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New Visitor
Posts: 2
Registered: ‎11-27-2013
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Trying to figure out how to improve my credit score

Good Morning,

 

I stumbled upon this group and have spent over an hour reading the posts.  This is a great site, and has come at a great time.  I am getting married and as an exercise we pulled our credit.  His is impeccable.  Mine, not so much.  I dont owe a lot of money (outside of the 65k in student loans which I have now been paying on time, and 18k in car loan which hasnt been late ever in the year I have owned the car), maybe 2k or less.  I dont have credit cards, but I have a lot of old stuff on my credit report.  Things like old student loans that got sold to another lender, and I had some late payments on.  So for example, the same student loan is reported on there 4 times with 4 different companies and all show my deliquencies.  Multiply that by 15 different student loans, and it starts to look very messy.  In addition to that there are a few things here and there that I paid late or got charged off years ago.  I recently paid off 3 different items that showed in collections (old things that I wasnt aware of), and have about 3 more to pay off.  Where do I even begin with improving my credit score?  My current score shows as 523.  UUGH!  Where should I start?

Valued Contributor
Posts: 2,857
Registered: ‎06-08-2012
0

Re: Trying to figure out how to improve my credit score

[ Edited ]

You picked the right website to start your journey back to a positive credit score.  Last June I was around 540's on my scores and now I'm 680-720's.   We are going to need more info on your baddies.  But generally here is what I would do:

 

1. Pay all current obligations on time for the amount that is due.  If credit card, try to always pay more than min. due.

 

2. Keep reading and posting on this site as there is a tremendous amount of info here and people are very helpful.  Read the stickies here for common abbreviations and general credit info.

 

3. Where did you pull your credit reports from and where did you get your score from?  There are FAKO and true FICO scores.  You want to get your FICO scores and you should had pulled your credit reports from the Free Annual Credit Report website.  This will let us know what you are dealing with and it gives important information like DOFD, contact information for creditor, etc.

 

4. For the 3 recent paid collections, you already paid them so you cant PFD but I would contact them by phone and send a letter requesting a GW removal from your CR's.  Are these collections medical in nature or just ordinary bills?  Look up the names of the CA's here and see how other people have been successful in getting things removed.

 

4a. Read up on PFD and if the old collections are valid, negotiate PFD with those unpaid collections.

 

5. Charge Offs - Contact the lenders and see if you can PFD on them.  If not, I would pay them and then ask for GW deletion.

 

6. Get a secured credit card - popular ones are Cap1, Bank of America, and NFCU/USAA (if you can join those credit unions). 

 

7. Since you do not have any open credit cards reporting your current UTIL is at 100% (maybe higher with CO and CA's).  This is killing your score.  Prior to getting your own secured credit card, you said that your soon to be husband has impeccable credit.  I would ask him to put you on as an Authorized User (AU) on his oldest credit card that has a high credit limit, low utilization and perfect payment history.  Tell him you dont need to have the actual card just to have him list you as an AU on the account.  This will help your AAoA, UTIL and payment history.

 

8. We need particular information on your other baddies.  Which lenders have are reporting your current and old student loans? What are the exact baddies (30/60/90 day lates, etc)? How old are the lates? Are you current with your student loans? Are you eligible for rehabilitation program?

 

9. Be patient - It took a whileto mess up your credit and it can take some time to repair it.  You will get there but it will take a change in your past credit behaviors.  Ive made the changes and I know you can too.

 

(Edited to remove large text block)



Starting Score: EQ 551 TU 548 CK 607on 6/8/12, EX 542(AMEX pull 3/4/12)
Current Score: EQ 710 TU 727 EX 704 CK 719(FAKO-EX 697, EQ 697, TU 697)
Goal Score: 750

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New Visitor
Posts: 2
Registered: ‎11-27-2013
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Re: Trying to figure out how to improve my credit score

WOW!!!  Thank you so much for all this great advice.  I really appreciate it!  Ill go through number by number and respond.

 

1. Pay all current obligations on time for the amount that is due.  If credit card, try to always pay more than min. due.  - This is something I am doing now (and it is even easier because my fiance handles all the finanances now - WOOHOO). 

