Bad credit can make it difficult just to get by anymore. Aside from barring you from access to Credit cards, car loans, mortgages, etc., it can make it very difficult just to rent a house or an apartment.
It’s safe to say that in modern society you need good credit in order to thrive. However sometimes the unavoidable happens, we go through a rough patch in life, and we don’t have access to money that we desperately need. At times like this, we might get a pay day, or short term loan. Although these carry very high interest rates, they can be useful to get you through a rough patch, rather than to suffer the consequences of default.
But sometimes defaulting on your credit lines is unavoidable. It’s best to try and recover from this as quickly as possible.
The exception to this rule is if you defaulted on your credit lines more than say five years ago. Most states have a statute of limitations of seven years, although some states go as far as 10 years, on which debt can be collected. In cases like these, it might be better just to ride it out rather than repay your creditors. Once seven years elapses on any debts they automatically fall off your credit report.
So that brings us to the question, how do we recover from bad credit? And unfortunately the answer is it too simple.
Pull your credit report and see what is hurting your score. The best place I can recommend to pull your score from, is credit karma.
The reason that I recommend these guys, It’s because they’re free. There are a lot of other credits or providers that will claim to be free, but there is always hidden fees involved. The only one that I found with no hidden fees is credit karma.
Once you have your credit score, Go through and look for any type of defaults, as these will hurt your score the most. Usually these creditors also don’t expect to collect anything on this debt. From your credit report, you can get their phone number, and call them to attempt to make a settlement agreement.
Keep in mind, that there are two ways that that can be handled on your credit report after you settle. The first is, the financial institution you settled with will show the debt as set. This helps your score, but isn’t ideal, because it still shows that at one point you defaulted on your line of credit.
The better alternative is to try and get them to purge the record from your credit report entirely. There are two ways to do this. The first is called a pay for delete. You can send them a check and write pay for delete on it, if they cashed the check, they are obligated to delete the score from your credit report. I would advise against this method. The reason is simple, it does not work in most states. A lot of states that used to allow this, no longer do. So depending on where the check is cashed, you could have a real problem.
A better solution is to get the credit company to agree to a contract that stipulates that they will remove all records from your credit report once the settlement has been paid. This requires a little bit more effort as you have to go back and forth with the company by mail, but in the end it’s completely worth it.
In summation, having bad credit sucks. Recovering from it isn’t so hard though, it just takes time and persistence. Outlined above I listed methods for settling debt, and getting defaults completely purged from your credit history, making it look like you are a great candidate to lend money to.