3 Quick and Easy Approaches To Increase Your Credit Score

How to Instantly Gain 20 to 30 Points to Your Score

There are two things that you can do to easily and relatively quickly improve your credit score. By making all of your bill payments on time, the credit bureaus will be alerted that you are timely with your monthly payments.

This most important category contributes 35 percent of your entire credit score. It needs only a few months for your accounts to all show as timely paid. 

Another way to quickly gain 20 to 30 points is to pay your credit card bills down to less than 30 percent of your available credit. By reducing your credit utilization on all accounts to under this figure, you will immediately gain from 20 to 30 points to your score (or more). If you are able to pay the balances down to 10 percent or less, then you will gain still more points almost immediately. 

The fastest way to gain major points to your credit score is to reduce those high balances on all cards so that credit utilization is low. 

Handling a Dispute On Your Credit Report

You need to regularly check all three of your major credit bureau reports from Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion. It is quite possible that incorrect information on one or more of your reports could be harming your total credit score. Disputing inaccurate or incomplete items with them is easy. 

You simply log on to their “file a dispute” pages on their websites at:

Here you will be able to open a dispute by providing them with all of the pertinent information on your claim. Be advised that the credit bureaus require up to 30 days to process, research, and correct false information from when you file your dispute. Removing mistakes from your credit report can add significant points back to your score, particularly if the mistakes involve inaccurate late payments or other derogatory information. 

Asking for A Lower Interest Rate

If you are carrying monthly balances on your credit cards, you will be able to pay them down faster if you are able to secure a lower interest rate. You can sometimes get these by calling the credit card issuers directly. Tell them you are preparing to pay down your balance, and you would like to ask for a lower interest rate to help you with the process. 

They may be more likely to approve your request if you are willing to make a significant token payment while you are on the phone with them. 

What Are The First Steps to Improve My Credit Score?

Building your credit and credit score up takes some time. Yet the quicker you seriously turn your attention towards the factors that are harming your credit score, the more rapidly your credit scores will rise and improve. 

There are a number of practical steps that you can take to get these moving in the right direction. It starts with gaining a history of paying your bills in a timely fashion and paying down your debt. Beginning with this article we look at practical, actionable steps that you can take to boost your credit. 

Make A Commitment to the 90 Day Credit Challenge

I encourage you to commit to a 90 day credit challenge. You should set yourself a 90 day goal to see at least a 100 point improvement in your credit score. You can do this most easily in two ways. 

  • First, pay down any credit card revolving balances that are in excess of 30 percent of your total available credit line. This will significantly improve your score in the second most important  category of credit utilization (which counts for 30 percent of the total score). 
  • Second, make sure you pay all of your monthly balances on time for those three months. This will improve your payment history points, the most important category in credit scoring models (counting for 35 percent of your total). By taking proactive action in both ways, you can see a 100 point improvement or better in your score within three months.

Negative Information Eventually Ages Off Your Report

For your credit report to improve substantially, it will help when the negative or derogatory items drop off. This includes items ranging from too many hard inquiries on your credit report to late payments, charge offs, collections, and bankruptcies. These different detracting features take different amounts of time to disappear from your credit report. 

Hard inquiries are the easiest to lose. They only need two years to disappear. Late payments, charge offs, and collections require seven years to drop. They will cause less negative impact as they age. Bankruptcies take from seven to 10 years to disappear. They also impact you less as they age. 

You should not let negative items on your credit report keep you from working on improving it, as they will all disappear eventually, and will impact you less each year as they age.

The Top 4 Credit Building Cards for Your Business

Any individual who has a business is able to apply for one of these business cards. You do not have to be officially incorporated or boast employees to be counted as an owner of a business. The top credit cards for small business owners have to offer the most value possible.

Maximizing profits while reducing costs is a top set of priorities for small business owners. Here we will look at the best business cards for larger purchases, travel and cash back rewards, and for building your credit up. 

Best Overall Credit Card

The Ink Business Unlimited credit card is a leader with its no annual fees, cash back rewards, and even low initial purchase APRs. Its sign up bonus is an incredible $500 after spending at least $3,000 over the first three months. You also benefit from a 12 month long zero percent APR on all purchases and balance transfers, so long as you pay your monthly bill on time throughout the duration of the promotional period. 

Best Credit Card for Travel Rewards

The ultimate credit card to have in your wallet for travel rewards proves to be the Citi Business AAdvantage Platinum Select World MasterCard. These miles reward get you 2.95 cents worth of value when you redeem them towards American Airlines flights. 

