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There was a time when banks were reluctant to give home loans to Americans. Thanks to FHA loans, many Americans got the opportunity to buy a house. Buying on credit used to be something you did at your local general store or department store—and you had to build a relationship of trust with the managers of the store before you got that kind of deal. I think our modern generation doesn’t understand why credit is a luxury rather than an entitlement. It’s still a system of trust—-although it has been tainted by the mortgage scandals of the late 2000s. The older generation of Americans saved up their money and bought stuff with one payment. Credit cards didn’t exist. We are very lucky to have access to credit, but it’s not a necessity.
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Pavelka and his wife weren’t always so well off. He grew up in Cleveland, off Buckeye Road, raised with his brother by his single mother after his father died when he was 1. The three lived in the upstairs of a house owned by his grandfather, surviving on Social Security and VA death benefits. His wife, Helga, an immigrant from Austria, had a similarly tight upbringing.
Pavelka found out about his stellar credit score after he went shopping recently at Bass Pro Shop outside of Toledo. Pavelka is an avid hunter, and the store had a sale on a piece of equipment. Plus, if you used a Bass Pro credit card, the store would pay your sales tax, which would amount to more than $50 for his big purchase.
Whole thing seems to be a scam to me. I have credit cards, two mortgage payments, car payments – never missed – never late and my credit score drops because I shop for better rates. My thought … someone does not want to do business with me – fine by me but so far when the question comes up – I demand the interest rate of the day and somehow they always come through when I threaten to walk. Home loan #1 3.2, Home loan #2 4.2 – will redo it when the value of the property increases, car loan #1 1.9, car loan #2 1.9. Yes I have a card that is loaded to capacity because I transferred others to it because it’s 0% interest. So my thought is – let the reporting agencies play their games – I’ll keep playing mine
Anonymous, you hit it right on the nail. My family and I are very loyal to our homeowner, who we’ve been renting a home from for almost 9 years (all payments made on time), and we now have to move. However, we’ve been having difficulty getting a loan due to our bad credit scores (though we all work very hard). Maybe one day we’ll own a house, though we can only hope.
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NOOOOOO! Do not close them. That will also kill your credit score. As long as you aren’t being charged a hefty annual fee, there’s no reason to close your cards. The longer the life of the credit line, the better for your credit. And certainly do not close any cards while you have a balance on it.
Many people out there have struggled through this “depression” and their credit scores have gone down. Yet they have managed to survive and pay their bills. They have paid late, because of loss of jobs etc. Its been reported that 75% of the country have a 620 score or below. An now they are being tagged as poor credit. They are the ones who struggled to stay out of foreclosure, or bankruptcy. You are the middle class who are the victims. Start calling your congressman and woman to change the Dodd Frank banking laws.
my house, paid for. car paid for, work truck paid for, I keep credit cards in the single digits utilization, currently less than 2%. My score is 753. whatever, I don’t need to buy a car or house or take out a loan to raise my score! geez, I still use 0% cards, usually with $100 or so bonus then more rewards. I only established any kind of score a couple years ago, reports said I had no history…takes time & for sure never miss a payment, maybe couple more years I might get up to 780?
The only time to ever consider carrying a balance month-to-month on a credit card is if you have a card that has an introductory offfer of zero percent APR for a given amount of time (usually 6-18 months). In this case, you can use it as an interest-free loan. For example, you could get a card that has zero APR for 12 months and put $1200 on it, knowing that you can easily afford to pay $100 per month. You diligently pay the $100 each month and, at the end of the year, it’s completely paid off and you’ve paid absolutely no interest on it. This only works if you don’t charge anything else to the card or, if you do, if you pay off whatever you charge in full each month, in addition to paying the $100. This isn’t a good habit to get into, and it certainly isn’t recommended for frivolous purchases, but it is a nice way to beat the banks at their own game.
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Failure to repay your debt as you originally agreed to do can negatively impact your scores. From missed and late payments to charge-offs, collections, and settled accounts, you will find many things that can impact you if you are not careful.
When you receive a credit score, you should also receive scale information like the one above. Looking at the context of where your score stands is more important than the actual number itself. You will also probably receive some information about why your score is what it is. That’s the information you want to focus on because it will provide a roadmap for boosting your score, says Susan Henson, a consumer credit expert at Experian.
Im a junior in college with loans and 2 credit cards, currently my credit score is 759. I am planning on working over the summer and I intend on buying a car, do you think I should wait for a bit longer and try to increase my score, or do you think I will be able to get decent rates with what I currently have?
This is ludacrious! My score is 602. I paid off my vehicle 1 year ago. I have no student loan. I have no debt but all has been paid off over a year now. My score continues to come down. The credit systems or maybe operator head space? Know what I mean? People enter information into computer. Junk in junk out (JIJO).
Payment History: Paying your credit card bills and making loan payments on time will positively impact your credit score. Missing payments, making late payments, or paying less than the minimum payment can hurt your credit.
My strategie is to never charge more on my credit cards than I can pay off in one month.  This has meant learning how to not only budget, but to put my needs before my wants.  Also to all who are just starting out, one of the most important lessons is to pay yourself first……….savings, 401, pension plan, etc.  This is a very important habit to get into.  Fashions come and go, styles change with the seasons, but having a good monetary foundation to fall back on in case of emergency is a must.  Buying a home that has a mortgage that is within reach of one person’s pay check is a must………big homes are beautiful and expensive to maintain, start small and work up to what you really want.  For the last 30 years I have had the equivilent of 6 months net pay in my savings account.  It was very difficult at first, but in the long run kept us from defaulting on our mortgage or falling behind on credit card/loan payments if one of us was out of work.  
Putting money in a savings account and then borrowing against it (“secured loan”) in order to build or maintain credit is one of the dumbest ideas I’ve ever heard. If you’re not a banker or a financier of some sort, you ought to be. What you are saying, in effect, is that you’re willing to give the banks your money (via interest) in order to maintain what is ultimately a completely arbitrary credit score.
If you find that you have a pretty lengthy history of late and missed payments, then your scores on each scoring model will be negatively impacted by your inability to make payments. When determining your score, each scoring model will take a closer look at how recently you have missed a payment or were late, how many accounts were late, and how many total payments on each account were missing or late.
I had the same problem! I saw that  my credit score was high so I was thinking hmmm why not go and apply for a credit card, thought I could manage it but then temptation got out of hand. So my credit score is EXTREMELY low, very shortly after opening up the accounts. Its good to know that if I just pay off the balances and keep the balance lower than 30% my credit will shoot back up 🙂
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It is not the same. The point is that you are paying interest on the secured loan, whereas with the secured credit card you are not, provided of course that you pay off the balance in full each month. Once you build some credit by making payments on time each month (and in full, to avoid interest charges), you can then apply for an unsecured credit card and, once approved, you can cancel the secured card and get your money back, just as you would have with the loan – with the advantage being that you won’t have paid any interest at all to the bankers. Again, the point is to avoid paying interest.
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But that doesn’t mean you should apply for every line of credit you’re offered. Multiple inquiries from lenders for your credit reports in a short period can trim your score, especially if you don’t have many credit accounts or you have a short credit history. Be especially careful when car shopping because Detweiler has heard lots of complaints from consumers whose scores dropped when they had several dealers pulling their reports for financing options. Rather than let a dealer shop your credit, choose a lender you like beforehand and get pre-approved for a loan.

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