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I know some people get tired of me promoting the importance of credit, credit ratings and smart money. However, living with bad credit costs people thousands of dollars along with potential opportunities. Potential opportunities you ask? YES…potential JOB opportunities. If getting better interest rates isn’t enough to move you to improve your credit, missing out on potential job opportunities should.

Imagine spending time building your resume with solid work experience only to have your dreams dashed because you’re living with bad credit. Don’t believe this can happen to you? See this article posted on CNN Money’s website -> http://money.cnn.com/2013/08/12/pf/bad-credit/. I also have clients who have personally experienced this, which brings an element of reality to the table. More and more employers are reviewing personal credit reports to see how potential employees are managing their personal affairs. Imagine going through the hiring process for your dream job only to be eliminated because your credit scores are lower than another candidates. No bueno (good)!

A large number of people are under the impression that improving credit requires a lot of work and in some instances it might. However, working smarter is most likely the solution to your credit problems.

Here are four quick things to do in order to improve your credit scores:

1. Start paying your bills on time TODAY!

2. Resolve past credit issues by paying-off, settling or validating the accuracy of accounts. Each account is different so you may need to consult a professional for assistance.

3. Pay your account balances down. The rule of thumb is to keep your utilization ratio around 30%. This means if you have a credit card limit of $1,000, you want to keep your balance for that account at or below $300.

4. Don’t close your old accounts. Aged, active accounts actually assist with increasing your credit scores. You lose that history when you close older accounts.

As always, feel free to share your stories with me…I enjoy hearing from you.