Free eBook by John Chow - How I Went From Zero to Over $100,000 a Month
 

How to Raise Your Credit Score by 200 Points or More

written by Michael Kwan on October 30, 2007

uopm

Building up your credit score is something that should be important to anyone. Whether you’re looking to get a new credit card, take out a mortgage on a new home, or even apply for a job in the United States, your credit score will follow you everywhere and affect nearly everything you do. With the subprime mortgage crisis still in full swing, improving one’s credit score is more important than ever.

Well, the Ultimate Credit Ebook was written exactly for this purpose and it promises to raise your credit score by 200 points or more. Can it live up to these claims? That’s what this ReviewMe request is supposed to find out.

Let’s Start at the Beginning

The first thing that struck me about the Ultimate Credit Ebook is that it does not carry a byline. In the ReviewMe request that John received, there’s no mention of an actual person by name. Instead, the e-book is authored by “http://www.ultimatecreditebook.com”. This made me a little uneasy, because I want to attach a name to anything that I read. Maybe it’s just me.

Getting past this, I actually found a fair bit of useful information within the 70-page ebook. Being a Canadian with zero debt, I’m not terribly familiar with credit scores, particularly those of American citizens. The definition of the FICO score was pretty handy for me.

ultimatecredit-ficodefine.jpg

That’s why I am thankful that the first section of The Ultimate Credit Ebook: How to Raise Your Credit Score by 200 Points or More is dedicated to providing background information. Some of this info is more useful than other bits. I didn’t care too much for the lengthy section on the history of credit cards and how they work.

ultimatecredit-card.jpg

One item that was noticeably missing from the ebook was a table of contents. I perfectly understand the importance of raising your credit score, but most people cannot be bothered with reading an e-book from beginning to end. Some folks like to skip ahead, come back, and read everything out of order. Having a table of contents would also help with future reference, in case there was a particular passage that you wanted to read again.

In addition to the cost of the ebook, the writers also make money through a series of advertisements and affiliate links integrated into the text. Here is an ad block for ING Direct.
ultimatecredit-adv.jpg

Uncommon Sense Tips

Randomly interspersed throughout the text are a series of “uncommon sense tips.” These are quick hitting points, identifying items that not everyone may know about credit scores. Here are a few examples:

  • Using a PO Box instead of your current address will pull your credit score down by 12 points.
  • If you apply for a job that pays more than $75,000 – by law, your credit report can be pulled.
  • Be very stingy where and why you apply for credit. (Inquiries that you do authorize, known as “hard inquiries” reduce your credit score by 20 points per hard inquiry.)
  • Your credit is mostly affected by new information, so start overlapping past old credit with present good credit.

Things You Can Learn About Your Credit Score

Despite the relatively brevity of the Ultimate Credit Ebook, it’s packed with plenty of foundational information for improving your credit score. For example, it tells you how to get your free credit report to check for errors, how to read your credit report, understanding what the different codes mean, how your FICO credit score breaks down, and what makes up your foundation score.

Your foundation score is based on several factors like:

Premium zip codes are considered neighborhoods where the cost of an average house is $1 million dollars or more. Doesn’t matter if you’re living in a trailer park – as long as it falls within a premium zip code, you get an automatic 200 points.

Beyond this background information, the real meat and potatoes doesn’t start until the last third of the ebook when you get treated to “12 Things you should be doing right now to Obtain credit / increase your credit score”, “10 Steps to a Perfect Credit Report”, and “How to raise your score by 200 points or 5 Ways to Improve Your Credit Score by 50 Points in Less Than 30 Days”.

Improve Your Credit Score With This Ebook

ultimatecredit-buy.jpg

For the most part, The Ultimate Credit Ebook: How to Raise Your Credit Score by 200 Points or More is well-written and a relatively easy read. There are a few grammatical and capitalization errors, particularly in the titles, but these are easily ignored. I would heavily recommend the inclusion of a table of contents as well.

Buy the ebook for $24.99 and if you don’t get an extra 200 points to your credit score, they will provide you with DOUBLE YOUR MONEY BACK. This is based on a 365 day period.

Did you enjoy this post? Get John Chow Dot Com updates via email...

Stay up to date with all of John Chow’s tips for making money online and blog posts by subscribing via email. Your email will be kept private and never shared with anyone.

