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Own Your Credit Problems

The bad news is that you’ve come out of the recent financial slump with dismal credit and unhappy creditors. But, at least, millions of people are suffering financially so you know you're not alone. Owning your financial issues today is the most responsible position you can take and, more importantly, will get you on the path to a better credit score, faster. The following steps will help you get on the road to improving your credit worthiness:

  • Access the destruction. Either pay for or request a free copy of your credit report. Sometimes it's hard to digest the truth but the inevitable is that you should look at your credit report and identify your score from all three agencies to see where you stand.
  • Dispute any credit inaccuracies. It's simple and free to dispute issues with your credit reporting. Simply go online to your creditor’s website or call them directly to ask for the proper steps in disputing a reporting error. More often than not you’ll find reporting errors that, when corrected, will improve your credit score. Also, if your creditor is unable to provide adequate proof, of the issue at hand, they are required by to law to reverse the negative entry. Continue to review your credit history, on a monthly or quarterly basis, to identify additional inaccuracies and also monitor your progress.
  • Answer the phone. If creditors are still calling answer your phone and have a conversation with them. Many lenders are more than happy to set up a payment plan or negotiate options that you can afford - they do this to avoid your bankruptcy.
  • Review the status of your credit cards. If you still have any open credit cards look for those with issues you can fix. For example, if you have a credit card that is over the limit, make every effort to eliminate the overdrawn portion as soon as possible.
  • Open a secured credit card. If you don’t have any credit cards open consider opening a secured credit card. Secured credit cards that report to all three agencies are going to be your best option to directly improving your current credit score. However, that means you have to show that you're more responsible now and will prioritize with this card. Make monthly payments on time, every month, without issue. Be sure and review the fees associated with any secured card you may be considering.
  • Once you have a little credit. Utilize your new credit card each month in the most responsible manner. You’ll see the biggest credit score boast by regularly using your credit card but only while keeping the spending down, and paying off the balance each month. Use your credit card to pay for groceries or utility bills - no need to spend on unnecessary items.

Owning your credit problem means taking the bull by the horns. Or in this case, taking control of your credit report. This will help you find ways to improve your existing credit score while making plans for the future.

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