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8 Ways to Raise Your Credit Score

1. Get Rid of Your Collection Accounts

Did you know that paying a collection account can actually reduce your score? Here’s why: credit scoring software reviews credit reports for each account’s date of last activity to determine the impact it will have on the overall credit score. When payment is made on a collection account, collection agencies update credit bureaus to reflect the account status as “Paid Collection”. When this happens, the date of last activity becomes more recent. Since the guideline for credit scoring software is the date of last activity, recent payment on a collection account damages the credit score more severely. This method of credit scoring may seem unfair, but it is something that must be worked around when trying to maximize your score. How is it possible to pay a collection and maximize your score? The best way to handle this credit scoring dilemma is to contact the collection agency and explain that you are willing to pay off the collection account under the condition that the all reporting is withdrawn from credit bureaus. Request a letter from the collector that explicitly states their agreement to delete the account upon receipt/clearance of your payment. Although not all collection agencies will delete reporting, removing all references to a collection account completely will increase your credit score and is certainly worth the involved effort.

2. Get Rid of Your Past Due Accounts

Within the delinquent accounts on your credit report, there is a column called “Past Due”. Credit score software penalizes you for keeping accounts past due, so Past Dues destroy a credit score. If you see an amount in this column, pay the creditor the past due amount reported.

3. Get Rid of Your Charge – Offs and Liens

Charge­offs and liens barely affect your credit score when older than 24 months. Therefore, paying an older charge­off or a lien will neither help nor damage your credit score. Charge­offs and liens within the past 24 months severely damage your credit score. Paying the past due balance, in this case, is very important. In fact, if you have both charged­off accounts and collection accounts, but limited funds available, pay the past due balances first, then pay collection agencies that agree to remove all references to credit bureaus second.

4. Get Rid of Your Late Payments

Contact all creditors that report late payments on your credit and request a good faith adjustment that removes the late payments reported on your account. Be persistent if they ref use to remove the late payments at first, and remind them that you have been a good customer that would deeply appreciate their help. Since most creditors receive calls within a call center, if therepresentative refuses to make a courtesy adjustment on your account, call back and try again with someone else. Persistence and politeness pays off in this scenario. If you are frustrated, rude, and unclear with your request, you are making it very difficult for them to help you.

5. Check Your Credit Limit and Evenly Distrubute The Balances You are Carrying

Make sure creditors report your credit limits to bureaus. When no limit is reported, credit scoring software scores the account as though your current balance is “maxedout”. For example, if you know that you have a $10,000 limit on your credit card, make sure that the limit appears on the credit report. Otherwise, your score will be damaged as severely as if you were carrying a balance of the entire available credit. Credit scoring software likes to see you carry credit card balances as close to zero as possible. If it is difficult for you to pay down your balances, read the following guidelines to maximize your score as much as possible under the circumstances:

There are different degrees that scoring software can impact your score when carrying credit card balances.
Balances over 70% of your total credit limit on any card damages your score the most. The next level is 50% of your balance, then 30% of your balance.
In order to maximize your score without having to pay down your balances, evenly distribute your credit card balances among all of your credit cards, rather than carry a large balance on one credit card. For example, if you are carrying a $9000 balance on a credit card with a $10000 limit, and you have two other credit cards with a $3000 and $5000 limit, transfer your balances so that you have a $1500 balance on the $3000 limit card, a $2500 balance on the $5000 limit card and a $5000 balance on the $10000 limit card. Evenly distributing your balances will maximize your score.

6. Do Not Close Your Credit Cards Ever

Closing a credit card can hurt your credit score, since doing so effects your debt to available credit ratio. For example, if you owe a total credit card debt of $10,000 and your total credit available is $20,000, you are using 50% of your total credit. If you close a credit card with a $5,000 credit limit, you will reduce your credit available to $15,000 and change your ratio to using 66% of your credit. There are caveats to this rule: if the account was opened within the past two years or if you have over six credit cards. The magic number of credit card accounts to have in order to maximize your score is between 3 and 5 (although having more will not significantly damage your score). For example, if a card was opened within the past two years and you have over six credit cards, you may close that account. If you have more than six department store cards, close the newest accounts. Otherwise, do not close any at all.

