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Monday Mailbag 2/11/2019

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How do I check my credit without hurting it?

AnnualCreditReport.com will give you free credit reports but, will not provide you with scores.
[Checking your credit on annualcreditreport.com will NOT impact your credit scores.]

CreditKarma.com will provide you Free Equifax and TransUnion credit reports and credit scores but, the credit scores are completely useless because they are VantageScore v3.0 scores and most lenders use FICO scores. Having said that, Credit Karma is a great place to monitor your credit reports and get alerts when accounts are added/removed from your credit.
[Checking your credit on creditkarma.com will NOT impact your credit scores.]

FreeCreditReport.com will provide you with a free Experian credit report and free monthly monitoring but, will not provide you with any free scores. They will try to sell you a FICO score but, it’s the FICO BankCard Score and only used by credit card companies, not mortgage or auto lenders.

Discover will provide you with a free FICO score but, it will be a FICO credit card (BankCard) score and only from one credit bureau. This score will be different from the FICO scores your mortgage lender or auto lender will get when pulling your credit.
[Checking your credit on discover.com/free-credit-score will NOT impact your credit scores.]

The BEST place to access your credit scores is myFICO.com because you’ll be able to access 28 of the most widely used FICO scores including;

Your FICO Mortgage Scores:
– FICO 8
– FICO 2
– FICO 5
– FICO 4
– FICO 9

Your FICO Auto Scores:
– FICO Auto 8
– FICO Auto 2
– FICO Auto 5
– FICO Auto 4
– FICO Auto 9

Your FICO Credit Card Scores:
– FICO Bankcard 8
– FICO Bankcard 3
– FICO Bankcard 2
– FICO Bankcard 5
– FICO Bankcard 4
– FICO Bankcard 9

There is a fee for these scores but, at least you’ll be able to view the same scores that your lenders will get when they pull your credit reports.

One more thing, checking your credit reports and scores on myFICO.com will not hurt your credit scores. It’s a soft pull and will NOT show up as a hard inquiry in your credit reports.

Ultimately, Credit Karma is a great free way of monitoring your Equifax and TransUnion credit reports for free. Stacked with the free monthly Experian report from FreeCreditReport.com you’ll be able to monitor all 3 of your credit reports for free but, if you’re getting ready to apply for a loan and need to find out your actual FICO scores – you will want to go to myFICO.com and access the same scores that lenders use in 90% of lending decisions.

 

Why Choose CreditFirm.net?

Assurance. Our Credit Repair process was developed by experienced attorneys.

Speed. Documents are typically processed and sent out for investigation within 3-5 days.

Support. Award-winning customer service guarantees your satisfaction.

CreditFirm.net Review

Monday Mailbag 2/4/2019

February 4, 2019 by  
Filed under Credit Repair, Credit Score

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What is the fastest way to repair bad credit?

 

The fastest way of repairing your credit score is;

1. Catch up on your bills

If you have active accounts that are currently reporting as 30, 60, 90, etc… days late with past due balances – catch up on those active accounts and bring them current. No matter how much progress you’re making, your scores will not increase if you have creditors continuing to report new derogatory information in your credit reports month after month.

2. Pay your bills on time

There’s no substitute for paying your bills on time. No matter how well you manage all of the other factors used to calculate your credit scores, your credit scores will remain low as long as you continue making late payments. Pay your bills on time and string together 6 months of perfect payment history with no late payments in order to see a significant increase in your credit scores.

3. Lower your credit utilization

Your credit utilization is about 30% of your credit scores and maxing out your credit cards will hinder your improvement. Paying your credit cards down to a credit utilization of 20% or less will increase your scores very quickly. For example, if the credit limit on your credit card is $1,000 you will want to maintain a balance of no more than $200 on it, which is 20% of $1,000.

4. Establish Credit

If you don’t have any/enough active credit – establish some new credit by opening up a credit card. If you don’t qualify for a regular credit card, apply for a secured credit card.

5. Add an Authorized User Account

If you have a friend or relative who has credit cards with a long length of credit history, a low credit utilization, and a perfect payment history – ask them to add you as an authorized user to their account(s). Once added, the entire payment history from the time the account was opened will be added to your credit reports. This will help to increase your length of credit history, establish a positive revolving account with a good payment history, and may even decrease your overall credit utilization. Most importantly, it will help to increase your credit scores.

