Bad credit can stand in the way of homeownership, buying a new car, or even relocating to another city. The best way to maintain good credit is to manage your money responsibly, but even if you do, sometimes life comes along with its own plans. Getting laid off, dealing with a medical emergency, or even having your identity stolen are all common problems that can result in a lower score. If you are interested in fixing your credit, working with a professional credit repair company in Rhode Island is an effective way to go about it.
Rhode Island is one of the most expensive U.S. states, consistently sitting in the top 10 most expensive U.S. states to live in. Housing is especially expensive in this state, and even basic necessities are above national averages. This likely factors into the average credit card debt that Rhode Island residents hold. On average, each person in Rhode Island has $5,259 in credit card debt. The national average is $5,193 per person.
Even though housing is quite expensive in Rhode Island compared to most of the US, credit scores in the state are still slightly above the national average. The average person has a credit score of 723, nine points above the national average of 714. While this is objectively a good credit score, it's not necessarily the best you can do. Credit repair is one option to help you improve your credit score if it’s being calculated based on any inaccurate information on your credit report.
There are no laws in Rhode Island that deal directly with credit repair companies. However, there is still a national law that governs all credit repair companies within the US, regardless of which state they operated.
The federal Credit Repair Organizations Act (CROA) is a law that dictates how companies offering credit repair service can speak to their customers about the service, charge for the service, and create contracts with their customers, among other things. This is a federal law aimed at helping customers avoid bad actors in the credit repair space.
There's no reason to hire a lawyer to do credit repair in Rhode Island, unless that's what you want to do. Legally speaking, any company that is following federal laws and any applicable state laws is allowed to offer credit repair service in Rhode Island. This means you have a large pool of companies to choose from, so you can pick the company you feel most comfortable with that fits in your budget range best.
Credit repair companies in Rhode Island can be an effective resource when you want to repair problem credit. A professional service will be able to perform many of the same actions that you can do on your own but in a more efficient manner. Disputing items on your credit report, dealing with collections agents, and even negotiating debt consolidation plans all take time and effort that most people are unable or unwilling to dedicate in order to repair their credit. A professional credit repair company will have the time, skills, and dedication to get rid of negative marks on your report, so you can start to rebuild your credit score.
Items listed by creditors or even the reporting agency that is not accurate are one of the leading causes of lower consumer scores. Mistaken entries are not placed out of malice, but they still can result in low scores and other negative outcomes in regard to consumer credit. Let’s discuss some of the more frequent mistakes that can result in a lower score.
There are several agencies that collect consumer credit information: TransUnion, Equifax, and Experian. Collection companies, lenders, and creditors will report consumer activity to these agencies on a monthly basis. Credit reporting agencies do not often cross-reference, so this can lead to information being listed on one report that is not present on another. For example, if you paid off an account or even opened a new account, but the creditor only reported it to one agency, it will still show up as unpaid or not at all on the others. It is common for credit reporting agencies to keep reporting a debt past its expiration date.
Any derogatory mark on a consumer credit report has a date that it expires. Once this date comes and goes, the mark is supposed to be dropped from the report. When it is still reported, it can lead to lower credit scores. Having another person’s information reported in your consumer report can lower your score if their marks are derogatory. Though not common, people who share the same or similar name may have to deal with this type of credit report mistake.
Credit card debt is one of the leading causes of poor credit scores. With high levels of consumer spending and a culture of fast fashion, more people than ever have started going into debt just to keep up with trends. If you are drowning in credit card debt and have messed up your credit score as a result, there are options available to help you rebuild. Working with a credit repair agent to consolidate credit card debt can help you get a handle on your bills and go a long way towards improving your credit score. A credit repair company will be able to help you merge all of your credit card debt under one bill and negotiate an affordable payment that will allow you to catch up on your bills and start to rebuild your credit score. A savvy credit repair agent can even convince credit card companies to remove negative marks such as late payment or collections notations from your credit report as part of the consolidation agreement.
All Rhode Island residents looking to get credit repair can expect the process to go like this:
Step 1: Getting your credit reports
You can't begin the credit repair process without looking at your credit reports. You'll need to request all 3 of your credit reports, 1 from each of the 3 major credit bureaus in the US. These reports are the foundation for calculating your credit score, which means that their accuracy has to be 100% or else you could be getting an inaccurate credit score based on false information. Every credit bureau in the US is legally obligated to provide you with a free credit report at least once every 12 months, so request your credit report from all three bureaus to get a full picture of what’s being used to calculate your credit score.
Step 2: Examining individual credit report entries
Open your 3 credit reports and look at each one individually. Scan the entries on each report to look for inaccurate or incorrect information that could be there. Not all credit reports contain inaccurate information, but it's surprisingly common for mistakes to be included in some entries on your credit report. If there are mistakes on your credit report, you have the right to dispute these entries and have them removed or changed on your official credit reports.
Step 3: Removing inaccurate entries from your credit reports
The organizations responsible for fixing mistakes on your credit reports are the credit bureaus that produce the reports. This is the best avenue for getting your credit report fixed. You need to send dispute letters to each of the 3 credit bureaus that list the inaccurate information, presenting evidence of the falsity of the information and requesting its removal.
Note: While it's easy enough to write these steps on paper, going through the process is a lot easier said than done. Because of the prevalence of fake credit repair services who dispute every negative entry on a credit report, these credit bureaus require a lot of evidence to prove that an entry is incorrect before they will consider your case. A credit repair company can help you draft the best dispute letter possible to give you a good chance of success more quickly.
Fixing your credit score is no easy task. But, if your credit score is bad because there is false information on your credit reports, you can make huge improvements to your credit score by simply removing these false entries. Credit repair can be vital to improving a bad credit score that's being drag down based on inaccurate information.
Fixing your credit score through credit repair in Rhode Island costs anywhere from $69 to $199 per month. The average company charges closer to $120 per month for credit repair, with most adding a small set up fee as the contract is beginning. This service is charged on a monthly basis because of the varied nature of the work and the unpredictable time frame.
There's no way to know how long it will take your credit repair process to finish. On average, you can expect credit repair in Rhode Island to take between 3 to 6 months, but it could be longer or shorter than this depending on your case.
Luckily for the residents of Rhode Island, all cities have the same access to credit repair as each other. There are no specific restrictions on credit repair based on the characteristics of a city. So whether you live in a large metro like Providence, Warwick, or Cranston, or a smaller city such as Jamestown, Foster, or Exeter, you can enjoy access to any credit repair company working within the state of Rhode Island.