{ 49 comments }

great008 October 30, 2007 at 11:14 pm

I need some tips. I wonder if this book is any good? I have been trying to boost my credit for awhile now. hmmm

Pajama Mommy Community October 31, 2007 at 8:08 am

I think half of what is in this book is a crock of crap.

James Wilcox October 31, 2007 at 9:25 am

Here’s something to think about. Consider that you get completely out of debt and get rid of all your credit cards. 7 years later you go to buy a house and the bank can’t figure out why you don’t have a FICO score.

It’s all a sham, see? All the FICO does is create a way for you to get into debt so that you can get into bigger debt so that you can get into enormous debt.

Instead of doing all that, and juggling credit cards, become debt free, pile up your cash and just pay for stuff when you need it. If you don’t have the cash then you don’t buy it.

There’s a popular saying, “If you are in a hole, stop digging”.

ADD 200 POINTS TO YOUR CREDIT SCORE October 31, 2007 at 10:52 am

Sorry I need to elaborate, piggybacking is ok if you use a relation who has a good account at least 5 years old, or what you’d call a co-signer. That’s in the book. What I trash are certain internet companies that let’s you add perfect credit histories to yours for hundreds, maybe even thousands of dollars. Those are the people the credit industry is cracking down on. Your uncles/aunts are still fine as co-signers (“piggybacking”) and there’s nothing the credit bureaus can do about it.

Jack November 2, 2007 at 3:49 pm

As far as Piggybacking ( Authorized users) I think it is good that you trash the companies that charge hundreds or thousands of dollars to add people as AUs.

However, FICO has also come out and said they will be removing ALL AU accounts from scoring. Meaning soon, being an AU on your Mom/Dad/Aunt/uncles accounts will no longer provide any score benefit either.

The AU train ride is coming to an end. If you can get a Joint account, that would be different of course.

Mark October 30, 2007 at 11:24 pm

Interesting. I wonder if anyone who works in the finance/credit industries can comment on whether similar systems are used internationally? Would it be safe to say that this is mostly based on accepted best practice and that similar guidelines would be in place in Australia, the U.K. etc?

Neil Duckett October 31, 2007 at 5:24 am

Never heard of anything like it and i lived in Australia for 34 yrs. Seemed like you eiher paid it off or didn`t … if you didn`t you went on a bad credit register that was harder than chinese arithemetic to back back off of. CC was easy to come by ….. too easy.
Living in Japan now i walked into the bank and upon producing my working visa and necessary documents i opened a bank account and had a credit card thrown in too boot ….. CC value was well into the 10K`s with little more than my word as proof of montly earnings.

Thomas Sinfield October 30, 2007 at 11:52 pm

Just those few tips you gave are good to know. I live with my parents with no debt so I dont have to worry about credit scores at the moment. But these things are always good to know.

Home Recording October 31, 2007 at 3:15 am

Listen to John. Become a Canadian if necessary, be debt free for ever. You can not go wrong!

Home Recording October 31, 2007 at 5:10 am

It is good to know that you are not in debt yet. I do hope that you will always stay that way. Just ask anyone with debt and they will give you the same advise.

One Buck Wiki October 30, 2007 at 11:54 pm

Hmm.. This could be good since I have mediocre credit…

Domtan October 31, 2007 at 12:04 am

Very well written article, as usual. Suppose these tips and advice will be beneficial in the future one way or the other.

The Property Pundit October 31, 2007 at 12:09 am

I suspect that one of his tools is piggybacking on someone else’s more established credit card accounts. This is no longer taken into account for FICO scores, but used to be a great way to quickly and dramatically raise your scores. I would save your money and just google “how to improve your credit.” I’m sure you’d find everything you’re looking for.

Prevent Fraud October 31, 2007 at 1:33 am

This following comment is not related to your review. I have just noticed shomoney has 18.000 RSS readers! It seems shoe didn’t care really much about the rss competition and left it alone, but blasted his rss readers overnight and generated a humiliating defeat for you John!

Prevent Fraud October 31, 2007 at 1:35 am

Maybe and probably the numbers aren’t real, but artificially generated. :lol:

Dandruff October 31, 2007 at 1:38 am

Nice article. I’ll definitely check out the book.

