Author - Ncredible Credit

Learning the Tricks of the Credit Card Trade

Credit cards seem like such an easy way to pay for everything – online, over the phone, and in person. You don’t have to fiddle for cash; all you have to do is swipe or insert the card so the machine can read the chip. In most cases, you don’t even have to sign for your purchases. Some credit cards are simply tap and go.

All of this is amazingly convenient, but it is also very easy to lose track of what you are spending, and end up maxed out on one or more of your cards.

Rewards for Shopping
In addition to the convenience of a credit card, companies often offer special rewards and incentives for using their card. Things like air miles, cash back, or points in their gift mall may seem like a good deal, until you consider that studies have shown that people who use reward cards tend to spend an average of 4% more than those using regular cards. Unless you travel a lot, your best deal is cash back, and monitoring your spending.

Another good deal might be a Upromise card linked to a 529 educational savings account if you have children and are planning to send them to college. The card will give you money back, and also register extra money back when you buy Upromise-approved products, such as in the supermarket. You can also invite friends and family to link their cards, for instant rewards.

Note: any money saved in the 529 account will be taken into consideration when it comes time to determine your child’s financial aid, but only if the account is in your name. See if you can get an aunt, uncle or other relative to open the account and then you can all contribute without it affecting your child’s financial aid package.

Attitudes to Money
Some people are very casual about cash. If they have it, they spend it. If not, they live on Ramen noodles for the rest of the month. One of the main driving factors for spending is emotional. It might be to keep up with what others have. It could also be that you work so hard, you feel you deserve a little treat. Look at all of the credit card ads with smiling, happy people going on vacation, dining out, or buying their dream item. It’s easy to get tempted, and that is exactly what the credit card companies are banking on.

The Offer That Is Too Good to Be True
The 0% APR offer for “X” months is a common lure credit card companies use to get new customers. It can be bad for a number of reasons. The credit limit and fixed term often tempt a person to use the full amount offered, treating it like “free money” because they don’t have to pay it back at the end of the month. They estimate they have, for example, a year to pay the bill. But what happens as the year draws to a close, and all the accumulated interest will fall due unless the full amount is paid in time?

A second reason these offers are too good to be true is that every time you sign up for one, it shows up as an inquiry on your credit report. Too many will lower your credit score.

A third reason is that having more than one card makes it easy to lose track of your spending and the amount of time you spend paying bills and juggling payments. The simpler, the better when it comes to finances.

Want more insight and information on the perks and pitfalls of credit cards? Ncredible Credit Repair can open your eyes to all the tricks of the trade. Contact us today for a free credit consultation.

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Steps To Get Your Credit Score Under Control

Your FICO score is important when it comes to buying a home. Your ability to qualify for a bank loan, as well as the terms of that loan, is dependent on your credit score, as is whether you’re able to finance or access your equity down the road. Whether you are buying a home or already own one, lenders want to see a positive FICO score that indicates good credit history. For this reason, FICO score is important even beyond the initial purchase of the home.

Credit repair can be a tricky business, and no matter how you choose to go about it, it generally takes some time to accomplish. But what if you need to improve your FICO score fast? Say you need a better score to get qualified for a line of credit, buy a new car or refinance your house. What can you do to raise your credit score quickly? Here are four steps you can take to boost your score for a multi-pronged approach to credit repair.

1. Check Your Credit Report
The first thing you need to do to start working on your credit is to give your report a thorough review. Be sure there are no errors, and get an idea of where you need the most work. You can get a free copy of your report once a year from each of the three major credit bureaus. Immediately take action to clear up any inaccuracies on your report.

2. Lower Your Debt-To-Credit Ratio
Your debt-to-credit ratio essentially describes how much your creditors were willing to loan you versus how much of that amount you’ve used. It’s also referred to as credit utilization. The lower the percentage of available credit you’re using, the higher your credit score. While you can help improve this ratio by moving balances around to reduce utilization percentages, raising your credit score is much more likely if you are able to pay down balances without creating more debt.

3. Pay Down Loan Balances
Lower loan balances can mean a higher credit score. Making extra payments or payments larger than the minimum as prescribed by your lenders can go a long way toward chipping away at your loan balances. If you’re aiming for a significantly higher credit score in a hurry, you might consider finding a way to obtain a lump sum of money to pay down your loans. Paying off large loans like car loans and mortgages can have a big effect on your debt-to-credit ratio.

4. Make All Payments On Time
One single late payment can…
To read the rest of this article by Jarred Kessler, please click >>here<<.

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Bankruptcy and Bankruptcy Alternatives

Which Is Right For You?​
Should you file for bankruptcy or not? This is a decision many are wrestling with. The truth is, you probably have more options than you realize.

Here are six Bankruptcy Alternative strategies:

#1) Negotiate 
Initially, you should call up the companies you owe money to and attempt to arrange an alternative payment plan. In many instances they will be willing to work with you.

#2) Hire a credit counselor 
This is more effective than the first option, unless you are a master negotiator.  Sure, it’s more expensive, but it’s usually much more effective. And in most instances your creditors are more willing to work with a legitimate company than an individual.

