Credit repair is all about knowledge, and your credit reports are the key. There are three credit bureaus, Experian, Equifax, and TransUnion, and they each provide their reports in a different format. In addition, there are many tri-merged reports available which blend the information from all three credit bureaus in a different format. The tri-merged reports are designed to be user friendly and may be your best bet for credit repair.
The Real Score
There is another credit repair resource that gets less notice, but is arguably the most important. This resource is MyFico.com the website for Fair Isaac Corporation the creator and owner of the Fico credit score. The credit bureaus sell their own scores, marketing them with no visible disclosure that they are not the scores that lenders use. These bogus scores are deceptive and bear little resemblance to the genuine scores available at MyFico.com.
The Right Credit Repair Set Up
So, if you want to benchmark your scores, get the scores that count. Ah, but there is a twist. Although you should get your scores from Fair Isaac, their credit reports are the least useful for credit repair. So, I’m sorry to say, but if you really want to do it right buy your scores from Fair Isaac and a good tri-merged report for credit repair information purposes.
Proof Reading for Credit Repair
Once you have your credit reports it’s time to put on your reading glasses and get down to the business of squinting through all of the data that the credit bureaus attribute, often wrongly, to your life. I suggest that you clear your desk or kitchen table, get a pad of paper and a highlighter and make a note of everything you see that is even vaguely questionable. Here are some of the most significant things to look for.
Pushing it to the Limit
Credit card issuers often under report your high credit limits. This seems innocent enough; most people don’t think to look for this innocuous little tidbit, but it has the potential to knock 100 points off your score. Gasp. Check it out. The FICO scoring model places great weight on the relationship between your balance and your limit. If the credit card issuer erroneously under-reports your limit your score may be artificially depressed.
Gone but not Gone
Another problem often overlooked are accounts that have been closed and paid but continue to report as open with balances. This is very common and can overstate your current debt load. It is not unusual to spot two or three of these accounts, ranging from mortgages to little store cards. You can easily eliminate these obsolete accounts for a nice little credit repair boost.
Ditching the Dupes
Duplicate accounts are as common as dandelions in the spring, and like old closed accounts that report as open, these bothersome little pests can put a dent in your scores. These accounts appear for a variety of reasons usually stemming from creditors reporting methods and occasional account number changes. Look carefully for these redundant accounts and remove them.
Collections are Iffy
Collections are the most questionable accounts on your credit report. Collectors buy, sell, and even trade debt regularly. Collectors that do not own a collection account, per FTC Fair Credit Reporting Act Staff Opinion Letters, must cease reporting that account. Unfortunately there are no incentives for them to do so, and hence these old erroneous collections can linger forever. Challenge them as part of your credit repair effort.
The Student Loan Solution
If you have student loans that have slipped into default it is time to make peace with your lender. Student loans are different from every other debt. There is no statute of limitation for collection of student loans and hence there is no hope of waiting until they go away. In fact, the situation will get worse with every day you delay. The good news is that you have awesome legal rights when it comes to your student loans including easy rehabilitation and consolidation programs. Call the Student Loan Ombudsman at (877) 557-2575. They are on your side.
Credit Repair Lifeline
Is this too much to handle? If you are too busy to manage your own credit repair project, hire a credit repair professional. This is far too important to ignore. You can’t afford to delay your credit repair project. Every single point on your credit score has an impact on your life, so take care of your credit and your credit will take care of you. Good luck!
Copyright © 2008 Sky Blue Credit Repair. All Content. All Rights Reserved.