Wednesday, 28 December 2011

Important Reasons Why You Should Review Your Credit Report

Obtaining a copy of your credit report is empowering. It gives you insight into what financial institutions see when they are deciding if you are credit worthy. Knowing your rating and seeing the status of your accounts lets you know if you can improve the way you handle your finances. Taking an honest look at your financial record is the first step in taking control of your finances.

Look for errors or inaccuracies reported by the financial institutions. If an account is reported as delinquent when you have consistently made payments on time, this can have a negative impact on your rating. Contact the financial institution that is reporting the incorrect data. Inform them of the errors. Provide documentation to verify the accuracy of your claims, if necessary. Ask how long it will take from them to update the correct information with the credit bureau. Review the report again at a later date to find out if the corrections were made.

Protecting yourself from identity theft is another major benefit to checking your financial data. Sometimes your information is compromised and it may be used for another person's benefit without your authorization. If you notice new credit card accounts or loans are taken out in your name, contact the bureau immediately. You should also contact the companies that issued those loans and credit to advise them that you never opened those accounts. Regularly reviewing the data is the best way to ensure that any activity or accounts being reported actually belong to you.

Sometimes the bureaus list incorrect information in your report. They may have misspelled your name, or don't have all of your current and previous addresses. They may also have inaccurately transcribed some of your account numbers. Let the bureau know if there are any mistakes and make sure they are properly fixed.

If your overall rating is low, it is an indication that you need to make some changes with the way you handle your finances. Set a monthly reminder for yourself to ensure you make all of your payments on time. Reassess your budget and cut out unnecessary expenses. Figure out if more money can be used to pay off debts sooner and put into savings.

Having a clear picture of your financial situation will help you realize the changes you need to make. Improving management of your finances takes dedication and patience. Ultimately, it will lead to long-term benefits for you and your family.

Get your credit report now! You can find details about important reasons why you need to review your credit report regularly, today.

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Chip-And-PIN Technology Catching On in the USA

Credit cards based on chip-and-PIN technology continue to make inroads in the United States, according to two recently released studies. It's time for merchants - and their merchant services providers - to brace themselves for the transition from magnetic stripe to chip-and-PIN credit card processing.

Chip-and-PIN relies on a microprocessor chip to store account data on the card and a PIN (personal identification number) to "unlock" it at the point of sale. Also known as the EMV (Europay-MasterCard-Visa) standard, it is considered more secure than the mag stripe technology that has been the basis of credit card processing for more than 40 years. Few great technological inventions such as the credit card mag strip have endured for so long without any innovations.

The United Nations Federal Credit Union (UNFCU) reports one year after it introduced a chip-and-PIN card in the U.S. that there was a 20% jump in revolving balances from October 2010 to February 2011 compared to the same period the previous year. Additionally, total purchases on the card jumped 15%, and applications for the card soared by 153%.

JPMorgan Chase and Wells Fargo have followed UNFCU's lead, separately releasing their own chip-and-PIN cards earlier this year. Like the credit union, the two banks targeted customers who are frequent travelers abroad and often encounter problems using their mag stripe credit cards.

More than 2.5 million EMV cards are expected to be released to U.S. cardholders in 2011, according to the Aite Group, a leading independent research and advisory firm focused on business, technology and regulatory issues and their impact on the financial services industry. Its recent study shows an increased optimism about chip-and-PIN among card security professionals in North and South America.

Nineteen percent of those surveyed agreed that the credit card processing technology will migrate to the U.S. in the next year or two; in a previous study in 2009, no one agreed. A much larger percentage (73%) indicated that EMV has a high impact in reducing fraud; two years ago, only 48% thought so. Still, 55% of the respondents predicted that the replacement of the mag stripe will take seven years or more.

"Card industry executives believe that EMV in the United States is no longer a matter of if, but of when," senior Aite analyst Julie Conroy McNelley told Digital Transactions, a publication that reports on trends in the payment processing industry. "The relevance of the magnetic stripe has disappeared."

Consumers and merchants, you've been warned.

Marc McDermott is the Online Marketing Manager at Merchant Express, a provider of merchant services and payment processing technologies with a specialized approach to merchant credit card processing, merchant bankcard processing and transaction processing services.

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Tuesday, 27 December 2011

Gasoline Credit Cards - Get Informed Here

Enjoying the benefits of gasoline credit cards go far beyond free gas. However, it's important to understand that we're not talking about specific cards that can only be used at the pump. Gasoline cards work just like any other major credit card out there and can help you save money while getting something we all consider a necessity in today's world.

Even though this is a great choice for just about anyone, you should learn more about what gasoline credit cards are, what types of advantages are available outside of gasoline discounts, and even the disadvantages attached to them. We all know that credit card companies have their own stipulations, so it will be a good idea to figure out what works best for you.

What are Gasoline Credit Cards?

The biggest part to gasoline credit cards is getting the discounts on gas. Whether you make most of your gas purchases through Shell, BP or anywhere else, you can get cards from them, or utilize standard credit cards that offer gasoline discounts. Whatever the case may be we'll give you a few inside tips that will help you make an informed decision about choosing the right credit card.

The Advantages

While there are several benefits available it's the gasoline advantages that we all want and need. Think about how much money you spend a month in gas. Now if you were able to enjoy a 1%-5% cash back rebate; how much would you save each month? When it comes to individuals it could be savings worth a whole tank of gas. If you have several people in your family driving the savings would be more.

Now if you own your own company, gasoline cards are definitely a necessity. All business owners will tell you that saving money and improving profits is crucial to the success of their business. Companies that have traveling salesmen, trucking fleets, or anything similar can easily see the benefits that these types of credit cards can offer you. Just remember that there are a lot of other advantages.

You can find everything from 1% cash back on any purchase, and 2% options if you purchase gas or groceries. There is no limit to the amount of money back you can receive, and in most cases they won't expire. So if you want to save them up and utilize the money for a month's worth of gas or take a vacation you have the opportunity to do so. Money back options can come in the form of gift cards, credit, or a check mailed to your home. Best of all you can get your savings whenever you want it.

