27+ Credit Repair Tips To Boost Your Credit Score In 2024

Written By Eddy Ballesteros

Updated on: May 25, 2024
Credit Repair Tips

All of our content is fact-checked & has affiliate links. Learn More

Are you battling a low credit score?

Discover practical credit repair tips to turn your financial situation around. I'll be giving you a lot of resources around credit repair that I've shared before.

From fixing errors on your report to managing debts, this article delivers concise strategies for credit improvement.

Credit Plush Insights

  • Look at your free credit reports every year. Find and fix mistakes. This helps make sure your credit score shows how you really handle money.
  • To fix your credit, focus on using less of your credit limit. Pay off debts with high interest rates first. Think about using tools like credit-builder loans and Experian Boost. These can help you build a good payment history.
  • Try not to close old credit cards. Don't apply for new credit too often.
  • Consider getting a secured credit card to rebuild your credit.
  • Use a budget and an emergency fund. This helps you manage your money better.

What Are The Best Credit Repair Tips And Resources?

So, if you're starting and looking to either purchase a new home, refinance, or get a personal loan, understanding the credit repair process may be a necessary step for you to take.

And we're here to guide you through these credit repair tips.

1. Understanding Your Credit Score and Reports

Your credit score is a three-digit number that tells lenders how good you are with money.

It’s based on things like how you pay your bills, how much you owe, how long you’ve had credit, new credit, and the types of credit you have.

Good credit scores

Why should you care? A good credit score could mean:

  • Lower interest rates on loans and credit cards
  • Better chances of being approved for rentals and utilities
  • Lower car insurance rates
  • More job opportunities

But where do you find your credit score? That’s where credit bureaus, also called credit reporting agencies, come in.

The three main credit bureaus are Experian, Equifax, and TransUnion. These reports show your credit history, including:

  • Your credit accounts
  • How you pay your bills
  • How much you owe

They’re updated at least once a month, but it can change based on your lenders and credit situation.

The good news is that each bureau gives you a free credit report once a year. By checking your credit reports often, you can quickly find and fix any mistakes. This helps make sure your credit score is correct.

If you have bad credit or negative information on your report, don’t worry. There are steps you can take to improve your credit over time.

2. Correcting Credit Report Errors

Picture this: You’ve been good with your credit, paying your bills on time and not using too much of your credit. But when you check your credit report, your score is lower than you thought. What’s going on?

The problem could be mistakes on your credit report. These can include:

  • Identity errors
  • Wrong account status
  • Data management errors
  • Incorrect personal information
  • Wrong account details

These mistakes can hurt your credit score, but don’t worry, you can argue against them.

Start by finding the mistakes and gathering proof. Then, file a dispute with the right credit bureau or credit reporting agency. You can do this online or by sending a credit dispute letter.

When writing the letter, be sure to:

  1. Point out each mistake
  2. Give your personal information
  3. Tailor the letter to fit your dispute
  4. Include copies of supporting papers, like bank statements or proof of identity

Once you file the dispute, the credit bureau will look into it. If they find that you’re right, they’ll fix the mistake. This can make your credit score go up right away!

3. Lowering Credit Utilization

Your credit utilization ratio – the percentage of your available credit that you're using – is a crucial factor in your credit score.

It's recommended to keep this ratio at 30% or less. Why? High credit utilization can signal to lenders that you're overly reliant on credit, which could decrease your credit score.

But don't worry. Reducing your credit utilization can lead to a quick recovery of your score.

A reduction in credit utilization can be achieved by:

  • Decreasing your credit card balances and maintaining them at a lower level
  • Requesting a credit limit increase from your bank (but be careful not to view this as an invitation to spend more)
  • Aim to reduce your spending and keep your balances low

The result? Less credit utilization, a healthier credit score, and a happier you!

4. Pay Down Credit Card Balances

Reducing your credit card balances is a critical component of credit repair.

Note that the ‘Amounts Owed' category holds a 30% weight in calculating your credit score. Therefore, reducing your credit card debt can significantly boost your score. But where do you start? A practical strategy is to prioritize high-interest debts first.

