It's not too late to work on improving your credit score
Your goal for the New Year was to pay off your debt or at least get your debt under control, but that hasn't gone according to plan. You've probably realized that this is harder than it sounds, particularly when new expenses accumulate every day. Just remember, you're not alone. Many South Africans have experienced financial stress due to the pandemic, such as losing their job and struggling to pay for expenses like food, school fees, and petrol, amongst others. We understand how difficult it has been, particularly if meeting these expenses has created additional debt for you, but it's also important that you tackle that debt once and for all. Remember, bad debt that reflects on your credit report and impacts your credit score.
Steps to begin repairing your credit score
If your goal for the New Year was to pay off your debt but you were not able to due to factors out of your control, then it's a good idea to revisit your plan of finally paying off outstanding debt to ensure the rest of 2021 is debt-free. In this blog post, we share a few actionable steps that you can take to pay off your debt in 2021.
Step 1: Acknowledge your debt
This is by far the hardest part of beginning the journey to repair your credit score: acknowledging your debt. Repairing your credit score is an emotional process as well as a financial one. But without recognizing that you have a mountain of payments and creditors to confront, you cannot begin solving the problem.
Step 2: Check your credit report
Download a free credit report and analyze the details. Make sure that the information is correct and query anything that you’re unsure of. This is an important step to taking charge of your financial situation.
Step 3: Create a budget
While you're dealing with debt, new expenses arise so you have to budget for both your debts and everyday expenses. Creating a budget can help you track these expenses so that you know how much money you have available at any given time, and what your biggest expenses are. Expenses you should include in your budget are birthdays, school expenses, and utilities.
Debt is not a comfortable subject, but we all have to confront it eventually. And dealing with the economic consequences of a pandemic does not make it easier. The best you can do is know where you stand by downloading your credit report and plan a budget for paying off your debt.