Unfortunately, a lot of consumers in Georgia are struggling with credit issues. The four biggest cities in the Peach State, Atlanta, Augusta, Savannah, and Athens, have average credit scores that range from 628 to 648. Consumers with scores that fall within this range are said to have “fair” credit. There are also plenty of Georgians who have bad credit. And if you’re wondering how to remove bad credit from your credit report, keep reading.
If your score is dragged down by errors on your credit reports, this issue can be managed easily and pretty quickly.
Removing Bad Credit from Your Credit Report the Right Way
Under the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA), the credit bureaus are legally obligated to remove inaccurate items from your credit reports. But valid negative items may stay on your reports until they have expired. Still, some credit repair companies know how to identify issues with valid negative information and remove it. For example, an account that was charged off will show up on your credit reports for up to seven and a half years. Chapter 13 bankruptcies may linger for seven years after they’re discharged, and Chapter 7 bankruptcies may stay on your credit history for a full 10 years. There are times when negative information is reporting inaccurately or incompletely. These kinds of issues may result in a lender having to remove this information as well.
Some of the more unscrupulous credit repair companies (which are technically illegal in the State of Georgia) will try to talk their clients into disputing every negative item on their credit reports. But credit bureaus typically won’t remove accurate, verifiable information. Instead, a bad credit score can be improved even while there are negative items on your reports.
While you’re waiting for negative items to fall off, you can give your rating a boost by:
- Getting current and staying on track with your bills.
- Paying down high credit card balances so that you’re using no more than 30% of your available credit.
- Putting down a cash deposit to open a secured credit card and using it responsibly.
- Resisting the urge to apply for every credit card offer you come across. All of those hard inquiries can make a bad credit score even worse.
Finally, you should check your credit reports regularly. It’s been reported that 80% of all credit reports contain errors of some type. These mistakes can be due to poor reporting practices, mistakes and errors on the part of credit bureaus or lenders, identity theft, or mistaken identity. After going over your reports, you may find such mistakes are actually depressing your credit score.
So, if you haven’t checked your credit report in a while, it’s definitely worth your time to request copies. You are, after all, entitled to a free copy of your credit report from each of the three primary reporting agencies every 12 months. And you don’t even have to approach each bureau individually. Authorized by federal law, annualcreditreport.com is a website that allows you to get reports from TransUnion, Equifax, and Experian by filling out just one form.
Now, what happens when you find mistakes on your credit reports?
How Georgians Can Fix their Credit Reports Legally and for Free
If you’re working hard to improve bad credit, errors on your credit reports shouldn’t be holding up your progress. At Credit Repair Lawyers of America, we can get these mistakes removed at no cost to you. We’ve been helping consumers fix their credit since 2008, and we’ll be happy to assist you next.
Let’s talk about how we can get your credit report clean and accurate. Set up your free consultation today by calling Attorney Gary Nitzkin at (888)293-2882 or sending him a message through our contact page. Want to know more about our firm or credit repair in general? Please visit our website at www.creditrepairlawyersAM.com.