Bad credit can harm your financial future, making it more difficult to find financing for major purchases like a home or vehicle. The good news is that the following three tips can go a long way when it comes to credit repair.

Make Payments On Time

On-time payments are arguably the best weapon in anyone’s credit repair arsenal. As Experian’s Ismat Mangla explains, this applies to all the bills in your life, ranging from utility bills to credit card bills. If you’re having trouble keeping track of all your bills, consider setting up automatic payments and/or reminders on your smartphone. The sooner you get a handle on making payments on time, the sooner your credit score can start to heal.

Reduce Debt

Reducing your debt is another important credit repair tactic. That is especially true if you have a high credit utilization rate. (A high credit utilization rate means you are using a large amount of the credit available to you, which may appear, to lenders, as a sign of fiscal irresponsibility.)

Paying down debt may seem easier said than done. However, many people have found success using the debt snowball method or the debt avalanche method. The debt avalanche method involves focusing on paying down your highest-interest-rate debt. The debt snowball method, meanwhile, involves racking up early “wins” by paying down small debts first. You can learn more about each by reading Investopedia’s guide on the subject.

Show Patience

Your credit score didn’t arrive where it is overnight: Years of financial choices play a role in it. Likewise, credit repair will take time, as well. Late payments, for example, take seven years to disappear from your credit history completely. However, even before then, their impact will fade as your credit score begins to reflect your new good habits. On-time payments and debt reduction, combined with time, are a surefire way to fix your credit.

To keep learning about money-related topics, just take a look at Coastal Commercial Lending’s other blog posts.