Credit Repair After The Holidays

Credit Repair After The Holidays

Credit Repair After Christmas The holidays are a wonderful time of the year filled with family time and joyful experiences.  They can also be a time when extended travel, purchasing gifts and other expenses can take a toll on debt loads and credit scores. Additionally, the holidays are also a notoriously popular time for credit card fraud, identity theft and other white collar crimes.  In this article we will cover some tips for how to stay within your limits this holiday season and also how to recover if you are a victim of a crime that impacts your credit score. Holiday Budgeting It can be easy to get carried away during the holiday season, maxing out credit cards and wearing savings thin to pay for extra travel expenses and to get the perfect gifts for your loved ones.  The following are some tips for keeping your financial standing upright leading into the New Year. Make a Budget – Set up a holiday financial plan that includes planned and unexpected expenses Be Frugal with Travel – Traveling during the holidays can be the most expensive time of the year.  Look for the best all inclusive deals or stay with relatives to keep costs down. Don’t Max Out Cards – Instead of maxing out one credit card use other options such as store lines of credit to level out the debt to income ratio   What to Do if Your Information Gets Stolen If you have your identity stolen or your credit card number used fraudulently during the holiday season, it can have a major impact on your credit score.  The first thing to do is close your credit cards and notify the bank of the situation.  The next thing you need to do is follow the steps for identity theft recovery.  Refer to our series of articles on Identity Theft for more help. After you have done this be sure to consult with credit repair specialist about restoring your score.  Reach out to an expert on our credit repair hotline when you are ready.  Call us...

Read More

What Makes up a FICO Credit Score?

What Makes up a FICO Credit Score?

On our Credit Restoration page we outlined the categories used to derive a credit score.  To review, those categories are the following… Payment History – 35% Amount Owed – 30% History of Credit – 15% Inquiries – 10% Account Diversity – 10% Today we are going to take a deeper look inside each of these categories including a few credit building tips that will show you how to improve your credit score for FREE!  As always, if you are looking for assistance on how to repair your credit quickly, effectively and at a low cost, be sure to contact us. Payment History These factors make up 35% of the FICO score. Payment info on specific types of accounts (credit cards, installment loans, mortgage, etc.) Negative public records (bankruptcy, suits, liens, judgments, wage garnishments etc.) Collection items, and/or past due items Severity of delinquency (how long past due) $ past due on delinquent or collection accounts Recency of delinquency, public records and collection items. # of past due items on file Number of accounts paid as agreed   Amount Owed Debt amount makes up 30% of the score, and also impacts the debt-to-income (DTI) ratio another tool lenders use when qualifying a loan application. $ owed on accounts (including specific types) # of accounts with balances Lack of a specific type of balance, in some cases Credit Utilization Rate (CUR) – The percentage represented by the amount owed on an account divided by the credit limit of the same account.  This also applies at the aggregate level for all revolving lines of credit for a consumer.   Length of Credit History This is the part of your credit profile that you have no physical control over.  The sooner you establish good credit practices the better. How long accounts have been opened How long accounts have been opened (measured by specific type of account) Time since last account activity     Inquiries & New Credit Only 10% but the easiest to control Number of recent credit inquiries (all credit pulls within 30 days count as 1 – for rate shopping) Time since last credit inquiry (month-to-month) # of recently opened accounts (by amount & type) Time since recent account opening(s), (by type) Re-establishment of positive credit history following past payment problems     Account Diversity Account mix makes up 10% of the FICO score and acts as a mechanism to help prevent the manipulation of scores. myFico.com defines Account Diversity as… “Number...

Read More

How Do Events Impact Your Credit Score?

How Do Events Impact Your Credit Score?

So how does foreclosure impact your credit score?  What about other damaging item like Bankruptcy? Until recently the credit agencies have been very secretive about what will happen to your FICO score after you start to fall behind on your payments. Just recently Fair Isaac, which is the company that developed FICO scores, has come out with some estimates (averages) on how your credit score will be impacted based upon mortgage delinquency. Here are their numbers… 30 days late: 40 – 110 points 90 days late: 70 – 135 points Foreclosure, Short sale, or Deed-in-Lieu: 85 – 160 points Bankruptcy: 130 – 240 points   Fair Isaac came up with these numbers based upon averages of different types of people, some of which had multiple (7-10) creditors and some with much less (1-4). They also factored in length of credit history, number of past missed payments and previous damaged accounts. As you can see the credit penalty to your FICO score becomes much more dramatic once you get 90 days or more behind on payments. This is due to the likelihood of full payment decreasing after this time. Also these point losses affect someone with a higher score much more dramatically than someone with a sub-par score to start with. So how do these FICO scores affect your personal finances? Well the average savings for someone with a good vs. mediocre credit score for auto insurance is about $115 a year. I’m not sure what type of car you drive but I’m sure that is at least a couple extra tanks of gas per year or a nice dinner on a birthday or anniversary. Point being everyone could use an extra $115 dollars. Now if auto insurance was the only thing affected by FICO scores… How about home owners insurance, car loans, home loans, renting an apartment, or getting a new job. Credit scores affect your personal life in so many different ways. When you apply for a loan or job, remember that every point counts!...

Read More