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It's Never Too Late to Improve Credit Scores
By Linda Ferrari
President, Credit Resource Corp.
There are many benefits to cleaning up damaged credit scores, even if you already own a home. By improving your credit score, you could save money on items such as car insurance, automobile loans, or any other type of loan. This is especially true when it comes to refinancing a home loan, because higher credit scores will always work in your favor. The goal is to secure the best interest rate available and save money. It's that simple.
If you've ever had credit issues in the past but still managed to qualify for a home loan, it's likely that you took on a loan with a higher interest rate because of your low credit scores. But if you feel as though you're stuck in a "sub-prime" loan, you shouldn't give up the battle.
Here are some basic rules you can follow to evaluate credit scores and initiate the cleanup process.
1. Order Your Credit Reports & Scores.
You can pull all three credit reports and scores for $1.00 at www.privacyguard.com.
Under the law, you are entitled to receive a free copy of your credit report from all three credit bureaus each year when you order it from Annual Credit Report Request Service. To order, visit www.annualcreditreport.com, call toll-free 877-322-8228, or complete the Annual Credit Report Request Form and mail it to:
Annual Credit Report Request Service
You will have to pay an additional fee for the credit score from each bureau.
2. Verify the data being reported.
3. Dispute inaccurately reported information immediately.
Remember to only send letters to the bureau(s) that are reporting the inaccurate information. If you send letters to one of the three bureaus that is NOT reporting the inaccurate information, you run the risk of having the derogatory information added to that bureau report. Be sure to include proof of current address, proof of social security number, and send all correspondence via certified mail.
4. Start improving what you can as soon as possible.
If the credit challenges are too much
Credit Resource Corp. is a consulting firm that primarily works with consumers who are in the process of purchasing a new home or refinancing their existing loan. If you decide this is the path you wish to pursue, ask your mortgage professional to forward CRC a copy of your current credit report. We will then give you a free credit consultation.
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