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protect your money Archives - Fair Debt Collection Help

03 Jul

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How to Improve Your Credit Score

July 3, 2013 | By | No Comments

Whether you would like to improve your credit score or simply maintain the good score you already have, there are steps you can take.

Graphs showing credit scores

photo by: i am real estate photographer

  • Check your report.

    Whether you have excellent credit or a less desirable credit report, be sure to check it. This will allow you to see any errors or any suspicious activity associated with your credit. You could have paid something on time, but it came up as a late payment. You could have possibly opened an account a while ago and forgot all about it. This is also a great way to check if you’ve had a problem with identity theft. If there are any accounts you don’t recognize, you’ll want to report them immediately to the credit bureau. You can check your report for free once a year by visiting AnnualCreditReport.com. It’s free to see your credit report, but you’ll have to pay a small fee to see your actual score.
  • Get organized with your bills.

    Since late payments are horrible for your credit score, you need to pay your bills on time. Late payments are flagged on your credit report and cause your score to go down. It can also cause your interest rate to go up and late fees to be added to your bill. On the other hand, making your payments on time will start to improve your score. Keep track of when your bills are due. The same way you mark on your calendar doctor’s appointments and items due for work or school, mark down when your bill is due. Sign up for automatic payments or a reminder that will be e-mailed to you when your bill is almost due.
  • Make a payment plan for your debt.

    If you’re struggling with debt and also dealing with a less desirable credit report, it can feel overwhelming. But it is possible to deal with it and come out on top. Make a plan of dealing with any debt you have as well as any accounts that are past due. Your plan may have to include finding ways to save money in your monthly budget so you can put it towards bills and/or debt payments. There are ways you can save money on food. Try to make more careful choices about purchasing wants over needs, and try to lower your utilities.
  • Work with anything you have past due.
    If you have an account that is past due, the worst thing you can do is just ignore it. Call the company, and face it. It is possible that they will work with you to go on a payment plan. For student loans, it is possible you can defer your payments if you are unemployed, still in school, or experiencing economic hardship. You can also put your loans in forbearance, which means you pay a fee, then you do not have to make a payment for a certain amount of months without any penalties.

On top of dealing with a low credit score, you may have been contacted by a debt collector. Remember that there are a lot of things that debt collectors can’t do or say. If you
you feel like a creditor violated your rights, call The Law Firm of Mitch Luxenburg’s experienced fair debt collection attorneys toll-free at (877) 846-1209 to find out how we can help you or complete our online form for a free FDCPA case review.

19 Jun

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8 Ways to Avoid Identity Theft

June 19, 2013 | By | No Comments

Identity theft is a booming problem that affects more than 10 million Americans per year leading to debt and financial disparity. But there are several ways to avoid having your identity stolen, and here’s how:

Man at ATM inserting his bank card

photo by: thinkpanama

  1. Guard your PIN. It sounds simple, but watch peering eyes while you’re visiting ATMs.
  2. Enter information online cautiously. Be sure a website is safe and secure before entering any credit card, bank, or other personal information. If you have any doubt, call to confirm it’s the right website.
  3. Keep your social security number safe. Don’t carry around your card unless necessary, and be cautious of who you give your number to.
  4. Protect your mail. Heading on vacation? Stop your mail to avoid any mail theft. If you’re moving, be sure to forward your mail to your new address.
  5. Shred your documents. Prevent thieves from attaining your personal information in your trash.
  6. Have a prepared list of your account numbers and expiration dates. If your wallet or credit card does get stolen, you’ll be able to immediately call your banks and lenders to freeze them and get a new card before a thief gets a chance to act.
  7. Use a strong password for accounts. While it may be easier just to use a simple password for everything, use a strong password that wouldn’t be easy to guess. Use a mix of capital and lowercase letters, numbers and symbols.
  8. Review your credit report. Check your credit report and credit score often to monitor for any suspicious behavior or inaccurate information.
  9. If a debt collector has been contacting you because of false debt from identity theft and has violated your request that they cease contacting you or is otherwise violating your rights, call The Law Firm of Mitch Luxenburg’s experienced fair debt collection attorneys toll-free at (877) 846-1209 to find out how we can help you or complete our online for a free FDCPA case review.