6. Limit your inquiries

Inquiries account for approximately 10% of your credit scores so don’t apply too often or you’ll be penalized. Limit yourself to one credit application every 6 months and if you already have way too many inquiries you will want to try to remove as many of them as possible. You can do this by contacting each creditor reporting an inquiry on your credit reports and ask them to verify their permissible purpose (authorization) for pulling your report. If they can verify this information the inquiry will continue to report but, if they can’t – the inquiry will be deleted and this will increase your credit scores.

7. Remove Derogatory Information

If you have accounts reporting derogatory information in your credit reports like late payments, charge-offs, collections, repossessions, foreclosures, etc… – you will want to work on removing it from your credit reports. Utilize the consumer protection statutes within the FDCPA, FCBA, and FCRA laws to remove as much of your past mistakes as possible. Disputing is a great start but, it’s only 10% of the actual credit repair process, so make sure that you also validate any debt reporting in your credit reports, initiate method of verification, goodwill requests, etc… and use the full scope of all of the laws at your disposal.

You can do all of this work yourself or hire a professional credit repair service like CreditFirm.net to file these investigations of your behalf.

Are you ready to get started on your journey toward a better credit score?

 

Why Choose CreditFirm.net?

Assurance. Our Credit Repair process was developed by experienced attorneys.

Speed. Documents are typically processed and sent out for investigation within 3-5 days.

Support. Award-winning customer service guarantees your satisfaction.

CreditFirm.net Review

Monday Mailbag 1/21/2019

January 21, 2019 by  
Filed under Credit Score, Monday Mailbag

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What criteria do lenders use to evaluate risk?

1. Payment History – The repayment history of your previous debt. The more derogatory information in your previous payment history (late payments, collections, charge-offs) the higher the credit risk. If you have a perfect payment history with no derogatory information – you will be considered less of a credit risk, have a higher credit score, and have loans available to you at much better terms.

2. Credit Utilization – The proportion of the amount of credit you have available to you in relation to the amount of credit available to you. Basically, if you have a lot of available credit lenders will consider you a lower risk for default as opposed to someone with very little available credit (i.e. maxed out credit cards) who is considered riskier.

3. Length of Credit History – How long you have had established credit. Someone with a long length of credit history, accounts which have been open and active for 10–20 years, will provide lenders with more data from which to make a lending decision. Someone with a short payment history, accounts of less than 2 years of activity, will not be able to provide much data to lenders on the consumer’s ability to repay a debt.

4. Mix of Credit – The ability to responsibly use both revolving and installment accounts. Lenders want to know that you can responsibly manage and repay both installment (accounts with a set length of term like auto loans, mortgages, student loans) and revolving accounts (credit cards and lines of credit). Having both revolving and installment accounts reporting in your credit reports with no late payments will make you look less risky than someone who only has either installment or revolving accounts.

5. New Credit/Inquiries – Recently opened credit accounts and credit applications. A consumer with many recent credit applications or many new accounts recently opened is a higher credit risk than someone with very few recent applications/new accounts. This is because lenders fear that a consumer who is establishing too much credit at once may be in a bad financial situation and is acquiring new credit off which to live off. Establishing your credit slowly is a much better idea. You don’t want to look desperate for credit.

In Summary, in order to get the best credit score possible and look like a safe as possible to lenders who are evaluating your credit risk, you will want to pay your bills on time, keep a low credit utilization, establish a long length of credit history, maintain a good mix of credit, and build your credit slowly.

And if you have derogatory information in your previous payment history hurting your credit scores you may want to work on removing it from your credit reports or hiring a professional credit repair service like CreditFirm.net to do so on your behalf.

Are you ready to get started on your journey toward a better credit score?

 

Why Choose CreditFirm.net?

Assurance. Our Credit Repair process was developed by experienced attorneys.

Speed. Documents are typically processed and sent out for investigation within 3-5 days.

Support. Award-winning customer service guarantees your satisfaction.

CreditFirm.net Review

How to Improve Your Credit Scores in 2019

2019 plans
If you found 2018 a difficult year for getting approved for credit cards, auto loans, or mortgages, or aren’t getting the best financing terms and rates, then you may want to work on improving your credit scores and make sure that 2019 is a much more prosperous year.

