How to improve a credit report

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Updated: 3/27/2003 1:09 pm
Your credit rating is an important factor in determining your eligibility for loans, retail credit purchases, insurance, and employment. There are several steps you can take to improve your credit report. First, try to correct any errors that may be on the report by working directly with the business that reported the problem. For example, if a department store wrongly reported that you did not pay off a debt, you can contact the store with proof of your account having been paid. If there is a dispute with a creditor about an item that appears on your report, you may write a letter to the credit reporting company to explain your side of the dispute. This letter can be mailed to anyone who requests a copy of your history. To balance the negative information that may be on a report, try to add any positive financial steps you have taken recently, such as paying off a loan or opening a charge account. Finally, make it a priority to pay all debts on time to keep your credit report as clean as possible. If you have further questions on credit reporting, contact your local chapter of the nonprofit Consumer Credit Counseling Service.

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