Home Recording October 31, 2007 at 3:00 am

John, I am very happy to know that you are debt free. So am I and I am particularly interested in conveying this message in that, we are a rapidly disappearing breed. While it may indeed be of interest to people who want to increase their debt, this ebook is a symptom of modern life which is driven by debt. Stay debt free John, you will live to be at least as old as I am.

maurizio October 31, 2007 at 3:39 am

I know it’s not relevant, but I just discovered that John lost his competition with Shoe. Check it on my blog
:/

Blog Contests October 31, 2007 at 3:47 am

Not something I need – looks interesting in itself though

Jason - AGLOCOnnected October 31, 2007 at 4:11 am

Hmm, I might consider buying it, but there’s not really a way to tell if the information is real. Hard inquiries really don’t mean a thing and don’t take any points off unless you have 3-6+. Also don’t be fooled by sites such as freecreditreport.com It’s free but also requires a credit card….and you guessed it, they will bill you after the trial period. Annualcreditreport.com gives 3 free credit reports a year with no obligation at all.

Thiru October 31, 2007 at 4:17 am

pretty interesting – but may not be useful for me :roll:

Jorge @ InvestingAdventures October 31, 2007 at 5:28 am

Guess Shoe did have a trick in his back pocket. You should have known it was too easy to overtake him most of the month John!

Ron October 31, 2007 at 5:42 am

So if I have a crappy credit score of 600, I can raise it to 800 by using a rich friend’s address? I’m not buying that.

Rich Gilchrest October 31, 2007 at 5:55 am

Probably nothing here that you can’t find for free at creditboards.com.

ADD 200 POINTS TO YOUR CREDIT SCORE October 31, 2007 at 6:30 am

Rich, last time I checked creditboards.com is a forum. People usually go to forums to seek the answer to a specific question or for help with a particular problem. Comparing an ebook to a forum is like comparing apples & oranges, they are totally different. This ebook tells you everything you need to know about credit, and then some. Plus there’s a convenience factor – you don’t have to go digging through months and months of posts to gather history on a particular thread. So get the ebook, and that way when next you go to creditboards.com, you can ask better questions and receive better answers :wink:

Web's Most Influential People October 31, 2007 at 7:05 am

Talking about the “Hard Inquiries” If you are shopping for a mortgage or any other type of loan, as long as it’s done within 10 days, all the pulls count as one single inquiry.

robert james October 31, 2007 at 7:17 am

I agree with rich gilchrest creditboards has really good info, but if you don’t have time to search 100s of threads this book or a book of it’s kind might be the way to go.

PS spending a little money can save you alot of time.

Technobuzz.net October 31, 2007 at 8:02 am

Nice write Up John :)

Jimson Lee October 31, 2007 at 11:23 am

You mean Michael, right?

bocah October 31, 2007 at 9:33 am

John, I am very happy to know that you are debt free. :mrgreen:

what i learn with you john ???

Vik Dulat - Making Money the Easy Way October 31, 2007 at 10:12 am

What kind of trial is 365 days. In that time, you will probably forgot how much you paid for your ebook.

ADD 200 POINTS TO YOUR CREDIT SCORE October 31, 2007 at 10:25 am

Actually you can do it in 6 months, but i just say 365 days to be on the safe side. Credit takes time (months) to build up even though you can trash it in 10 minutes.

ADD 200 POINTS TO YOUR CREDIT SCORE October 31, 2007 at 10:22 am

This is part of the reason why I wrote this ebook, to debunk a lot of myths and misconceptions. Like most of you, I’m a CHOWNADIAN (ha, I coined that phrase first :grin: ) and I’ve learned a lot from this site.

A lot of you are misinformed about credit.
James Wilcox: Credit is a catch-22, you can’t do without it and if you have it you’ve got to use it or else they will close your account down and you’ve gone from having credit to no credit. What you can do is use your card once every three months to pay for something that you’d ordinarily pay cash for.
Thomas: Now is actually the time to start building credit – get a secured card. That way when you’re ready to move out of your parents’ house you already have established credit. Don’t wait till the last minute.
Property Pundit: In my ebook I denounce piggybacking so NO THAT’S NOT ONE OF THE METHODS I RECOMMEND IN MY EBOOK!
Jason: Hard inquiries do count. If you doubt me, go to your nearest shopping mall, apply for 3 different department store cards (e.g. Macy’s, Nordstroms etc) right after the other and check your score the next day. Actually don’t do that because you will trash your score.
If you’re going to trash the ebook, at least read it first!

