- Your credit score is important when you're borrowing, renting a property, or buying insurance.
- It can take a long time to earn a good credit score, especially if you currently have a low score.
- There are some quick ways to increase your credit score significantly, including taking steps to try to remove negative information from your report.
Improving your credit score doesn't have to take months or years.
Earning a good credit score is worth the effort. Landlords and potential employers review your credit record and look at your score, as do lenders and many other companies you hope to do business with, such as utility providers.
Unfortunately, many of the steps you will need to take in order to build credit can take a long time. And if your score is lower than you'd like it to be, it may seem like it will be months or years before you increase it substantially.
The good news, though, is that there could be some quick ways to boost your score. In fact, here are two of the fastest ways you could try that may make a big impact quickly.
1. Get added as an authorized user
If you have a friend or family member with good credit who is willing to help you out, taking advantage of their positive credit history could be the fastest way to increase your own score.
To help quickly increase your credit score, a loved one could add you to one of their credit cards as an authorized user. Ideally, you'd want to be added as an authorized user on a credit card with a long history of positive payments, a large credit line, and a low credit card balance.
The credit card that you have been added as an authorized user on will show up on your credit report and the entire credit history on the card will appear as if it is your own. This can increase your score by a lot if it makes your credit record look more established and convinces lenders you've made lots of on-time payments.
As an authorized user, you'll also be allowed to use the credit card but won't have any obligations to make payments. Ideally, you actually won't charge anything on the card at all -- and your friend or family member who adds you to the card doesn't even need to actually give you access to it if they don't want to. But for the entire time you're named as an authorized user on the card, it can give your score a quick and sometimes substantial boost.
2. Ask creditors to remove black marks from credit report
Another great way to quickly increase your credit score is to have information removed that's reducing it.
If you've been more than 30 days late on making a payment, your credit card company or lender is likely reporting this negative information to the credit bureaus. Even one late payment can reduce your credit score by a substantial amount, so having that information removed could make a big impact.
Lenders do not have to remove accurate negative information, and disputing accurate negative info is unlikely to be successful since the credit bureaus would investigate if you challenged the record of the late payment, and would likely find it legitimate and refuse to remove it.
But you can ask your credit card company to voluntarily stop reporting negative info. You can call your card company and talk with customer service or send a "goodwill" letter making a request to have the record of the late payment removed. This isn't guaranteed to work, but if you've been a good customer who mostly pays on time, many card companies and lenders may be willing to work with you.
If you're successful at taking one or both of these two steps, they can make a huge impact on your credit record very quickly. It's worth trying.
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