For those of you who are trying to shore up your credit score, here are ten tops for improving your credit score, courtesy of the Washington State Department of Financial Institutions. Most of this is pretty standard stuff, but it’s still worth keeping in mind.
- Pay your bills on time
- If you missed a payment, get current and stay current
- Be aware that paying off a collection account or closing an account on which you previously missed a payment, will not remove it from your credit report
- If you are having difficulty making payments, contact your creditor or see a credit counselor
- Keep balances low on credit cards and other “revolving credit”
- Pay off debt rather than moving it around
- Don’t close unused credit cards as a short term strategy
- Avoid credit repair agencies that charge a fee to improve your credit score by removing negative, but accurate information from your credit report
- If you have been managing credit for a short time, don’t open a lot of new accounts too rapidly
Like I said, pretty standard stuff, but a good reminder just the same. If you’re not sure where you stand, remember that you can get a free credit score from MyFICO.