Doing so reduces interest costs and free up funds for other financial objectives, improving your financial well-being and credit score.

How about considering the avalanche method? It's a strategy where you:

  1. Make minimum payments on all debts
  2. Allocate any extra funds to pay off the debt with the highest interest rate first
  3. Once that debt is paid off, move to the one with the next highest rate, and so on.

Also, you could use balance transfer credit cards, which allow you to:

  • Move high-interest debt to a card with a lower or 0% APR
  • Provide relief from interest charges
  • Help you focus on reducing the principal balance more efficiently

Remember, every small step towards lowering your debt gets you closer to a higher credit score and further away from a poor credit score.

5. Setup Monthly Autopay

Keeping track of due dates for credit card payments, bills, and loans can be a lot to handle.

But if you miss payments, you might have to pay late fees and hurt your credit score. Autopay could be the solution.

Autopay is a handy feature that lets you pay your monthly bills automatically from your checking account.

It makes sure your payments are made on time, which is really important for keeping a good credit score.

Setting up autopay is easy. Most companies offer this feature and will walk you through the process on their website or with customer service.

But it's important to remember that even with autopay, you still need to make sure you have enough money in your account for the payments.

If you don't, you could end up with overdraft fees or payments that don't go through. So, while autopay can make life easier, you still need to manage your money actively.

6. Use A Credit Building Tool

If you have a low credit score or are new to credit, credit-building tools can be a big help.

These tools, such as credit-builder loans and credit boosters like Experian Boost, can help raise your credit score by reporting a good payment history.

A credit-builder loan helps you build credit and save money at the same time. When you get one, the lender puts some money in a savings account. You make monthly payments towards that amount.

These payments are reported to the credit bureaus. This helps you build a good payment history.

Experian Boost is another great tool. It can boost your credit score by:

  • Adding more good payment history to your Experian credit file
  • Linking your money accounts to Experian, the tool sees when you pay bills on time
  • Adding this good bill payment history to your Experian credit file, which could raise your FICO Score

It's like giving your credit score an instant boost!

7. Do Not Close Old Credit Cards

Considering closing an old credit card? You might want to rethink that!

While simplifying your finances seems like a good idea, closing old credit cards could hurt your credit score. Here's why:

  • Having a longer credit history can positively impact your credit score.
  • Closing old credit cards can reduce your overall available credit.
  • It can potentially increase your credit utilization ratio, negatively impacting your credit score.

However, keeping old credit cards open does come with potential costs. Some cards charge annual fees, which can add up over time.

Also, credit card companies can close your account due to inactivity.

So, if you decide to keep old cards open, use them occasionally and pay off the balances in full each month. Remember, credit repair is all about balance and making smart decisions.

8. Apply for New Credit Sparingly

Even though it's tempting to apply for new credit, especially when there are great deals, it's best to be careful.

Every time you apply for new credit, a hard inquiry shows up on your credit report.

This can make your credit score go down for a little while. If there are a lot of hard inquiries in a short time, lenders might think you're a risky borrower.

So, how often should you apply for new credit? It's a good idea to wait at least six months between applying for credit cards.

This stops your credit score from going down too many times. It also shows lenders that you use credit responsibly. When it comes to applying for new credit, remember that less is more!

9. Know The Difference Between Consolidation And Settlements

Debt can be scary, but there are ways to handle it well.

Two common ways are debt consolidation and debt settlement. Debt consolidation means putting all your debts together into one payment, like a personal loan or balance transfer credit card.

This can make your payments easier and give you a lower interest rate. This helps you pay off your debt faster.

Debt settlement is different. It means talking to the people you owe money to and trying to get them to let you pay less than what you owe.

If they agree, you pay the new amount, and the rest of the debt is forgiven.

Both ways have good and bad points. It's important to understand them before choosing which one is best for your money situation.

10. Do Not Pay Collections

This might surprise you: paying off collections doesn't always make your credit score better.

