This post is in partnership with CreditRepair.com
Sometimes, our egos can keep us from living our best life. For example, I’ve put off joining Weight Watchers (now rebranded as WW) for years because I didn’t want to be thought of (or think of myself) as a person who needed professional help managing my weight. But then I got over that and joined up and I’m really pleased with the results. I imagine for many, the same can be said for credit repair.
Those who need help repairing their credit might not even know they’re eligible, or worse, think the situation will get better on its own.
Having to engage with a professional credit repair organization sounds scary…like you’re probably someone on the brink of bankruptcy. And no one wants to think of himself or herself that way, right?
I can’t speak for what makes a good weight loss candidate, but for those wondering, “How do I know if I need professional credit repair help,” I’ve got a checklist.
If you (or someone you know) meet 2/5 of the criteria below, it doesn’t hurt to explore options available to you for getting your credit in ship-shape.
5 Signs You Might Need Professional Credit Repair Services
Having a large amount of student loans left to repay
Large loan balances likely means your debt-to-income ratio is still too high, which is why you can’t seem to raise your credit score no matter how perfect you are with your credit card payments.
A credit repair agency helps negotiate payments with lenders and come up with a customized debt and credit plan that works for your lifestyle. With the help of a professional, you’ll not only improve your credit in the ways that matter most for your situation, but pay off debt at the same time.
Still paying for a significant amount of debt from your post-college years
As someone who has literally built a business out of writing about the money mistakes I made in my twenties, I can completely relate to having bad financial behavior follow you around throughout the decades.
You may be older (and wiser) and know better now, but can you ever really change the past? Possibly. Here’s what you’d seek credit repair help for:
- Opening and closing cards
- Too many credit inquiries
- High revolving balances
- Not having a good mix of credit
- Late payments and delinquencies
A credit repair agency will work with both creditors and the bureaus to limit your own stress and effort involved, and make sure your debts are squared away and in good standing (if applicable.)
Past bills sent to collections
Let’s say you got your financial act together and are on pretty solid footing. Even if you’ve had past bills sent to collections, you might need the help of credit repair professionals in getting the mark removed from your credit report.
Remember: removing negative items is one of the fastest ways to boost your score.
Debt from the military
For military members, managing debt and credit is a bit more complex than it is for civilians.
If you are in debt trouble from a time when you were on active duty, you are entitled to benefits under the Service Members Civil Relief Act.
The benefits and protections under this law are numerous, but it may be better to work with a credit professional well versed in this law to ensure you get the maximum you’re entitled to. The credit repair organization will work on your behalf to lower interest rates, get interest rates refunds (in some cases) and remove any derogatory remarks from your credit. Legally, those shouldn’t exist, but mistakes can happen.
Even if you’re non-active duty, it’s important for servicemen and women to keep their credit in good condition as it could affect security clearances and keep military members from being deployed and could result in a discharge.
You want to buy a car, home or business in the next twelve months and your credit is lower than you’d like
Once removed, your score will rebound.
You can improve your credit on your own, but it can take years to make all the strategic moves necessary to see a score increase. Which is fine…and cheaper, but difficult if you’d like to make a large purchase in the near future.