In this day and age everything works on credit. If you cop a default on your credit file – you will be refused credit with mainstream lenders (at affordable interest rates). If you do get a loan, often the interest rate is much higher. You may also find you can’t get credit cards or mobile phones on a plan. So you can’t afford to let bad credit history stand in your way – especially if that credit listing shouldn’t be there. Let’s look at what you can do if you want to fix bad credit.
By Graham Doessel, Founder and CEO of MyCRA Credit Rating Repairs and www.fixmybadcredit.com.au.
If you have bad credit – you have two options….
1. You can attempt to remove the default or other credit listing yourself, and there are processes to do this – OR
2. You can use a professional credit repair service.
The benefit in fixing your own bad credit is that it’s cheap. You may have very little costs associated with disputing your own credit listing. But similarly to defending yourself in Court – the cheap option may not be the best one for you.
Credit rating errors are quite common, and the onus of ensuring the accuracy of your credit file rests with you. But how do you know if a listing has been placed accurately on your credit file, or if it should be there in the first place?
There are strict codes of conduct and legislation which must be adhered to when your Credit Provider is placing a default or other credit listing on your credit file. These laws are in place to protect consumers from unfair and damaging credit reporting. Creditors are largely aware of this legislation (yet may not have adhered to it), but there are very few consumers who are well-versed in credit reporting and industry legislation.
In order to dispute a credit listing which you believe shouldn’t be there, you must identify where the Creditor has not adhered to current legislation when placing the notation on your credit file. There is a whole barrage of points which need to be met in order to constitute a valid listing, and if you have not been made aware of all the avenues for dispute, then you could be doing yourself and your case a disservice.
A professional credit repairer will often dig deeper to conduct an audit-like investigation of your credit complaint to uncover errors or non-compliance.
What’s the process for a credit repairer to fix my bad credit?
Credit repair is not an exact science, because every case is different but there are some common threads which run through credit reporting law which we follow.
Firstly, we order a free copy of your credit file on your behalf from one or more of Australia’s credit reporting agencies which tells us exactly who and what we are dealing with in relation to the bad credit.
Then we investigate any avenues for disputing your credit listing or listings with your creditor. This involves requesting documentation from your creditor about your account. The creditor can at times take a while to provide the information they should.
Then the information we receive is cross-referenced against the appropriate legislation for potential compliance errors.
Then we formally communicate with your creditor to request the removal of what we would then deem to be a listing placed on your credit file unlawfully. This process can be a bit ‘back –and- forth’, as there are procedures that we, and they have to follow in accordance with industry and the law as well as negotiations which take place behind the scenes with creditors. The complaint may also need to be escalated to a higher authority such as an industry Ombudsman if there is no satisfaction with the creditor.
If the creditor agrees to remove the listing, we ask you to contact the credit reporting agencies at a later date to confirm it has been removed. (You don’t generate a credit ‘enquiry’ on your credit file if you request the information yourself – and too many credit enquiries could see you refused a loan).
How long will it take to fix my bad credit?
The length of time it will take to remove bad credit from your credit file is very much an unknown factor.
It could depend on the particular facts relating to your application, including the evidence required to support each party’s claims; on the amount of cooperation we receive from your creditor/s including how quickly they respond to our requests; on the number of issues raised in your application; the volume and relevance of information and supporting documents provided by you and the complexity of the legislation relating to your particular defaults.
At MyCRA Credit Rating Repairs, the costs involved are not based on the amount owing nor the time it takes to remove the listing, but are on a per-listing basis. For more information on costs, visit our main website www.mycra.com.au.
Not all credit repairers are the same.
What makes a good Credit Rating Repair Company?
You need full disclosure of fees and charges up front. You need to know exactly what the service will cost before you spend a single cent. Are there any Guarantees in place, what about refund policies. Then, is it all written down?
Are there testimonials, and can you verify them? Anyone can write a testimonial, but are they willing to put their name on it and have you call them? If you can’t call the person that’s raving about the Credit Rating Repair Company, how do you know it is a real testimonial and not just made up?
What are your chances of success, what are the refund policies, how long is it going to take? These are all questions that you should be able to answer before you speak to anyone. This information should be published on their website.
In addition to these 3 items, there are a few others to check on as well.
-Are they a “One Man Band”?
– Do they have the resources to do what they say they do?
– Is it a Registered Company or just a business name? (how to check..)
– Are they registered with the ATO (Australian Taxation Office) for GST (Making more than $75,000 PA requires registration) (How to check..)
The main message here is:
Before you hand over your hard earned cash, make sure you do your homework and know who it is that you are dealing with.
MyCRA Credit Rating Repairs publishes costs, product information, is fully registered, has the resources and experience, has verifiable testimonials, is registered for GST, and is an established business in Both Australia and New Zealand. You can speak to MyCRA for FREE and if we don’t think we can help, we won’t charge you a thing.
If you’d like to speak to a real person about how we can help fix your bad credit, contact a Credit Repair Advisor on 1300 667 218.
Image: David Castillo Dominici/ www.FreeDigitalPhotos.net