Improving your credit score overnight is simply not possible. It’s kind of like the gym – one day of lifting weights is not going to turn you into Arnold Schwarzanegger. It’s multiple weeks of consistently going to the gym and good dietary decisions that lead to results. Improving your credit score is really similar – if you do these behaviors consistently over time, you will raise your credit score.
Table stakes - make your payments on time on all of your debts.
Just in case this one isn’t obvious, we’re going to say it anyways - make your payments every month for loans you currently have outstanding. That track record of on-time payments is one of the biggest contributors to credit scores and is the easiest way to be on a path to a 800+ credit score.
Late payments can significantly hurt your credit score, so ensure that all your bills are paid on time. If you end up in a financial situation where you don’t think you’ll be able to make your payment on time, call your lender and let them know in advance about your situation. They might be lenient and work with you so the late payment doesn’t end up on your credit report.
Pay down high credit card balances if you can.
Credit utilization is that tricky metric that can get out of control really fast. And when it goes, it hurts your credit score pretty brutally. A high outstanding credit card balance means you have higher credit utilization which hurts your credit score. So if you pay off a credit card with a large balance, you’ll immediately help your credit score. This is one of the very few examples where you can see fast changes and impacts on your credit score from one action.
Check your credit report for errors and if it has one then dispute it.
Everyone is human and sometimes credit bureaus or lenders accidentally forget to log an on-time payment or maybe your outstanding balance was reported incorrectly. Check your credit report regularly for any glaring discrepancies or errors. If you find any, be sure to dispute it as it quickly as you can and you can see a quick improvement to your credit score.
Avoid applying for new loans if you don’t need to.
Yes, we know you get a lot of direct mail and targeted social media ads about how someone can offer you a higher credit limit or a lower APR. But don’t fall for it! Every time you apply for new credit, a hard credit check is performed on you and that hurts your credit score every time. So if you’re curious about a loan-related ad, be careful before diving in too deep and filling out an application.
If you do need a new loan, try to batch all of your applications with potential lenders around the same timeframe so your credit score impact is concentrated at a single point of time rather than declining slowly week over week.
Peach out ✌️