Improving your credit scores can be time-consuming and complicated but, we have a few tips and tricks to simplify and speed up the process for you on your road toward better credit scores.

A bad credit score can cost you hundreds of thousands of dollars over the course of a lifetime and keep you from buying the house or car that you deserve. That is why the process of improving your credit is especially important and worth the investment.

Lots of consumers struggle to increase their credit scores but, with a little knowledge, your credit journey can lead you toward the achievement of your credit goals, allowing you to enjoy everything that comes with having good credit.

 

1. Pay Your Bills On-Time

This goes without saying but, we’ll say it anyway. New late payments and derogatory information in your credit reports will derail your chances at a better credit score.

It’s important to pay your bills on time, every month, and put together a perfect payment history from this day forward. Payment history accounts for approximately 35% of your credit score so, make a commitment to paying all of your bills on time in 2019.

Put together a bill schedule which includes all of your monthly bills to keep yourself on track or set up auto pay or reminders in your calendar.

Do whatever you have to do in order to make sure that you don’t miss even one payment in 2019 and have a perfect payment history going forward.

 

2. Pay Down Your Credit Cards

Approximately 30% of your credit score is aggregated from your active credit utilization. Basically, it’s the percentage of credit that you are using in relation to your total available credit.

If you consider that the average FICO Score ranges from 300 to 850, that means that your credit utilization accounts for approximately 165 points.

Now, if you do a little research, you will find that most companies typically tell consumers to keep their credit utilization below 30%. This means that if the credit limit on your credit card is $1,000 – your balance should be $300 or less. Having said that, FICO doesn’t actually disclose the proper utilization percentage for consumers. They basically only give 2 guidelines; keep your credit card balances as low as possible and don’t carry $0 balances to get the most out of your credit scores.

FICO releases data on what they call “FICO Score High Achievers” every year, these are consumers with FICO Scores of 780 or higher. For 2017, the average credit utilization for a FICO Score High Achiever was 5.8%. ($58 balance for every $1,000 credit limit).

Ultimately, if you can pay your credit cards down to a 30% utilization – great! If you can get it down to 20% – even better! 10% utilization – better yet!

But, work on paying down your credit cards and your credit scores will increase.

 

3. Establish Credit

If you don’t have any active or open credit – you’re missing a huge opportunity to increase your credit scores. Revolving credit (credit cards) is a very important factor in the calculation of your credit scores.

Having an active credit card that you pay on time every month impacts your payment history (35% of your credit score), your credit utilization (30% of your credit score), and your length of credit history (15% of your credit score).

If you’ve had credit issues in the past, a new credit card will help to show future lenders that you have turned over a new leaf and started managing your credit more responsibly. Just pay your card on time, keep a low credit utilization, and don’t close the account, and your credit scores will go up.

If your credit score isn’t high enough to help you qualify for a regular (unsecured) credit card, try applying for a secured credit card.

 

4. Build a Long Length of Credit History

Your length of credit history, in particular, the average age of your open accounts, represents approximately 15% of your overall credit score. Ideally, you want to keep your accounts open for as long as possible and establish a long length of credit.

Constantly opening and closing accounts might seem like a good idea if you keep getting better terms like lower interest rates and higher credit limits but, this process will actually shorten your length of credit history and end up lowering your credit scores.

If your length of credit history is short and the average age of your open accounts is less than 5 years, there’s not much that you can do to increase it quickly. You could have a friend or relative add you as an Authorized User to an old active account with a long credit history but, other than that, the best thing that you can do is establish your credit, keep your oldest accounts open, and refrain from opening up too many new accounts.

 

5. Limit Your Inquiries

Inquiries are a record of your applications for credit and account for approximately 10% of your credit scores. Too many applications within a short period of time will decrease your credit scores.

Limit yourself to no more than 1 inquiry every 6 months to get your scores as high as possible.

If you have too many inquiries reporting on your credit reports right now, you can either wait for them to fall off your reports themselves (inquiries report for 2 years) or work on removing them from your credit reports earlier.

Inquiries fall under the permissible purpose section of the FCRA which state that every creditor reporting an inquiry on your credit report needs to have a permissible purpose (proper authorization) for the inquiry.

You can request that all of the creditors reporting inquiries provide proof of permissible purpose or hire a company like CreditFirm.net to do so on your behalf. If the credit furnisher has the proper authorization, the inquiry will stay, if they can’t verify permissible purpose, the inquiry will be deleted.

