Summer an Ideal Time to Check Up on Credit Reports

For many Americans, it might seem like they never have the time to sit down and do the hard work that’s often necessary to maintaining strong, healthy finances, but those who take the time to address many of the issues that might plague them throughout the year during the summertime might be able to get their dealings back in order expediently.

Summer may provide consumers an optimal time to do a little work to repair what might have previously been their good credit scores simply as a result of their potentially having a little more free time, and also because it might set them up better for the remainder of the year. Much like spring cleaning can help to get a home in shape for a summer of use, whether it’s for parties or other gatherings or simply for the kids being home on school vacation for the coming months, taking the time to repair credit during June, July, or August can set up a family well for healthy financial dealings once fall and winter roll around.

It will perhaps come as no surprise to many consumers that the autumn is when many Americans start leaning on their credit cards more heavily, as a result of the often hectic holiday shopping season, and many may even seek to obtain new credit cards during this time as a means of taking advantage of strong introductory offers that can help them save money. Whether it’s an extended period during which no interest will be charged to their accounts if they carry a balance, or through enhanced rewards benefits, the best credit cards on the market are traditionally reserved for those with the very best credit scores.

How to make sure credit is as good as it should be

Consumers generally have a pretty good idea of how well they’re handling their various accounts, but sometimes there might be a disconnect between what is perceived to be important where credit is concerned, and what are actually the ways in which behavior can alter a credit rating.

For instance, many might believe that things such as their age or income will have an impact, but this is not the case. In reality, the most important thing that goes into making up a credit score is a borrower’s ability to meet all their deadlines with payments made on time and in full. This factor alone accounts for 35 percent of one’s rating, and therefore needs to be addressed carefully by anyone who wants to both maintain a strong rating and avoid the often costly penalty fees and interest rates lenders can apply if borrowers miss a deadline, sometimes by as little as just one day.

Those who have missed due dates in the past can only smooth them over with several months or more of on-time payments, which is what makes now the best time to repair credit. The more payments sent in on time, the more it shows that a misstep was a one-time incident that won’t be repeated, but the earlier borrowers get the jump on making up the potentially large amount of ground they lost here, the better off they’ll be down the road.

Meanwhile, many borrowers may also believe the old misconception that lenders want borrowers to carry large amounts of debt, the opposite is actually true. In general, the best way to maximize an aspect of one’s credit standing known as “credit utilization ratio” is to carry debts totaling 30 percent or less of all accounts’ combined maximums. To reach this threshold, it may take comprehensive repayment efforts that include larger contributions for a period of a few months or more.

Checking credit reports is important too

Of course, keeping close tabs on how one’s own credit cards and other accounts is only one aspect of maintaining a healthy standing. In addition, consumers should also be taking the time to order copies of their credit reports and making sure there are no unfair markings which appear on these documents without cause. There are many reasons why one might show up on a person’s documents, but they can all be addressed in more or less the same way: By contacting the company or companies that issued the reports and letting them know that these listings are potentially problematic.

In many cases, borrowers may have to provide proof that they are not responsible for the accounts in question, which isn’t always easy. Often, it might be wise for borrowers dealing with these issues to contact and work with a credit repair company. This may help them more expediently sort out the issues than they might have been able to accomplish if they had been working on their own.

Posted in Credit Report
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