Learn How to Read Your Free Credit Reports to Help You Manage Your Money
The different sections and categories can be confusing if you've never read your credit report before
You probably know that the law entitles you to a free copy of your credit report every year from the three major credit reporting bureaus: Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion. You may even know that the best place to request copies of these reports is AnnualCreditReport.com. But do you know how to read your report when you get it?
Your credit report is split into roughly three general sections: personal information, public record information, and creditor information. Each section contains the following information:
- Personal Information: Your name, address, etc.
- Public Record Information: Any bankruptcies, liens, or wage garnishments
- Creditor Information: The main content of the report in which you'll find details on each credit account that you've opened
Your accounts fall into one of two main categories: accounts in good standing and possibly negative items. For instance, if you've paid any accounts late or had any accounts sent to collections, these will probably be in the "negative items" category.
If you have any negative items, look over each one carefully and make sure they're real. If you find any mistakes, you can dispute them. If there are several negative items and none are errors, you'll have to work on improving your credit.
Fixing Your Credit
The best way to fix poor credit—and to keep good credit—is to pay your debts on time and in full. In addition, keep open any accounts that are in good standing, and don't use any more of your credit than you absolutely have to. It will take time to fix your credit, but reviewing your credit reports is the key to starting.
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So you're finally ready to trade in your current car for a new one! Congratulations on such an important step. If you've never bought a new car before, you may know nothing about the process. To begin with, there are a number of things you should do to get ready to buy the car before you ever step on the dealership lot.
Can you Use Money That Is Mistakenly Deposited Into Your Account?
Have you ever noticed that your bank account somehow had 'extra' money in it even though you knew for a fact it wasn't yours? If so, you are not alone. It happens more often than you would think. All it takes is for a bank teller to type in one wrong number at the time a deposit is being made.
Low Interest Automotive Financing Might Not Be Best Deal After All
Great rates do exist. But even if you are offered a low interest car loan, you can probably save more money by accepting a slightly higher rate and using rebates or other incentives or by getting your own financing and taking the rebates and incentives.
Following These Tips Can Help You Save Your Hard-Earned Money at Tax Time
Many people feel like they just can't get ahead when it comes to money. What you may not know is that saving during tax season can start you on the path to financial security. We urge you to take advantage of tax season to prepare for unexpected emergencies or plan for the future. Here are some tips to help get started.