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Credit Repair Houston TX – Credit Repair and Education Articles
Most Americans Have Bad Credit, Study Finds – Credit Repair Houston
The study found that 56% of consumers have subprime credit scores. That means they are unable to take advantage of the best — or even average — interest rates if they need or want to borrow money. The very best rates and terms go only to people who have excellent credit.
Add that to the fact that home ownership has actually dropped to its lowest level in about 20 years, and you have a lot of people sitting on the sidelines reading or hearing about how great the economy is. It’s not great for everyone, though, and economic uncertainty is not something experienced only by low-income households.
If you don’t know how your own credit stacks up, you can check your credit report summary with 700 Plus Credit. A credit specialist will explain of the factors that make up your score and advice for raising or maintaining it. If yours is not where you want it to be, take time to work on improving it before an unexpected expense arises. That way, you are much more likely to have options for financing.
Interesting Credit Card Statistics – Credit Repair Houston
If you want to know how Americans are doing financially, take a look at their credit scores. Credit scores are key to determining whether you’ll qualify for a mortgage, loan or credit card and how much interest you’ll pay. The higher your score, the more likely you’ll be approved for a favorable loan.
The credit scores of Americans tend to fluctuate over time, with different scoring systems showing slightly different results. FICO scores, the most commonly used model, range from 300 to 850 points. The average FICO score was 692 as of April 2014, up from 690 in October 2013 and 689 in October 2012.
VantageScore, the model developed by Experian, TransUnion and Equifax, also shows rising average scores, though they trend a bit lower than the FICO numbers. Like FICO, Vantage scores also range from 300 to 850. The average VantageScore in the U.S. in 2014 was 666, up from 664 in 2013.2
However, the average VantageScore rises with age — presumably as consumers build their credit history. Experian’s State of Credit 2013 report found that Americans age 66 and older have the highest average VantageScore (735), while millennials have the lowest (628)
Read the entire article here – creditcards.com
5 Crucial Lessons Teens Need to Be Taught About Credit
1. Understanding the value of a dollar
Perhaps the toughest lesson to teach teens is the value of a dollar. Many teens aren’t working as they’re focused on school and they may have the perception that simply swiping a card through the credit card reader gets you anything you want. Because of this they have a hard time making the connection between money being spent and using a credit card.
Teens need to be taught early and constantly reminded that credit is debt. This means teens need to understand the idea that just because they have spending room on their credit card it doesn’t mean they have to utilize it.
A potentially easy way to convey the value of a dollar to teens, and to get them to use their credit wisely, is to remove cash from their checking account, or directly from their person, for each corresponding dollar they spend on their credit card. This way there’s a tangible connection of how much they’re spending and they’ll likely make wiser decisions as to whether or not a product or service is worth buying.
2. How credit card interest and fees work
Secondly, it’s evident from Charles Schwab’s study that most teens don’t have a good grasp of how credit card interest and fees work, so this would be the next most important topic to tackle.
Teens need to be taught that what they purchase can actually wind up costing a lot more than the sticker price over the long run if they only plan to make the minimum payment on their credit card. Because teens are unlikely to have much if any credit history, credit companies are unlikely to give them an attractive APR, making it critical that they understand the connection between interest, time, and how much they choose to pay on their bill.
Under the Credit CARD Act of 2009 credit statements are required to have a minimum balance warning to demonstrate to consumers how much they’d pay in interest if they just made the minimum payment. This can be an important learning tool for teens.
3. How their credit score can affect them
Once teens have a good grasp on the true value of a dollar and how credit card interest and fees work it’s time to teach them why making their payments on time and maintaining good credit habits is so important.
In addition to teaching teens the basics about the credit score system, they should be taught about how lenders will use their credit history to determine their interest rate and available balance. Teens also need to understand that their credit score can affect more than just their ability to get a new credit card or obtain a mortgage. As was noted earlier, employers and landlords will often look at an individuals’ credit report to get a bead on their trustworthiness. An individual with a lower score may be viewed as a risk and could lose out on a good job or a favorable apartment or home.
4. Not all debt is bad debt
Although it’s important teens understand the seriousness of using credit to make purchases, they should also be taught that not all debt is necessarily bad.
For example, teens or their families may not have enough cash on hand to pay for the rising cost of a college education. This means more teens than ever are applying for student loans to get through college. According to The Project on Student Debt, 69% of seniors who graduated from public and nonprofit college in 2013 had some form of student loan debt, with the average student loan equaling $28,400.
While no debt is welcomed with open arms, a student loan could be a path toward a better paying job and career advancement. The Pew Research Center noted earlier this year that Millennials aged 25-32 with a Bachelor’s degree or better earned a median of $45,500 per year in salary compared to just $28,000 for millennials of the same age group that only had a high school diploma. A good education could easily cover the cost of a student loan, making a student loan a potentially smart move.
5. How to protect their information
Finally, considering the number of credit card breaches we’ve learned of from major corporations over the past year it’s definitely worth teaching teens how to safeguard their information.
For instance, Facebook and Instagram are popular stops for teens these days who want to express to the world the ups and downs of their day. Some might even be tempted to post their accomplishment of obtaining their first credit card online with a photo — a potentially dangerous idea that could wind up with their account information being stolen.
