Most people need to take out a loan in order to make big purchases such as homes and cars. When you apply for a loan, the loan company usually bases its decision to grant you a loan on your creditworthiness, which is largely based on your credit score. A credit score is based on various factors, including a person's past experience with credit and his or her ability to make payments on time. The better your credit score, the more likely you are to be approved for a loan and get favorable rates. Those with bad credit may find it difficult to get a loan, and in some cases it can even disqualify a person from particular jobs. However, it is possible for people with bad credit scores to repair their credit. FindLaw's Credit Repair section provides information about credit repair and how to go about restoring your creditworthiness. In this section, you can also find articles about the various kinds of credit repair companies and how a credit repair attorney can help you.
Managing Your Credit Score
It's best to properly manage your credit, so that you can hopefully avoid having to repair your credit in the future. Although there are several factors that affect credit score, the two biggest factors are your payment history and the amounts you owe. For this reason, the best way to maintain a good credit score is to make payments on time and reduce the amount you owe.
It's also important to be aware of your credit score. This means that you should review your credit score at least once a year. In fact, you are allowed by law to receive one free credit report each year from the three credit bureaus. Even if you believe you have a good credit score, checking your credit report will ensure that there are no errors that may affect your credit.
Credit Repair Companies
There are companies that offer credit repair services. These companies will perform the same tasks that you would be doing yourself. However, they might have an advantage because of their experience handling credit repair services and their relationship with particular lenders.
If you decide to use a credit repair company, it's important to research the company first. There are certain signs to look for that may indicate a credit repair scam. Insisting on being paid before doing any work, offering to sell you a new Social Security number, failing to explain your legal rights, or advising you to provide false or incomplete information on a credit or loan application are all signs of a possible credit repair scam. Basically, if the fee or services offered by a credit repair company seem to good to be true, it's probably a scam.
Hiring a Credit Repair Attorney
While fixing your credit score doesn't usually require the assistance of an attorney, sometimes it can be a complex and time-consuming endeavor. A credit repair attorney can help you in many ways. The attorney can help you by:
- Reviewing your credit reports in order to evaluate errors and suggest ways to improve your score.
- Contacting and negotiating with credit report agencies to remove negative items from your credit report
- Negotiating settlements with your creditors
- Representing you in court in the event that your creditors sue you
By having a credit repair attorney help fix your credit score or correct an error on your credit report, you can be free to continue living your life and avoid a possibly frustrating experience.