As an underwriter for over 20 years in all areas of financing, I have learned to read the most important financial documents of your life: your credit reports. You might have negative elements – inaccurate or otherwise – lowering your score. This can lead to problems obtaining financing, services through insurance or utility companies, and even now finding employment.
Here are five tips to clean up your credit report and potentially boost your score and open the financial doors the future may hold for you:
- Pull your credit reports
- Reduce your credit utilization rate
- Take care of collections
- Go through your credit reports line by line
- Challenge all mistakes
Pull your credit reports
While it’s great that you can get your FREE credit report from Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion once a year (annualcreditreport.com), there are a few shortcomings: you can’t see your scores, and you don’t a side-parallel comparison with the other desks in one sitting. This is very important because each desktop can report different items and it doesn’t help if you can’t see a clear picture of all three desktops to see where the errors are.
Reduce your credit utilization rate
One of the main contributors to your credit score is the amount of available credit you have. Most people don’t realize that they should strive to keep their debt ratio around 30-40% of their limit. So if you owe $700 on a $1,000 credit card, that limits your debt to 70% and causes huge changes in your score. A simple solution is to call your creditor and ask for a raise. Simply changing the limit from $1,000 to $2,000 puts that limit at 35% and you don’t have to pay anything.
Take care of collections
Negligence or total disregard for a debt can lead to collection. Many times there are billing errors or even identity theft that causes an account to appear on your credit. The misconception with many is that if you call and pay the debt it will automatically come off your credit. The REALITY is that many collection accounts are sold to collection agencies for pennies on the dollar and these collection companies often do not follow the laws to properly collect this debt. They also do not follow the necessary protocols to have the item removed once paid for.
With our guidance at Next Level Credit, we discern the best course of action for each item and get your credit reflecting correctly to get rid of these horrors.
Review your credit reports line by line
In October 2017, 317,200 complaints were filed with the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. Of these, 85,000 had credit report issues and this could be much higher as many do not report to the CFPB.
As you go through your line of credit line by line, look for the following:
A. Creditors Who Reported Incorrect Accounts as Charged Off or Defaulted
B. Accounts you don’t recognize
C. Misrepresentation of Late Payments
D. Judgments against you that have not been rendered
E. Addresses or names you have never used
Next Level Credit can come and do the work for you and make sure everything is done right.
Challenge all mistakes
Under the Fair Credit Reporting Act, you have the right to dispute anything on your credit report. If the creditor or reporting agency cannot verify the item’s accuracy, it should be removed from your credit report. You will receive a written summary of the results usually within 3-4 weeks of completing the process.
Next Level Credit, LLC is owned by Jimmy Rios, who has over 20 years of mortgage and lending experience and is also a licensed real estate agent with EXP Realty. After seeing the problems home buyers sometimes face, Jimmy teamed up with his wife, Sylvia Rios, who serves as his credit manager, to start a “boutique” business in Maricopa to help the community solve a serious problem that many people sometimes have for no reason. fault on their part, must face.
This sponsored content was first published in the April edition of InMaricopa magazine.