The Disadvantages

Just like most cards out there, the interest rates can be high. Even though it's a convenient option when you're working through the week, you're going to be paying more than what you see at the pump. The rates can be anywhere around 11% to 20% depending on the company you use and the type of benefits they have available. So if the price at the pump is $2.50 a gallon you're actually going to be spending $2.75 to $3.25 because you're using gasoline cards.

Some gasoline cards don't offer as much of a benefit as the others either. Then again, it's possible that they look like they offer more, but there are underlining charges that make up for it. If you don't do the proper research in the beginning then it's only going to hurt you in the end.

Oh, and don't forget that this isn't a guaranteed approval. You have to have the proper credit in order to use gasoline credit cards. The majority of the time you need better than average credit, which could be a problem for several people. If by chance you're able to get one of these with "okay" credit, the interest rates are usually much higher. This eventually costs you more at the pump, even though you're paying for it later.

Do the Research

The best thing you can do is research all the gasoline credit cards you find. Take the time to look over all the benefits, but remember to look over the disadvantages as well. This can be one of the best opportunities you take advantage of if the card works for you. We recommend writing out all your needs and then finding a card that fits each one.

Next, discover 0 balance transfer credit cards as a way of taking care of your personal finance or check out easy approval credit cards here.

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Jumpstart Your Kid's Credit Habits

As an adult, you probably know the importance of having good credit. Getting a good interest rate on credit cards and loans is just one of the smaller benefits of good having good credit. Having a good credit score plays a big role in buying a house or a car, and even in getting a job. Parents can play a very beneficial role in helping their kids establish good credit habits. That way, when they're older, they'll already have the skills necessary to get an excellent credit score.

Help your child understand when you're using your credit card and when you're using a debit card. To someone who doesn't know, all plastic looks the same. A child watching a parent shop can easily think that parent uses credit for all their purchases when that parent is really using a debit card. Explain the difference between your two cards - that one card pulls cash from your checking account and the other creates a loan that you have to pay back.

Create a formal arrangement when your child borrows money from you. Instead of just handing your child the cash for spending, sit down and write up an agreement. In the agreement, include the date you're supposed to be repaid. Discuss what you think should happen if your child doesn't pay you back by on time and include that consequence in the agreement. It can be something simple: the child has to wash the car each week they're late on payments. Use this opportunity to talk about what banks do when you're late.

When your child has a job and is old enough, help them open an account with a debit card. That way they can get hands-on experience with using plastic. Have the bank turn-off the feature that lets your kid overdraft their account. Instead, transactions that exceed the current balance will be declined. Teach your child how to check the account balance by phone, over the internet, and with a smartphone app if it's available.

Teach your child the types of habits that banks value, especially paying their bills on time and spending a reasonable amount of month every month. These two factors have the biggest impact on a person's credit score. So, they're the most important things to learn. Overspending money elsewhere can make it hard to repay what you've borrowed and in turn make you late on payments.

Show your child the way to save up for big ticket items - by helping them put aside money every month. When you get in the habit of saving up for things, you eliminate the need for instant gratification, which is often why people use their credit card instead of saving up for purchases. You can encourage your child to save by matching their savings or offering to pay a certain percentage of the cost for what they want to buy.

One of the best, and easiest ways to teach your child good credit habits is to let them see you practicing good habits. If they see you use your credit card, they should also see you pay the bill every month. That way, they lose the notion that credit cards are magic money.

Steve Dowell is a seasoned writer in personal finance, specializing in credit repair. You can find more of his articles located at

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How To Dispute Credit Report Errors - And Get The Bureaus to Fix Them

An error on your report can be devastating. Not only can it negatively impact your ability to obtain affordable credit, but it can also impact your insurance rates and your chances of being offered a job.

Everyone is entitled to one free report from each of the three major bureaus per year. It is a good idea to request it from one of them every four months. This will serve as your own monitoring service to ensure no negative or incorrect data is being provided. To request one, visit the annualcreditreport website. This is the only site that truly offers you a free copy according to federal law. You can also call 1-877-322-8228 or fill out the required forms and submit via mail to get your free copies.

Once you receive them, make sure all of the information is correct. If you find an error, you must contact both the bureau and the entity that provided the inaccurate information. Under the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA), both are responsible for investigating and correcting the record if found to be incorrect or incomplete.

The first step is to contact the major bureaus. You can choose to submit a dispute online, but it is not recommended. It is better to submit it in writing and send via certified mail with a return receipt requested. Write a letter which clearly states what information you believe to be incorrect and why, as well as what corrective action you would like taken, i.e. deletion or correction.

Include copies of any documents you have to support your position, but do not include originals as you need these for your files. It is also a good idea to include a copy of your file from the bureau with the items you are challenging circled so that there are no questions. By law, they must investigate within 30 days. They must forward all relevant data to the provider, who also must investigate and provide a statement back to the agency. Further, if they find that you are correct, the item must be deleted.

In addition to correcting your record, the reporting agencies must notify you in writing of the changes and provide you with an updated copy of your file. This does not count as your yearly free copy. If you request, they must also notify anyone who received it in the past 6 months of the corrections, and you can also request to have this information sent to anyone who has looked at it for employment purposes in the past two years.

Errors can have a huge impact on you financially. It is important to remember that you have the right to ensure your record is correct. While disputes can be time consuming and stressful, you must remain focused as an incorrect item must be erased according to federal law.

For more about how you can file a Credit Report Dispute and remove the inaccurate information from your report in order to Fix Your Credit Score visit us - you can also get a free credit analysis by calling 800-251-3505.

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Learn More About No Credit Credit Cards

If you are like many North Americans, you have some credit card debt; credit cards are based on unsecured lines of credit, which means you don't put up any collateral in order to get one. However, you do promise to pay at least the minimum payment each month. Not paying the minimum payment can affect your credit rating and your chances of getting another card are slim to none. You may also find it difficult to qualify for other types of credit, such as loans, mortgages and bank lines of credit. Fortunately, there is a no credit credit card that can help you re-establish your credit rating. This card is secured, which means that you are required to put up some collateral.

In order to secure a no credit credit card you will have to put up a security deposit. The amount of the deposit will depend on how much credit you want to have. For example, if you want a $1,000 credit card, you'll have to put $1,000 down as your security deposit. There is also an annual fee of $39, which is taken out of your available credit once a year.

