You have the right to dispute any information in your credit report that's inaccurate, incomplete, or you believe can't be verified. When you order your credit report, you'll receive instructions on how to dispute credit report information. Credit reports ordered online typically come with instructions for making disputes online, but you can also make disputes over the phone and through the mail.
The Credit People offer a simple way to check out their services: pay an initial fee of $19, which includes your credit report (a service often not provided by credit repair services) and see what you think for the next 7 days. If you choose to continue using their credit repair plan, you'll pay a flat fee of $79 per month. The service can be cancelled at any time, and an "Unbeatable Satisfaction Guarantee" allows you to get a refund for one month's service fees (this is assuming you cancel as soon as you're unhappy, not months after the fact).
When the bureaus and data furnishers receive the dispute and supporting information, they then work with the credit repair company to determine if the item should be removed from your credit report. The major law governing your rights when it comes to credit reporting is the Fair Credit Reporting Act, but it isn’t the only law on your side when it comes to credit repair.
eCreditAttorney's pricing is simple: $29 per month. For that fee, your credit repair service should include addressing late payments, collections, bankruptcies, tax liens, repossessions, judgments, foreclosures, charge-offs, garnishment, even identity theft/fraud. You're expected to provide a current copy of your most recent, updated credit report; it's not included with the fees that you pay. Side note: the link provided by eCreditAttorney for their "preferred credit score provider" took us to an invalid page - not very encouraging.
Credit Assistance Network is one of the few credit repair providers that offers a pay-as-you-go pricing structure. You'll make an initial payment of $179 (or $279 for a couple), which gets you access to one -on-one consultations with a certified FICO professional, debt validation/goodwill letters to creditors, cease and desist letters to collection agencies, and unlimited disputes. From there, you'll be charged for every deletion CAN is able to achieve on your account - $50 for confirmed deletions per bureau, and $70 for deletions from public records. That could add up very quickly, if you have multiple issues on your credit history.
The payment history of the individual can be a significant factor on their credit standing. Taking steps to make sure payments are up to date or improve the payment schedule for outstanding credit can beneficially affect their credit score. Furthermore, the amount of credit used by the individual can also play a role. For instance, if an individual is actively using large portions of the credit available to them, even if they are maintaining minimum payments on time, the size of the debt they are carrying can negatively affect their credit rating. The issue is that their liquidity may be pressured by the overall debt against them. By taking measures to reduce their overall debt load, they may see improvements to their credit profile.
The best credit repair service includes credit education tools that help you maintain your improved credit once it’s repaired. Credit coaching helps you better understand how different decisions affect your creditworthiness. Many credit restoration companies provide credit score simulators to see how specific actions are likely to affect your credit score. Financial education tools help you better manage your future credit profile after your reports are cleaned up and your score is improved.
Of course, if keeping accounts open and having credit available could trigger additional spending and debt, it might be more beneficial to close the accounts. Only you know all the ins and outs of your financial situation, and like thumbprints, they're different for each person. Make sure you carefully evaluate your situation; only you know what can work best for your financial outlook.