Depending on your current credit score, there’s a chance that you may be looking to make an improvement sooner rather than later.
But that often leads to a question: what’s the best way to improve your credit score as quickly as possible?
While this varies from one person to the next, there are a few basic steps you should take into consideration.
1. Pay Your Bills On Time
No more late payments. No more missed payments. Do whatever it takes—such as setting reminders on your phone and/or setting up auto-pay—to ensure that this never happens again.
When you pay your bills on time, you avoid red marks on your credit report. As a result, you position yourself for an increase in your credit score.
2. Request a Higher Credit Limit
This is a great idea as long as you’re responsible enough to handle access to a higher amount of credit.
When your credit limit increases and your balance remains the same, your credit utilization rate automatically drops. Subsequently, this often leads to a credit score boost.
This is as simple as contacting your credit card issuer, requesting a higher limit, and seeing what they say. Every little bit helps, so don’t turn down any increase.
Tip: ask your issuer if they can approve a higher limit without a hard credit inquiry, as this can actually lower your score.
3. Dispute Credit Report Errors
This is one area that many consumers continually overlook. They assume that their credit report is accurate, but have no real reason to believe this. And when they finally get around to reviewing it, they find that there’s one or more error.
Don’t let these errors linger, as they could be dragging down your credit score. For example, if you find that your credit card company dinged you for a late payment—but you were never late—request more information and find your records to back up your claim.
4. Stop Spending
It’s a difficult habit to break, but it would be in your best interest to stop spending until you feel better about your ability to responsibly do so.
For instance, if you’ve maxed out your credit card, begin to pay it down as quickly as you can. While you’re doing so, don’t keep spending.
Tip: creating and adhering to a budget will help you avoid overspending, while making more informed financial decisions across the board.
If you follow the tips above, you’ll find it easier to improve your credit score in a timely manner.
As a final note, keep in mind that the lower your score the easier it is to quickly make gains.
And of course, if you’re taking steps to improve your credit score, monitor it closely to ensure that you’re making progress.