DIY Or Hiring A Credit Repair Agency
Having the words bad and credit score in the same line is like having a nightmare. No one dreams of having a bad credit score, not only it has negative effect on your ability to borrow money, it can also affect your ability to buy a house, get a job, lose money on high interest rates and insurance premiums, and even affect your personal relationships.
Good thing is, you can improve your bad credit, either Doing-It-Yourself or hiring a credit repair agency. Credit repair agencies work to get your credit history cleaned up and dispute any inaccurate information on your report, which is something you can also do on your own.
The first thing you need to do is carefully check your credit report and make sure that it doesn’t have errors. If you found errors on your report try fixing it yourself before hiring a credit repair agency. By contacting the credit bureaus and disputing the errors you will be able to improve your credit rating. Surely it would take time and persistent, but your efforts will pay off. Many people have been able to repair their credit without hiring a credit repair agency.
If you decide hiring a credit repair agency or a law firm to fix your bad credit is better in your situation, make sure it’s a reputable company. While there are reputable credit repair agencies out there, there are also credit repair agencies who only think of exploiting their customer’s financial predicaments.
What Do Credit Repair Agencies Do
Primarily, credit repair agencies or law firms remove errors from your credit reports. Keep in mind though, that no credit repair agency can remove anything that’s bringing down your score if it’s accurate information.
If you have errors on your report, the credit repair agency can remove these errors and eventually raise your score. They may even negotiate settlements, reduced your debts, negotiate flexible repayments with your creditors on your behalf. Reputable credit repair agencies know how to navigate the rules and how to approach your credit issues so they can work to improve your credit rating.
How To Spot a Scam
Be wary of any credit repair agency that promises to fix your bad credit in no time. A 100-point jump overnight is just too good to be true. There are many red flags to watch out for when looking for a credit repair service. Knowing these red flags will help you steer away from unscrupulous business owners who only wants to gain but do not provide results.
Credit repair agencies cannot legally:
- Ask you money before they perform services.
- Perform services without giving you a written contract detailing the services they’ll perform. The contract must include: the amount you’ll be required to pay for the services, services included, how long it will take to see results, a form to provide notice of cancellation, no waiver stating you are waiving your rights under Credit Repair Organizations Act.
- Charge you for canceling a contract within the three day period. Any contract you sign can be revoked in three days.
- Misrepresent the services they will provide to you.
- Make any changes in your identity, i.e. changing your social security number or employer identification number that would prevent a valid search from being conducted.
- Make false statements about you or your credit history or induce you to make false statement on your credit.
- Remove accurate negative information on your report.
Be sure to fully research any credit repair agency or law firm before you agree to let them handle your case. A good credit repair agency should inform you that you have the right to obtain a free credit report from all three Credit Rating Agencies each year and that you can dispute information without their help. A good credit repair agency knows what they can and can’t do for you and they should be transparent about this so you fully understand what you’re getting.