The interest rates are typically 14.99 percent for purchases, and 19.99 percent for cash advances. There is a further fee of $10 or 3 percent (whichever is greater) for the cash advances.

These rates and conditions are very similar to many unsecured cards. These cards will also come with many of the same features as other cards do. Keep in mind that with the secured credit cards, payments can take up to 10 days to process. Be sure to coincide that with the due date of the payment.

This new option is a good alternative for those with poor credit or a 'spotty' credit history. It is much cheaper than getting a payday loan and will help to re-establish your credit. You could borrow from family or friends, but that is always a risky venture, as it could cause problems in the relationship.

This program is currently not available to those living outside of the United States. Most states are included, but there are handfuls that are not: New York, New Jersey, Maine, West Virginia, Alaska, Iowa, Arkansas and Wisconsin. As long as you don't live in one of those states, you are eligible to receive a no credit credit card.

If your credit rating is less than perfect, and you have a history of making late payments, these secured no credit credit cards can give you peace of mind, as well as a way to rebuild your credit. You could choose to borrow from others, get a payday loan or save up the money until you can afford it. However, keep in mind that your credit rating is critical to qualifying for any number of products and services on the market today. The best thing to do is re-establish your credit and get it in good standing again. You'll be glad you did!

Find out how to easily fix your credit rating with the no credit credit cards. Learn how to build up your credit again so you can have peace of mind online only at MyReviewsNow.Net

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Monday, 26 December 2011

Financial Services In Global Trade

The efficient management of cash, assets, credit, and financial instruments to conduct international trade is trade finance. Trade finance is the process by which working capital is provided to ensure smooth movement of trade. There are a number of financial instruments utilized in trade finance like letters of credit or L/C, bill of exchange, guarantees, trade credit insurance, and documentary collection.

Why Use A Letter Of Credit?

In a letter of credit, the bank acts as a mediator between the importer and exporter. The letter of credit is issued by the bank to the exporter guaranteeing to pay the money when he meets the criteria laid out in the letter of credit. The duration of the letter of credit is for the length of the transaction and ends when the money is paid to the exporter or the seller. The L/C does not protect the beneficiary from the loss that he may have to endure if the deal does not go through. The letter of credit can be used not only in the selling of goods but also of services. The buyer sends the letter of credit from his bank to the exporter's bank thereby making the buyer's bank responsible for timely payment of his money.

Common Financial Instruments

Bank guarantee is also another financial instrument in which the bank guarantees to pay the beneficiary in the event the buyer defaults on the payment. The difference from a letter of credit is that the bank guarantee comes into play only when the buyer defaults. Another financial instrument used commonly is documentary collection wherein the seller forwards the sale documents to the buyer's bank with conditions attached as to when it can be released for collection of goods from the shipper. A bill of exchange acts like a cheque or demand draft and is a promise to pay the said sum of money at a prearranged date to the person or company mentioned in the bill of exchange. Trade credit insurance guarantees protection from defaulting buyers and an unstable political situation.

The Need For Financial Services

The financial services provided by the different financial agencies are many. The various sectors under the financial industry are mainly the banks, the insurance companies, private bankers, credit card companies, investment funds, brokerage firms, wealth management services, hedge fund management, mortgage services, the list is limitless. These financial services are needed to help you to manage your funds wisely. All of us work hard to make sufficient money to meet our needs and to save for our old age. Financial services help you to invest this money wisely and according to the rules of the land, so that they are available to you when needed. It helps you to actually sit down and study your financial picture and make realistic plans for the future.

Maria is an expert author for writing articles and currently working for and already written so many articles on diffrent topics and currently working on these topics Letter Of Credit, Financial Instruments, Financial Services.

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How Bad Credit Affects Your Business

Every business works on capital. The give and take of money, funds, and investments are a part of every business. A business cannot operate without capital. This give and take is the essence of a business. In a business the entrepreneur many times need loan to expand his/her business or to complete a consignment. When the business organization borrows any money it has to prove its credit worthiness in the market. The credibility of the entrepreneur does not count here because the money is borrowed for business so the business credit comes in to picture. If the organization does not have a good credit history then there would be many problems.

Effect of bad business credit:
1. The capital procurement becomes very difficult with bad financial history. If the organization does not have a good financial history and needs loan for its business the banks or financial institutions would not accept its loan application. In such cases, private money lenders are the only choice and borrowing from them would mean shelling out more money as interest to these lenders.

2. At the time of M&A's dissolving assets, partnership, the credit worthiness of the organization and its market value is judged. Based on this, the buyers decide whether buying an organization or getting in to a partnership is profitable. If the organization is under debts and has a history of not repaying debts its market value would be hampered.

3. Business runs on credit from suppliers. Everything is not paid in cash at that very moment. The business needs many different sorts of materials and support services like transport, packaging, etc. All this cannot be paid for at that very moment. The businessmen get a tenure within which they can pay the supplier. This tenure can be increased or reduced depending on the past history of the organization. If in the past the organization has failed to make payments or delayed its repayments, the lender might revise the credit period clauses or even deny giving credit. This would again pose a big problem for the entrepreneur.

Thus, bad business credit would not let your business flourish. It would hamper the progress of your business, its reputation in the market and its overall growth. However, if you are on the verge of getting a bad credit score resort to credit repair measures to overcome the same and take your business to new heights. Do not let it affect your business.

Chris Rodac is an expert, who provides advise to improve your credit score.He has also good ideas on personal credit and business credit.

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Credit Bureau

In the modern world, people have become very accustomed to all things related to finances, such as credit bureaus, credit scores, credit history, different kinds of loans and interest rates, just to name a few. Namely, there comes a time in everyone's life when they simply have to learn something about these financial terms, as we all need some kind of financial help from time to time. Well, one of these financial terms is a credit bureau. The reason why you should familiarize yourself with this term is the fact that absolutely everyone has to be interested in what a credit bureau has to say about them, as this is of great importance for everyone's financial future.

What Exactly Is a Credit Bureau?