 

6. Make Sure Your Credit Reports Are Accurate

According to the FTC (Federal Trade Commission), 79% of credit reports contain errors and 21% or credit reports contain errors significant enough to have a substantial impact on a consumer’s credit score.

This is why it is so important that you check your credit reports from all 3 credit bureaus (Experian, Equifax, and TransUnion) at least once a year.

You can access your credit reports for FREE from annualcreditreport.com or via credit monitoring sites like Credit Karma.

Once you have your credit reports, go through them, account by account, to make sure that everything in your credit reports is 100% accurate.

Make sure that you keep an eye out for any addresses, phone numbers, accounts, or inquiries that you do not recognize – they may be a sign of a merged credit file or identity theft.

If you find any suspicious information in your credit reports make sure that you address those issues and work on removing them from your credit or hire a professional credit repair service to handle the removal of the inaccurate information on your behalf.

 

7. Work On Removing Negative Info From Your Reports

If you have any derogatory information reporting in your credit reports such as late payments, collections, charge-offs, repossessions, etc… you will want to work on removing them from your credit reports by leveraging consumer protection laws such as the FCRA, FCBA, FDCPA, etc….

Investigate and challenge the derogatory information with the credit bureaus, validate any debt reporting in collection, complete method of verification requests for any information verified by the credit bureaus, contact each creditor reporting the negative info directly and request goodwill removals of the derogatory info, conduct permissible purpose verification on the inquiries as stated above. Use every tool alotted to you by consumer protection laws and remove as much derogatory information as you can.

You can perform all of this work yourself but, make sure that you understand that the process takes time and can be quite time-consuming. You have to be organized, diligent, and stay on top of everything.

You can also choose to hire a professional credit repair service like CreditFirm.net to handle all of the work on your behalf, to work on removing the derogatory information and advise you on the best way to manage your credit to get the most out of your credit scores.

NOTE: If your credit score is holding you back from achieving your dreams, CreditFirm.net is here to help improve your scores and achieve your personal and financial goals.

 

Why Choose CreditFirm.net?

Assurance. Our Credit Repair process was developed by experienced attorneys.

Speed. Documents are typically processed and sent out for investigation within 3-5 days.

Support. Award winning customer service guarantees your satisfaction.

CreditFirm.net Review

Monday Mailbag 01/14/2019

January 14, 2019 by  
Filed under Blogs, Credit Repair, Monday Mailbag

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Question:
How do I know that you guys are being as aggressive as you should because you’re a business and I don’t want to keep paying you forever?

Answer:
We try to remove derogatory information for our clients and help them increase their credit scores as quickly as possible. We would much have you complete the program quicker and refer your friends and family to us than milk you for an extra 1 or 2 months.

In fact, we’re one of the few credit repair companies that initiate investigations with the credit bureaus and credit furnishers simultaneously, instead of one at a time – like most other companies.

For example, we process debt validation with collection agencies while the credit bureaus are working on their disputes which allows our clients to complete our program faster. Our rounds are 30-45 days instead of 60 days some other companies.

Finally, there’s a lot of false information on the internet about aggressiveness and credit repair, which has been perpetuated in no small part by credit repair companies. Consumers are lead to believe that accounts can be deleted based on the aggressiveness of the investigations, this is false.

A credit bureau will not delete an account from your report if our attorneys send them an aggressive angry letter threatening a lawsuit, a credit bureau will remove derogatory information if the information was found to be inaccurate, incomplete, unverifiable, biased, or not compliant with the law.

An account will not be deleted based on aggressiveness but, will be deleted based on an incorrect method of verification, or debt validation, or permissible purpose verification, etc….

And that’s what we do, we have a process where one investigation leads into the next and we escalate the investigations accordingly to try to catch the credit furnisher or credit bureaus out of compliance and get the accounts deleted.

Ultimately, we’ll do everything possible to get you in and out of this process as quickly as we can.

Are you ready to get started on your journey toward a better credit score?

 

Why Choose CreditFirm.net?

Assurance. Our Credit Repair process was developed by experienced attorneys.

Speed. Documents are typically processed and sent out for investigation within 3-5 days.

Support. Award-winning customer service guarantees your satisfaction.

CreditFirm.net Review

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