credit scores

Student Loan Debt Preventing Consumers From Buying First Homes

Student Loan Debt Preventing Consumers From Buying First Homes

First-time home buyers accounted for only a third of the homes purchased over the last year. The below-average number is thanks in part to American’s growing student loan debt. With high monthly payments and increased credit risk, student loan debt is keeping some first-time home buyers from entering the housing market; a trend that doesn’t appear to be turning around anytime soon. [More]

Discover Giving Free FICO Scores To All Cardholders, But Are They Actually Useful?

Discover Giving Free FICO Scores To All Cardholders, But Are They Actually Useful?

All Americans are, as Consumerist is happy to remind you, entitled to access their own annual credit reports for free. But those reports are just that: reports. They don’t come with credit scores on them. For those, you still have to pay. Unless, that is, you happen to have a Discover card–and maybe, someday, other major credit cards, too. [More]

(me and the sysop)

Young Adults Not Eager To Take On Piles Of Credit Card Debt For Some Reason

Everyone has that one relative who was an adult during the Great Depression and hid boxes of cash all over the house because they didn’t trust banks. Someday, your own descendants might share tales of weird old Aunt Mykayla, who entered the workforce during the Great Recession and refused to get credit cards or even buy a car. [More]

Legislation Would Give Consumers 120 Days To Resolve Medical Debts Before Dinging Credit Reports

Legislation Would Give Consumers 120 Days To Resolve Medical Debts Before Dinging Credit Reports

Consider the following: 1-in-10 insurance claims are processed incorrectly; debt collectors are using account information that may be incomplete, inaccurate and out-of-date; once reported to a credit bureau, medical debt — whether real or erroneous — can do severe damage to your credit score. Perhaps it couldn’t hurt to give consumers a chance to challenge or resolve medical debts before collectors report them to the credit bureaus? [More]


Advocates Call On Senate To Remove Paid Medical Debt From Credit Reports

Medical bills can be outrageously high, and usually there’s a direct relationship between the unexpectedness of a procedure and its cost. Sometimes, no financial planning in the world can forestall unforeseen medical expenses. Yet if any medical debt ends up on your credit report, it can remain there for up to seven years — even after you’ve paid it in full. That’s why a large coalition of advocacy groups have written Senate leadership asking them to consider the Medical Debt Relief Act. [More]


Green Billing At Macy’s Is Costing Me Lots Of Green

Robert and his wife aren’t poor: they’re currently in the process of buying a vacation home. His wife opened up a Macy’s credit card in order to get an additional discount, because yay for discounts! Robert set up “green” or paperless billing after gaining online access to the account, but it turned out to be more like billess billing: they never saw any bills. Should they have noticed that no bills were coming and checked their spam folders? Maybe. But no bills came. [More]

(Alec Peden)

Bill Would Allow Consumers To Get Free Credit Score When Receiving Free Credit Reports

Right now, U.S. consumers can check each of their three credit reports — from TransUnion, Equifax, and Experian — once a year for free through, but getting your actual credit score will probably cost you. Legislation introduced today seeks to remedy this issue. [More]


“Hey Baby, What’s Your Credit Score?” Is Apparently An Acceptable Courting Question Now

Even if you don’t want to now your credit score for your own financial awareness (which really, you should know it) a new trend on the dating scene implies that you might need to come to dates armed with such knowledge. And we say “armed” because if you’ve been in the dating trenches lately, you know it’s a war out there. Apparently the latest onslaught against your character could come not from being unversed in current affairs, but in having a low credit score or not knowing where your credit ranks at all. [More]


Former Customer Claims Comcast Error Ultimately Cost Him $26,000

When a man in Washington, D.C., canceled his Comcast service in 2010, he probably had no idea that this decision could set off a chain of events that would damage his credit and have him paying more for to refinance his house — and ultimately ending up pleading his case in a U.S. District Court. [More]


Credit-Repair Scammers Hit With $7.4 Million Penalty, Continued To Break Law

I don’t know about you, but if I’m running a scammy business and get hit with a $7.4 million penalty from the federal government, I’m at least going to think twice about running the same scam again. And yet, a Florida couple completely disregarded court orders by continuing to sell people on their illegal credit-repair system. [More]


We Would Like To Shake The Hand Of The Man With A Credit Score Of 848

If you know what your credit score is (and you should), you might know that the best possible score is 850. So the fact that there is a man who has a score of 848 might just impress you — and maybe simultaneously make you super, super jealous that he’s managed to pull that off in this economy. As he explains it, it’s not that he doesn’t have debt. He’s just very wise about how he handles it. [More]

(Plankton 4:20)

One-In-Five Consumers Seeing Significantly Different Credit Scores Than Creditors

Much is made about how much impact your credit scores has on your ability to get a loan, live a happy life and be a good human being. But a new report from the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau claims that one-in-five consumers are seeing scores that are significantly different from what lenders see. [More]

How Capital One Didn't Send One Bill And Cost Me Thousands Of Dollars

How Capital One Didn't Send One Bill And Cost Me Thousands Of Dollars

Alyssa had a perfect credit score. Once. Not too long ago. Before Capital One. She has a card for her small business, and made a small charge around the time that her baby was born. She didn’t receive a statement from Capital One, didn’t remember that there was a charge in the fog of new-mom hormones and things to do, and didn’t pay the nonexistent bill. Months of unpaid bills caused a 200-point drop in her credit score, just as she happened to be applying for a mortgage. Now that one unpaid bill she never got will cost her thousands of dollars. [More]

How Much More Expensive Is It To Have A Bad Credit Score?

How Much More Expensive Is It To Have A Bad Credit Score?

Most people know that having a less-than-perfect credit score makes it more difficult to get a loan. And for those who can manage to be approved for a loan or new credit card, it also means they will end up with higher payments. [More]

Does A Bad Credit Score Mean You'll Be Bad At Your Job?

Does A Bad Credit Score Mean You'll Be Bad At Your Job?

A growing number of employers are running credit checks on potential hires before making a job offer. Unfortunately, there are a large number of people out there whose credit reports are still marred by the recent and ongoing economic troubles. So does it make sense to consider an applicant’s credit history? [More]

How Lower Credit Scores Cost You More Money

How Lower Credit Scores Cost You More Money

People talk a lot about credit scores. Bands play songs about them in TV ads that try to sell you credit reports. It’s generally known that a higher score is better than a lower score. But what really is the difference between a person with a 820 and one with a 620? Is one a better person than the other? Not necessarily, but the person with the 620 score can expect to pay $227 more a month on a $216,000 30-year fixed rate mortgage. Here’s the breakdown. [More]

Freeze Your Credit Report

Freeze Your Credit Report

One way to protect yourself from identity theft is to “freeze” your credit report. This means that no new lines of credit can be opened in your name because lenders are prevented from taking a look at your credit report. This stops identity thieves from opening credit cards under your name and going on spending sprees. It also means extra hassle for you when you want to legitimately open credit. There’s always a tradeoff between security and convenience. Here’s how to do it. [More]

Quick Fixes To Up Your Credit Score

Quick Fixes To Up Your Credit Score

Sweeping things you can do to improve your credit score, such as paying off large loans, aren’t the only moves you can make to appear more attractive to lenders. Small, immediate fixes to your personal finances can go a long way toward your goal. [More]