 

2. Keep reading and posting on this site as there is a tremendous amount of info here and people are very helpful.  Read the stickies here for common abbreviations and general credit info. - Yes, I need to get the abbreviations down.  Smiley Happy 

 

3. Where did you pull your credit reports from and where did you get your score from?  There are FAKO and true FICO scores.  You want to get your FICO scores and you should had pulled your credit reports from the Free Annual Credit Report website.  This will let us know what you are dealing with and it gives important information like DOFD, contact information for creditor, etc. - I pulled my report and scores from FreeCreditReport.Com (which wasnt free BTW).  I have pulled my reports (and printed a hard copy) from AnnualCreditReport.Com about a month ago as well.

 

4. For the 3 recent paid collections, you already paid them so you cant PFD but I would contact them by phone and send a letter requesting a GW removal from your CR's.  Are these collections medical in nature or just ordinary bills?  Look up the names of the CA's here and see how other people have been successful in getting things removed. - One of the 3 told me that they would remove it from my report (it was a medical bill I was unaware of).  The other 2 are still showing, so I will send a letter requesting a GW removal.  Is there a template for what this letter should say?  I didnt know I could do this, but that would be great!!

 

4a. Read up on PFD and if the old collections are valid, negotiate PFD with those unpaid collections. - PFD?  Pay for Deletion?  One is with Verizon.  I honestly thought this was paid, but I could be wrong, and do not have any proof, so I can take this course of action.  Another is a gym here, but they were direct debiting my card, and I cancelled them (once my 1 year contract was up), so I am not sure where this $285 charge came from.  The third is Capital One, and I talked to them yesterday and set up a $50 month payment plan.  I will obviously pay more, but figured if I ever get in a bind, $50 is always affordable.  The last one is an old HSBC card, that I SWEAR I settled in full, but I have gone around and around withe the company, so I am probably going to have to pay it. 

 

5. Charge Offs - Contact the lenders and see if you can PFD on them.  If not, I would pay them and then ask for GW deletion. - I will do this. 

 

6. Get a secured credit card - popular ones are Cap1, Bank of America, and NFCU/USAA (if you can join those credit unions). - Is this the credit card where you deposit xx dollars on it, and that is what you have available?

 

7. Since you do not have any open credit cards reporting your current UTIL is at 100% (maybe higher with CO and CA's).  This is killing your score.  Prior to getting your own secured credit card, you said that your soon to be husband has impeccable credit.  I would ask him to put you on as an Authorized User (AU) on his oldest credit card that has a high credit limit, low utilization and perfect payment history.  Tell him you dont need to have the actual card just to have him list you as an AU on the account.  This will help your AAoA, UTIL and payment history. - If he does this, will it affect his credit??

 

8. We need particular information on your other baddies.  Which lenders have are reporting your current and old student loans? What are the exact baddies (30/60/90 day lates, etc)? How old are the lates? Are you current with your student loans? Are you eligible for rehabilitation program? - Wells Fargo Loan Originations (all these show "Claim filed with government") - I already did a rehabilitation on these (9) loans.  US Dept of Ed - Show Transferred/Closed, and SLSC/EFS (these show late even though I got a deferrment).  I am now current with all my student loans for the past 6 months or so. 

 

9. Be patient - It took a whileto mess up your credit and it can take some time to repair it.  You will get there but it will take a change in your past credit behaviors.  Ive made the changes and I know you can too. - Yes, and I am sure its going to take a lot of work...which is why I havent done it thus far, but am willing to do the work to get this done.  Smiley Happy 

 

Again, I want to thank you so very much for your reply and any information you can get me.  Smiley Happy

 

Valued Contributor
Posts: 2,857
Registered: ‎06-08-2012
0

Re: Trying to figure out how to improve my credit score

4. Search the rebuilding forum here. There are example letters.

4a. Verizon is a tuff nut. I've Ben fighting with them for 18 months.

6. Generally. Some like cap1 may also extend you some unsecured credit with your deposit.

7. Nope. Will not hurt his at all. As long as he keeps the card and you don't run up his utilization.

Hope this helps. Happy Turkey Day


Starting Score: EQ 551 TU 548 CK 607on 6/8/12, EX 542(AMEX pull 3/4/12)
Current Score: EQ 710 TU 727 EX 704 CK 719(FAKO-EX 697, EQ 697, TU 697)
Goal Score: 750

Take the FICO Fitness Challenge
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