How To Increase Your Credit Score

Updated December 10, 2014

It is a lot of hard work to raise your score. It requires a lot of time and patience unfortunately. That said, there are always a few quick ways to get an initial pop in your score.

1. First, know your score.
2. After you have your full credit report, fully review your personal information (name, address, etc...) Anything that is not 100% true or correct needs to be disputed. Incorrect names, invalid addresses, etc...
3. If the CRA removed any of your disputed personal items then you can immediately and easily dispute any negative credit item that was related to a removed name or address.
4. Review your Hard Inquiries - go to the Sample Letters and dispute the hard inquiries.
5. Review any Collections listed on your credit report and disput them if you can
6. Pay down all of your credit card balances to zero or as much as you can. Once these are paid down, dispute the credit card balance with the CRA if you don't want to wait a full month to see an increase in your credit score.
7. Get a credit card . Make a small purchase with the card once you get it and immediately pay the card to 0 balance.
8. Only apply for one credit card and make sure it's a card that would likely be approved for your level of credit. 9. STOP applying for credit! The more inquiries into your credit, the lower your score goes.

Utilizing these steps will nearly always yield up to a 100 point increase in your credit score depending on your other circumstances obviously.

How I Raised My Credit Score

1. First, I got all of my scores. This costs some money, but it's a must. You have to know where you are in order to get somewhere. Also, you must have your credit report with the credit report number in hand in order to call the CRA and dispute anything over the phone.
   a. MyFICO
   b. Credit Report
   c. Equifax

2. I reviewed the Personal Information section of the report and found there were several variations of my name that incorrect. For example, there were a few instances of my full name but my middle name was incorrect or they have my middle name where my first name was supposed to be. I disputed all of these and they were all removed. I called Experian and got these removed while on the phone with a live person.

3. Also, in the personal section I found a few addresses that weren't actual residences - one of them was a box at a UPS Store that obviously wasn't where I lived. I disputed it and it was also removed.

4. With my printed credit reports in hand, I looked for any negative items that had a name or adddress that was just removed listed with the account. I then went to the online dispute area for the CRA and disputed those accounts. They were removed within a few days.

5. Next, I went after the hard inquiries. I should mention also that during the past few years I have not requested credit whatsoever, with the only exception being the credit card I mention in this article. I sent Sample Hard Inquiry Letter to the creditor (not the CRA) for each one of these. Some of the creditors move the hard inquiry to a soft inquiry or deleted it altogether. The others simply fell of as time passed. They only stay on there for two years and do actually put a big dent in your overall score - just one takes points away from you.

6. I had one collection item on all three of my reports. It was for a small medical bill that was honestly something I did not remember. I sent Remove a Medical Collection Item Letter to the collection agency via certified mail. They replied with a letter after about three weeks stating that they were removing the item on all three of my credit reports! Sure enough after a week it was gone on all three reports!

7. I got a credit card. I made a small purchase or two per month and then always paid the balance to keep a zero balance.

My Credit Score rose to a range of 650-740 across the three Credit Bureaus over the course of one year with most of that gain in the first three months and will continue to rise!