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"Intent is not a thought, or an object, or a wish. Intent is what can make a man succeed when his thoughts tell him that he is defeated. It operates in spite of the warrior’s indulgence. Intent is what makes him invulnerable. Intent is what sends a shaman through a wall, through space, to infinity."

Carlos Castaneda

New Year, New You: How to Rebuild Credit and Gain Financial Independence
Tuesday, 22 January 2019

 Ready to make a change in 2019? Read on to learn how to rebuild credit and become financially independent.

 In recent years, studies have shown that about 30 percent of Americans have a low credit score. Low credit scores can stop people from being able to buy a house, take out a loan, or even apply for a new credit card.

If you have a low credit score, you should do whatever you can to bring it up in 2019. By learning how to rebuild credit, you can put yourself on the path towards financial independence and feel better about your life as a whole.

There are a number of ways to rebuild your credit in a relatively short amount of time if you have a low credit score. Take a look at several of the best ways to do it below.

Begin by Checking Your Credit Report and Credit Score

Your credit score is extremely important. It's one of the first things creditors are going to consider when deciding whether or not to lend you money.

Yet, you might be surprised to learn that there are millions of Americans who don't have any idea what their credit score is. A survey done in 2017 revealed that almost 30 percent of people are in the dark when it comes to their credit scores.

Do you know what yours is? If you don't, you can check both your credit report and your credit score for free. By reading through your credit report and analyzing your credit score, you can get a better sense of what kind of shape you're in financially.

Dispute Anything You Don't Recognize on Your Credit Report

When you're reading through your credit report, keep an eye out for anything on it that might look suspicious. There could very well be things on your credit report that could be dragging your credit score down without you even realizing it.

There are almost 17 million Americans who are the victims of identity fraud each and every year. And many times, they don't know that they're victims until they open up their credit report for the first time in a while and see fraudulent credit card charges on it.

If you ever see something on your credit report that doesn't look right, you have the power to dispute it with the credit bureaus. You could very well give your credit score a big boost simply by disputing some of the things on your credit report. 

Catch Up on Any Missed Payments

Have you fallen behind on some of the payments that you owe to your creditors? Looking at your credit report will allow you to see just how far you've fallen behind on them.

Regardless of how far behind you are, you should make it a point to catch up on missed payments as quickly as you can. You might be able to work out a payment arrangement by contacting your creditors right away and seeing what kinds of options they can offer.

Missed payments will really take a toll on your credit score. So it's a good idea to bring your payments current and keep them current as you move forward.

Come Up With a Plan for Paying Down Debt

In addition to catching up on missed payments, you should also crunch the numbers and figure out exactly how much debt you have on your hands at the moment. This will allow you to formulate a plan for paying your debt down.

Some people who are in debt will choose to use the debt snowball for pay it down. Others will take out no credit check loans to consolidate their debt and make it more manageable.

No matter which approach you decide to take, it's important to come up with a plan of action as soon as you can. The longer debt hangs around, the more of an impact it's going to have on your credit score.

Avoid the Urge to Close out Old Credit Cards

Once you start paying down some of your debt, you might be tempted to call your credit card companies and close your accounts. In your mind, this is a great way to prevent falling back into debt in the future.

This might sound like a great idea in theory. But in reality, closing your old credit card accounts will cut down on your available credit and hurt your credit score. You'll see your credit score start to dip once your old credit cards fall off your credit report.

Rather than closing your old credit card accounts, keep them open without using them. The available credit that you have will work in your favor and show creditors you're responsible with your credit.

Steer Clear of Racking Up New Debt

At this stage, you should start to see some real results when it comes to improving your credit score. Your score should be higher than it has been in recent years. Now, keep it that way!

After you've brought your credit score back up, you should steer clear of racking up any new debt since it'll bring your credit score back down. Instead of using your credit cards to make purchases, do your best to use cash on everything you buy.

It won't be long before you begin to see the benefits of having good credit. You won't have any trouble getting creditors to take your calls or answer your emails when your credit score is sitting pretty.

Knowing How to Rebuild Credit Can Change Your Life

If you don't have good credit, it could be impacting your life in ways that you wouldn't imagine. Bad credit can make it difficult to get a job, move into an apartment, and do a whole host of other things.

With that in mind, you should learn how to rebuild credit and then dedicate yourself to doing it. You'll love the way that you feel once you bring your credit score up, and you'll be blown away by all the new opportunities sitting in front of you.

Would you like to learn how to take better control of your money so that you can improve your credit score? Read our blog for money management and personal budgeting advice.
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