Do You Really Need Credit Repair Companies? How To Conduct Credit Repairs Yourself

Whether you are looking to salvage your plummeting credit score in order to get a job or you simply want to improve your credit score so as to enjoy lower interest rates on your insurance and have access to an extra line of credit, you need to ask yourself whether you really need a credit repair company or can you conduct the credit repairs yourself?

Credit repair companies are more of a convenience rather than a necessity. You can do without them although you would probably have less to deal with if you hired them. They offer services that you can do for yourself and of course, at a fee. So if you cannot or will not spend extra money on hiring these companies, here is how you can go about fixing your bad credit score.

Doing credit repairs yourself

First of all, if your credit score is low you need to find out what happened. How did you get to the score that you are currently at?

Access your credit information from your credit reporting company and look through the report carefully to see if it could have made any errors. The reports are prepared by humans, after all. These are the things that you should pay particular attention to on the report:

Words like ‘settled’, ‘paid charge-off’ and ‘paid derogatory’ describing accounts that have been paid in full and on time.
Lower credit limits than the actual existing ones.
Late payments on loans and credit cards, credit card charge-offs and collections, along with any other negative listings that are not yours.
Negative items that should no longer be listed.
Accounts that were included in your bankruptcy but are still marked as unpaid.

If you find errors in these areas, you can communicate them to your credit reporting company (politely), through certified mail. Send the report with the errors marked out clearly and copies of relevant documents to support your claims. Make sure to get a receipt for your mail as proof of communication and wait for a written reply from the company.

After you have those errors sorted out, your credit score should be better and you can work towards making it better. One of the ways you can further conduct a credit repair yourself is by maintaining your oldest line of credit.

You don’t want to shorten your credit history so you can decide to cancel more recent credit cards (which is not entirely advisable unless you have too many, of course), but do not touch the oldest one. A longer credit history means a higher credit score, if the history is mostly good. Take the old card out for dinner or buy some appliances with it here and there just to keep it active. This is because, after a period of inactivity, the company may decide to cancel that card and that will hurt your credit score. So you don’t necessarily have to get a new credit card, just break out the old ones.

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