Why You Should Stop Panicking About Bad Credit

Tuesday, June 3rd, 2014
Updated: June 3rd, 2014
The content is accurate at the time of publication and is subject to change.

Many people worry that a bad credit score is the end of the world. But the truth is, bad credit is common. Everyone gets into trouble sometimes and financial messes are nothing to be ashamed of. There are many reasons your credit may be less than spotless, or even downright terrible. Some of the most common culprits:

  • Job loss – Unemployment is still relatively high, even post-recession, and whether you recently lost a job or have been out of work for some time, you may be struggling to meet your expenses. When you have to choose between putting food on the table and paying the minimum due on your credit card, the grocery store is always going to win out. Before you can pay your credit card bill, you have to eat.
  • Illness – Medical debt is a huge culprit in poor credit scores. You may have medical debt you aren’t even aware of that appears on your credit report as being in collections. Insurance company issues, doctor’s offices mistakenly billing you instead of insurance, or loss of medical insurance can all leave you with bad credit, whether justified or not. Often, medical debt is not your fault and there is nothing to be ashamed of.
  • Divorce – Splitting up is one thing, but separating your credit reports is another. When people divorce, it is common for there to be conflict or misunderstandings around who is responsible for paying which credit card bill. That can lead to late payments and defaults on loans, which can drag both parties’ credit scores down. Even after the divorce is final, spouse’s names may still appear on each other’s credit reports, meaning your ex’s financial behavior can continue to affect your credit.

Whether your credit is bad for one of these reasons, or because of something else, there is no need to panic. Having a good credit score is important, but bad credit is not a disaster. In time, any credit score, no matter how bad, can be brought up to a good or even an excellent rating. Here are some tips to fix your poor credit score:

  • Contact a credit counseling agency for advice. If you aren’t sure where to start, call up a nonprofit credit counselor. They can help you look at your budget and make a plan to pay off your debt. They will also help you contact your creditors to get back on good terms and begin the process of repairing your credit.
  • Always make payments on time. Paying at least the minimum amount due on your credit card is absolutely the number one most important thing to do to maintain a good credit score or repair a bad one. If you are having trouble making minimum payments on time, contact your credit issuer right away to let them know. They will often give you options to help you manage your payments and stay in good standing.
  • Make a budget and stay within it. Sit down and figure out exactly how much you’ve been spending and how much you really need to spend. Look at your income and expenses and be realistic about what you can afford. Consider getting another job or doing side work to bring in more income if you cannot bring your expenses down. It’s vital that you know where your money is going and have a spending plan.

Facing up to your bad credit is the first step in fixing it. Don’t be ashamed and don’t panic. Many people have been where you are. Take a deep breath and start on the road to better credit today.

All rates and fees, and other terms and conditions of the products mentioned in this article/post are actual as of the last update date but are subject to change. See the current products' Terms & Conditions on the issuing banks' websites.

Latest Bad Credit Cards Guides

Earning Rewards with Bad Credit: Dream or Reality? June 17th, 2022

Without a doubt, every credit cardholder is not averse to earning some rewards or other benefits while building their credit history. And everyone knows that almost all good or excellent credit credit cards can ensure this.

Continue »
Take These 4 Steps to Mend Bad Credit May 6th, 2022

It is absolutely true that bad credit can cause a lot of inconvenience and problems. Having poor credit history, you will not likely get approved for credit cards with great rewards and perks, high credit limits, and low APRs. Moreover, you may even face hardships while renting a house or looking for a job. Fortunately, […]

Continue »
6 Tips to Improve Bad Credit Score March 28th, 2022

If you have bad credit, you probably have already got to know all its fallouts. Most likely, you meet not only high interest rates on credit cards and denied applications but also difficulties getting a job, renting an apartment or purchasing a car. This is not the whole list. A bad credit score can seriously affect all spheres of your life.

Continue »
A Guide to Bankruptcy January 26th, 2020

You might have never thought of ever facing such a thing as bankruptcy. However, each of us may have things going the wrong way one day and stay with a huge unpaid indebtedness. No matter how scary it is even to pronounce the word “bankruptcy”, it doesn’t look like a good idea to just leave it where it is and put yourself in a debt trap. Especially since our government takes care not only of lenders but also of the borrowers. In case of financial difficulties, you will be protected by law.

Continue »
5 Bad Credit Score Myths You Probably Believe January 6th, 2019

Credit scores are incredibly important in order to do a number of things: rent an apartment, get approved for a mortgage, car loan, or business loan, and even to get a job. But as important as credit scores are to almost every adult who wants to live a full and rewarding life, many of us still don’t understand the basic facts about how credit reports work and what a good or bad credit score really means.

Continue »
Best Credit Offer
Surge® Platinum Mastercard®
Check off the cards you want to compare. Then click the Compare link to go to the comparison table.
Consumer Rating: 4 / 5
Horizon Card Services Group One Freedom Card
Copyright © 2001-2024 BestCreditOffers.com All Rights Reserved.

See the credit card's terms and conditions on the online application page. Note that this website may be compensated by credit card issuers when the visitor applies for a card through the links on this website. We do our best to maintain all information accurate and up to date. However, we do not warrant the credit card information won't change. Click the "Apply Online" button and review the current info on the secure credit card terms page.

Information in these articles is brought to you by BestCreditOffers.com. Banks, issuers, and credit card companies mentioned in the articles do not endorse or guarantee, and are not responsible for, the contents of the articles.

The BestCreditOffers.com webpage is a free service and an information resource for credit cards and financial products and services available to eligible United States consumers. BestCreditOffers.com does not offer any warranties and is not a direct service. There are no guarantees for approval or offers when applying for a credit card. Please refer to the application if you would like more information on each credit card. When you click "Apply" for a particular credit card, please take the time to review the terms and conditions of the product/service at the issuer's website. All logos on the BestCreditOffers.com website are property of their respective owners.

Disclaimer: This editorial content is not provided or commissioned by the credit card issuer. Opinions expressed here are the author's alone, not those of the credit card issuer, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the credit card issuer. Reasonable efforts are made to present accurate info, however all info is presented without warranty. Consult a card's issuing bank for terms & conditions.

BestCreditOffers.com makes every effort to keep information up to date and accurate. However, the information regularly changes and is presented without warranty. Therefore, we strongly recommend all our readers to visit the credit card application page by clicking "Apply Online!" button to review the detailed credit card's terms and conditions. Note that BestCreditOffers.com may be compensated by the credit card issuers when the readers apply for a credit card through this site.

BestCreditOffers.com is an independent, advertising-supported website which receives compensation from the credit card issuers and companies whose offers appear on the site. Compensation may impact how and where products appear on our site, including, for example, the order in which they may appear on the site pages. BestCreditOffers.com does not review or list all available financial or credit offers.

You've successfully subscribed!

Please specify the following:All these fields are optional

Thank you for providing this information! We will make sure our letters are useful for You.

User Generated Content Disclaimer: These responses are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser's responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.