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How to repair your credit rating

A bad credit score can haunt you. Here’s how to improve it if you’ve let it deteriorate.

Woman reading credit report

It happens to too many of us. There are unexpected emergencies we had to take care of financially, or perhaps we weren’t careful with our first credit card. Regardless of the reason, we are carrying big balances on our credit cards, and we start to miss payments. Once you let your credit score drop, it can haunt you and may prevent you from doing things like purchasing a home, for example. So how can you fix your credit score and get it healthy again? Here are some things to do.

Check your credit score for accuracy

Unfortunately errors in paperwork or computers can happen, or perhaps someone’s stolen your identity. So it’s a good idea to make sure your credit score is accurate. You can get a copy of your credit report for free through such organizations as Equifax. Look over your copy thoroughly to ensure everything is correct. If you find any errors, take the proper steps to have the information corrected.

Be diligent about paying bills on time

Make paying your bills on time a high priority, and look for ways to pay off your debt faster, whether that means consolidating your debt onto a lower-interest loan or finding ways to earn more money that goes directly into paying off debt.

Consistency and stability work in your favour

Staying at one employer and living in the same residence is favourable when it comes to credit scores. It demonstrates stability and that you’re earning a steady income. So if it fits with your career plans, consider loyalty to one workplace for a length of time rather than flitting from job to job.

Build good credit

If you have a bad credit score, it can be difficult to get credit that’ll allow you to get out of the hole you’re in and rebuild your score. One option is to get a secured line of credit or a secured credit card. This involves depositing a lump sum with a financial institution that acts as a security deposit if you were to not make your payments. If you do get this type of card or loan, it goes without saying you must be sure to make your payments in full each month rather than grow more debt.

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