Real Problems Deserve Bold Solutions

Don’t get duped! Credit repair myths and scams.

On Behalf of | Jun 30, 2024 | Credit Repair

Building good credit is a journey that takes time and effort. In today’s world, where the cost of living is soaring, a healthy credit score is more crucial than ever. However, the allure of a quick solution can sometimes lead to falling prey to credit repair scams. These deceitful practices waste your money and can worsen your credit situation.

Here’s what you need to know about credit repair myths and scams.

Empty promises and shady tactics

Be cautious of companies that make unrealistic promises like ‘erasing all negative information from your credit report overnight.’ This is simply not feasible. Genuine credit repair involves disputing inaccurate or outdated information on your credit report, which requires time and effort. You can recognize red flags and be mindful of them. Here are some to look out for:

  • Upfront fees: Reputable credit repair companies typically charge a monthly fee for their services. Companies demanding large upfront payments before any work is done are likely scams.
  • Quick fixes and guarantees: There’s no magic bullet for good credit. Be wary of companies that guarantee a specific credit score increase or the removal of accurate negative information.
  • Pressure to act now: Legitimate credit repair counselors will take the time to understand your situation and explain your options. High-pressure tactics are a red flag.

If the promises seem too good to be true, you may want to talk to another professional about the information you received. Seeking advice from other professionals can provide you with reassurance and support in making the right decisions for your credit.

Taking charge of your credit: Empowering yourself with knowledge

The good news is that you can improve your credit score yourself without falling victim to scams. Here are some resources available to Chicago residents:

  • Annual credit report: Every year, you are entitled to a free credit report from each of the three major credit bureaus (Equifax, Experian and TransUnion). Review your reports carefully and dispute any errors you find.
  • Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB): This government agency provides valuable credit repair and debt management information and resources.
  • Non-profit credit counseling services: These organizations offer credit counseling and financial education programs to help you improve your credit score and manage your debt responsibly. Look for agencies affiliated with the National Foundation for Credit Counseling (NFCC).

Remember, you are in control of your credit. Educating yourself about credit repair and avoiding scams can improve your credit score and achieve your financial goals. If you suspect you’ve been a victim of a credit repair scam, consider filing a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission (FTC).