A credit bureau is basically an agency that is in charge of collecting credit information about both individuals and businesses. In a nutshell, this agency takes all the information related to your credit history, your financial data, the public records and all other relevant information and creates something known as a credit report. Now, even though many people wrongly believe that a credit bureau simply has to be their enemy in the financial world, this couldn't be further from the truth. What an agency like this does is they create a report on how a person or a business pays their debts, how often they get or do not get into financial trouble, and all the other information related to the financial aspect of one's life or of a business. All of this is done in a strictly professional and unbiased manner, which implies that a credit bureau really has nothing to do with you receiving a bad credit report.

Why Are There Credit Bureaus?

To start off, let's just say that these agencies are there to help lenders determine who is eligible for a loan of any kind. What this means is that lenders or can easily determine whether you will get a loan or not, as well as how high your interest rates will be, by requesting your credit report from a credit bureau. Now, this really helps your creditors, but it can also help you if you understand the whole concept of credit reports, and if you do your best to make your credit report as good as it can be possible. The best way to do this is to be on time with all of your monthly payments.

How Many Credit Bureaus Are There?

Due to the fact that these financial agencies have to keep track of the financial information of more than 170 million people, there are over a thousand smaller and bigger credit bureaus all over the USA. However, all of these agencies are owned by the only three major US reporting agencies - Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion. This means that all of these agencies will provide you with your free annual credit report, and this report is something that you should always take very seriously.

Why Is Reviewing Your Annual Credit Report so Important?

As it has already been mentioned, the three major credit bureaus are responsible for creating credit reports for more than 170 million people, which is a lot of reports. Owing to this fact, there is always a possibility that your report will contain some false information. However, even though this should be seen as something normal, you should always make sure to correct this mistake, as it can result in you not getting an important loan. Therefore, if and when you notice that some information in your annual credit report is not valid, you should contact the credit reporting agency immediately. In order to rectify this error, you will have to provide the agency with relevant proof to support your claim, which will result in the agency in question removing the false information from your credit report.

For further information regarding personal credit, please visit MyReviewsNow Online Shopping.

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How Do I Get My First Credit Card?

In the economic environment of today, although you may not need to use it, having good credit is vital to survival. It positions you as a fiscally responsible person and can help ensure that:

You get better rates on your mortgage;You get better rates on your car loan;Your security deposit, if your utility company requires it at all, is as low as possible;Your potential landlord favors you over someone with a bad credit rating; andYour potential boss favours you over a candidate with a bad credit rating.

That being said, you should always keep in mind that the ability to obtain credit is a privilege not to be abused. It takes a long time to build up a good credit record but your reputation can be destroyed in a very short time. Do not borrow money that you cannot afford to repay.

How do you get your first credit card?

There is a slow way to get your first card fast. (And get a good credit rating)

And there is a quick way to get your first card fast. (You only need some collateral)

My hope is that if you are still young enough you will implement the slow way. If you are not - well keep on reading.

The slow way to get a credit card fast

Open a debit or savings account (having an account demonstrates stability.)Become an authorized user on a parent's, siblings or friend's card (do not use this card and make sure that the primary account holder is financially responsible.)Get a student credit card.Consider an auto loan (the interest rate is usually higher but it is a simple way to build good credit.)Pay all accounts on time (set up debit orders to pay your bills or have a reminder system in place so that you're never late with a payment. This includes utility bills, cellphone accounts and accounts at stores.)Keep your employment history clean (your work consistency and stability in holding onto jobs is very important.)Maintain a stable place of residence for as long as possible (this home address can even be that of your parents. Having a fixed home address greatly affects your credit rating.)Consider a loan from a peer to peer lending site (individuals who offer these loans compete with each other to offer you the lowest rates. Often lowerthan the bank's rates. Ensure that these sites report to all the credit bureaus.)Get a copy of your free credit report every year and make sure there are no mistakes.

Building good credit is about proving financial responsibility and that you can reliably repay money you are trusted with. A single missed payment can negatively impact your credit score and take many years to disappear.

If all these things have been taken care of, getting your first card will be quick and painless. Just make sure you are able to pay the balances when they fall due or all of your planning and sacrifice will be for nothing.

The quick way to get a credit card fast

1. Pre-approved Cards

Companies which offer pre-approved cards get information from you through an electronic trail that you leave behind every time you apply for a card. If you have a good credit rating, you would be able to get a loan every time you apply and can prove that paying it back will not be a problem. You would also be able to get the benefits and privileges given to people with a good credit rating.

Everything is also visible online if you happen to have a bad rating. Potential lenders are also able to see that you have been disallowed credit and how often. This is a clear evidence that you are in possession of a bad credit rating. Only those with bad credit ratings get continuously rejected.

As such, they send you invitations so that you will be able to get hold of their pre-approved cards. If you take a good look at what they are offering, especially the conditions, you will see that they are asking higher interest rates. But, given your situation, this is may be a pretty good opportunity to try to bounce back.

2. Instant Approval Card

Search online for offers by banks and credit institutions for instant approval cards. These cards can be approved or denied in as little as 60 seconds.

Compare the benefits and obligations attached to these cards.

Apply for those that suit your needs and re-compare all those that are accepted. Most times, you will only need one card. It is not necessary to get all the cards for which you are approved.

3. Secured Card

With a secured card the credit card company will require a deposit held against the card's use that will be used if you fail to pay the account. The deposited funds for a secured card are not used to pay for the goods and services as you use the credit card. This deposit will also determine the limit on your card.

Secured card providers report to the credit reporting agencies.

Pay all your bills on time and after six months of 'good behavior' you can consider applying to the same lender for an unsecured card. By this time, you will have established yourself as a responsible borrower.

If your application for an unsecured card is turned down, find out the reason. Not all lending institutions are the same. Some may require that you wait a little longer before applying for an unsecured card. Say anything from 12 to 24 months.

Do not re-apply every month. Unsuccessful applications reflect on your credit rating and can leave you with an unfavorable rating.

4. Pre Paid Card

A pre paid card is very similar to a secured card in that it also requires a deposit up front. However, unlike a secured card, the amount available from this deposit is reduced every time you make a purchase. In this way, your card actually functions as a debit card. The details of account behavior on a pre paid card are not normally released to credit bureaus. So, if you are trying to build up a good credit rating, this is not always the best option.

