Are you on the right track with your credit record?
Have you ever walked into someone’s home with dirty shoes – leaving your mark on their clean, white floor? Some marks are not easy to get rid of… the same goes for a bad credit record. Changing your credit status from good to bad is not a task that can be done overnight – those who tell you otherwise, can also tell you how their attempted quick-fix backfired. We’d like to give you some sound advice – as anyone with a good credit record would tell you – the key is to demonstrate your ability to manage your debt effectively. Here are some tips on how to do just that.
Don’t miss a payment date
A major influence on your credit record is if you pay on time and not a day later. So, should you have sufficient funds there really shouldn’t be an excuse. To make sure you don’t forget, find out from your bank about payment reminders or set your own when you receive your statement. You could also opt for your monthly payment to be automatically debited from your account, but remember that this may only pay your installment and further payments would need to be done manually in order to reduce the amount owed. Now, not having enough money is another story. If you do not have enough funds to pay the minimum payment on your credit card, loan or account it’s important to inform your credit provider before the due date. While you may still be hit on the negative side, a payment arrangement can be made and your communication is recorded.
Erase the mistakes
Errors on your credit report could affect your chances of applying for credit – it could also lead to a bad credit record. The first step you should take is to enquire about your financial situation and proof read your credit report. Take note of personal information, credit history and judgements from credit providers. If mistakes are found on your report, it’s vital that you inform the relevant providers in writing and include all supporting documentation. Once your report is clean from mistakes, you’re moving on the right track.
Don’t create, eliminate
Unless you have a tree growing money, paying off your debt is easier said than done. And, while you need credit to have a credit record… it’s important not to get yourself in a hole that you can’t climb out of. Many people believe that having different accounts will mean a better credit record, but this isn’t always the case. One of the first things you should remember is to rather reduce your existing debt before creating more, because high outstanding debt can impact your credit record. The same goes for creating too much credit if you are a new credit user – this can appear dodgy and reckless. The best way to improve your record is to come up with a payment plan that priorities the accounts with the highest interest rate. It makes more sense to get these accounts out of the way, even if it means paying extra while sticking to the minimum installment on other accounts.
The point we’re putting across is that someone who manages their credit responsibility over time is better off than one who has too much or none at all. Don’t wait until you have a bad credit record, start now – keep your credit record on the right track.