Offers for different types of credit repair services are prevalent in the market. IF you need to repair your personal credit, should you sign up for these offers? Although there are trusted non-profit credit counseling organizations that provide free counseling to consumers, there are a lot of agencies that are only after one thing – make profit.
These agencies may present themselves as non-profit and may use outrageous promises to attract people. They may claim to instantly fix your bad credit or to have the power to remove derogatory marks such as bankruptcy, tax liens, and court judgments from your credit report. In reality, these agencies are fraudulent and consumers need to be aware of them to avoid being a victim.
The truth is, you can do certain steps to improve bad credit by yourself. You do not need to pay an agency to help you resolve your bad credit problem. Consider the following steps that you can do to repair bad credit in 2012.
Check your credit report. You are entitled to receive free credit report from each of three major credit bureaus (Experian, Equifax, TransUnion) annually. Order your free annual credit report at www.annualcreditreport.com to make sure that all information and charges in your file are accurate.
In case you find errors, send a credit dispute letter to the bureau that issued your report. In your letter, point out the specific error that needs to be corrected. Enclose photocopies of documents that support your claim and a photocopy of your latest credit report, with the incorrect items clearly marked.
Upon receiving your letter the credit bureau must conduct an investigation which can take up to 30 days. If your dispute is valid, the errors will be corrected and you will receive an updated copy of your report for free. This step can instantly improve your credit score by a few points.
Know the truth. Consumers must understand that no person or company can remove any negative information from a credit report, unless the detail is incorrect. Thus, if a certain credit counseling agency or debt consolidation agency claims to erase negative details from your file, it is a clear sign of a fraudulent agency. If the charges in your account are correct, then it is your obligation to pay back your creditors. However, you can try to negotiate with a creditor and request for modification of the terms to make repayment easier.
Seek free credit counseling. Check out the NFCC’s (National Foundation for Credit Counseling) website for a list of credit counseling agencies that offer free or affordable service. Keep in mind that an agency should not require you to submit any upfront fee before rendering service.
A trusted counselor should spend time evaluating your financial situation. Initial counseling typically lasts for an hour, but follow-up session may be necessary. A genuine counselor should help you devise a suitable debt repayment plan and monthly budget plan. He/she must help you recognize the root of the problem to make sure that you can repair bad credit and avoiding being stuck in the same situation again.
About the Author:
Suzy Vanstrusen is a credit analyst and a writer on the website EZCreditRepairSolutions.com. She has been providing consumers with tips and wise information about credit repair as well as helping you out more with your bad credit loans. Copyright © 2012
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