Makin' Money

Sage steps for repairing credit scores

Chris Farrell Feb 21, 2011

It’s practically a personal finance epidemic: Damaged credit scores. Millions and millions of Americans fell behind on their debt payments during the Great Recession and Anemic Recovery. Little wonder so many people struggle to repair their credit score.

It’s a question we take all the time. Healing a Wounded Credit Score offers an overview of the basic options to consider when trying to boost a severely hit credit score. (A minor nick can be repaired by simply paying bills on time over time.)

Journalist Tara Siegel Bernard covers not only positive steps to take, but also highlights a business to avoid: Credit repair outfits.

You may have seen the advertisements for credit repair companies on the Web. “We really tell our clients to stay away,” said Ms. Glass, of CredAbility. One re-emerging scam, she says, involves companies that claim they can clean up your credit. Some companies manage to do this for a limited time by disputing all of your accounts, sending letters to the bureaus claiming the accounts aren’t valid. But after the credit bureaus validate the accounts and debts, they reappear on your report and your score will plummet again.

You can deal with your credit report on your own far cheaper and with much better results.

As a nonprofit news organization, our future depends on listeners like you who believe in the power of public service journalism.

Your investment in Marketplace helps us remain paywall-free and ensures everyone has access to trustworthy, unbiased news and information, regardless of their ability to pay.

Donate today — in any amount — to become a Marketplace Investor. Now more than ever, your commitment makes a difference.