In this article we discuss something that almost everybody will need going forward: credit repair. This is a relatively new focus for our site because it steps away a little bit from the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act and focuses more on the other side of debt trouble – what it does to you in the long run financially. Of course everybody reading these words knows how much anxiety and trouble being sued can make for you, but the longer term effects may not be quite so much in your face right now.
Still, the price of bad credit information is big, and it adds up over time in ways that matter. A bad credit report may not scare you as much as a lawsuit right now, but it drains your hope and adds costs to everything you do.
So what is in your credit report? Obviously it includes information from your credit-involving transactions. But it also includes “lifestyle” information like judgments or liens, arrest and conviction records, and even job investigations under some circumstances. Actually, very little is safe from the reports.
Let’s be blunt here. There is a lot of wrong or expired information out there on most people’s credit reports, but there is also a lot of true information that might be hurting you. We are not concerned here with whether the information is true – our only goal is to help you remove bad information. Like debt law, the businesses and systems that control the process are set up to handle people in mass – this gives you an opportunity to remove harmful information. We think this is both moral
We do consider the moral and ethical questions as separate questions. Think of the moral question as involving the bigger questions of right and wrong – is it morally right for you to try to get rid of “bad” information from your credit report even when it’s true? In our opinion it is because you did not ask for credit reports to be pervasive and all-intrusive. The reporting system makes many mistakes, includes false negative information and does not include all positive information, and exists to serve the interests of people who are opposed to you in economic transactions. Why should you be forced to play their game? But if you are forced to do so, why shouldn’t you do the best you can within the rules?
Ethically, the rules are designed to let you challenge information – other people will be doing as much as they can, and the companies using the reports will assume you are doing so. If you don’t, you’ll be overcharged.
We think you should use every tool at your disposal to repair your credit report. Our Credit Repair Manual is designed to guide you through the process, showing you what information to attack and how to do it. In some cases there are things you should not do if you want to increase your chances of winning, and we show you those things and discuss them as well.