Step Seven: Create a Monitoring Plan
Once you have learned how to fix credit, be sure you maintain your high credit score through a credit monitoring plan. Though you can certainly hire a credit monitoring company, I suggest that you schedule time to monitor your own credit score.
1. First, create a budget and live frugally!
2. Second, use technology to keep your bills current and your accounts active.
3. Third, review your credit card bills and bank statements monthly.
4. Fourth, pull your credit report at least once every six months and review the seven steps.
Credit Monitoring Plan #1: Create a budget and live frugally.
To protect your credit, you must live within your means. Otherwise, you will not be able to pay your bills. If you have not created a budget, now is the time to do so. If you have already completed your budget, make a note to review your budget in six months. Finances change, people’s obligations change, and so must your budget. Reviewing your budget allows you to make adjustments and modify your behavior so that you can pay your bills on time.
Credit Monitoring Plan #2: Use Technology to Keep Your Bills Current and Your Accounts Active.
I once forgot to pay my car bill, and my score dropped thirty points over night. Don’t let this happen to you. My suggestion is that you automate every one of your regular payments. You can do this by setting up automatic payments either through your bank, or with the creditor directly.
When creating these automatic payments, be creative about how you can keep your credit cards active. Inactive accounts do nothing for your credit score, so my suggestion is that you use each of your credit cards to pay a bill monthly. For instance, you can use your Visa to pay your gym membership, your MasterCard to pay your car insurance, your American Express to pay your health insurance. You can avoid paying interest on these by being strategic about the payment dates. For instance:
- Pay your gym membership with your Visa on the first of every month.
- Pay your Visa bill on the third of every month. This way, you do not pay interest on your gym membership.
Credit Monitoring Plan #3: Review Your Statements Monthly.
The third thing you should do is review your credit cards and bank statements monthly. Specially:
- Look for signs you are a victim of identity theft.
- Check the limits on your credit cards. If the limit has been lowered, remember to lower the balance to no more than 30 percent.
Credit Monitoring Plan #4: Pull Your Credit Report and Review This Article.
The final step of your credit monitoring plan is to pull your credit report every six months. Keep in mind that your credit score will not suffer if you pull your own credit report. Be sure to pull your report from www.720ficoscore.com so that you get your FICO score and not your consumer score. When you pull your credit report, do a quick review of this article so that you can address any issues you might notice.