Getting into debt is often very easy, and when that debt gets out of control it can be much harder to get out. The consequences of debt, especially when those debt responsibilities are not being met, can be devastating. Getting financing for a car, obtaining mortgage financing, or even being approved for a small loan for incidentals can be extremely difficult, and so getting out of debt is critical if you want to have a secure financial future. And, not only do you need to know how to get out of debt, you will then need to know how to rebuild credit.
How can debt impact your credit? Missed or late payments, too much credit, too many credit checks and credit going to collections all work towards bringing your credit score down. Your credit report also reflects any credit activity and so any lending institutions can easily gauge credit behaviour based on this reporting. Many debt solutions, such as consumer proposals or bankruptcies can also harm your credit, but if it has gotten to the point that these debt solutions are where you turn for help, they can actually be the first step in how to rebuild credit.
How to rebuild credit: Step 1. Recognize that you may have a financial problem. If you are at the point where you are living paycheque to paycheque and have accumulated so much debt that you are only making minimum monthly payments - even if you make those payments on time - you have a financial problem. Making minimum payments on credit cards barely covers interest and so the debt will never be paid off. If you can’t manage minimum monthly payments, you have a financial problem. If you rely on your credit or payday loans to make ends meet - even if you are honouring your repayment terms - you have a financial problem.
How to rebuild credit: Step 2. As noted, the best way to start rebuilding your credit is to get rid of your debt. A professional debt management company is the smartest way to do this as they will be able to offer you the guidance and help that you need to get those debts paid off. Debt consolidation, a consumer proposal, bankruptcy or a debt settlement might be the answer – it all depends on your current financial situation.
How to rebuild credit: Step 3. Once you have paid off/settled all of your debts, you need to attempt to establish your credit once more in order to repair it. A great way to do this is with a secured credit card. With a secured credit card, you offer a cash collateral and the lending institution will take that money and it becomes your credit limit. You then use the credit card as you would any other – and make sure to make regular payments, never just the minimum. Also, stay away from payday/cash advance loans. These do not report to your credit report and can start a vicious borrowing cycle that can be hard to get out of.
Rome wasn’t built in a day, and rebuilding your credit won’t be either. It takes time, but knowing where to start is the first step.
For more information about how to rebuild credit, or to find out about possible debt solutions, please contact DebtCare Canada today by calling 1-800-890-0888.