  • What will they do for you? They basically help work out a more favorable repayment plan. But in most instances these firms will only deal with unsecured obligations.
  • What’s a “more favorable plan?” They generally attempt to do either one of three things: get the grand total reduced, get better interest rates, or lengthen the amount of time you can pay it back by. All of these will make the payments easier to deal with.
  • How do the counselors determine who they will work with? They will want to know how much money you make. They have to know this to figure out if it’s possible for you to pay off your debts with the new terms.

What if they decide not work with you? Do you have to file bankruptcy? Not necessarily. There are still more options.

#3) Get a debt consolidation loan
This is where you take out a loan for the amount of your home’s value in order to reduce your debt. Obviously you stand to lose your house if you can’t pay your debt. Therefore you need to think long and hard about this. It is worth speaking to a certified professional before making such a big decision.

For some, having a monthly loan payment is much more manageable than credit card debt. This is because the interest is applied all at the beginning, so it doesn’t keep accruing.

#4) Lower your expenses
This is the simplest and easiest method. Just take a very close look at where your money is going.

Check your credit card for the past month and notice the charges. Cancel any monthly payments from companies you aren’t using. Chances are, there are more than a few in this category. Focus on the big expenses, because those are the ones that are making the most difference.

#5) Sell nonessential items
Think about getting rid of that second car you own. Consider taking out the money in an investment portfolio and using that to pay things off. Sell your TV. All these things can make a big difference.

#6) Get a loan from a loved one
This is obviously not a good option for everyone but in some cases it may be the right thing to do.

If you try all of the above and still feel that you need to file for bankruptcy, contact us! We know several affordable bankruptcy attorneys.

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Choosing (and Creating) Good Credit to Boost Your Credit File

Credit can be a fickle thing and complicated to those who are unsure of how credit works. Credit is a billion dollar a year industry and while most of that represents debt that families and individuals are struggling to get out from under, it also represents the possibilities that credit can offer.

When handled appropriately and with smart decision making, credit can be a great thing that offers opportunities and advancement to you. Most people think of credit as how you are able to get a house, a vehicle or other loans for items of value, but credit is also used to judge the character about a person when they are applying for a rental house, a job or other life advancements.

It’s important to take the time to choose and create the right mix of accounts to reflect good credit, then maintain those accounts to boost your credit rating and score for the ultimate level of possibility in the future.

So, how do you know which are good accounts to have and which are ones to avoid?

There are several different types of accounts. The most popular are:

  • Revolving Credit/Charge Cards – Visa/Mastercard/AMEX/Discover (approvals from banks like Chase, Bank of America, Credit Unions, etc.) Can be used anywhere Visa, MasterCard, AMEX and Discover are accepted.
    • Charge Cards – Best Buy, JCPenney, Dillards, etc. Can only be used with that particular store/retail business.
  • Installment Loans – Personal Loans (signature and secured), Auto Loans, etc.
  • Mortgages – Loans secured by Real Estate

The main type we will focus on in this article is Revolving Credit/Charge Cards.

Revolving Credit
This form of credit allows you to borrow money up to a certain amount. The lending institution sets a credit limit, or the most you can borrow. In revolving credit, the borrower revolves the balance by rolling from month to month until it is paid in full. Interest charges typically occur for any revolving balance. As the money is paid back, the difference between the maximum credit limit and the current balance is available to be borrowed. This is the most common form of credit issued by credit cards, such as Visa, MasterCard, and store and gas cards. Credit cards are considered unsecured credit because there is no collateral securing the amount borrowed.

Charge Cards
This form of credit is often mistaken to be the same as a revolving credit card. However, the major difference between a credit card and a charge card is the credit card can carry a balance, whereas the charge card must be paid in full each month. If the balance is not paid on time and in full, penalty fees will be added. American Express is an example of a well-known charge card. This form of credit is advantageous against accumulating credit card debt.

If you’re looking to build your credit, start by checking your 3-Credit Bureau report with www.freescore360.com (free 7-day trial).*

After you find out your credit score, check out a few of our favorite cards (based on customer and client feedback):

  • Horizon Gold  – $500 Limit, No Credit Check, No Employment Check, & Fast Online Application
  • OxPublishing – $2,500 Charge Card, 0% interest for 6 months, Fast Online Application & NO membership dues
  • MyJewelers Club – $5,000 Charge Card; Guaranteed approval;
  • Hutton Chase – Guaranteed Approval, $1,500.00 Credit Line, NO Application Denied For Bad Credit, 0% interest
  • Credit Builder Card – $200 Secured Card, No Credit Score Required, Instant Approval, AMAZING customer service
  • Indigo Card – Choose your own Custom Card Design & Free 24/7 Account Access
  • Milestone Gold Card – Choose your own Custom Card Design, Free 24/7 Account Access & Bill Pay

As with anything we enjoy, credit can be of fantastic benefit if used properly. Please be sure to use these cards (and your good credit) wisely.

To your success!! 🙂

Do you have more questions or want more information about credit report or credit repair? Schedule your free consultation with one of our Credit Education Specialists today.

*Our posts may contain affiliate links! If you buy something through our links, you won’t pay a penny more, but we’ll get a small commission, which helps keep the lights on. We’ve tested each account/product thoroughly and give recommendations only to what we feel would be best for our clients.

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