Collections can really hurt your credit scores, but paying them off might not take them off your credit report. Some credit score models might ignore paid collections, so it's not always helpful to pay them.

But if you don't pay collections, you could get sued. It might also stop you from getting approved for loans or credit cards.

It's best to avoid having accounts go to collections in the first place. But if you do have collections on your credit report, talk to a financial advisor or credit counselor to figure out what to do.

11. Build Credit With a Secured Credit Card

If your credit score is low or you don't have a credit history, a secured credit card can help. Here's how it works:

  1. You put down a deposit, which becomes your credit limit.
  2. You use the card to buy things, just like a regular credit card.
  3. If you pay your bills on time, it can help build a good payment history and make your credit score better.

However, secured credit cards often have high fees and interest rates. So it's important to use them responsibly.

Once you've built up a good payment history, you can switch to an unsecured credit card. If you get approved, you'll get your deposit back.

Using a secured credit card responsibly can help you build better credit over time.

12. Sign Up for Credit Monitoring

Credit monitoring services can be incredibly helpful when you're working on fixing your credit.

They monitor changes in your credit report and alert you if there are mistakes or unauthorized activity.

These services provide regular updates so you can closely monitor your progress and quickly address any issues that arise.

When choosing a credit monitoring service, consider factors like fraud detection and alerts, identity theft protection, access to your credit report, credit score monitoring, quality of customer support, and cost.

A good credit monitoring service clarifies your credit situation and helps you stay on top of your credit health.

Regularly reviewing your credit report can help you spot errors and discrepancies, ensuring your credit score accurately reflects your credit behavior.

By staying informed and proactive, you can make significant strides towards achieving a healthier credit profile.

13. Consider Credit Counseling

If fixing your credit feels too much to handle, consider getting help from a credit counseling agency.

These non-profit groups offer services like:

  • Teaching you about money
  • Helping you make a budget
  • Making plans to manage your debt
  • Giving you advice about your personal finances

When choosing a credit counseling agency, it's important to pick one with a good reputation. The agency should be clear about what services it offers.

Credit counseling doesn't make your credit score better right away. But following the plans and strategies that a credit counselor suggests can help you build better money habits. Over time, this can lead to a better credit score.

14. Try DIY Credit Repair Before Working With A Company

Before hiring a credit repair company, consider trying DIY credit repair.

This involves reviewing your credit report for errors, disputing them with the credit bureaus, and negotiating with creditors.

While it takes time and effort, it can be a cost-effective way to improve your credit score and teach you about credit management.

If you find the process overwhelming or have a complex credit situation, a credit repair company might be the right choice.

They have experience with credit laws and negotiation tactics, which can relieve stress.

However, remember that no company can promise immediate results because credit repair takes time, whether you do it yourself or hire a professional.

15. Learn Metro2

Comprehending the Metro2 format can provide a clearer understanding of your credit report. Metro2 is the standardized format businesses use to report credit data to the major credit bureaus.

This format ensures the information's accuracy, consistency, and readability, helping uphold industry standards.

By familiarizing yourself with this format, you can ensure the accuracy of credit reporting. This knowledge empowers you to:

  • Identify any errors or discrepancies in your credit report
  • Take the necessary actions to correct them
  • Potentially eliminate negative or inaccurate information that could impact your credit score negatively.

16. Use Credit Repair Software

Should you seek a more efficient method of credit repair, credit repair software might be worth considering.

These tools automate the credit repair process, making it easier to identify errors, negotiate with creditors, and track your credit score.

Top-rated packages include Credit Repair Cloud, Disputebee, Turbo Score Home, and DisputeFox.

When selecting credit repair software, look for features such as:

  • Business software integrations
  • Automated dispute processes
  • Industry leadership
  • Affiliate management tools
  • Scalable growth tools
  • Credit repair training
  • Affordability

By automating the credit repair process, you can save time and focus on other areas of your financial health.

17. Get a cosigner

Is it hard for you to get approved for a loan or credit card because your credit score is low? A cosigner could help.

