My Credit Journey: 6 Months in and My Score Has Went Up 168 Points
When I first started the journey to repair and build my credit, I wasn’t optimistic and I felt hopeless and also financially stuck. Now, six months into this credit repair journey, I am very happy with my credit and very optimistic about my future. I went from only being approved for a secured credit card to now being able to get approved for store credit cards and unsecured credit cards. Not saying that I am applying for a lot of credit at one time because I would just be going backwards on this journey.
You have to remember if you are in the stage of repairing your credit that you didn’t wreck your credit overnight so it’s not going to be fixed overnight. You have to be very patient on this journey and very disciplined. Come up with a credit repair plan and stick with the plan and prepare to adjust it as needed.
I am going to give 5 tips that really helped me on my journey and helped to raise my score by 168 points in 6 months.
1. One of the best things I’ve done on this journey was join a credit repair group on Facebook. The group I joined is called Your Financial Fix and it’s amazing because it is filled with a lot of information and people on similar credit journeys. There are other groups but I feel this group was the most useful and the administrator of the group is very helpful, knowledgeable and usually answers questions right away. You learn that you can honestly repair your credit yourself without giving someone else a dime to do it. I mean why pay someone to help your debt when your money going to that person could go to your debt?
2. Only spend what you can afford to pay back. And I know this is difficult when you get in a pinch or an emergency occurs. But if you end up maxing out your card, don’t fret and work on getting your balance paid off and do not touch the card until you’ve done so.
3. Monitor your credit and if something doesn’t look right, look into it. Because my score was so low, I avoided even monitoring my score and looking at my reports. I am glad I did because I was able to dispute things on my report that were not accurate. Another tip is to be careful with disputing online because you waive some of your rights. I learned this the hard way.
4. Be patient. The score will go up and down as you build and repair and that’s okay. I learned that patience is key when rebuilding your credit.
5. Learn all you can about credit, about the factors affecting your credit score, the laws when it comes to disputing accounts, learn about interest, carrying balances, hard inquiries, the difference between vantage and Fico scores and utilization. Knowing these things empower you to take back control of your credit and repair your credit. Also, come up with a detailed plan about the score that you want, how you will get to that score and what you want to do when you get to that score whether it is buy a house, car, refinance or just qualify for credit cards. Having a plan helps you understand your own credit repair journey and helps to meet those goals.
I think it is important to note that what works for others might not work for you and that’s okay. Your credit repair journey is uniquely yours and you can achieve whatever credit goals you have set for yourself. Being knowledgeable about credit is the first step in the credit repair journey. In the beginning of this journey, I had limited information about credit and I was a little overwhelmed and thought there was no way I could repair my credit on my own. I thought about paying someone to help because it just seemed like too much but I’m glad I learned that I could repair my own credit and now I feel more knowledgeable about credit in general and my own credit.
In the beginning, I only had a secured credit card, a bunch of negative remarks on my credit report and things in collection. Now, I still have my secured credit card along with 3 other credit cards and no collections on my report at all. The age of my credit is still young and I’m waiting for some things to fall off of my report. As I do that, I am paying my credit card bills off every month, keeping my utilitization low and will not be applying for new credit for awhile. My goal was to get to the 600 club by the end of the year so I can rent an apartment in the beginning of the new year. I started in the low 400s and now I’m a few points away from 600. Even though it seemed impossible in the beginning, I am glad I started this journey to repair my credit. I have a better outlook on life and now know the importance of having good credit.