Buy now – pay later, it’s the American way. Our society has become obsessed with having the best of everything. Even when we don’t have the money for the latest television set or the coolest automobile, no worries, we have credit. At this time in our history, we have become a nation of debtors. Good thing we no longer have debtors prison. Our parents saved their money, paid cash, and probably had no debt except for a home.

Our parents were not like this, but us kids are consumers that don’t want to wait and don’t even know what saving money means. We live from paycheck to paycheck. But what happens when the paycheck is no longer large enough to pay off our bills and still have enough money to live on? If we have to choose between a roof over our heads and food to eat, we are naturally going to forego paying the credit card bills. Then inevitably the harassing calls start coming until you think you will go crazy with worry. Even if you go bankrupt, you still have credit problems. What is a person to do? Is there help out there? The answer is yes.

Everyone needs to know that good credit is extremely important to have in today’s society. If your credit is less than favorable, you will find it difficult to get a loan, obtain a credit card or buy a home. Bad credit often occurs when people have too many credit cards with high balances that they are unable to repay. Some people decide to file for bankruptcy when they feel their credit is unable to be repaired. However, bankruptcy can lead to a whole new set of problems and can stay on your credit report for up to ten years. If you are having credit problems, then it’s a good idea to look into credit repair and how it can help you before deciding to do something drastic like file for bankruptcy.

There are a couple of ways you can start to work on repairing your credit. One way is on your own, the other is with the assistance of a company that specializes in helping people restore good credit. While some of these companies can help you get your finances in order, others can do more harm than good. It’s advisable to do what you can on your own before turning to a third party. Let’s look at the steps involved in fixing bad credit.  

First of all, you should obtain copies of your credit report from the three major providers — Equifax, Trans Union and Experian. It’s also a good idea to order your credit score as well. Once you have copies of your reports, thoroughly review each one. First, look for discrepancies. This could include things you’ve already paid off that are still reported as delinquent, or even bills that don’t belong to you. Second, look for current debts that need to be repaid. For the mistakes you’ve found on your credit report, write a letter to the credit bureau detailing why you feel the item is a mistake and requesting them to take it off. Then, contact each of your current debtors and work out a payment plan. Once you’ve paid off each debt, write another letter to the credit bureau informing them that you have done so. Be sure to monitor your credit report regularly to check for future mistakes and keep track of your progress.

If you have decided to work with a credit repair agency do some research to ensure the company you are working with is legitimate – not all of them are. Check your local area for a free credit counseling service before paying anyone to help you. Often these free non-profit companies can provide a great deal of help and assistance for people with bad credit. You can also take advantage of the legal loophole which is Section 609 of the Fair Credit Reporting Act. Fixing bad credit can be a time-consuming process but one that is definitely worth the effort!