Buying a new car is a large purchase, so if you’re like most people, you won’t be able to pay for it all at once. This means that you’ll need financing from a lender willing to loan you the money for a pre-determined period of time at a set interest rate. Before you start looking into car loans, it’s a good idea to make sure your credit score is in good shape since this is one of the factors lenders consider when determining if they will provide funding. Here are some strategies to boost your credit score if it has seen better days.

Get Your Bills Paid on Time

It’s easy to pay a bill a few days late, either because you want to wait until after payday or you forgot to pay on time. Figure out how to get your bills paid on time, every time. This is one of the best ways to gradually improve your credit score over time.

Keep Balances Low

One of the nice things about credit cards is that you can purchase an item and make low payments on it over time. However, this also means you’re paying interest on your purchase and elevating its total price. Give your credit score a boost by keeping the balances on your credit cards low. Although this may mean sacrificing some things elsewhere in your budget, it can help you get your credit score where you want it to be.

Refrain From Opening Up New Accounts

When you open a new credit card or account, you increase your personal credit limit. This also creates a hard inquiry on your credit, which can negatively impact it if you open too many accounts at one time. The better option is to refrain from opening up any new accounts as you work on improving your credit. However, do not close any of your credit accounts, as this could lower your credit score.

Dispute Inaccuracies on Your Credit Cards

You should pull your credit report and make sure there aren’t any inaccuracies on it on a regular basis. Make sure that all of the accounts listed on your credit report are valid and if you see any errors, dispute them right away

It does take time to rebuild your credit score. However, as long as you are consistent with the actions listed above, you will notice incremental progress that drastically and positively impacts your credit score over time.