James Wilcox October 31, 2007 at 2:36 pm

i disagree, although I am not debt free right now, I am working on it and when I am, I plan on getting rid of all my credit cards. Nowadays with check cards that act as credit cards, the use of other cards is absurd. The problem is most people don’t use credit wisely and don’t pay off that debt (the once every 3 months thing). People are lazy and what happens is you don’t set aside the money you would normally have to pay for the item you bought, and if it’s a big ticket item…well we know how that goes. The credit companies would have you believe you need them…but you don’t.

Top Web Celebrities October 31, 2007 at 10:40 am

If this ebook really works, which I highly doubt, this should be heavily marketed to mortgage brokers and loan officers whose business is being hard hit by the subprime bust. If a borrower has a credit score of 500 to begin with (very subprime), he will end up at 700- which is a great score!!!

ADD 200 POINTS TO YOUR CREDIT SCORE October 31, 2007 at 10:54 am

Quite to the contrary TWC, mortgage brokers make more money from people with bad credit as opposed to good – and they are notorious for their bait and switch methods, especially 10 minutes before you are set to close on a house.

Richard Osborn October 31, 2007 at 11:32 am

You don’t need a book to tell you how to raise your credit score. It’s simple, just get a copy of your credit score. Clear up negative items, pay off high debt and make all your payments on time and your credit score will eventually start to raise over time as long as your making ALL you payments ON TIME.

ADD 200 POINTS TO YOUR CREDIT SCORE October 31, 2007 at 12:52 pm

Richard, it’s not as simple as you think it is. The credit bureaus are not on your side, they are FOR PROFIT companies that make money by selling YOUR information. They have no monetary incentive to fix errors, even if there are laws in place that say they should. To correctly get them to take the errors off your report, you have to cite the sections of the law that pertain to that law. You need to know the FCRA, FACTA and ECOA like the back of your hand. Last time I checked I think the FCRA by itself is 87 pages long!

Nick October 31, 2007 at 2:41 pm

There might be some good tips in here and the double your money back guarantee sounds good. However, is that money back guarantee too good to be true or are they just hoping that people will be too lazy or forget a year from now?

In any case, I probably will not be making that purchase.

Stephen November 1, 2007 at 6:53 am

RE: Secured Credit Cards

Do NOT get a card from Capitol One.
They do not fairly report your credit limit and you will always appear to be maxed out. This hurts your ratios.

pro2promo November 1, 2007 at 9:49 am

thats right…this is good tips.
Thanks John – from indonesia :D

Jack November 2, 2007 at 12:50 am

The information from this “book” is so full of bullshit I don’t even know where to start. The numbers made up seem like they are pulled out of a fucking hat. If you want to work on your credit, join ( or just browse) a free forum like Credit Boards.

20 points for an inquiry? Bullshit. This is highly relative and depends entirely on your unique profile. FICO uses multiple scorecards and I have seen people lose 2-3 points or have no change with an inquiry. People go on AORs all the time and will have 10 INQs and sure dont lose 200 points. An Inq is worth whatever it is, not a fixed value.

The PO Box thing, is a MYTH. It probably comes up in manual underwriting, but its not an auto score killer. FWIW, every application I have used since the patriot Act requires a physical street address and that address will end up on all reports, L/N,etc

Actually as far as I know, ANY job can pull credit ( it doesnt have to be a certain salary) but you do have to sign the disclosures giving them permission. Many employers do this now and some are for 20-30 grand jobs,etc.

As far as NEW credit goes, well it’s true new credit has its own %, but it can often hurt to have too many new accounts as well as lower your average account age. Old aged accounts help a lot.

This writer prbably DOES know some good things in general, but too many of these examples are just made-up figures with nothing to back them up and myths that have been debunked all over the place. SO I suspect it is not worth spending a dime.

All these (and the correct information) is available freely online in forums that provide a lot of real life examples as well as lively debate that weeds out the BS.

If your score can even be raised it is terrible to begin with ( 650 or less is low/below average, and you arent going to get 850, anyway). If it is terrible, it is most likely either because you have a LOT of baddies and you will need to dispute off, engage in PFD negotiation,etc OR you have very high utilization- in that case you will need to pay down balances or transfer them to non-reporting accounts.

