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Improving Your Credit Score Without Gimmicks

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NEW YORK (CBS NEWS) - Chat boards and websites are filled with tricks and gimmicks to improve your credit score.

One gimmick that gets a lot of attention is the practice called credit piggybacking. This is where one person, sometimes for a fee, agrees to add you as an approved user on their credit account. This is typically an account with a good history and lots of available credit. The result is that their credit account and history is added to your credit report. This increases your credit score and, in some cases, the increase can be dramatic. It amounts to buying another person’s good reputation and posing that it is your own. But this is simply the wrong way to go about it.

What if you have a few late payments or other negative information on your credit report?

First, get a free copy of your credit report. Don’t assume your credit score is doomed. There are steps you can take that can boost your credit score. Some of these steps can increase your score by 20 points or more in a single month — and best of all is that you don’t need to hire some credit repair shop to do it.

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