Many people ask us how to know if they should consider fixing their credit or consult a credit attorney. Sometimes derogatory credit can be fixed by some simple do it yourself tactics, but in some cases you may need a little more help to get that credit score back up to where it needs to be. So how do you know what you need? Let’s go over a short credit checkup diagnostic guide.

1. The only way to know what you need is by having the item you need. Hop online and get a free credit report and print it out. Printing out your credit report will make this diagnostic process much easier than trying to do it on a computer monitor. Once you have pulled a free credit report and printed it off, grab a red pen and then you can begin.

2. At this point make sure your name, address, birth date, and social security match what’s on the credit report. If something is not matching up or is not current, circle it with the red pen. These errors can sometimes associate a totally different person’s credit to your credit report and may be either hurting or helping your credit score.

3. The next thing to do is to circle any accounts that have been delinquent, or are in collections. These accounts are credit score killers, and it’s good to circle and know how many credit score killers you have against you.

4. The final step is to circle any account that has a balance that is more than 33% of the credit limit. These balances will also hurt your credit score and it is wise to know how many accounts are above this ratio balance limit.

Now that you have red circles on your printed free credit report it’s time to analyze it. Depending on the information you come up with you will fall into 3 categories.

The first category is the do it yourself credit repair category. If you have circled on your credit report some personal information errors and some delinquent accounts, you may be able to clear some of this up with the credit bureaus yourself. Please refer to our website for this information.

The second category is credit repair services. If you don’t have the time to try and take care of these things yourself then this is the category for you. There are many credit repair services that range from $30-$100 dollars a month depending on your specific case. These services work really well and normally repair your credit within 6 months to a year.

The third category is seeking the help of credit attorneys. Credit repair attorneys can really push some weight around and use the legal system to effectively and quickly fix derogatory items. If there has been errors with reporting by certain credit account lenders, and if the companies refuse to work with you or fix something than credit attorney is your best option. By having credit attorneys it will make those companies listen to you because there is a legal threat against them.