Paying off debt, increasing lines of credit can improve scores

U.S. News and World Report says that it might not be worth buying into advertisements that promise credit score revitalization. For consumers struggling to improve their credit scores, there is no quick fix. However, there is truth behind the idea that consumers can take control of their credit scores with better spending habits.

World Report notes that by determining credit utilization, the calculation of how much available credit is used, can send consumers in the right direction. Credit utilization is the total balanced owed divided by the total credit limit. By either increasing a line of credit or reducing a balance, consumers can revamp their credit scores.

Many issuers have online account managers that allow members to increase their lines of credit instantly. However, most require that a card holder must be a member for at least 12 months before their line can be extended.

Minimizing debt is the easiest way to increase a credit score. An outstanding balance can reduce a score over time, making it even more important to stay on top of bills.

For those with debt on several accounts, debt consolidation is an option. This can condense interest rates and reduce monthly payments, saving money in the future.