- Get a free credit report.
You can receive a free credit report one every 12 months.
Review the report for accuracy and report any mistakes promptly to the agency.
- You can also get your FICO score there,but you will have to pay for it.
However, you can obtain a free credit score from a number of free websites.
These sites will not provide your FICO score, but they are definitely worth checking out for free.
- Do not randomly closed credit card accounts.
If you are one of those people that opened a few store credit cards at Christmas in order to get the discounts, pay off the balances but leave the accounts open for at least a year.
If you close them all at once, it can negatively impact your all-important FICO score.
The credit agencies look at your total available credit vs.
the amount that you owe.
It is also better to pay off the debt rather than move it around.
- Be diligent about paying down credit card balances.
Make at least the minimum payment toward all credit cards.
And remember, it is wiser to pay down credit card balances before putting anything extra toward your mortgage.
The credit agencies compare the total amount that you owe vs.
your total available credit.
Set up payment reminders so that you won't have any late payments.
Many banks will allow you to set up bill reminders.
make us of this free service.
Having just a few late payments can have a major impact on your score.
Also being late just one of two days can also raise a red flag.
Be responsible with your debt and make at least your minimum payments on time.
- If you are being hounded by a collection agency, come to an agreement.
The collection agencies will often accept a greatly reduced one-time payment to settle the account.
Never agree to make payments that you cannot afford.
You should be aware that paying off a collection account will not remove it from your credit report.
Therefore, you should always pay off newer debt first.
- Do not add to your debt.
Reduce expenses and live below your means.
Try to go a full week without spending anything.
It is important to have a budget in place.
Remember, this is only temporary, and you will reap the rewards for many years.
You can clean up your credit score.