7. Open Business Credit Cards

Most business credit cards do not report to the personal credit report unless the person pays the card late. Given that fact, any debt carried on these cards does not hurt the credit score if it is not reported. You can carry credit card debt on these cards without hurting your credit score. Just apply for business credit cards now to start building this segment of your credit.

8. Keep Your Old Credit Cards Active

15% of your credit score is determined by the age of the credit file. Fair Isaac’s credit scoring software assumes people who have had credit for a longer time are at less risk of defaulting on payments. Therefore, even if your old credit cards have horrible interest rates, closing those cards will decrease the average length of time you’ve had credit. Use the old card at least once every six months to avoid the account rating to change to “Inactive”. Keeping the card active is as simple as pumping gas or purchasing groceries every few months, then paying the balance down. An inactive account is ignored by Fair Isaac’s credit scoring software, so you won’t get the benefit of the positive payment history and low balance that card may have. The one thing all credit reports with scores over 800 have in common is a credit card that is twenty years old or older. Hold onto those old cards, trust me! Preparing credit is a slow and time consuming process. Full knowledge of your credit profile and how it represents you to creditors and credit bureaus is pivotal to full credit restoration success. Credit bureaus always advise individuals that they have a right to dispute their own credit files, but when the rights of the Credit Bureaus slow you down, you know where to ask for help.

2 Comments

Tina Marie Brenner September 21, 2018 at 4:42 pm Reply

I’m ready to fix my life( credit)

Derick Vogel October 26, 2018 at 5:18 am Reply

Hi Tina,

That is great to hear and we would love to help. Give us a call for a free consultation or fill out the form on the right and we’ll be in touch.

https://www.creditabsolute.com/

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Angel  Maldonado
Angel Maldonado
14:27 30 May 20
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Phuong Mai Pham
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06:13 21 Dec 19
I noticed a few changes on my credit report that had lowered my score which concerned me and after looking at reviews online I decided to set an appointment with Derek at Credit Absolute. I was fully expecting to spend hundreds of dollars for his advice on what I should do to get it back up to where I had it. After consulting with him and looking in depth at my report, he gave me some tips and helped me understand how the 3 bureaus work and what I could do to increase my score. Best of all..... he didn't charge me a penny. Derek is an honest guy, running an honest business, and if you are looking to build your credit score then he is the guy to turn to. It was about a year ago that I met with him and my score is up over 90 points. 10/10 would recommend Derek at Credit Absolute!
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nestor victore
nestor victore
22:14 04 Nov 19
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Tina Abbott
Tina Abbott
02:07 01 Nov 19
My experience with Credit Absolute has been nothing but wonderful! The entire staff are very knowledgeable and understanding. Felica is the one of the nicest people.
Christopher Moore
Christopher Moore
15:10 03 Oct 19
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David Burgess
David Burgess
19:02 20 Aug 19
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steve moore
23:32 16 Aug 19
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Zacary Roberts
Zacary Roberts
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Christian Wunder
19:35 18 Jul 19
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Baron Adelmann
Baron Adelmann
21:59 26 Oct 17
Derick and his team have helped me tremendously! He explains the process of improving your credit and does all of the work for you! My credit score has improved drastically and I know that I couldn't have done it without the help of Credit Absolute. Because of them, my business has continued to thrive in a way I never thought possible. Thank you Derick and the Credit Absolute Team!
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Sho Sho Smith
22:31 16 Feb 17
Derek just made my day when I thought my credit was being compromised due to a balance on my late husband's credit card. He checked it out my credit health and assured me that I lost no points and the balance was forgiven. Great news! He gave me pointers on how to get my credit score even higher to put me into the premium level and coached me on getting back on my feet, credit-wise, after my husband's death. A great experience!
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Vanity Hernandez
20:15 19 Jul 16
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