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There are many seemingly harmless acts that can negatively impact a credit score. Unfortunately, not everyone is taught early on how to properly manage their credit. However, there are easy, simple steps to steadily improve one’s credit over time.

Oftentimes fixing a poor credit report isn’t as easy as making a few monthly budget adjustments. When professional legal assistance is required, the bankruptcy attorneys at Labiak Law Group are dedicated to helping their clients in time of need. Stephen Labiak and team are the premier bankruptcy attorneys in the state of California with their two offices in Fresno and Visalia area.

Getting Started

A bad credit score is a heavy burden to bear on one’s shoulders. However, it is not a burden for life either. There are plenty of proactive measures one can take to improve a credit score. The Credit Counseling Society offers five simple steps to take control over one’s credit.

Credit Report Check

It’s hard to find a solution when the root of the problem is unknown. An updated credit report can help spot the factors bringing down a credit score such as late or missed payments, high debt utilization, or a bankruptcy.

In some cases, an error or fraudulent account can be the sole factor hampering one’s credit rating. A frequent credit report analysis can help rectify such issues before they get out of hand.       

Negotiate Arrangements with Creditors

One of the key factors that can hamper a credit rating is the presence of backed-up payments. The simple act of making constant payments on time can make a big difference on the road to rebuilding credit.

However, if it is not possible to make at least the minimum payments on time, then it might be worthwhile to contact the creditors in order to work out an arrangement that takes into consideration one’s financial situation and budget.

If the creditors aren’t willing to settle on an alternative arrangement, perhaps consulting an accredited credit counselor will be able to construct a plan in order to meet payment due dates, pay down debt, and help bring accounts up to date.     

Open a secured credit card

One of the most important steps towards a better credit score involves demonstrating a consistent history of paying at least the minimum balance on time. If a credit card seems out of reach, then a secured credit card may be the best option.

A secured credit card operates much like a traditional unsecured credit card. However, the key difference lies in a security deposit ranging from $100 to $500 in order to utilize the card which acts as a form of collateral.

The purchases made on a secured credit card are not deducted from the security deposit, but instead operate much like traditional unsecured credit card with a monthly balance that is paid on a predetermined date.

Responsible use of a secured credit card can demonstrate to creditors that a person is worthy and able to manage credit. The added benefit of a secured credit card is the possibility of upgrading into an unsecured credit card after a period of around six months of clean credit.

Pay the minimum payment by the due date

Credit cards bills aren’t the only ones that count towards impacting credit score, but also a parking ticket, utility and even cellphone bill are all taken into account to formulate a credit rating. It is crucial to pay at least the minimum payment on time which can establish a reliable precedent.

It can be helpful for some to set up multiple alerts and reminders in order to avoid missing payments. Automatic bill payments can prove a tremendous resource for those who tend to be forgetful. 

Practice good financial habits

The road to repairing one’s credit score involves making wise lifestyle choices over time such as devising a budget that takes into account earnings and spending and living a more frugal lifestyle overall.

Effects on Public Record    

There’s no quick fix for a poor credit rating. Experian states that delinquent accounts, inquiries, and collections can remain on a credit report for as long as seven to ten years. The long and steady game is the best strategy for improving credit.

Time is definitely an ally in the struggle towards building better credit. The larger a credit file becomes with positive public record items, the better it reflects on the credit score. Persistence and patience prove vital yet again as in many other aspects of life.  

Legal Resource

Simple steps can be taken to improve a poor credit score over time. However, in more severe cases professional legal assistance might be required. In these cases, the experienced bankruptcy attorneys at Labiak Law Group are here to help. The road to a new life without credit worries can begin with a simple phone call or email.