Repairing a credit score in 60 Days or less is possible. Free eBook and 14 tips to help!
Credit scores exist to create a fair, transparent, and non-subjective way to rate a loan applicant’s credit trustworthiness. The credit scoring process is certainly not perfect. It can be confusing and frustrating. Credit scoring helps remove discrimination and bad business practices.
This article was researched and written by Marie Morganelli, Ph.D
and is sponsored by Lexington Law.
It is possible to raise a low credit score, however. It is even possible to raise a credit score quickly.
If you want to win at raising your credit score and stop paying interest, get this helpful eBook – “Credit Revolution: Path of the Smart Consumer!”
Sometimes it is necessary to get a car loan, home loan, credit card, or new job today rather than tomorrow. The months and years it takes to build or improve a credit score is time that you don’t have.
There is no way to guarantee you will raise your score in a hurry. But, these are some steps you can take to move the dial on your credit score as quickly as possible.
1. Focus on Eliminating Credit Card Debt
The amount of debt you carry makes up 30% of your credit score. Pay down your credit card debt, even a little, to make a big impact fast. (5 Factors that make up your FICO Score – CreditCards.com)
2. Correct your Credit Report
If you do nothing else to raise your credit, do this. It’s free, easy, quick, and makes a big impact. Everyone can get a free credit report once a year from each of the three major credit bureaus: Equifax, TransUnion, and Experian. In about fifteen minutes you can have these reports downloaded and ready for your review.
Read through each one and check for any inaccuracies. Mistakes happen, and there’s no reason to allow those mistakes to impact your credit score. If you see any errors, call the reporting agency and request a correction.
3. Don’t Open Anything New
This tip is more like playing defense than offense, but it will help you a great deal. Every time you open a credit card or new account, it shows on your credit history. These inquiries lower your score.
Long-term, this is not a problem. Inquiries are necessary to build credit. Short term, your goal right now is to hang on to every point in your FICO score, so don’t create new reasons for the score to drop.
4. But, Accept Pre-Approved Credit Card Offers
It likely won’t even take 60 days for one or more pre-approved credit card offers to show up in the mail. Take advantage of one, and you will have more available credit on your account.
According to MotleyFool.com this improves your debt-to-credit ratio. Remember to immediately cut up the card that comes with the account. Be sure you don’t open more accounts than necessary.
5. Request an Increase of Your Available Credit
Log in or call your credit card company and request an increase to your credit limit. Your credit score will receive a boost, thanks to your lower debt-to-available-credit ratio.
This way, without paying a dime towards your debt, you have reduced the ratio of available credit you owe. It would be sneaky if it weren’t a completely acceptable practice.
6. Selling Unneeded Items to Eliminate Debt
It may be easier than you think to find some extra cash to pay down debt in a hurry. Every penny you put towards debt helps improve your situation. One of the quickest, easiest, and most effective ways to do this is to sell items you no longer need.
Take a look around, and think about what you haven’t touched in the last year. There are more items than you might think sitting around, gathering dust. Selling is easy with Craig’s List, Facebook Marketplace, and eBay. Put the money you earn directly towards paying off one of your bills.
Related Article: Places to Find a Deal and Sell Things Online
7. Become an Authorized User on Someone Else’s Credit Card
This strategy is in the same vein as getting a co-signer. It’s one of the more effective ways to boost your score in the short-term but is not the best long-term solution.
A friend or family member with strong credit might let you add your name to their account. Your score goes up, though theirs might take a small hit, so be sure to remove your name in a few months once you’ve achieved your short-term goal.
8. Don’t Close Cards to Repair Credit
While it seems logical that closing accounts might a step in the right direction, resist the urge to do this. Credit scores are based in large part on the amount of money that you owe vs. the amount of money available for you to borrow.
We know that this sounds counter-intuitive, but keeping the amount of money available to borrow is important. The trick is to exercise the willpower of having the credit, but not using the credit.
Instead of closing accounts, simply cut up the cards. That’s it. The credit companies still report that you have the credit available, but you’re not using it, which leads to a higher credit score.
9. Pay Twice a Month
This is a great strategy. It will boost your credit score and start a new habit that will help keep your score up once you get it where you want it. There is nothing stopping you from throwing some extra money at your debt more than once a month.
Pay what you can each time you get a paycheck, and watch your balances drop while your credit score goes up. You’ll be less likely to spend that money on other things while waiting for your bill to come due. It’s a win all the way around.
10. Make Minimum Payments on Time
Even if you can’t pay off a small debt in full right now, make sure that no matter what, you make all minimum payments. This credit-worthiness is reflected in your score and will help inch that dial towards a higher score.
11. Set Payment Reminders
You might be noticing a theme: paying off your debt is perhaps the second biggest step you can take toward improving your credit score. What is the biggest step, you ask? Paying off your debt on time. Set auto-alerts on your phone or calendar, or write the dates that payments are due on a paper calendar if you prefer going old school. Most credit cards have an auto-payment feature where you can set your account to automatically pay the minimum amount every month. Do this.
12. Pay Off Debt to Repair Credit
Are there any accounts that you could pay off in full, right now? It may seem like a drop in the bucket to pay off that small account when the bigger one is looming, but every time you pay down a debt, your credit score goes up. When you’re trying to boost your score in a hurry, every point counts.
13. Request Rapid Rescoring
This tip only works if you’re applying for a mortgage loan, but could help a great deal in that situation. Take your 30-60 days to follow the steps listed above. Then, once you are in the loan application process, ask your lender to run a rapid “Re-score” of your credit history.
You should be aware that this will log an extra inquiry on your credit file. But, this could show a higher score overall thanks to your efforts to pay off what you can, on time.
14. Finally, Remember to Take the Long View
To make the biggest impact on your credit, that any steps you take should be the start of new good financial habits. Any benefit you reap from raising your score even a little now is a benefit you can multiply tenfold if you keep up these healthy habits long term.
Remember that building credit is a long-term effort, measured in months and years, not days and weeks. However, these short-term steps can help boost your score as much as possible in just a few months if you are strategic. Then, keep that momentum going as you watch your credit score continue to steadily rise over time.
If you want to listen to and read a brief history of how credit scores came into being, check out this page from NPR’s Marketplace.org.
Some of the links included in this post are from our sponsors. Read our disclosure policy.