5. Retail Accounts

Some retailers issue cards for use only at its own stores, while gasoline companies offer cards for fuel purchases. Gas and retail cards are more likely to approve consumers with little to no credit history. Retailers and gasoline companies report activity to Experian, Equifax and TransUnion and are useful credit rating builders.

6. Joint Accounts

You can make use of a parent, a spouse, a close relative or a friend with good credit by opening a joint credit card account with that person. The bank approves the application based on the other person's high credit rating, and the account gets reported in both cardholders' credit files.

Use your card responsibly and always pay on time or you may damage your joint account holder's excellent records. Make sure that your joint account holder does the same. You will want to get your own card eventually and a bad credit report will hurt the process.

7. Charge Cards

The providers include Diner's Club and American Express.

Charge cards are similar to credit cards, but the difference is that the balance of a charge card must be repaid in full every month whereas a credit card balance can be carried over to the following month. Charge cards don't have credit limits either, so you have to be sure to spend only what you can pay off at the end of the month.

The cards mentioned above can usually be obtained on the same day that they are applied for - sometimes within minutes. How fast is that?

Don't live your whole life looking over your shoulder.
Find out now how to have a clean credit record and get the trust you deserve.

Credit Card Secrets
Go to

Do it NOW!
Because you'll be so happy you did.
Richard Glanville

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Sunday, 25 December 2011

Great Ways to Apply for a Credit Card

Credit cards are now an essential item for your life. Like a true friend, they are ready to help in critical and essential situations. It may seem that anyone in the world can easily apply for a credit card, but this is not true. There are certain norms that you need to follow. People who have bad credit history find difficulties in getting the card they want.

Filling an application for a credit card looks simple but if you have a bad credit history or no credit, you need to know the types of forms to fill to get a new card. Here are some techniques for filing credit card applications.

If your credit history is strong or clean, you can go for a store credit card. They are good for people who are applying for the first time. Their norms and regulations are easier than other cards.

Some people request a card for gas as they are easy to apply for. Students who usually have no credit history like to go with a Visa or Master Card. Companies that provide these cards to students, see their parents as a source of security of payment.

If your credit history is not good, you need to be wise while filling a credit card application. Also, you need to do some preparations to apply for your desired cards. The step starts with your request for the previous 6 months or 1 year credit report. Three bureaus- TransUnion, Experian and Equifax are responsible to provide detailed information of your credit history and scores. They provide your credit report once in a year. When you get your credit report, it is your duty to check it thoroughly to know any enormous mistake and due payment. If you have any due payment, try to pay it off before applying for a card.

Enormous mistakes like you have already paid your dues but the report doesn't contain that history, then you need to write dispute letters of each of your mistake. The letter should be written in a well manner and contain the name of three bureaus. There are much chances of rejection of your letters, so try to careful about formatting. If your letter is accepted by these bureaus, it will take 40-45 days to repair the history. With your letters, don't forget to include the proof that conveys you have already paid the bill.

Apply for secure cards are another wonderful way. But make sure about your credit bills. It should be paid on time, otherwise you may lose your essential goods.

This is one of the most idealist ways to apply for fair credit credit cards. There are many people who are following these ways. If you are quite anxious to get your desired credit card you can go with these ways.

If you want to learn how to fill credit card applications, you can make your visit to the It is the best site to know tips, techniques and sources to get a fair credit card.

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Improve Your Credit Score - 3 Tips to a Better Lifestyle

If your score is lower than 760 you are likely paying higher interest rates and not getting the most out of life. You should take action to improve your credit score, after all this three digit number impacts your lifestyle is so many ways! If you rent or own your home, what sort of car you own, you're interest rates, and most importantly your hard earned money and how much you can keep.

1. The first thing you need to do is figure out what is on your report. You can request a copy from each bureau annually for free by visiting annual credit report. You may be surprised out how much your reports will vary from one bureau to another.

If you discover errors or inaccuracies on your report you should file a dispute. It is estimated that 25% of all reports carry errors on them. These errors could be costing you real dollars and cents!

2. Next you should settle outstanding debts. Before you just start paying old bills it is important to use debt validation. This will require the collection agency to provide legal evidence that they own your debt and can collect on it. If the agency is unable to do this then you do not have to pay them and when you dispute the item on your report it will be removed. It is not unusual for debt collectors to be unable to prove they own an account.

If the agency is able to show they own your account then you should make a settlement offer. We suggest you start your offer at 50% of the total debt. Remember these agencies purchased your account for pennies on the dollar and have also added in fees and charges that they assessed to you. In other words not money you borrowed from the lender or interest rates you agreed to with your original lender.

You should never pay the full amount unless you feel morally obligated to. Additionally as a stipulation of your settlement you must get the agency or debt collector to agree to stop reporting this account negatively to the bureaus. If you do not get them to agree to this then just paying your bill will not improve your score.

The negative credit item will remain on your report, it may be changed to paid but that will not improve your score. Make sure to get this stipulation added to your settlement and don't worry it is standard practice. You need to do this so when you dispute this item on your report and file a dispute. Once the bureau investigates and contacts the debt collector due to your settlement agreement they will not verify your debt with the bureau and thus the item must be removed from your report.

3. Have available credit that you are not using. The best example is with a major Visa or MasterCard if you can keep your balance at roughly 30% of your limit it will help your score. This is because it shows you have money that you could borrow but are not using it. In other words it gives the impression that you are in a comfortable financial situation and not in dire straits borrowing anything and everything you can.

For a free credit consultation call us at 1-800-232-2903 or visit us to learn more about how to Improve Your Credit Score or how to Fix My Credit.

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Letters to Credit Bureaus: How to Get Their Attention and Remove Derogatory Credit

Writing letters to credit bureaus can be very tricky. You may not know what to say, where to send them, or what to include. But, with a little knowledge you can get powerful results.

When writing letters to credit bureaus it is important that you know what items you are disputing on your report. You should have three different credit reports; one from each Equifax, TransUnion, and Experian. With your credit reports in hand highlight each item that is negative that you are wanting to dispute.

