By Amy Wells | On April 24, 2007 | In Finances | Rated
Once you've received all three reports, start by reviewing the information for accuracy. For each item that is inaccurate, you will want to write a separate letter to the credit bureau, providing them with any documentation that you have available. Some of the typical errors include.
If your considering buying a home, getting an auto loan, or a new job, your credit will be a factor, and could negatively impact your ability to get a loan or a mortgage. If you would like to get the best deal possible, it is essential that you take a look at your credit report, and clean up your credit as much as possible, before you even apply for anything where credit is a factor.
First contact all three credit bureaus, Experian, Trans Union, and Equifax, and get a copy of your report. Each report will be slightly different, and you want to make sure you compare all of them, since they will need to be corrected one by one. In some cases you can get a copy of your report free, depending on the state. Also, you may get a free report bundled with offers like a credit monitoring service, but it is usually best just to get the report right on the bureau website.
Once you've received all three reports, start by reviewing the information for accuracy. For each item that is inaccurate, you will want to write a separate letter to the credit bureau, providing them with any documentation that you have available. Some of the typical errors include accounts that are listed twice, under a slightly different name, which can
make it look like you owe more than you do. Another common error is companies that do not report when a loan or a debt is paid off. Once the credit bureau receives your letter, they will write to the credit company and wait for them to respond to your claim. If the credit company cannot provide proof to the contrary within 30 days, the item should be removed from your credit report.
Sometimes, you may be paying a bill regularly on time, such as a student loan, and find that it is not listed on your credit report. On-time payment is one of the major factors that go into getting a good credit score. If you call or write these companies, and ask them to report your good standing to the credit bureaus, chances are that they will, and that can also improve your credit.
One of the key things you can do to continue to improve your credit is to make sure you always pay your bills on time. If possible, sign up for auto-deduction for any recurring bills. Auto deduction has many benefits, and it takes the time and hassle out of bill paying. Also, each time you pay a bill on time, you will be taking one step toward improving your credit.
While it can take some time and effort to clean up your credit, it is certainly possible. You will need 1-3 months to dispute any errors and have them reflected on your credit report. By being proactive, and maintaining good credit habits, your credit will improve.
Amy Wells writes about consumer finance. Bad Credit? Get insider tips on getting a bad credit loan or credit card at: http://www.badcredit.yourtechtool.com