Request your credit report and score from the three national credit bureaus.
The first thing you need to do is know where you are now, in order to fix any errors and determine where you need to improve.
The information on the credit report is the data used to develop the credit score, so ensuring the information is correct is critical.
You can obtain one free credit report per year from each of the three agencies.
Therefore you should request one report every four months so you can continually monitor your reports.
Your credit history is free but you may have to pay a small cost to get your actual credit score.
Some banks and credit unions offer credit score information to their customers for free.
Many services that advertise that they will give you a free credit report or score are scams.
They will stand there between you and the credit companies in order to harvest your data and then sell the data to marketing firms.
You’re considered to be a poor risk if you have a credit score under 620.
For other types of reporting errors such as fraudulent use of your identity, provide all the forms of proof that you have to the bureaus, such as cancelled checks, stamped invoices, police reports, etc.
Put everything in writing and follow up at least once per week by phone with the bureaus until the mistakes are corrected on your report.
If you have some late payments showing on your credit report, these can really hurt your score. Collections, judgments and tax liens are devastating.
You can try to negotiate with the entity that reported the collections, etc., for removal of such negative notations.
Be aware that unlike what you may have heard or read elsewhere, getting negative information removed from your report is not an easy thing to do.
Be persistent, factual and patient.