Monday, February 19, 2018

3 Simple Steps To Improve Your Credit Rating

Welcome to Money Tips Daily.

3 Simple Steps to Build Up and Improve Your Credit Rating.

We've looked at how to check your credit rating, but what to you do if you want to improve or build up your rating or if you have discovered that you have adverse credit registered against you?

There are different strategies for people who have a bad credit history, for instance if you have a County Court Judgment (CCJ) of a Default registered against you, and those who have virtually no credit rating at all.

For those of you who want to build or rebuild your rating, here are three simple steps:

1.      Get a credit card if you can or apply for ‘rebuild your credit’ credit card if you already have a poor credit history. Search for card providers which offer credit to people with an adverse credit history. The interest rate could be as high as 40% so make sure you pay them off quickly.
2.      Pay off your card balance in full each month. This shows a record of handling your finances and you will usually find that card companies will offer to increase your limit. Also, drawing cash on your card is not only expensive, but also demonstrates poor money management skills.
3.      Register yourself on the voters list, assuming you are eligible to vote, or write to the credit referencing agencies with proof of address so they can note your residence. This will show lenders that you are registered at a UK address. Lenders also like to see stability, so the more addresses you’ve had in a short period of time, the stable you are going to look to lenders. This can also apply to how long you have held your current account with your bank, so don’t go switching your account every six months just to get a free offer!

If you have a CCJ or a Default you should take steps to mitigate the pain. For instance, you can apply to have CCJ’s ‘set aside’ if it was registered in your absence or at a previous address. 

You can also ask credit referencing agencies to add a note to your file where there are mitigating circumstances, e.g. “the goods we ordered never arrived so we refused to pay to £50 bill”. With hindsight, it would have been better to pay the bill and dispute it after to avoid wrecking your credit history for six years.

The golden rule is never ignore a court or bailiff letter, debt recovery notice, default or pre-action notice or any letters relating to debts, no matter how painful they are to read. Sitting there looking at a pile of unopened red letters is only going to make matters worse.

As mentioned yesterday, avoid being late with payments and use direct debits to pay bills and card payments.

See also: 

How To Check Your Credit Rating

How to Make Money Online Without a Website or Inventing Your Own Product

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