Good credit has become more and more important. Credit checks are now often run when you apply for a job, rent an apartment, sign up for utilities, apply for insurance, and, of course, when you apply for loans such as car and home loans. If your credit is lacking, you should fix it as soon as possible.
There are ways to fix your credit yourself. If you are currently behind on payments, you may want to notify your creditors and negotiate terms of settlement. If you are not behind but have a low credit score because of past late payments, you will want to make sure to make your payments on time consistently over the next few years.
You may also want to avoid applying for new credit while you are trying to improve your credit. If you have a low credit rating because of errors on your credit report, you will need to contact the company reporting the incorrect information and send them documentation proving their information is incorrect. You will also need to send a copy of both the letter explaining the error and the material proving the error to one of the three credit bureaus so your information can be corrected.
Improving your credit yourself can be time consuming. If you don’t have the time or inclination, you may want to consider hiring one of the leading credit repair companies, like Lexington Law, Sky Blue Credit, just to name a few. If you decide to hire a credit repair company, make sure you do your research to hire a reputable company.
A reputable credit repair company will NOT:
- ask for money upfront
- suggest you use a different number than your social security number or create a different identity
- claim that they can help everyone no matter what their financial situation
- claim that they can fix your credit quickly, within a few days
A reputable credit repair company WILL:
- have attorneys and paralegals on staff
- charge you after they have started working on your credit
- have you sign a written contract
- give you a realistic time frame for fixing your credit
In addition, there are several steps you can take to make sure you are dealing with a reputable credit repair company:
- Check with the Better Business Bureau. If the company has complaints lodged against it, choose a different company.
- Ask for references. A reputable company should be able to provide testimonials from satisfied clients.
- Read online reviews. Go to a site such as Yelp.com to see what others are saying about the company and their experience with the company.
- See how long the company has been in business. The longer, the better; many illegitimate companies cannot remain in business for several years without their scam being discovered.
A person’s credit affects so many areas of his life. Having good credit is necessary for many jobs, loans, and sometimes even insurance. If your credit is less than ideal, take the time to fix it either yourself or by hiring a reputable credit repair company. You will be happy you took the time to do so.
Guest post by Melissa Batai.