Having a cosigner with a good credit score can make it easier for you to get approved. You might even get a lower interest rate.

But cosigning can change the cosigner's credit scores and how much money they can borrow. So before you ask someone to cosign, make sure you can pay back the money on time.

Cosigning can be a good way to help you build credit, but it has some risks too.

It's important for you and your cosigner to agree on who will make the payments. You should also talk about what will happen if you can't pay.

Talking to each other is important so there aren't any fights. It also helps keep a good relationship with your cosigner.

18. Understand the Credit Repair Organizations Act

In 1996, the government passed the Credit Repair Organizations Act (CROA).

This law is meant to control credit repair companies and protect people from scams. It says companies can't ask for payment before they do the work.

It also says they must give you a written contract to protect your rights.

Knowing about the CROA can help you stay away from credit repair scams. It can also help you choose a credit repair company that follows the law.

If a company doesn't follow the CROA, it can get in trouble. It might have to pay fines or get sued.

So before you hire a credit repair company, make sure they follow the CROA. This helps protect your rights.

19. Create a budget and an emergency fund

A budget is really important for managing your money well and keeping a good credit score. It lets you keep track of how much money you make and spend.

This helps you make sure you have enough to pay your credit card bills and loans on time.

To make a realistic budget, figure out how much money you make after taxes, keep track of what you spend money on, set achievable money goals, make a plan to meet those goals, and change how you spend money if needed.

It's also important to have an emergency fund along with a budget. This is money saved up to cover unexpected costs, so you don't have to rely on credit.

Experts usually recommend saving enough to cover 3 to 6 months of living expenses in your emergency fund.

By sticking to a budget and being prepared for emergencies, you can reduce debt, avoid late payments, and maintain a healthy credit score.

My Personal Story With Credit Repair

After joining the military, I had this "great idea" to make purchases using my credit card. Since I was making a steady income, I figured I could afford to pay off my debts over time.

Unfortunately, this was not the case. I began only to pay the minimum balance and would forget to set up auto-pay, which caused me to forget about the monthly bill.

My credit card balances grew along with my interest rates. The credit card companies started calling me non-stop and even sent me to collections.

This is where my credit score dropped, causing me stress and anxiety. 

How I Ended Up Fixing My Credit 

I knew I needed to do something about my credit score, but I didn't know where to start. That's when I took the time to learn about credit repair and how I can dispute credit report errors.

After everything was said and done, I started a credit repair business with a partner, and we started to help others who were in the same credit situation.

I learned everything I could about credit scores and credit-building tools.

Final Thoughts

Fixing your credit might seem scary, but you can do it if you're patient and keep trying. Using the right strategies can help you raise your credit score and open up new money possibilities.

Remember, fixing your credit isn't something you do just once. It's something you have to keep working on.

You need to check on your credit often and make changes when you need to.

So start today! Take control of your money and credit.


How do I delete my credit history?

You can delete credit history by sending a dispute to the credit bureaus or making a goodwill deletion request to the creditor.

These methods can help remove inaccurate or paid-off debts from your credit report.

How to rebuild a 500 credit score?

Rebuilding a 500 credit score takes time and effort.

You can start by checking your credit report for errors, paying bills on time, reducing credit utilization, and considering a secured credit card or credit-builder loan.

What is the best way to repair my credit?

The best way to repair your credit is to regularly check your credit report for errors, make small and regular payments, reduce high-balance accounts, and consider debt consolidation if needed.

Working with a credit counseling agency and building towards a target credit score is also important.

What are the three major credit bureaus?

The three major credit bureaus are Experian, Equifax, and TransUnion. These bureaus collect and maintain your credit file.

What is the recommended credit utilization ratio?

Keeping your credit utilization ratio at 30% or less is recommended to maintain a healthy credit score.

About the Author Eddy Ballesteros

Welcome to Credit Plush! Credit is something I'll always enjoy writing about. I've helped many people improve their credit scores and start their credit repair businesses.