You’ve probably seen ads on TV, the Internet, or even on a lamppost that promise you a higher credit score overnight.
In fact, they may say claim to raise your score 100 points in “x” amount of time if you give them your hard earned money.
But as I alluded to in a previous post, it takes time to establish a solid credit score. And I use the word “solid” intentionally, because I mean a credit score that carries some weight.
Sure, you could open one or two credit accounts, keep the balances low, and pay them on time. And over time, maybe even a short period of time, the credit reporting agencies would collect this data and spit out a seemingly good credit score.
All that positive data would surely translate to a favorable credit score, but not one with much depth.
On the surface, your good credit habits may afford you a good numerical credit score, but perhaps not a solid one.
For example, you could wind up with a 740 credit score in no time, assuming you made no financial missteps and kept credit requests and balances to a minimum.
But without years of proof, some creditors may not give you that approval you’re looking for.
Take a mortgage loan – most underwriters want to see three active credit tradelines with at least two years of history on each.
So even if you “raised your credit score fast” by gaming the system and doing exactly what you thought was right, you could still be left out in the cold.
Now back to that age thing I was talking about. Both credit history and depth of credit factor big into how Fico score and VantageScore are calculated.
Put simply, this means the system favors those who have spent more time on this beautiful planet of ours.
Of course, there will be extremes, like the old guy that always paid cash, and the young lady who got started with credit early.
But the general trend is that older people have higher credit scores on average, largely because they’ve got years of credit history and massive credit depth.
Okay, I Get It. But I Still Want to Raise My Credit Score Fast
Shoving aside my rambling, there are some methods to boost your credit score quickly, assuming certain circumstances are in place.
If you’ve got high balances on your credit cards, paying them down significantly will boost your credit score quickly.
Same goes for an error on your account – if you’ve got an errant medical collection or a late payment that isn’t legit, disputing it with the credit reporting agencies and getting it removed will give your credit score a shot in the arm.
Finally, there are services that “rapid rescore” your credit score, and basically figure out what needs to be done to raise your score “x” amount in a certain period of time.
While these aren’t guaranteed, they can come in handy if time is not on your side, and you need a quick improvement.
Such as when you’re applying for a mortgage and need your score to be just a few points higher to qualify.
But I still caution against these types of services, namely because they can be expensive and are not full proof.
That’s why it’s highly, highly recommended that you know your three credit scores long before applying for a major loan such as a mortgage, to avoid a situation where you’d need an instant boost.