Become familiar with the information contained in each of your credit reports. They'll all look very similar, even if you've ordered them from different bureaus. Each credit report contains your personal identifying information, detailed history for each of your accounts, any items that have been listed in public record like a bankruptcy, and the inquiries that have been made to your credit report.
"My experience was initially great until I had a medical emergency and had to cancel my account. I cancelled my account and was told that the following payment would still be drafted of $89. As of the date that I cancelled I was unable to access my account although I was being charged another $89. I would not recommend any company that does not have a fair cancellation policy. I cancelled my account with Equifax and was still able to access my account and was not charged any extra fees."
While we did find quite a few customer reviews that said their credit scores improved reliably over time using the Credit Repair service, it's hard to recommend a business that has an "F" grade at the BBB because they didn't take the time to prove that their advertised claims were legitimate. If those facts are accurate, it should be a simple process to report them and clear up the concern at the BBB. If that happens in the future, Credit Repair will probably move up in the rankings among the services we reviewed; until then, we suggest you look at some of the higher-rated companies for your credit history improvement plan.
Brittney Mayer is a credit strategist and contributing editor for BadCredit.org, where she uses her extensive research background to write comprehensive consumer guides aimed at helping readers make educated financial decisions on the path to building better credit. Leveraging her vast knowledge of the financial industry, Brittney’s work can be found on a variety of websites, including the National Foundation for Credit Counseling, US News & World Report, NBC News,TheSimpleDollar.com, CreditRepair.com, Lexington Law, CardRates.com, and CreditCards.com, among others.
Credit bureaus must send a notice of any corrections made to your report. Sometimes, a deleted dispute can reappear on your credit reports if the lender proves its claim is valid. If you find a derogatory mark reinserted on your credit reports, you can dispute it again. If you believe a credit reporting agency or one of your creditors has violated the FCRA, you should submit a consumer complaint to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC).
Getting negative and inaccurate information off of your credit reports is one of the fastest ways to improve your score. Since credit bureaus have to respond and resolve a dispute within 30 days—a few exceptions can extend this to 45 days—it’s a short timeline. The timeline is particulary important when consumers want to buy a house, get a new car or open up a new credit card and don’t have time to wait to build good credit organically.
Here’s a good example of when a reputable credit repair service can help you do something you may not be able to accomplish yourself. If you have a collection account that’s been sold to a few different debt collectors, it can appear on your credit report multiple times. That information is accurate but having that one debt dinging your credit score multiple times doesn't meet the “fair” standard that Padawer mentioned.
If you find information that is incorrect, you can file a dispute. Remember too, that items on your credit report that you don't recognize could also be potential signs of fraudulent activity — someone working to secure credit in your name for their own use. Make sure you're clear on items that could potentially be fraudulent, versus those that may simply be inaccurate.