Have you just discovered that your credit score is bad and credit providers don’t want to grant you credit because of it? It is an awful feeling and your head is probably spinning with questions. Is there any way you can turn this situation around?

Take a deep breath. A negative credit report is a serious stumbling block, but you can do something about it. Remember, it will take time to repair the damage you have done by not being a faithful debtor, but the faster you act, the sooner you can turn your score around.

Starting today, commit to doing the following.
Get your hands on your credit report:

South Africans are entitled to one free credit report every year. You can subscribe to GetBucks credit report for a small monthly fee (see our website for more details). Go through your report with a fine-tooth comb and look for any errors. If you find any suspicious activity, you can lodge a dispute at the credit bureaux.

Make arrangements to settle your outstanding debt:

Unfortunately, your debt won’t simply disappear on its own. You are in a sticky situation and the only way to get out of it is to start repaying what you owe. It is unlikely that you will be able to pay off all your outstanding debt in one sweep, but you have to start somewhere. Reach out to your creditors and see if you can’t make a suitable repayment arrangement. Get your outstanding balances down as quickly as possible.

Take care of your credit cards first:

Credit cards usually have the highest interest rate of all your debt, so it will be in your best interest to take care of it first. It will also count in your favour if creditors see that you are making regular payments on your credit cards.

Try to stay positive during your debt pay off, and do your best not to accumulate any more debt until you are in the clear!