This step is crucial! – all credit information is reported by banks and the like to credit bureaus, who in turn hold the key to credit repair.
Most people never consider obtaining their credit reports until they are attempting credit repair, but it’s always a good idea.
In most cases there should be no charge to receive a copy of your credit report – you simply have to request it (usually in writing and accompanied by photocopied ID). When you are turned down for a credit card or loan, the company must state which credit bureau reported you as having bad credit, and you can then request a report from this bureau.
Credit repair begins by taking a detailed look at your credit report. Look for any inaccuracies – in some cases there can be mistakes on your file, or your credit information can get confused with someone else with the same name. Many people are surprised how often a company reports a missed payment by mistake.
If you find any inaccuracies, you can have your credit repaired by requesting, in writing, that the credit bureau investigate the disputed items. If you have any supporting documentation, include it, otherwise simply state where the confusion is and request that it’s looked into.
This benefits you in two ways: first, if the credit bureau can not verify the information you are disputing, by default it must be removed from your file; second, if the bureau doesn’t respond to your request for an investigation within 30 days, the information in dispute must be removed.
If it turns out that your bad credit is the result of a mistake, going to the credit bureau is usually all you need to do for credit repair.
Keep in mind when requesting your credit report that many credit bureaus will make the process seem more difficult than it is, as in terms of man hours it is not in their interests to be responding to many credit report requests.
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