one you feel comfortable using, there are a lot of factors to consider when comparing. While things like fees and features may be more obvious, don’t forget to check the company’s status with the BBB and industry associations; if the company has a bad reputation among other companies, you should take the warning.
You've probably seen advertisements for credit repair on television or heard them on the radio. Maybe you've even seen credit repair signs on the side of the road. You don't have to hire a professional to fix your credit. The truth is, there is nothing a credit repair company can do to improve your credit that you can’t do for yourself. Save some money and the hassle of finding a reputable company and repair your credit yourself. The next steps will show you how.
A question that always tends to rear its head is “how do I quickly improve my credit score by several hundred points?” While you can’t increase your credit score tomorrow, it is possible to turn your credit around in a relatively short amount of time — usually give or take one year depending on the health of a person’s current score. Showing you can be diligent about your spending and debt repayments will go a long way in convincing lenders you are a low-risk customer.
Pay strategically: Here’s another way to look like you don’t use much or any of your available credit card limits. Try to pay off your balance, or as much as you can, before the statement closing date. The balance on that date is sent to you and the credit bureaus, and is used when FICO calculates your credit score. It doesn't mean that you have to change your spending behavior, it just means you're attacking outstanding debt earlier in the billing cycle. 

You might also be able to ask for a “good-will adjustment.” Suppose you were a pretty good Visa customer until that period of unemployment, when you made a late payment or two – which now show up on your credit report. Write a letter to Visa emphasizing your previous good history and ask that the oopsies be removed from the credit report. It could happen. And as long as you’re reading the report, you need to…
If you’ve never had a credit card before, your scores may be suffering because of that account mix factor we talked about earlier. Just make sure you make on-time payments — a new credit card account with a bad payment history will hurt you, not help you improve your credit scores. If you have a fair, good or excellent credit score, there are many credit card options out there for you. If you have a poor or bad credit score, read the next tip.

Brittney Mayer is a credit strategist and contributing editor for BadCredit.org, where she uses her extensive research background to write comprehensive consumer guides aimed at helping readers make educated financial decisions on the path to building better credit. Leveraging her vast knowledge of the financial industry, Brittney’s work can be found on a variety of websites, including the National Foundation for Credit Counseling, US News & World Report, NBC News,TheSimpleDollar.com, CreditRepair.com, Lexington Law, CardRates.com, and CreditCards.com, among others.
If you're close to maxing out your cards, removing the debt should increase your score after the low or zero balances show up on your credit reports—likely in the following month or so. Don't have enough cash lying around to make a big payment? Another strategy is to transfer the debt to an installment loan—say, a personal loan—or a home-equity line of credit. Such debts don't factor into utilization ratios. Plus, the presence of the loan or HELOC on your credit report could improve your mix of credit, which accounts for 10% of a FICO score.
As the particular issues involved in each individual case vary from case to case, we cannot guarantee a specific outcome or accurately predict how long it will take. Completion time can be reduced or extended based upon the promptness of the client to forward necessary information and upon the number and circumstances of the issues being disputed on the individual's credit report. Based upon the initial term of this agreement your completion date will be the date of your electronic signature of this agreement (contract).
Randall Yates, is the founder and CEO of The Lenders Network, an online mortgage marketplace that helps homebuyers find reputable mortgage lenders. As a part of Randall’s successful entrepreneurial career, he spends a chunk of time helping consumers understand their credit and lending his mortgage expertise to help them find the right type of loan. Randall Yates lives in Dallas, Texas with his two sons.
Bankrate.com is an independent, advertising-supported publisher and comparison service. Bankrate is compensated in exchange for featured placement of sponsored products and services, or your clicking on links posted on this website. This compensation may impact how, where and in what order products appear. Bankrate.com does not include all companies or all available products.
Either way, you should always remove any errors or outdated information from your credit report — regardless of the actual effect on your score — as soon as you discover them. A clean credit report can give you peace of mind the next time you apply for a loan; you’ll know that an inaccurate credit score isn’t holding you back from qualifying for a better interest rate, saving you time and money in the long run.
What can and DOES change is whether you have a collector pursuing you for the debt. If you are talking about a dormant account that has been in collections and has finally been left alone with no collections activity for a few years, messing with it can be problematic from the point of view that the collections people will start pestering you again to see if they can get money and if the SOL isn't up, they can start reporting on it again which can affect your score or they could even file suit if your state SOL isn't up.
But don't ignore a collection just because it's a small amount or listed as paid off. Such negative marks are actually quite serious and can significantly hinder your score. However, there's no need to jump up and down in a screaming fit of indignation if the credit reporting agencies listed the wrong employer for you or misspelled your middle name. Unfortunately, the scoring formula doesn't even consider those things.

Help…….Had a Bk7 that’s 4 years old (kidney transplant) and 9 items that have reported late (2016) in the past. All have been current for the last several months though I’m needing to boost my scores (currently 600 across the board ) in the up coming months for mortgage processing. My oldest trade line on my credit is showing 16 years, how is this process completed moving forward?


When the investigation is complete, the credit reporting company must give you the results in writing, too, and a free copy of your report if the dispute results in a change. If an item is changed or deleted, the credit reporting company cannot put the disputed information back in your file unless the information provider verifies that it’s accurate and complete. The credit reporting company also must send you written notice that includes the name, address, and phone number of the information provider. If you ask, the credit reporting company must send notices of any correction to anyone who got your report in the past six months. You also can ask that a corrected copy of your report be sent to anyone who got a copy during the past two years for employment purposes.
Check your free credit report carefully - it could help you boost your score. Why? It's common for banks, lenders and credit companies to make a mistake. If you spot any accounts that you don't recognize, dates that don't seem to match up, and especially if you see any mention of late payments or penalties, make certain they have been recorded correctly - and don't be afraid to call the company in question for details. After all, it's better to spend a few minutes on the phone clearing something up than leave a mistake on the report that could adversely affect your credit record. That phone call could wind up boosting your credit score - and it really only takes a few minutes of your time. 

I have had my identity stolen and when I became aware of this I was almost 7,000.00 in DEBT, so after getting many letters from the credit card companies that I did not apply for these cards and my information was stolen.  Along with a Police Report I  typed many letters and got the cards  removed from my credit report But, As this happened I watched my credit score go DOWN VERY QUICKLY, I was shocked I was the victim and my credit score just kept going down, down, down. Now I have POOR credit I did obtain 3 credit cards and always pay the card off monthly, Does this help me by paying them off every month or not?? But just a note KEEP YOUR INFORMATION THAT IS PRIVATE, PRIVATE IN A SAFE!! THE PERSON WHO DID THIS WAS MY X PARTNER OF 17 YEARS.    
If you are unsure if tradelines are right for you, please do your research first. We don’t want to sell anyone a product they don’t need. Google is very helpful on this subject. We’ve seen scores go up dramatically enough to know they work – and quickly – for the right people. Of course, the more negative items you have on your report, the more there is to overcome. For those with just a few negative items, but not much positive accounts yet, tradelines can make a dramatic difference. Contact us (below) to get a list of tradelines: we offer, you decide – no up-sell (no other products!) and no hard-sell (we have no problem keeping our lines in use).
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