Posts Categorized: Credit and Debt

All throughout April, we’re posting educational financial literacy content in honor of national Financial Literacy Month. One of the key financial literacy topics that people don’t readily grasp is calculating interest. Many of us are fine with basic math, but when it comes to estimating gains or costs associated with interest rates, we struggle. A…

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Big changes are underway with regard to credit reporting, and those changes will impact how credit scores are calculated. These changes appear across the board to be good for consumers. The reform is a voluntary effort by the 3 major credit bureaus—Experian, Equifax, and TransUnion—and it’s called the “National Consumer Assistance Plan”. This idea has…

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We frequently see married credit counseling clients who come to us by themselves and do not want their spouses to find out about their debts.

Either one partner has secretly been using credit cards without his/her spouse’s knowledge and has gotten in too deep, or one person in the relationship is responsible for managing all of the family’s finances and, having failed to keep debt under control, doesn’t want anyone to find out.

Over the past few years there’s a trend online of financial experts recommending college students get credit cards. Is this really a good idea? This strain of advice usually includes some of the following arguments: Having credit helps establish a good credit history. Using credit early is educational and can teach the user how to…

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In short, your credit utilization is the percentage of total credit used in comparison with the total credit available. Calculate your utilization by dividing your balance by your limit. For a simple example, let’s say you have one credit card, and it has a 10,000 dollar limit. If you owe $2,500 on that account, your…

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Do you want to close a credit card account but are unsure how it will affect your credit score? There are many reasons why we may want to close a credit card, such as avoiding annual fees, too many fees, high interest rates, or unsatisfactory customer service. Whatever the reason, please review the following to determine what is best for you:

The Fair Isaac Corporation FICO™ states “They would never recommend closing a credit card for the sole purpose of raising the score.”

Many student loan borrowers feel helpless in the face of tens of thousands of dollars of student loan debt. There is popular support among them for student loan forgiveness, but there are misconceptions about these programs that need to be cleared up. A recent report from LendEDU found that nearly half of all college students…

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A common response to a financial crisis when there are bills involved is to stop answering the phone or opening the mail. This is a big mistake. Letting bills pile up unopened takes away your ability to respond to the situation effectively. Even if you can’t pull together the funds to address a particular bill,…

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