ADD 200 POINTS TO YOUR CREDIT SCORE November 2, 2007 at 7:25 am

Jack, does your job allow you to pull credit reports / credit inquiries? A lot of the information contained in the ebook is confidential and I cannot disclose my sources. Jack DID YOU ACTUALLY READ THE EBOOK – (I know you haven’t) or are you just judging the book by it’s cover and going off of the brief blurb Michael posted above and the comments of others? I could debate you on here all day long, but it’s really not worth it. You will never know the inside workings of the credit bureaus and they want to keep it that way. This ebook exposes a lot of those workings and a lot of people may find them hard to believe – but that’s what it is. I wonder if there are any mortgage brokers or bankers on Johnchow that can speak up on this and add to this debate. Oh and as you’re such an “expert”, you’re wrong that 650 or less is below average, it’s actually 692 nationally.
You’re also wrong when you make it seem as if they need your permission to pull your credit report when you apply for a job that pays $75,000 or more. NO they do not, by LAW they can pull it with or without your authorization and most probably will <a href=”http://www.ftc.gov/os/statutes/fcradoc.pdf”and here it is written into the LAW, look at the bottom of page 23. You wanted some evidence that I’m not pulling my numbers from a fucking hat, well there’s two. The P.O Box thing is a myth? You can’t even get FedEx to deliver a package to a P.O. Box yet you want someone to give you thousands dollars worth of credit with nothing more than a P.O. Box? You think using a P.O. Box on a credit app doesn’t hurt your score? Jack why don’t you supply hard evidence which shows my information is BS (it would help if you read the ebook as opposed to basing your response on hearsay), or stop being a comment whore looking for some attention on Johnchow.com!

Jack November 2, 2007 at 3:41 pm

Hi, can you read?

I said that 650 or less is BELOW average, and you said average is 692, so You AGREED With Me!

What are you talking about?

DO you know Math?

Yes, 650 is a below average score. just like I said and you agreed. The top score is 850, right?

850-200= 650.

Which means it is IMPOSSIBLE to raise your credit score 200 points UNLESS you have a very low credit score, lower than 650.

Thats exactly what I said. I NEVER said ” EXACTLY 650 is average.” I said anyone who could possibly raise 200 points would have to have a score below 650, hence a below average credit score.

And I am right, a hard inquiry has no specific point value. I know because yes I do pull credit reports and I pull my own scores frequently. As i said, there are people tha go on APP Sprees and get 10-20 cards at one time and have nowhere near a 20 point per inquiry score decrease.

Yes, I did get well over 6 figures of credit with a PO Box. Before 9/11. Since then I have had to supply a physical address. However my post Office only delivered to a PO Box for many years. As i said, if you have applied for credit anytime in the last several years, a physical address is on your credit report. making it a non-issue.

You are selling a cheap product at a cheap price, but there is a wealth of information available that is more correct and has more input including from Fair Issac insiders and people who are willing to share info and build databases,etc.

I am certainly not whoring JohnCHow comments, as I have been a reader here for about 1 Year and I can count my comments on 1 hand. I also do not link to any commercial sites, even though I run a couple hundred. I keep readng and blogging separate, pretty much.

People should know when they buy a ReviewMe here, a lot of people will see it, and not all are Sheep. I did not read our eBook but I know enough from excerpts that there is misinformation. I know plenty of people in the industry, people wwho have successfully sued credit buraeas and credit card providers,etc and I read enough papers to know certain things. The real experts arent selling $25 ebooks.

My point about employers was that a minimum wage job can pull your credit if you want, but perhaps in rereading that, I misunderstood your wording in the same way you misunderstood mine about “average credit score.”‘

Jack November 2, 2007 at 12:54 am

Should have said “if your score can even be raised 200 plus points, it is terrible to begin with” ^

The market is obviously ignorant people with low scores. The exception is probably people with Young credit and high UT%

Jimson Lee November 2, 2007 at 11:31 am

I just re-read this post, and noticed the name on the credit card!

I. P. Freely…

Too funny! You could have also used “Al Kolic”

Blake November 2, 2007 at 7:08 pm

From the tips I’ve gotten from friends that works for a large bank. She basically told me that, pay your bills, dispute anything suspicious (sometimes just dispute ;) ) and in time your credit will get back on track. No short cuts!

Thousand Dollar Project November 4, 2007 at 10:52 am

its the old adage
when its sunny the bank will give you an umbrella
when it raining they take it back! :evil:

Mike November 4, 2007 at 10:25 pm

Credit scores are important but credit card security is even more important.. Im not so sure its a good idea to have a huge limit on your card, and when it comes to credit cards, security is #1 to me!