Credit scores are often the bane of peoples lives. That number that will say whether you can get that mortgage or phone contract or that credit card. A lot of us have had bad credit scores in the past and managed to get ourselves back into the good scores. Others are still trying to get out of their bad range. But what exactly can you do to improve your credit score?
There are a variety of ways to boost your credit score. Steve and I have tried some of these in the past and they’ve worked for us, others we haven’t tried but know people who have. Its all about finding what works for you – and your credit score.
Check you are on the electoral roll
It sounds silly but this is one thing people forget to do and if you’re not, how are they meant to know who you are and where you are?
Consider a credit rebuilder credit card but stop applying for credit elsewhere on other things
A credit rebuilder credit card can be very handy in helping to boost up your score. Steve has one and keeps on time with his payments which has seen his score get better and better. However just because you’ve applied for a credit card and its helping you to build up your credit score, don’t keep applying for credit as your score goes up as you could still bring it down again.
If you must apply for credit for emergency reasons…
This is simply if you absolutely must – say for instance your car completely broke down and was scrapped and you needed to get a car – and quickly – to be able to get to work and pay your rent and bills. You know that you won’t be accepted by some leasing companies and are reluctant to get credit whilst building up your score but know you need to. Perhaps consider a bad credit car leasing company such as CVS Ltd. It is worth remembering that by leasing a car with CVS Ltd it wont help improve your credit score, but they are happy to write a reference for customers should they require one at the end of their leasing term.
Applying to CVS also does not have a negative effect on your credit score – the company works on affordability and traceability and not on a credit reference check. Once a customer has been approved by their own underwriters, it is at that point that they will do a credit reference check as per the regulations from the FCA.
Never be late with payments
It sounds silly but keeping to at least the minimum payments on your account is a surefire way to cease a bad credit score. You don’t want a default on your account.
Cancel unused credit
Not using a credit card or a store card? If there’s nothing on it, cancel it! Why keep it open if not in use? Also if the remaining payment on it is small, pay that off and cancel. It will be much better for your score.
Challenge any unfair inclusions
If you feel like something is unfair, challenge it. Steve looked at his credit report a few years back and found something on his file that was paid off years ago in full. Yet it said that he owed them and was in default. After getting in contact with them, it turned out they’d made a mistake their end and he had indeed cancelled it and paid the remainder in full so there shouldn’t have been a default. It took a couple of months for it to disappear off his report but it finally did – if he hadn’t checked his report, who knew how long that unfair inclusion would have been on his account?
Have you ever had a bad credit score? How have you been working to improve it?