In writing your letter tell the bureaus which item you are disputing and why. Let them know why the item is inaccurate and must be removed. Also tell them that you are including a copy of your credit report with those items highlighted. This will help to make things very clear to them. You should write three different letters, one for each bureau.

If you have back up documentation, like an invoice showing the item was paid, include that with your letter. Be sure to also include your full legal name, address, social security number, and date of birth in your letters.

The address to the credit bureaus can be found on their websites. These addresses change frequently to try and detour people, so be sure the check regularly for address changes. You do not need to send your mail certified. Regular postage is fine.

Many people try to dispute their credit online with the credit bureaus. This is not recommended because you are unable to send support documentation and it is harder for you to keep records of your actions. It is important that you keep copies of the letters you send and the dates that you sent them.

After you mail a dispute the bureaus have 30 days from the time they received the letter to take action. They will mail you back a response showing the results of the dispute. If not all the items are deleted you will need to send another letter with further details.

If you are a victim of identity theft be sure to let them know. You will also want to ask them to put a fraud alert with your best phone number to prevent further damage to your credit.

When you are suffering the credit problems many things in your life can seem more difficult. But with the necessary tools and knowledge you can remove derogatory items and get your credit back on track.

Jeremy Roberts has helped thousands of Americans improve their credit by providing letters to credit bureaus that can get the bureaus attention. He also teaches his clients how to build new positive credit and pay down debt. His goal is to boost client's credit scores and give them the tools to prevent future credit problems. Visit his website to learn more about improving your credit score

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Cleaning Up Credit Report - 4 Easy Steps To Clear Credit

Do you have negative marks on your report? This is what is ruining your overall score. It often doesn't matter how many positive items you have because the negative marks will outweigh them and cause the damage.

Therefore the most effective way to improve your score is by removing old derogatory listings. Contrary to popular belief it is completely legal and Congress passed legislation in 1970 that gives you the right to challenge the accuracy of any item on your report. This was passed in an attempt to protect you and other consumers from the bureaus and debt collectors.

1. Your Reports - The first step you must take is to get current copies of your file, one from each bureau. These can be gotten for free once a year, according to government legislation.

2. Examine Your File - You will need to closely look at each report as they will vary from bureau to bureau. You are going to need to identify items that appear questionable to you, or the negative listings that you would like to dispute.

You can challenge any mark you feel is inaccurate. You will never face any legal trouble or prosecution from disputing an item you know to be accurate. As we mentioned earlier the law that Congress passed was intended to protect you, and has yet to be used to prosecute anyone. Further, if you examine the law the burden of proof to challenge a mark is if "you feel it is inaccurate."

An item can be inaccurate for many reasons including: wrong dates, incorrect balance, it's not your account, it's been paid, and its wrong... It would be in your best interest to dispute every negative item on your report. The law that gives you this right was passed in 1970 and no one has ever been in any legal limbo for filling a dispute for an item they knew was accurate in the past 40 plus years.

3. File Your Dispute - This is done by hiring a service to do it for you or you can do it yourself by writing each bureau a dispute letter. In your letter you will need to include the item you are disputing, the reason, and any supporting evidence you have.

Once the bureau gets your letter they will investigate. They will contact the lender and ask them to verify the account, the balance on it, and the dates. If the lender doesn't verify your account then it must be removed from your report.

4. Check Your Mail - You will be notified by the bureaus of their investigation results by mail. They will inform you if the item was verified or removed.

Contrary to popular belief you don't have to just live with these listings on your file. The reason this myth is so prevalent in our society is because the bureaus must first determine your dispute is valid before they will investigate. Unfortunately this is nothing more than their attempt to avoid conducting an investigation. They end up spending potential profits when they investigate an item and are therefore very reluctant. The only reason they do, is to comply with our government.

However this is debatable as the bureaus have one of the worst records of any regulated business in our country. They have been fined countless number of times for blatantly not complying with Federal Law. If you find yourself hitting brick walls and getting frustrated we would encourage you to check out a professional service.

For a free credit consultation call 1-800-232-2903 or visit us for more about how you can Clean Up Credit Report or how you can achieve a Clear Credit history visit us.

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Saturday, 24 December 2011

Credit Cards For Bad Credit Will Repair Poor Credit Scores!

The best way to repair bad credit is with a credit card for bad credit which is usually a secured credit card. The type of card usually requires you to pre-load the card with funding and the amount you load is what you can spend. Many secured credit card companies will report to credit agencies. This makes this card a glorious opportunity for establishing credit when your overall credit score is very low.

If you have poor credit it's obviously due to not paying your bills and once it goes to collections it will stay on your credit report from 3 to 10 years (Stature Of Limitation) depending where you live. The average is around 7 years. Once the Stature Of Limitation has expired the creditor is barred from taking any legal action against you. They can still attempt to collect the debt, but since they can't sue you there is little they can do. The best thing to do is arrange a payment plain you can afford and start to pay it back and at the same time rebuild your credit score with a prepaid credit card.

When a credit company investigates your credit report and finds that you have a ton of negative results listed, you've not held employment for an extended quantity of time, or have moved to various areas quite frequently. They will read you as a high risk, therefore, you will probably be denied any type of credit limit with a credit card that is offered with that company unless it's prepaid.

Secured cards allow you to pre-load funds from $200 to $1000. You don't really have to worry about approval since they are not lending you the money, it's your money you are spending. This makes it very easy for you to start rebuilding your credit fast.

After a few months, you should be able to see improvement in your credit standing. It's a good idea to check your credit report after six months of using your secured credit card. If your credit score is really low you might have to continue to use your prepaid/secured credit card for 12 months or longer. The good news is you will be rewarded for your effort at repairing your credit score.

You last choice to repair a bad credit score would be to forget credit cards entirely and open a checking account and use debit cards, that act some what like credit cards as so much as convenience, in which you'll use to make purchases. Debit cards are used in place of checks. Instead of writing a check to create a purchase, or pay a bill, you can merely use the debit card instead. Some debit cards operate in a way that is considered credit. However, you'll only be able to pay what's obtainable through your checking account. Make sure you limit your use of an overdraft as this looks just like bad credit when it's used often.

