Data reported to credit bureaus by your lender, as required by the CARES Act, will not cause your credit scores to go down, which can help protect your credit history and credit scores that is why you should contact your lenders to request an accommodation on your accounts.
During the COVID-19 we may be concerned about how the current economic conditions might affect your financial situation and your credit scores. Although our priority is to stay healthy, here are some important aspect to take into consideration to help keep your good credit.
- Pay all your bills on time if possible. Otherwise, contact the creditor directly for assistance before you miss a payment. The creditor may pause your monthly payment for some time, be sure to request the terms of the assistance provided. Ideally it would be best to request a letter stating your arrangement. Also, if your loan is in deferment or forbearance, the lender will not report late payments to the credit bureaus. Contact your service providers. If you do not think you can pay your utility, cell phone, cable or other monthly bills, reach out to your providers to see if they offer flexible payment options during this time.
- Dispute information on your credit report with the credit agencies if you detect inaccurate, incomplete, or information that does not belong to you.
- Protect your credit report by placing a free security freeze to avoid unauthorized access. You can lift the freeze at any time, for free.
- Consider requesting advice from a professional to help you plan how to repay your debts in a manageable way.
- Make a budget and plan for unexpected expenses ahead. If you think current conditions could impact your income or finances, consider tightening your budget to help make sure you have enough funds to cover your expenses.
- Check your credit regularly to identify fraudulent activity. You can get a free copy of your credit report (without your credit score) from each bureau once every 12 months at AnnualCreditReport.com, or you can monitor your credit at www.identityiq.com.