How To Repair Your Credit for Cheap

FT Contributor  | 

Whether you’ve gone through tough financial times or made some mistakes financially, you may be in a situation where you need to repair your credit. Since your credit score is an important factor when it comes to applying for and securing loans, purchasing big ticket items like cars and property, and even applying for apartments and jobs, a poor credit score may have a detrimental effect in many different areas of your life.

Luckily, there are a few steps you can take to boost your credit score and improve your prospects.

While repairing credit takes time and effort, you can do many of the steps for free yourself, including disputing items on your report, sending goodwill letters to creditors, and working to improve your score through on-time payments and responsible borrowing.

However, if you’re overwhelmed by the process or simply don’t have time, you may want to consult with a credit repair service. When looking for ways to improve your credit, be sure to steer clear of scams that promise overnight results or ask you to pay money up front.

Lexington Law

Lexington Law is an online credit repair service that also comes with a handy app, where you can check your credit for FREE. Lexington Law starts by analyzing your score for any errors and negative items. Next, they contact credit bureaus and creditors to attempt to remove or negotiate items that are affecting your score.

The company has three tiers for credit repair services: Concord Standard, Concord Premium, and PremierPlus. Prices range from $89.85 to $129.95 depending on which tier you select. Lexington Law is a unique customer favorite because they have experienced lawyers and paralegals on staff that work to protect consumers’ credit rights. They ensure that their clients have fair and accurate credit reports.

CreditRepair.com

CreditRepair.com is a popular service used for repairing credit. They provide a three-step plan for checking, challenging, and changing your credit report. They also have several different tiers of services: basic service, which is ideal for customers with only a few negative items on their report; moderate service, which is recommended for customers with a medium amount of negative items; and aggressive, which is recommended for customers with many negative items on their report.

CreditRepair.com has a flat fee of $99.95 per month, plus a one-time service charge of $14.99. Other perks of their credit repair services include a personal online dashboard and a monthly online credit score analysis along with updated credit reports.

While CreditRepair.com can help you to understand and analyze your report, challenge any errors that it may contain, and provide helpful updates about the status of your credit, a large part of the credit repair process will still fall on your shoulders. This includes making on-time bill payments, paying down debt, and borrowing responsibly.

CreditZO.com

CreditZO.com is another online service for boosting your credit score and repairing bad credit. They have a cute robot mascot named ZO who pledges to work on your behalf to raise your score. CreditZO.com has no hidden fees, and doesn’t charge for their credit repair services. However, you may have to pay a one-time fee of $10 to $13 so that the company can pull your credit report from the three main credit bureaus.

In addition to sending out letters to creditors and credit bureaus concerning negative items on your report, CreditZO.com may also provide tips and tricks on how to increase your credit score and match you with loans and credit cards that fit your financial situation.

The Credit Pros

The Credit Pros works to boost your credit through the power of artificial intelligence. Their credit repair services include easy-to-read credit reports, educational resources, credit monitoring, and more. You’ll come up with a one-on-one action plan with a certified professional, and then the company will go to work boosting your score, including sending cease and desist and goodwill letters to creditors.

The Credit Pros has pretty wide-ranging fees depending on how many services you need — it only costs $19 per month for their credit monitoring package, while their most comprehensive Success Package is $149 a month. Which plan you choose to go with will depend on how many services you need and your budget.

Credit America

CreditAmericaInc.com is another credit repair company that can help borrowers with poor credit boost their scores. This company uses an “E-Vanish system” that attempts to dispute negative items on your credit report. While credit bureaus will only remove negative items that contain errors, this may still help raise your score if you have any mistakes on your report. They charge a flat fee starting at $300 per month.

Avoid Credit Repair Scams

If you’re looking to repair your credit, you should be sure to steer clear of predatory credit repair scams when using third-party services. Avoid companies that require payment in advance or that promise overnight returns when it comes to credit repair. In reality, the credit repair process takes time and effort before you see any effect.


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