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Importance of Credit Control in a Company

Debtors are one of the largest assets in the financial statements of a company and should therefore be safeguarded through timely collections. Many solvent companies have gone under-receivership for failure to manage and collect from their clients. For a positive cash flow, debtors must be managed through effective credit control methods.

If you met a stranger in the bus stop and they borrowed some cash from you, and promised to repay at a later date, would you advance them credit? Obviously your answer will be no, on the basis of that they are a stranger to you. If this is so to an individual why would a company give goods and service to a client whom they don't know or have no information about? Good credit management therefore begins with know your customer.

Just like personal finance, cash inflows are few compared to cash outflows and therefore for a company survival, it must manage its debtors books, otherwise all margins will be drained by bank loans and over-drafts borrowed to run the day-to-day operations of a company. If good credit control is put in place, cash will be collected faster and borrowing will be minimized thus saving the company from heavily on loans and overdraft.

There are different types of customers and there are those that won't pay unless they are reminded to pay and there are those that wait to see a reminder letter in order to pay. Most companies have realized that buying goods and services on credit can help them run the business without borrowing cash to pay for stock that will not be purchased immediately. The way to survive in high interest economy is by buying goods and services on credit and pay at a later date.

Failure to collect on time implies that the operations of a firm will be financed by borrowed funds which off course come with an interest charge. This can be minimized or avoided by carrying out good credit control management to ensure timely payment and query resolutions that may lead to delayed payment. The key role of a credit control department is to ensure timely collection of credit sales.

New clients must be credit checked to ensure that they are credit worthy and are able to meet their obligations when they fall due. A credit controller upon credit checking should advice the management accordingly if credit business is a risk to the company or not. This can be done using different means like credit checking with a credit reference bureau, registrar of companies, other suppliers and financial statements of the company.

Zipporah Njoroge is a Credit Consultant and a trainer in the area of credit control and management and the principle of Credit And Debt Management Services Ltd.

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Is Your Business Still Not Part of the Wonderful World of ECommerce?

While the term of eCommerce is being waved a lot lately, few understand its complete definition. The general misconception is that eCommerce only refers to trading items online via websites like E-Bay. However, this guide aims to educate you about the complete list of implications related to online commerce and why it is critical for conventional business owners to adapt to the trend and take their company to the exciting world of internet trading. Let us start by stating that the sales in the online environment have increased exponentially over the last years and the economists forecast that their peak is far from being reached.

Online commerce or eCommerce implies being able to emit and receive payments via an internet merchant account or payment gateway. Consequentially, customers who purchase your products or services will be able to pay by using the credit card. These services are basically the linkage between the accounts of your clientele and your own and will perform the credit card processing in order for the transaction to become valid. While there are many service providers and platforms through which this goal can be achieved, selecting the correct one for your company can have immense benefits and a wrong decision could have negative implications.

One of the reasons any company should employ eCommerce resides in expanding the client base, as offshore services enable you to tackle a much larger segment of population without the conventional brick and mortar office branches. At the same time, online commerce translates into immense savings in the long run and that means the profits of your business will amplify. Lastly, online commerce enables customers a much simpler means of purchasing your products or services, so they will be sold much easier. All in all, no matter how small or large your company is, the internet is the best place to expand it.

It is worth pointing out that the aforementioned meaning of the term is not the only one. For instance, eCommerce can also refer to outsourcing. In order to understand how, it is important to note that many companies hire freelancing service providers for certain tasks. Freelancers advertise their services on specific websites and state the general means of payment they prefer. Once their job is completed, the payments are processed via internet merchant accounts. These tasks can imply anything from accounting to web design and anything in between. Therefore, as you can see, not only can you employ online commerce in selling your products, but you can also use it to outsource performing various jobs.

In conclusion, this guide should have shattered any doubts you might have had regarding the importance of adapting to the new business trends and on the advantages of creating a strong online presence. One needs only take a quick look at the success websites like Amazon and Yahoo have experienced in order to understand that online retail is the way to go. However, it is advisable to select an affordable internet merchant account service which can easily fit in your budget, especially if you are starting small. Making a correct estimation of your sales and is an essential part of that decision.

eCommerce is such an integral part of the online business nowadays and can easily help you to start accepting credit cards online - have you gotten it for your online business yet?

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How to Remove a Charge-Off From Your Credit Report

Charge-offs have an extremely detrimental effect on your credit report. They are reflected there for 7 years and are viewed negatively by future lenders. Therefore, it is of the utmost importance to deal with them as quickly and efficiently as possible.

This item is essentially a lender recognizing that attempts to collect on a debt have been unsuccessful and thereby recording it as a loss. Companies do this for tax purposes; however, this does not mean that you are no longer obligated to repay the amount owed. Lenders can continue collection attempts even after this has happened.

If the notation is in fact an error, the appropriate course of action is to dispute the inaccurate information, in writing, with the reporting company, either Experian, TransUnion or Equifax. By law, these companies must investigate and remove the notation if it is not correct. It also must forward the documentation you provide to the lender who will, in turn, notify all three reporting agencies to correct the information in your file.

If the notation is in fact correct, the process for removal is more involved. It is not easy to get this mark removed from your report, but it is possible. The tactic generally believed to garner the most success is negotiation with the original debt agency. At best, the lender will change the status of the account to "Paid as Agreed," but even less desirable notations, such as "Closed" or "Settled," will not have as much of a negative impact.

The first step for removal is to contact the original account owner and determine the appropriate person with which to speak. It is imperative that this person actually have the authority to make decisions concerning your account. Once this person is determined, you are highly encouraged to put everything in writing. This is the only way to prove the negotiations are taking place and to verify any decisions or agreements that were made.

It is also important to remember to keep these negotiations professional. Their only interest is in collecting the debt and they do not care about your personal circumstances. As a result, they will respond more readily to business like reasoning then that of a personal nature.

It is tempting to just pay as soon as possible with the hope that the creditor will be more favorable to negotiations; however, this is highly discouraged. Once the account is paid, you lose all bargaining power. They have gotten what they want and have no incentive to negotiate or change the account status to a more desirable notation. The ultimate agreement needs to be a change in the account status in exchange for payment.

Further, this arrangement must be in writing. Ask for a document outlining the agreement that is written on company letterhead with the name and contact information of the person with which you spoke. Have this document in hand before making any payment.

