Why the 5 Steps?
These 5 steps are important because they will teach you not only to calculate your credit score, but to actually control it. You can always refer back to these steps in order to keep your credit profile fresh and accurate.
Remember, addressing just one area may provide improvement, but it will only be for a short period of time. Learn each of these 5 steps and you will find your credit profile improving and gaining strength and soon, over a period of time, you will see a major improvement as well as long term stability.
The order of the steps is important as well, since each step builds on the previous one. You will more than likely find that some of the steps will not hold as much weight for you as others, but this is expected. If you find difficulty in completing any of the 5 steps, just contact us. We are always happy to help!
If you missed the first 2 steps to credit success, check them out here. Now on to the final 3 steps of The 5 Steps to Credit Success…
Step 3: Dispute
Your third step is to dispute the identified inaccuracies from Step 1. Before you dispute inaccuracies however, determine if there was the possibility of identity theft. If there is the possibility of identity theft, that issue must preclude any attempts to dispute other entries.
An identity theft issue involves getting a police report. With the police report in hand, you can now effectively stop abuse of your personal information. Simply forward the report to the bureaus indicating you are a victim of identity theft and wish to have the derogatory entries removed from your credit profile. Keep a record of everything.
If the need is still there, you may now wish to dispute the other inaccuracies that are not related to any theft issues. Note: the dispute process can be long and tedious, and due to the nature of the industry, can be very frustrating as well. We use our legal department (free to our clients) to force the collection agencies, credit bureaus, and creditors to abide by the law as defined by the FDCPA. Often this will result in not only the deletion of the negative entry, but could mean a cash award for you as well!
Step 4: Settle
The fourth step to credit success is to settle outstanding derogatory debt. After the dismissal of any identity theft issues and the removal or correction of any inaccurate or unverifiable entries, if there are still unpaid debts showing up on your credit profile, you may wish to settle the account. This will involve speaking with the creditors to see if you can reach an agreed upon amount to pay the debt.
This step is often overlooked but must be considered as part of your endeavors. It is also very important that you pay the debt that is owed if you are in a position to do so. Here’s a caution: once the settlement amount has been agreed to, never send any money unless the collector has also agreed to remove the derogatory entry for your credit profile. This MUST be done in writing! If you need help with this, please let us know.
When we perform this step for our clients, we always turn to our legal department first to determine whether or not the collector has abided by all the laws governing the collection process and also have the right to collect debt from the client. If we determine that a law has been violated, instead of settling the account and giving them money, we will sue the collector on behalf of our client which will result in not only the deletion of that account, but could also mean a cash award for client as well! This service comes at no cost to our clients.
Step 5: Realize Your Objective
Congratulations! You have made great strides! Now with new credit lines in place, all the derogatory remarks off your credit profile, and possibly new found money from our legal department’s effort, you are on your way! Was your objective home ownership? Purchase an automobile at a low interest rate? Whatever your goals, your hard work has now put all your financial affairs in order, so move forward and make your dreams come true!