Consumers Improve Their Own Credit Scores

Jun 28, 2010, 07:00 ET from

DALLAS, June 28 /PRNewswire/ -- Consumers are raising their own credit scores with the help of the free Web site

While many turn to professional credit repair firms, they can avoid fees and boost the scores themselves.

"Credit education is the biggest problem," says founder Mike Clover.

Clover, who started the company to provide credit education resources, explained that half of the credit reports he sees are littered with collections, short sales and foreclosures. Most are the result of bad credit management.

Visitors to are provided with a step-by-step guide about how to improve credit scores.

The first step in the process is obtaining a copy of the credit report. provides a link to the Web site where consumers can pick up free copies of their reports.

"We recommend getting a 3 bureau credit report because the information can be different with each bureau," Clover said.

The next step involves identifying erroneous items. The company offers several tips about which type of items might be incorrect and how to address them. Frequently misreported items include old collection, collections accounts that belong to someone else and derogatory credit that is reported more than one time. Maxed-out credit cards also need to be addressed.

The third step is to dispute erroneous entries, which the site provides guidelines for.

"Under the Fair Credit Reporting Act you have the right to dispute anything on your credit report that is not correct," Clover explained. "But don't waste your time with disputing information that is actually accurate."

Many items can only be reported to the credit bureaus for a specified amount of time, and provides details about these limits.

Consumers should then attempt to negotiate with creditors for derogatory items with outstanding balances. Most creditors and collection agencies will work with consumers to come to a settlement – a move that can have an immediate impact on credit scores.

"I have always recommended paying pennies on the dollar for collection accounts," Clover added.

Because nearly a third of scores depend on the share of available credit is being utilized, Clover suggests paying down credit card debt. recommends opening new accounts and offers some advice about how to achieve this.

About was founded in 2007 as a subsidiary of Clover Mortgage Group, LLC. Visit the company online at