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What is contained in your credit report

What іѕ a Credit Report?

Mаnу реорlе ѕееm tо hаvе аbѕоlutеlу no іdеа what a credit rероrt іѕ and how іt саn actually bеnеfіt them. Wеll here wе try tо answer the question, “Whаt іѕ a сrеdіt rероrt?” and take a look аt еxасtlу hоw a сrеdіt report саn hеlр уоu.

So firstly, tо аnѕwеr the ԛuеѕtіоn, a credit report is a rероrt thаt details уоur credit hіѕtоrу that can be used by соmраnіеѕ thаt are соnѕіdеrіng еxtеndіng уоu gооdѕ оr ѕеrvісеѕ оn credit, such as lоаnѕ, сrеdіt cards оr еvеn phone contracts.

Thеrе are three соmраnіеѕ thаt соmріlе сrеdіt rероrtѕ – Eԛuіfаx, Exреrіаn, and TransUnion аnd each of them uѕеѕ a vаrіеtу of different ѕоurсеѕ tо gеt an understanding оf уоur сrеdіt hіѕtоrу. Thеrеfоrе each of thе соmраnіеѕ mау асtuаllу have a different rероrt for thе оnе реrѕоn.

Anу соmраnу thаt is соnѕіdеrіng оffеrіng уоu a сrеdіt bаѕеd service саn соntасt Eԛuіfаx, Experian, аnd TrаnѕUnіоn to gеt a copy оf your сrеdіt rероrt hіѕtоrу аnd mаkе an assessment оf whether уоu аrе a good credit rіѕk or nоt.

Frоm that іnfоrmаtіоn thеу саn thеn decide tо nоt offer уоu thаt ѕеrvісе оr іnсrеаѕе the price if уоur сrеdіt history is poor.

So whаt exactly dоеѕ that mеаn fоr уоu?

Bаѕісаllу, іt mеаnѕ thаt thе better your сrеdіt rероrt, thе more lіkеlу уоu will be аblе to uѕе credit bаѕеd services аnd thе сhеареr thоѕе services wіll bе.

Aѕ уоu can іmаgіnе, when it соmеѕ time for a significant іnvеѕtmеnt such аѕ a mоrtgаgе, іt can be рrеttу іmроrtаnt to have аn ассurаtе аnd good сrеdіt history аѕ thіѕ саn end up ѕаvіng уоu thоuѕаndѕ оf dоllаrѕ іn rерауmеntѕ. Even оn ѕmаllеr lоаnѕ, thе savings in rерауmеntѕ саn be ԛuіtе ѕіgnіfісаnt.

It is vеrу іmроrtаnt thеn, tо mаіntаіn a gооd сrеdіt hіѕtоrу as well as mаkіng ѕurе thаt your gооd repayment hіѕtоrу іѕ rеflесtеd accurately on уоur credit rероrt.

Thе fіrѕt thing уоu should dо іѕ to оrdеr a сору of уоur frее аnnuаl сrеdіt rероrt frоm Eԛuіfаx, Exреrіаn, and TrаnѕUnіоn іn оrdеr tо lооk at іt аnd gо over your credit іtеmѕ tо mаkе ѕurе thеу аrе accurate аnd fair.

Whіlе sometimes thеѕе companies mаkе mistakes in reporting which can negatively аffесt уоu, thе gооd nеwѕ іѕ thаt уоu саn сhаllеngе аnу іnсоrrесt or misleading іtеmѕ оn уоur сrеdіt rероrt іn оrdеr tо rераіr уоur rаtіng.

An easier wау to dо that is tо hіrе the ѕеrvісеѕ of a сrеdіt rераіr аnd mоnіtоrіng company whо wіll dо it on уоur bеhаlf.

 

How to read you credit Report

What Is on a Credit Report, How Do You Read a Credit Report?

How to Read a Credit Report, What is on it, and what does it mean?

Credit reports contain a wealth of information about your financial history and current debt, but it can appear overwhelming. It indicates your active loans, or credit accounts and how you pay them, and any delinquencies.

If you are going to be reading through your credit report for the first time, find a nice quiet place so you can concentrate and take a moment to yourself. Expect to find the following on your report.

1. Personal Information. Name, address, employment.
2. Account History. It will offer Company Name, Account Number, Account Type, Terms of Repayment, Date Opened, High Credit (the highest amount ever charged on the credit card), Credit Limit or Loan Amount. Balance, Past Due Amount, Payment History, and Date of Last Creditor Update.
3. Public Records. This would include any information like tax liens, bankruptcies, judgements, state and county court records, and over-due child support (in some states).
4. Credit Inquiries. This section lists all parties who have accessed your credit report within the past two years. While your complete version of your credit report indicates every inquiry. Lenders get a modified version that only shows the “hard” inquiries. Hard inquiries would include any credit approval application.

Okay, so deciphering the meaning of your actual score is a little tricky in itself. All lending institutions have variations of what they find acceptable in terms of your actual score. In my experience, the following are fairly accurate.

550- Poor
650- Average
750- Great

Get Your Credit Score

 

How to detect identity theft

How Do You Detect Identity Theft?

With the increasing advancements in technology, identity theft has become a growing concern. It is a genuine plague that can enormously affect the life of its victims, both individual and businesses. If you have been a victim of identity theft, it is important that you know how and when to act, as well as what to do to clean up your identity and credit score. Here are some guidelines that you can try to follow through the entire process of fixing your identity in any case that another person has chosen to prey on you.

