Category

Credit

9 Facts You Should Know About Your Credit Score

Today we have an awesome guest post about credit from LaToya Irby.  Make sure you check out her bio at the end of the post. 

Your credit score isn’t something you use every day, but when you do need to use it, you need it to be in good shape.  Building and maintaining a good credit score is much easier when you understand how it works and what does and doesn’t affect it.  There is a lot of misinformation floating around the internet about what a credit score really is, what counts as good credit, and how people can improve their credit scores.  Here are 9 things every responsible adult should know about their credit score.

9 Facts You Should Know About Your Credit Score

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Rising Interest Rates: The Good, The Bad & The Ugly

During December the U.S. Federal Reserve announced an increase in interest rates.  The Fed raise the benchmark federal funds rate from the most recent range, between .25% and .5%, to a new higher range .5% and .75%.

The Federal Reserve’s decision about interest rates will have a direct effect on you.  An increase in interest rates affects the prices of goods at the store and how quickly the prices go up (i.e. inflation).  In addition, they have a direct effect on the money in your savings account, the interest rates you pay on credit cards and loans, and how much car or home you can afford.

Rising Interest Rates: The good, The bad, & The ugly

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8 Strategies to Pay Off Debt Fast

After featuring my friend MJs debt payoff story, a lot of other people have made declarations of becoming debt free.  His story was motivating and inspiring.  If you haven’t read the post yet, as a teacher he paid off over $39,000 of consumer debt in less than in 21 months.

According to an article by Nerd Wallet, the average U.S. household with debt carries $15,675 in credit card debt.  In fact, credit card debt costs consumers an average of $2,630 in interest per year, assuming an average APR of 18%.

Paying off a large amount of debt can seem overwhelming but it doesn’t have to be.

The thing is anyone can become debt free.  It takes dedication and will power but you can do it too. In order to help others on the path to becoming debt free, check out these 8 strategies to pay off debt fast.

8 strategies to pay off debt fast

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Balance Transfer: The Best Way to Pay Off High-Interest Debt

So many of my friends are on the quest to becoming Financially Fit & Fab. I am so proud of everyone.  Last month, I featured MJ’s story of paying off 39k in debt in 21 months.  Since then I have been told that others want to be featured in the future after they become debt-free.  From the snowball method to paying off the debt with the highest interest rate first, people readers don’t know where to start.

One of the questions that I have been asked recently is what is the best way to pay off high-interest debt?

 

The Best Way to Pay Off High-Interest Debt

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5 Credit Lessons I Wish Were Taught in School

Credit is one of those many personal finance topics that should be taught in school.  Unfortunately, I had to learn about credit the hard way.

I’ll never forget when I went to purchase my first “grown up car”. I knew what car I wanted and saved up the down payment. I figured my credit score would be good since I usually paid my bills on time. Boy, was I wrong!  Ultimately, it related to not understanding how my credit score was calculated.  Thankfully, with a little dedication, I was able to raise my credit score over 150 points!

Check out these 5 credit lessons I wish were taught in school.

5 Credit Lessons I Wish were Taught in School

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How I Raised My Credit Score 150+ Points

I will never forget the first time I pulled my credit score.  I was in my early twenties sitting around with college friends.  One friend just received a letter regarding a medical bill in collections that he didn’t realize existed.  So he decided to pull his credit report and credit score to see where he stood.

I thought to myself, I’ve never pulled my credit report before. I followed my friends lead and pulled my credit score too.  I figured it had to be good.  I mean, I paid my bills on time (for the most part).  I only had one $800 credit card from college.

Boy, was I in for the shock of my life!

Staring patiently at the screen, it finally came up.  My credit score was a 580!  580!  No, that had to be wrong.  I was mortified.  I thought I was responsible.  I thought my credit score would reflect that.

My credit score was only part of the story.  Therefore, I took the following steps to raise my credit score.

raise my credit score

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The Only Way to Get your Free Credit Report!

The last few weeks we have been talking about credit! In case you missed the previous posts, check out Credit Report Basics and Do you Have a Good Credit Score? Let’s discuss the only way to obtain a copy of your free credit report!

The Only Way to Get your Free Credit Report

Before you start building or repairing your credit, make sure you obtain a copy of your free credit report.  Many companies will advertise that they can supply the report for you.  Don’t get tricked by impostors!  The only website that you can obtain a free copy of your credit report is annualcreditreport.com!

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Crash Course in your Credit Report

I asked what topics the readers were most interested in and I heard the suggestions loud and clear!  So look forward to more posts regarding credit, saving, investing and traveling for less!  To kick things off, this post lays the foundations of credit: what information is included in your credit report and how that information affects your credit score.
Each person has more than one credit report.  There are various credit reporting agencies in the United States like Experian, Equifax and TransUnion and each reporting agency has its own credit report.  The credit reports from each agency may differ some; however, there are four main categories on all of the reports.  The four main categories are Personal Information, Trade Lines, Credit Inquires, and Public Record and Collections.

 

Crash Course in your Credit Report

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