Posts Tagged: ‘free credit score’

Tips to Improve your Credit Score

February 8, 2017 Posted by kingcade

Having a low credit score can cost you.  If you have a credit score of 620 or below, this is considered to be “bad credit.”  Lenders or credit card issuers, if they are willing to extend you credit at all, are likely to charge you a higher interest rate.  You may also have to pay a utility deposit when starting or renewing service, something people with good credit do not have to pay.  Having a bad credit score can even effect how much you pay for car insurance.

Now onto the good news- there are things you can do to improve your credit score.  Following these easy steps will help push your score in the right direction.

  • Watch your credit card balances.  A major factor in your credit score is how much revolving credit you have versus how much you are using.  The smaller the percentage, the better your credit rating.  The ideal amount is 30 percent or lower.
  • Eliminate small credit card balances.  When you have small balances on credit cards, pay them off.  Charging $50 on one card and $100 on another instead of using the same card (preferably one with a good interest rate) can hurt your credit score.
  • Leave “old debt” on your report. Some people believe that old debt on their credit report is a bad thing.  Good debt- such as a home or car you recently paid off – is actually good for your credit.  Do not close out old accounts where you have had a solid repayment history.
  • Use your calendar.  If you are shopping for a home, car or student loan, it pays to do your rate shopping within a short period of time. Every time you apply for new credit, it can cause a small dip in your credit score, which can last up to a year.
  • Pay your bills on time. If you are planning a major purchase (like a home or car), one of the biggest factors in having a good credit score is simply making on-time payments month after month. Saving up money for a major purchase is smart; just don’t neglect your bills.  This can even extend to outstanding library books.  If the original creditor, such as the library, does not report it to the bureaus, they may eventually call in a collections agency to recoup the unpaid bill.
  • Avoid risk. One of the best ways to improve your credit score it to avoid purchases that might lower it.  This could include taking out cash advances, using cards at businesses that could cause future money stress, etc.
  • Do not obsess. If you are getting ready to make a big purchase, pull a copy of your credit report. You are entitled to one of each of your three credit bureau reports (Equifax, Experian and TransUnion) for FREE every year through AnnualCreditReport.com. While the score you receive may not be the exact one the lender uses, it will grade you on many of the same criteria. If you are denied credit, the lender has to show you the credit score used in their decision making, thanks to the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act.

If you are in financial crisis and considering filing for bankruptcy, contact an experienced Miami bankruptcy attorney who can advise you of all your options. As an experienced CPA as well as a proven bankruptcy lawyer, Timothy Kingcade knows how to help clients take full advantage of the bankruptcy laws to protect their assets and get successful results. Since 1996 Kingcade & Garcia, P.A. has been helping people from all walks of life build a better tomorrow. Our attorneys’ help thousands of people every year take advantage of their rights under bankruptcy protection to restart, rebuild and recover. The day you hire our firm, we will contact your creditors to stop the harassment. You can also find useful consumer information on the Kingcade & Garcia website at www.miamibankruptcy.com.

Related Resources: http://www.bankrate.com/finance/debt/7-simple-ways-improve-credit-score-1.aspx

 

Tips for Applying for a Credit Card after Bankruptcy

April 1, 2016 Posted by kingcade

Filing for bankruptcy doesn’t mean you are shut off from new credit. Creditors look at multiple factors when determining credit eligibility. For example, your income and the time since you received your bankruptcy discharge.

If you are looking to rebuild your credit post-bankruptcy, a secured credit card is a good place to start. Secured credit cards are designed specifically for people trying to improve their credit. They are different from normal credit cards in that they require you to put down a security deposit, usually a few hundred dollars. Your deposit typically equals your credit line:  For example, if you make a $400 deposit, you will have a $400 line of credit. The deposit protects the issuer if you do not make your payments. That makes secured cards a relatively safe bet for lenders extending credit lines to people with lower credit scores.

Those individuals who file for bankruptcy may receive an influx of credit card offers soon after. Proceed with caution. These cards will likely have low limits and high interest rates. The best way to qualify for a credit card post-bankruptcy is to improve your credit score.  Here are some immediate steps you can take to improve your credit score after bankruptcy:

  1. Make sure all discharged debts are cleared from your credit report. If your credit reports are still showing delinquent accounts after you receive your bankruptcy discharge, this is likely affecting your credit score in a negative way.  You are entitled to a FREE credit report every year from the three credit bureaus.
  2. Get your noncredit finances in order. Although many bankruptcies are the result of medical bills, divorce, job loss or other unavoidable debts, it is also important to remember the fundamental problems with spending, saving and budgeting. Addressing these issues before applying for new credit can help you overall.
  3. Build credit. Once your finances are back in order, it is time to consider strategic credit building via a secured credit card or credit-builder loan.

Click here to read more on this story.

If you are in financial crisis and considering filing for bankruptcy, contact an experienced Miami bankruptcy attorney who can advise you of all your options. As an experienced CPA as well as a proven bankruptcy lawyer, Timothy Kingcade knows how to help clients take full advantage of the bankruptcy laws to protect their assets and get successful results. Since 1996 Kingcade & Garcia, P.A. has been helping people from all walks of life build a better tomorrow. Our attorneys’ help thousands of people every year take advantage of their rights under bankruptcy protection to restart, rebuild and recover. The day you hire our firm, we will contact your creditors to stop the harassment. You can also find useful consumer information on the Kingcade & Garcia website at www.miamibankruptcy.com.

 

What to do if an employer wants to pull your credit

March 27, 2014 Posted by kingcade

Running credit checks on job applicants is a fairly common practice. There are credit reports that are designed specifically for potential employers use. Here is what you need to know about them. These reports contain much of the same information found in credit reports pulled by lenders, but do not show your account numbers, date of birth or references to your spouse. Also, your credit score will not be included in these reports.

These reports contain basic personal information (i.e. – your home address and your maiden name), information on public records like bankruptcies or liens and your credit history. These reports also include your work history. Employer credit checks are referred to as a “soft pull” on your credit, meaning it will not affect your credit scores.

A potential employer cannot legally pull your credit report without your permission. You will have to sign a release form giving the potential employer access to this information. It’s always a good idea before beginning your job search to pull your credit report and fix any errors. You are entitled to your credit reports for free every year from the three major credit reporting agencies.

If you have any questions on this topic or are in a financial crisis and are considering filing bankruptcy, contact an experienced Miami bankruptcy attorney who can advise you of all of your options. As an experienced CPA as well as a proven bankruptcy lawyer, Timothy Kingcade knows how to help clients take full advantage of the bankruptcy laws to protect their assets and get successful results. Since 1996 Kingcade & Garcia, P.A. has been helping people from all walks of life build a better tomorrow. Our attorneys’ help thousands of people every year take advantage of their rights under bankruptcy protection to restart, rebuild and recover. The day you hire our firm, we will contact your creditors to stop the harassment. You can also find useful consumer information on the Kingcade & Garcia website at www.miamibankruptcy.com.

Related Resources:
http://www.foxbusiness.com/personal-finance/2014/03/26/what-to-do-when-employer-wants-to-pull-your-credit-report/