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Five Ways to Improve Your Credit Rating

/ BY / Credit 101

Do your New Year's resolutions include improving your credit score? A low credit score makes borrowing money and using credit cards more expensive. Banks and lending companies see you as a bigger risk, so you end up paying higher interest on loans and on credit card debt. If the difficult economy of the past few years has caused your credit score to plummet, this year could be a good time to send it upwards again. Here are some tips you can use to boost your scores: Check your credit report for errors. Under federal law, you're entitled every 12 months to request a free credit report from each of the major credit reporting agencies (Equifax, Experian and TransUnion)...

Paying Down Debt

/ BY / Managing Debt

Paying down debt is a smart financial move--no one ever misses the monthly payments or high interest rates that come along with every credit card. The trick is figuring out a way to pay down your debt that actually works for you. Build a debt reduction plan that leads to success by beginning with a clear understanding of your financial resources and your debt load. It’s a good idea to put pencil to paper and build a budget that supports your financial goals. Carefully list all of your outgoing expenses, and then add together your income. Adjust your expenses so that you have a budget that will support your goal to pay down your debt. It also helps to have an emergency savings account in place...

Smart Credit Card Use

/ BY / Credit Cards

Credit cards often get a bad rap, but they can actually be beneficial to your overall financial health. Smart use of a credit card can add flexibility and value to your budget while helping you develop or improve your credit. Experts and savvy credit card users agree that in order to avoid heavy interest fees or become too dependent on credit cards, you must manage your credit card wisely. With literally hundreds of credit card companies vying for your business, choosing the right one can be a daunting task. As you narrow down the list, consider these tips: Choose the lowest interest rate card you qualify for. Compare set-up, maintenance, and transaction fees. Choose perks credit cards that...

 

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