Credit Report Counseling for a Higher Score

Credit report counseling is a very important tool that may affect you when applying for consumer credit. If high it will be an effective tool. It will be an all together devastating liability when reporting a low score. Activities like credit counseling do have an immediate negative effect upon your score. Bu there are opportunities once past counseling to raise your score through obtaining a new history for making monthly payments to recognized creditors who will report this activity to the major credit agencies. Follow these steps to determine how counseling has affected your score.

1. Free Credit Monitoring Trial

Sign up for one of the free online trials where your credit can be monitored, Obtain your FICO score .Also get a copy of your credit report. Make sure you understand the free trial requirements and restrictions before you sign any contract agreement. If you cannot agree with the terms, don’t sign anything.

2. Access Your Account
Once you have signed up for your free trial, access your newly established account, create a username and a password and then proceed to the next step where you will need to establish your identity through use of your social security number, date of birth and other personal information to confirm your identity.

3. Get the Reports
Access your credit reports and FICO scores through your account by following any online instructions directing you through the process.

4. Print the Reports
Once you have accessed the reports, make sure you follow online instructions to print these out.

5. Check It Closely

Examine the reports reading all remarks made by creditors concerning your payment activity. Make sure you note any negative remarks concerning your credit history. Also note any items you wish to dispute.

6. Look at the Score

Check the FICO score. Discover if it has been lowered after receiving counseling. Look at your score you had before counseling and then after. If, indeed, your score has dropped and negative remarks have been added since you received counseling, then this counseling has effected your score negatively. However, if you have participated in a debt management plan, your FICO score may not have improved, but high balances and negative remarks should begin to dwindle. Through a debt management plan, late payment or missed payment remarks will not continue to appear and should be reflected in future credit score computations.

There are several online services offering credit monitoring including:
•MyFICO that offers a free trial for credit monitoring services
•Experian offers a free trial for credit monitoring services
•Identity Guard also offers online access to credit reports and monitoring services.

Things to Remember

•Higher FICO scores increase your credit standing
•Most lenders consider a consumer a high credit risk when a FICO score is less than 620. Although this may not prohibit you from getting credit cards or other loans, a high score may lead to higher interest rates and other loan fees
•Too many inquiries to reporting agencies will affect your score
•When taking advantage of free online trials, follow instructions to cancel membership before you are fully charged for continuing access