How Do You Detect Identity Theft?

The first thing that is always on the mind of individuals is how would they know if another person has stolen their identity. There are a lot of ways on how you can detect this. For instance, if you apply for a credit card and you are turned down because you have a low credit score although you have always paid for your accounts and debts religiously and on time, then this can be a signal that somebody else has been using your identity. Or maybe, you will receive a call from a debt collector and will demand you to pay your overdue credit cards or loan for accounts that you do not remember opening. There are also instances when victims receive credit cards that they have not applied for. These are just some of the ways on how you can realize that somebody else has assumed your identity and is taking actions towards destroying your credit score. If you are more careful with your accounts, then you are more likely to be on top of your finances. If you are on top of your finances, then you are more likely to detect early signs of identity theft or if someone is using your identity and personal information for their own benefit.

So, what now? Fraud Alert!

As soon as you realize that there is a problem and that another person is actually wreaking havoc to your credit score, then it’s about time for you to act fast. The first thing that you need to do is to inform the three credit card bureaus and place a fraud alert on your name. Request for a copy of your credit report and scrutinize each entry. If there are any entries that you do not remember doing or checking out, dispute them immediately.

Once you’ve filed for a fraud alert, then you will now be flagged and creditors will be asked to call you before any credit is extended your name. The credit bureau will place the fraud alert for ninety days and if you want it to be extended, then you need to contact each credit bureau to inform them of your intent to place a fraud alert under your name. If you want to obtain a seven year alert, then it is important that you show a proof or clear evidence that another person is racking up your credit in the name of identity theft.

 

Credit Score

The road to financial health is a journey that can begin with simple, relatively painless steps. One way to get started is to apply a system to how you approach your household budget. Of course, the step before that step is to actually create a household budget, which unfortunately many individuals do not. How to improve your credit score by budgeting is relatively painless.

Americans are inherently optimistic people; we expect tomorrow to be better than today, including the amount of money we earn. This positive expectation has been one of the reasons for our decades of prosperity and economic growth. But when applied to our financial management, this expectation can cause trouble, particularly for individuals whose income is variable. And for most of us, our income does vary from year to year, up and down, even if we don’t remember it that way. Suppose you made $88,000 last year. You could reasonably expect to earn $95,000 this year, perhaps because the company you work for has cost of living increases, and you might get a merit pay raise. So what happens? You begin to spend as though you’re already earning that $95,000, ignoring the possibility that your income could actually drop next year.

In this recession, we’ve seen millions of people fall into this trap. As the economy contracts, so do the earnings for many of us. It doesn’t have to be as drastic as getting laid off. It might be something as minor as our company not being able to afford paying us a bonus. Or we have to offer our customers discounts to keep them buying from us, in the case of a retail store, or even a service provider.

People whose income is variable, such as commission salespeople, or people who work on a contract or project basis, are particularly vulnerable to falling into this trap. The extreme case would be people who, temporarily, earn the most money they possibly can over the course of their lives, such as pro athletes. They might earn $5 million a year for a few years, and unfortunately spend at that rate as well. It can be disastrous for them when their career ends, their income drops, but their spending habits stay the same.

One way to avoid this financial pitfall it to think of your income as a moving average of several years’ earnings; three years might be a good place to start. Maybe our person who made $88,000 last year, for example, earned $58,000 the year before, and $70,000 the year before that. Averaging these three years, we see that number comes out to $72,000. If this person made out his budget with this number being his assumed income level, he would be building up cash surpluses during good years that could carry him through lean years. Perhaps this recession would have been hardly painful at all, in terms of changes he would have to make to his lifestyle.

Improve your credit score by budgeting your expenses.

 

How to get into Credit Card Debt

With so many people owning and using so many credit cards, loans and mortgages it’s not surprising that eventually some people make mistakes while managing finances and thus end up in credit card debt. However if and when you are in credit card debt, instead of crying over your spilled milk, you have to work at resolving things and getting back on track with your finances.

It is important to resolve things as the more payments you miss, the more fees and interest your loan accumulates. Moreover, if you miss your payments, you also start receiving letters and threats from solicitors regarding court action. This in turn creates lots of stress and worry, which can be avoided just by getting out of credit card debt.

Credit card debt consolidation

The most common option available to get out of credit card debt is debt consolidation. This is a technique where you use a loan to repay all your present debts that includes credit card, loans and mortgages. The benefit of this option is that you end up with only one payment to make every month. You thus don’t have to remember various payment dates and amounts to pay per month.

Moreover, the minimum payment amount you have to pay towards this loan is usually considerably lower than the amount you previously had to pay all your debtors. If you only have credit card debt as you failed to repay your credit card balances on time, you could consider doing a zero balance transfer.

Repay only the money you borrow

This is where you transfer the balance amount to another credit card that offers 0% interest. These cards offer 0% interest for 6 months or a year, and you have to work at repaying the balance amount within this time span. The benefit of this balance transfer is that you end up only repaying the money you had borrowed, and need not pay any additional interest or fees.

With the help of these tips, you will be able to get out of credit card debt. Of course, it’s always better to first avoid falling into debt by using your cards wisely and curbing on your expenses.