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You really try to be responsible with your money.
But, no matter what you do, your credit score never seems to make it over that 700 hump.
That score is important. The better your score, the better deal you’ll get on a mortgage or a car loan or credit card. Even if you’re not buying a house anytime soon, bad credit means you’ll get mugged for a high security deposit whenever you rent a car or move into a new apartment.
Yup — you’ve got some algorithm spitting out a three-digit number that’s basically controlling your entire life. We get it: It’s frustrating.
Don’t give up just yet, though! These five moves just might be the kickstart you need to finally get your credit score moving in the right direction.
Best of all? You can do all these things by the end of this week.
1. Write a Love Letter
…to your creditors.
If you generally have a pretty solid credit history, save for a few missteps, then sending a well-executed goodwill letter to those you owe could help get you back in good graces with them and improve your credit score.
You’ll want your letter to cover the following bases:
- Explain why and how long you’ve been a loyal customer of the creditor.
- Take responsibility for the mistakes that led to the blemishes on your credit history.
- Describe the steps you’re taking to ensure these mistakes don’t happen again.
- Keep your letter clear and to the point.
Don’t forget to include important information, like your account number and the date and amount of the missed payment you want removed from your credit history. Once you’ve written your goodwill letter, send it to the right address by using the information on the creditor’s website.
2. Let This Site Help You Improve Your Credit
Your credit score is like your financial fingerprint. Everyone’s is different and for different reasons. One person’s credit score might be under 700 because they have an error on their report. Another person’s credit score might be under 700 because they have a bill in collections.
That means everyone’s strategy to improve their credit score will look different… but how in the world are you supposed to know where to start?
Thankfully, a free website called Credit Sesame will take a look at your credit report and let you know exactly what you need to do to improve your score.
Take people like Salome Buitureria, a working mom in Louisiana who, in using Credit Sesame, found a major error on her report. The site helped her fix the mistake and take additional steps to raise her credit score nearly 200 points.
Want Credit Sesame to show you exactly how to finally get your score over that 700 hump? It takes 90 seconds to sign up and get started.
3. Have This Website Pay Your Credit Card Bill This Month
No, like… the whole bill. All of it.
Chances are, your credit card company is ripping you off with insane rates, and it’s getting rich off of you. But there are other, nicer companies that’ll help you out, including a website called Fiona.
Here’s how it works: If you have a credit score of at least 620, Fiona will help match you with a low-interest loan (up to $100,000) you can use to pay off every credit card balance you have. The benefit? You’re left with just one bill to pay every month, and because the interest rate is so much lower, you can get out of debt so much faster. Plus, no credit card payment this month.
Fiona won’t make you stand in line or call a bank. And if you’re worried you won’t qualify, it’s free to check online. It takes just two minutes, and it could save you thousands of dollars. Totally worth it.
Now you can finally start effectively chipping away at your debt — and watch your credit score reap the benefits.
4. Let This Company Handle The Complicated Stuff
Now it’s time to take a look at everything you haven’t been able to address in the first three steps. And you might need to call in reinforcements for this one — especially if debt collectors are involved.
If you’ve been getting phone calls and mail from debt collectors, look into Collection Shield 360, a free service that helps people clean up their credit reports and deal with collection agencies. It will contact your debt collectors on your behalf and negotiate to get marks on your credit report removed, plus other steps to improving your credit.
It helped 31-year-old server Tabatha Pankop deal with lingering bills from T-Mobile, Bright House Networks and Verizon. Her credit score jumped up nearly 200 points in just a few months. See how much it can help you improve your credit here.
5. Switch Car Insurers
When you’re trying to raise your credit score, paying off debt is one of the most impactful things you can do. It might feel like you've already cut every enjoyable thing out of your budget, but the truth is, one of the simplest expenses you can cut is car insurance.
If you really want to get the best price on car insurance, experts say you should be shopping twice a year. OK, we can hear you laughing from here. You’re thinking, who has time to do all that?
But seriously, insurance companies take a lot of factors into consideration, and they change all the time. Ipso facto — you’re paying too much.
Thankfully, a free app called Root will cut the need to shop at all. It will reduce your rates by up to 52% — and give you the same coverage.
We talked to Amanda Collins, 27, who, along with her husband, used Root to cut their insurance bill by $2,352 a year — or $196 a month.
It takes just two minutes to download the Root Insurance app and get started.
Root Insurance is available in Arizona, Arkansas, Delaware, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maryland, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, New Mexico, Nebraska, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Texas and Utah.
Now you’ve got five tactics you can use to get your credit score right where you want it. Good luck — you’ve got this!
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