Another common method of account information theft is credit card offers being thrown in the trash. Thieves can very easily pull your info from these offer sheets and open an illegal account in your name. The easy solution is to teach teens to shred all credit card offers.
It’s also a smart idea for teens and their parents to go over their credit report at least once a year and look for discrepancies. Even if identity theft isn’t a problem, it’s quite possible that credit reporting agencies can make mistakes.
There are no guarantees that teaching teens these five crucial lessons will set them up for credit success, but if more teens were taught these steps early there’s a very good chance that future generations would wind up with higher credit scores and better spending habits.
What is a Credit Score?
Credit Reporting Agencies
Most information about credit reporting agencies — also known as credit bureaus — lists only three agencies. These agencies are Experian, TransUnion and Equifax. In reality, there are five agencies that provide access to your credit report, but only those three are mandated by law to provide a free annual credit report to any consumer who asks.
Experian, TransUnion and Equifax each provide you with a free credit report upon request. This credit report will give you a detailed history of your credit, what factors go into its calculation and your credit score itself.
You can also request your credit report from the other two companies, Innovis and PRBC. These companies have a less streamlined process, and they operate slightly differently from the big three. PRBC, for example, allows consumers to enroll directly as reporters. This allows the average person to report certain expenses and payments that would not otherwise be reported, or that might be reported differently and inaccurately. The benefit to your credit score is questionable, but it fluffs up a credit report and makes it look more enticing.
What is a Credit Score?
Credit Score definitions from the three major credit bureaus – Experian, Equifax and TransUnion.
- “A credit score is a number lenders use to help them decide: ‘If I give this person a loan or credit card, how likely is it I will get paid back on time?’”
- “A credit score is a number a lender uses to decide if you’d be a good credit risk for credit cards, auto loans or home mortgage loans.”
- “A credit score is simply a number that represents the likelihood that you will repay a debt as agreed. Credit scores are calculated using information from your credit report at the moment it is requested by a lender.”
- “Basic Definition – A credit score is a rating used by a lender to help determine whether or not you qualify for a particular credit card, loan, or service. The credit reporting companies apply an in-depth mathematical model (called an ‘algorithm’) to the information in your credit file to yield your credit score. Most credit scores estimate the risk a company incurs by lending you money or providing you with a service — specifically, the likelihood that you’ll fail to make payments in the next two to three years.”
- “Credit Scores are a Snapshot of Your Credit… A credit score is arrived at by applying a mathematical equation to a borrower’s credit history, which results in a score that indicates what kind of credit risk that borrower represents.”
- “A credit score is a rating used by a lender to help determine whether you qualify for a particular credit card, loan, or service. Based on information in your credit file, the credit reporting company analyzes your information using a complex mathematical model to yield your credit score.”
- “What is a credit score? A credit score is a number used by lenders as an indicator of how likely you are to repay your loans. Your credit score is generated by a mathematical formula utilizing the data from your personal credit report.”
- “A credit score is the result of advanced analytical models that take a ‘snapshot’ of the consumer’s credit report and translate it into a three-digit number representing the amount of risk a consumer brings to a particular transaction, such as financial, insurance or even employment.”
- “Your credit score is a snapshot of your creditworthiness. Credit grantors use the score to assess your default risk at a specific point in time.”
Your Role in Successful Credit Repair in Houston
A Perfect Solution
If you have credit issues you may be considering using 700 Plus Credit to help repair your credit. This may very well be the perfect solution to your problem and a way to make your credit report respectable again. But you should know that credit repair is not a magic fix; it will require some work on your part, and take some time.
It Is Up To You
A good credit repair service will do a lot, but their effort will focus mainly on sending dispute letters to the credit bureaus. They should also provide advice on rebuilding your credit and managing your existing debt, but the work involved in executing this aspect of your credit repair program will be up to you, and it is critical.
Rebuilding your credit is essential if you want your credit repair effort to result in higher scores and usable credit. Many people shy away from rebuilding because they either believe that they will be denied or because they are just plain nervous about reentering the world of credit. The first fear is incorrect, and the later must be overcome.
Creating Positive Data
The reason that rebuilding your credit is critical to your credit repair success is that credit scores are based on the payment patterns and balance management information you provide to the credit bureaus via your accounts. If you do not have any open accounts the credit scoring software will not have any data on which to base a score. You must feed positive data to the bureaus each and every month.
Manage Debt for Success
Managing your new credit cards for credit repair is easy, but the details matter. The credit scoring model will react most favorably if you make your payments right on time each month and keep your balances low. The key to optimizing your scores with new cards is to keep the ratio of your balance to your account limit under twenty percent.
A Simple Solution
Many people find it convenient to use their new cards to pay for small expenses that they would previously have paid in cash. This is a comfortable way to incorporate debt usage into your credit repair without causing any financial stress. Just use your new cards for the occasional tank of gas or bag of groceries. When you get the bill pay all but five or ten dollars, just to insure the account is always reported as active.
All of this may require a bit of effort, but the payoff will be significant. Opening new secured credit cards and managing them carefully can provide a dramatic boost of over one hundred points within six months of the new accounts reporting. Organize your finances, budget yourself carefully, and start rebuilding your credit today. The sooner you start, the sooner you will have excellent, usable credit again. You can do it!