08Sep/15
Mixed race woman paying bills on digital tablet

The Impact of Minimum Payments on Your Credit Score

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Protecting your credit score is one of the best things you can do for your financial life. A good credit score not only makes it easier to get credit-based applications approved but also saves you money on interest and security deposits. You may already know that payment history is one of the most important factors of your credit score, counting 35% of your FICO score. But does the payment amount matter? And more specifically, do minimum payments hurt your credit score? Continue reading

31Aug/15
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Could My Business Loan Wreck My Credit?

A couple I’ll call Jake and Marcia purchased a coffee shop. The business was really Marcia’s dream, not his, but she was persistent and he reluctantly agreed to try to help out. Things went badly from the start and within less than 18 months they were forced to shut it down. But that wasn’t the worst of it. Because they had obtained a loan that required a personal guarantee to purchase the business, they were facing the possibility of losing the home where they raised their children. Needless to say, their relationship was also quickly going south, with Jake accusing his wife of putting their entire future at risk. Continue reading

21Aug/15
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Will an old address on my credit report hurt my credit score?

One of the things your credit report includes is a list of your current and previous addresses. Credit bureaus get updates about your address from creditors and other businesses that report to credit bureaus. Each time your address changes, creditors report the new address along with your other credit report information. Can these old addresses hurt your credit score? Continue reading

19Aug/15
credit-report

What is a Credit Report and Why is it Important?

Your credit report is a compilation of information about the way you handle debt. It includes information about how much debt you’ve accumulated, how you pay your bills, where you live, where you work, whether you’ve filed bankruptcy, and whether you’ve had a home foreclosed or vehicle repossessed. If it sounds like your credit report contains a lot of information, that’s because it does. Continue reading

12Aug/15
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4 Ways Your Driving Habits Could Wreck Your Credit Score

My daughter recently turned 15, and one of the first things she did on her birthday was to take an online test required to get her learner’s permit. She passed, and now she’s driving. I don’t have to lecture her on safe driving habits; she’s been doing that to me for years. And she’s more up to speed on the rules of the road than I am.

But what I do have to explain is how driving may affect her credit in the future. They don’t teach that in Driver’s Ed, and it’s something most of us don’t think about until it affects us.
Here are four ways that driving can have significant, long-term impact on your credit. Continue reading