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August 07, 2019

How to Rebuild Your Credit Quickly

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Increasing your credit score doesn’t require blood, sweat, and tears—just patience and good behavior.

Whether you’re thinking about purchasing a home, shopping around for the best credit card rate, or simply taking a proactive approach to your financial health, you might wonder how to increase your credit score. The good news is that you can add points to your score with just a little patience and persistence.

Pay bills on time, every time

Do you know that payment history accounts for 35% of your credit score? Simply paying your bills on time is an easy way to increase or maintain your credit score. Schedule payments ahead of their due dates using Bill Pay and rest easy knowing your bills are taken care of and that your credit score won’t be affected by late payments.

Examine your credit utilization ratio

Simply stated, this is the amount of debt you hold compared to available credit. There are two ways to improve your ratio: either pay down the debt (preferable) or ask for a credit limit increase on one of your cards. The creditor might pull your credit when you ask for an increase, and that could lower your score by a few points. If you’re confident that you’ll be approved for an increase, that could negate the slight score decrease that comes with a credit pull. But beware—utilizing your extended credit will only make matters worse; your ratio will only become more attractive if you don’t max out your card again!

Stay patient

As creditors see it, sometimes the best predictor of future action is past behavior. For this reason, some mistakes will stay on your credit report for many years to come and the only remedy is time and patience. Take a look at the chart below to see how long some of these missteps can continue affecting your score:

Late payments 7 years
Bankruptcies 10 years from the date you filed (or 7 years if you’ve filed for Chapter 13)
Foreclosures 7 years
Short sales 7 years
Repossessions 7 years
Tax liens 7 years
Charge-offs 7 years from the date your account was charged off