Five Dangerous Credit Repair Myths That Could Spell Disaster For You

More than ever, during recession times, you should be careful that your credit score stays up. In case your score is lower than it should be, there are many credit repair agencies, which specialize in helping you build it up. Beware though, that there are many unscrupulous organizations, which prey on people like you. If you want results, choose only from among verifiable agencies such as those endorsed by BBB (Better Business Bureau) and ECRA (Ethical Credit Repair Alliance). An ECRA affiliated agent is similar to a realtor in this regard; it's an alliance, which has extremely stringent quality criteria so you can get the best - both in terms of services and fees charged.

Before you go for help, take a look at the most common myths, which more often than not prevent you from taking correct measures to improve your credit score.

1.I will pay all my debts and I am in the clear – If only it were so simple! Your credit score is not written on a blackboard so you could just write it off. This is the history of the way you handled your finances throughout your life. Just paying off all your outstanding debts would not help you improve your score overnight. The truth is that the score would need to be coaxed up gradually by proving that you are a responsible and financially savvy person.

2.If I look for credit counseling, my credit score will suffer – Nothing could be farther from the truth. In fact, you would definitely learn how to deal with your finances if nothing else. However, when you go for counseling you would unquestionably earn much more than information. The counselor would also give you advice and most often, help too, on how to improve your score and avoid debt traps in the future.

3.After I pay my credit cards, closing the accounts would help my credit score – This is yet another tricky myth. Your credit score keeps count of how much credit you are given at any given time. Therefore, a paid up credit card would account for a certain amount of credit to your name, which is a positive trait. Closing the account would take away this advantage from you. Therefore, it is better if you keep the credit card account open and utilize up to 30-40 percent of the available credit.

4.My credit score is locked-in every six months – This is a myth that might have been generated by unscrupulous credit repair agencies so they could milk the hapless customers dry while giving no tangible results over the "lock-in" period. The truth is that the FICO score is dynamic and changes every time new information is entered into your report.

5.I am safe with my credit report if I am always punctual with my payments. If only this could be true! The need for credit repair agencies would be much lower than it is today. The truth is that nobody is safe. Even when you are leading a perfect financial life, there are about 80 percent chances that your report would receive erroneous information and reports, which if not checked and contested would damage your score. This is why you need to keep a close tab on what is entered in your credit report, so you could defend any wrong entries.

 

Marriage Affects Your Credit Score?

Marriage is an important milestone in your personal as well as financial life. Post marriage you could pool your resources, which could boost your personal credit report. You need to be careful about the formalities that have to be completed post marriage such as:

1.Establish continuity - Inform the creditors and credit bureaus about the change in your name, if any. Failure to do so would result in wiping out your credit history, which is never a good thing. Credit scores are affected by the length of recorded financial transactions in your name. Therefore, if your report holds 10 years of information and you fail to transfer it to your married name, your credit report would start afresh, which is a negative thing for you.

2.Joint credit is as good as it is bad – while it is true that joint credit accounts would help you obtaining better terms on your loans, this is a Damocles Sword for both of you. In case the relationship sours at any time in the future, both spouse would remain responsible and bound to these joint accounts, which are not easily, dissolved owing to the different financial capacity of each spouse. At that time you would find it terribly unfair to have to account for the financial mismanagement or problems of your estranged spouse.

3.Beware of large loans – among the first on the list of 'must-haves' would definitely be the purchase of a house. Beware though that this is a huge loan with long-lasting implications. If you are applying for such a loan together, ensure that you weave in clauses that clearly state how the payment would be made in the event of separation or divorce.

4.Raising a family – babies are very important in all marriages. Your credit would be immediately affected with the arrival of a baby. You need to start planning at this time for their education and upbringing. The countdown starts as soon as the child is born as in 18 years he or she would go to college.

5.Number of dependents – it often happens that parents become the responsibility of their children in their old age. More so if there have been no adequate plans for their retirement age. Marriage could bring in additional responsibilities such as old age medical bills, old age home costs, among others which would also affect your finances.

Marriage is a beautiful institution on personal level. On the outside, it is seen as a partnership very much similar to a company where the finances, profits and losses become joint responsibility.

Resources

US Trustee Program

FEDERAL TRADE COMMISSION

NBC-2.com

Useful links
Credit Help: Do It Yourself
quote of the day

A cardinal principle of Total Quality escapes too many managers: you cannot continuously improve interdependent systems and processes until you progressively perfect interdependent, interpersonal relationships. by : Stephen Covey
 
 
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