This means that the sign up bonus for the card is valued at $2,065. Besides this, it also gives you worthwhile perks such as free checked bags, preferred boarding, companion certificates, and in flight discounts. This comes with a card with a comparatively low yearly fee that the company waives during the first year. There is also no foreign currency transaction fee for overseas purchases. 

Best Sign-Up Bonus Credit Cards

The United Explorer Business Card offers the best sign up bonuses. After you spend $5,000 over your initial three months, you get 50,000 miles. You also have the chance to earn another 50,000 miles after spending a total of $25,000 over the first six months. This means you can see rewards of from $785 to $1,570 with United Mileage Plus. Besides this, the card is replete with chances for obtaining bonus rewards and useful travel perks. 

Best Secured Business Credit Card

Wells Fargo Business Secured Credit Cards will require that you make a cash deposit against the business credit limit which ranges from $500 to $25,000. The card also provides several good rewards programs from which you can select. One of them is their 1.5 percent cash back program on all purchases, hard to beat anywhere.

What Are The Best Credit Building Cards For Families?

If you find yourself with a new and growing family, it is a good bet that you will need credit cards that grow into this role alongside your newfound expenses and responsibilities.

Such credit cards understand your new family’s needs and provide significant rewards for purchases like school supplies, diapers, and family getaways. We look at five of the most family friendly credit cards next, as recommended by Credit Karma.

Best Family Card for Cash Back

Parents would struggle to outperform the Blue Cash Preferred Card by American Express. It offers six percent cash back on all American supermarket purchases. You get this incredible cash back rate for your first $6,000 in annual purchases and then a one percent base rate on everything after. 

Best Credit Card for New Parents

The Citi Double Cash Card is a lifesaver for new parents. It eliminates the need for tracking cash back expenditures and categories as well as having to activate cash back programs. This flat rate cash back card is no frills and no nonsense. Besides this, it provides you with an impressive two percent cash back on all purchases, significantly better than most competitors’ 1.5 percent cash back rate.

Best Credit Card for Family Travel

Chase Sapphire Reserve is a great card for families who travel. It does flexibility extraordinarily well. The card starts with a yearly $300 travel credit for any qualifying travel purchases you charge. You also receive three points for each one dollar you spend in the restaurant and travel categories in the U.S. and abroad. All other category purchases earn you one for one rewards points for every dollar you spend.  

Best Credit Card for College Savings

Upromise is the name brand in the college bound savings plans. Its Upromise MasterCard makes it easy to save for the future, with 1.25 percent in cash back for each dollar spent on any purchases. If you link up your Upromise Program account to a 529 college savings plan that is eligible, you also receive a 15 percent bonus on all earned cash back. This helps you to allocate a more serious amount of money to your children’s college savings.

Thanks to this linking bonus, you are looking at roughly 1.44 percent cash back on all purchases you make. 

Best Credit Card for Online Shopping

Online shopping has its own best credit card category these days. Amazon Prime Rewards Visa Signature Card is just what the doctor ordered if you buy those constantly needed supplies for your growing children from the online retailing giant. 

All Amazon Prime members who are cardholders automatically receive an impressive five percent in cash back on each one dollar you spend with the Prime Rewards Visa Signature Card at either Amazon.com or Whole Foods Market.

Every dollar spent on gas stations, drug stores, and restaurants earns you two percent cash back. All other purchases get one percent cash back as a base rate. It adds up pretty fast.

How To Manage A Balance Transfer on Credit Cards?

First you gather up your highest interest rate credit card balances. Get the statements so that you have all of the information necessary to transfer them to your new zero percent balance transfer offer. Next you will need to have your balance transfer offer ready to hand.

They may have you send out checks included in the offer to your existing creditors to transfer the balances. More and more these days it is all handled online by logging on to the offering card’s site and filling in the appropriate information to transfer the balances over electronically. 

It is important to keep in mind the end of your promotional period on this zero percent interest rate transfer. You want to pay it off before it defaults back to the higher interest rate. 

You can take the number of months in the promotional period and divide this into the total amount of debt you have transferred to come up with your required monthly payment to liquidate all of the transferred debt in time. 

For example, if you are transferring $3,000 to a zero percent balance transfer offer that is good for 24 months, you would divide the $3k by 24 to come up with a necessary monthly payment amount of $125. By making this payment faithfully every month, you would have repaid the entire transferred balances amount in time to avoid any interest charges for carrying the debt.