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Three steps to cleaning your credit FOR FREE

MenInTights

not a plastic bag
I just started this process about a month ago and I have already had phenomenal results.

Step 1: Get a credit card. If you don't qualify, go to a credit union and see if they will get you a secured visa. With a secured visa, you place $500 in savings that is locked away and they issue a card with a $500 limit. Use the card sparingly.

Step 2: Get all 3 free credit reports from annualcreditreport.com. Make a note of all of the negative information. Write letters to the credit bureaus disputing any negative information. If an account is in collections and you still owe money on it, forget about disputing it until you have paid it off. This site has some really good sample letters: Credit Repair Letters to Help Improve Your Credit

Step 3: Track your credit score for free at creditkarma.com. I have been doing this for one month and am amazed at what I was able to get removed just by disputing it. In 1 month, my FICO score went up 20 points!!
 

MenInTights

not a plastic bag
haha - believe me I do. I have not had a credit card in 6 years until this secured card. My problem is I am wanting to buy a house now and I need to build my FICO before I get approved. There's just no way I can do 100% down on a house. Its a necessary evil. As soon as I get a house (which will probably be a year), I am going to throw away the credit card I have. I much prefer cash.
 

pro2A

Hell, It's about time!
You should really check out Dave Ramsey's plan... my wife and I are doing it. It works... seriously.
 

MenInTights

not a plastic bag
You should really check out Dave Ramsey's plan... my wife and I are doing it. It works... seriously.
I had his financial peace book. Years ago, that would have worked great for me, but I don't really have any debt anymore that I can use the snowball effect on. I have a few accounts here and there that are outstanding, but they are in collections and that is a lot different than credit card debt. When something is in collections, you just call the agency up and say - "Hey, I owe you $500, if I give you $200 will that settle it?" In most cases, they will accept it. If they don't, then I just pay the $500 and call it.
The thing I can do better at is budgeting, but I've found that once you commit to not spending money, the budgeting becomes easy. So, I may have $x,xxx in the bank and I don't really have $xxx set aside for this and $x,xxx set aside for that. I know that I need to be planned ahead like that, but I just haven't set down and worked it out.

But overall, I really like Ramsey. He does a lot of good.
 
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