7 Tips to repair your credit score

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Maintaining a healthy and high credit rating is something you should never underestimate. This is indeed the means that bankers prefer to know if they can lend you money , and if so, at what interest rate . Sure, that’s easy to say, but harder to do. Simply failing to pay ONE bill on time (regardless of the amount!) and your credit rating plummets a hundred points in ONE DAY, when it took you months or even years to build yourself a good credit reputation! I speak from experience, it happened to me just this year! I will tell you all about it later in my article.

Well, no need to panic either. The good news in all of this is that even when the damage is done, it is quite possible to repair your credit rating in a relatively short period of time . After all, we are the masters of our destiny (at least I would like to believe that) and we have control over the factors that influence our credit rating . So we have the power to improve our situation. On the other hand, no miracle either, it is not done without effort. When I say “relatively short”: it really all depends on the state of your current score, if it is really badly off, if you really have a lot of debt, if you went bankrupt and when, etc… usually it takes a year or more.

In fact, you must be able to prove to a future lender that you can show sustained diligence in reimbursing your expenses and your debts (if you have any).

KNOW YOUR CREDIT SCORE

The very first thing to do before thinking about improving your credit rating is to check how high it is. Nothing can be done without first taking stock of the situation that concerns you.

You can get your credit report for free from the two largest credit reporting agencies in the country, Equifax Canada and TransUnion Canada . You just have to send them some basic information and wait two to three weeks for your report to arrive in the mail. Note however, you will only receive the report and not the score itself , but it will still give you an excellent idea of ​​the points you need to improve to rectify the situation.

If you’re not the patient type, you can also immediately access your file and score online for Equifax Canada and TransUnion Canada for a fee . And yes, everything is paid for and everything is sold these days… I will tell you right away that this is no longer the solution I would recommend. It was a while ago but there has been a lot of progress in terms of access to your credit report, so why pay for a service that you can now get for free ? It’s still possible, so that’s why I’m offering this option, but it’s up to you to decide if you want to use it.

HERE ARE THE FREE OPTIONS THAT I RECOMMEND TO KNOW YOUR CREDIT SCORE

If you’re a Royal Bank customer, like me, you can access your credit report AND your TransUnion Canada credit score for free through your personal online bank account ! Not only that, but you can also simulate a situation such as a breach for example, and see in real time the impact it would have on your score ! It’s really a great advantage to be able to access your file in this way. This Is How I Realized My Credit Score Dropped 110 Pointsbecause of an error from Koodo, with whom I had opened an account for a month, before returning to Fido. Thanks to this service, I was able to contact Koodo and have the situation rectified quickly. It was settled in two weeks and I was able to verify online without difficulty that what I was assured was true. I’m like that, I only believe what I see and it has served me well so far.

If you are not a Royal Bank customer there are also other sites that now offer to check your credit score for free online . On the other hand, they try to pay themselves in another way, that is to say by recommending financial products based on the result you have obtained. The site I tested is Borrowell.com and it has the Equifax report. Note, this is an English-only site. To register you must provide full details, including your social insurance number, but this is a secure site and it is trusted. There is also credit karma which is well known but I haven’t tried it. Its direct advantage over Borrowell is that it offers a French version.

It is no longer necessary these days to pay, nor to wait! to access their credit score. You are free to choose this option but otherwise keep (and invest) your money😉

Once you know what your credit rating is, it’s time to think about the most effective ways to improve it . Know that whichever method you choose to get your score, you’ll also get insight into the factors that affect your results the most . This information will help you understand what changes you can make to improve your score. Of course it will take time for the changes you make to be reported by your creditors and then reflected in your credit rating, but the key is to get started!

IMPROVE YOUR CREDIT SCORE

Now let’s move on to the different ways that you can put in place to improve your credit score as quickly as possible.

In very brief, most scoring models consider the following factors to assess your credit score. I also provide you in brackets with the degree of importance of each factor:

Your payment history on loans and credit cards (35%)

The amount of revolving credit you use regularly compared to your available credit (30%)

Your credit history (15%),

Public data that exists in your name (10%)

How often you request new credits (10%)

As you can see, some factors are more important than others. Among the most important are your payment history and your credit utilization rate, the first two in the list . Together, they make up more than two-thirds of a credit score , or about 65%, which means they have a huge influence . It is therefore necessary to focus on these two factors first if you want to obtain convincing results quickly. Here’s how we go about it:

1. CORRECT ERRORS IN YOUR CREDIT REPORT

Check your credit reports with the two Canadian credit bureaus, namely Equifax and TransUnion, to ensure the accuracy of the information contained therein at least once a year. Incorrect information on your credit reports could cause your score to drop, and I can confirm this from having experienced it. If you see any errors, dispute the information and correct it immediately .

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