Finally, once your settlement has been fulfilled, it is important for you to check your credit reports to ensure the status has been changed.

For more about how to remove a charge-off on your credit report which can potentially improve your credit score visit us at - or you can get a free credit consultation just by calling 1-800-483-0256

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Friday, 23 December 2011

New Debit Card Fees Have Customers Looking For Better Options

Bank of America has announced that it will now be imposing a fee on any of its customers who use their debit cards to make purchases, starting in 2012. The fee will be five dollars a month which when added up amounts to sixty dollars a year. Many customers are up in arms about the new fee and are ready to leave Bank of America as soon as possible, myself included.

The new fee does not necessarily affect everyone who banks with Bank of America, but the bad part of this is that those who will have to pay the fee are those who are most likely to not be able to afford the fee. The fee will be charged to anyone who uses their debit card to make purchases at a store, no matter if the card is used only once or a hundred times. If the card is only used at the ATM however, customers will not be assessed the fee. Also those who have at least $20,000 in their bank accounts and those who have a mortgage with Bank of America will not be assessed a fee.

Still, those of us who don't have enough good credit to buy a house and don't make enough to have $20,000 in the bank at once will start having this fee. For many customers it feels like Bank of America is penalizing them. This is causing a lot of customers to commit to switching banks, but surprisingly a good number of others are sticking with Bank of America despite the fee.

Of course most people who continue to bank with Bank of America will be those who are not affected by the fee. But even those who will start to be assessed the fee may decide to stick it out anyway. Some people are willing to pay the fee for the convenience of Bank of America's branch and ATM locations. Others will stick with it for the convenience of not having to switch over all their funds and direct deposits. And surprisingly enough, there are also those who just don't care that they are being charged this extra five dollars even though switching to another bank may mean they wouldn't have to pay. This is sometimes due to loyalty to a bank that has been an excellent financial provider for them in the past, or simply because they may not have time to worry about the new fee.

But when other banks, such as Wells Fargo who has already announced a similar fee plan, are jumping on the bandwagon with this fee idea where are the customers who are fed up going to go? One option is Citibank, which has so far claimed that it will not be adding the monthly fees for its customers. There also may be other banks that choose not to add the fee, in hopes of taking over all the customers who are fleeing Bank of America. These could become options for customers, but it is necessary to be wary when switching to a bank that claims it will not implement the fee. It may not be implementing the fee at first, but this could land customers in the same spot they're in now if the bank decides to change its mind a few months later.

Another option for some customers is to switch to a credit union. The problem here though is that the credit unions only accept certain customers and it may be difficult for customers to get in to a credit union. Here in North Carolina we have the NC State Employees Credit Union, which has an excellent checking program, but unfortunately it is not open to everyone. Only state employees and their direct relatives are eligible to bank with the NCSECU. But there are still options for customers who are not eligible for most credit unions. New websites are popping up online to help customers find credit unions that will accept them.

One last option is to withdraw money from the bank altogether and start working only in cash. But in the digital age this may be more hassle than it's worth. Many businesses are starting to only pay their employees by direct deposit, though some companies who do this may have some hidden options for employees who don't have bank accounts. But working only with cash eliminates the ability to shop online unless the customer makes all their online purchases with credit. As we have discussed in some of our previous articles, purchasing on credit can help credit scores but it can also hinder, so customers should be wary about taking this financial route. There are also many stores who are no longer willing to take cash, which could become a hassle for those who choose to start working with only cash.

Any way you spin it this new fee is not great for consumers. Because consumers will have to start looking into other financial options this new fee may start to affect some people's credit scores. And because of that this may be added to the list of ways that people are winding up with bad credit through little to no fault of their own, like we discussed in our article 8 Missteps to Bad Credit.

Jessica Harmon is a staff writer for Scott McCorkle's Credit Capitol. If you would like more information on how we can help get you an auto loan today, please visit our website!

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Credit Card Processing: Calculating Average Processing Charges

There's the quick and easy way to figure average credit card processing fees, and then there's the right way. If you're looking for quick figures; average processing fees for a retail business are about 1.90% - 2.25% of total volume, and typical fees for an Internet business are about 2.25% to 3.00%.

Calculating an accurate average means taking into account a number of different variables including how cards are accepted, the type of cards accepted, the equipment or software being used, and the type of pricing model that the processor uses.

Whether transactions are swiped, keyed-in or taken via the Internet will have a large impact on overall processing expense. Internet transactions are considered higher risk than retail transaction because of the increased risk of fraud and chargebacks. Interchange fees, which are essentially wholesale processing rates, average about 1.90% plus $0.10 for Internet transactions and 1.64% plus $0.10 for retail transactions.

If you haven't already, you should take a moment to familiarize yourself with the interchange fee schedules for credit card processing available at the Visa and MasterCard Web sites.

The equipment of software that your business uses also has a large impact on average cost. Retail businesses that use a counter top credit card machine will have lower fees than an Internet business that uses an online gateway. Machines do not have recurring fees like a gateway or POS system that has additional transaction and monthly fees. Any recurring costs associated with equipment or software will have to be considered when calculating average credit card processing fees.

Perhaps the largest impact on average credit card processing fees is the type of pricing model being used by the processor. Credit card processors can structure fees based on a tiered or pass through model. Tiered pricing has a low qualified rate and then higher mid and non-qualified surcharge rates.

In contrast, a processor charges just a single, low rate on an interchange pass through pricing model, and interchange fees (the wholesale processing rate) are passed directly to their merchants. Interchange pass through pricing is significantly less expensive than tiered pricing, and choosing a processor that offers interchange pass through over a processor that offers tiered pricing will produce a lower average cost.

A helpful tip to accurately compare average costs from one processor to the next is to calculate the average base expense of interchange and assessments, and then apply each processor's markup to this base average. By leveling the playing field with an average of base costs, you will be able to more accurately compare costs from individual processors.

Find the best credit card processing services by getting instant merchant account quotes at Our software calculates average credit card processing fees so you don't have to.

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Getting A Credit Card With No Credit History

Getting a credit card with no credit history can seem like a daunting task, especially with all of the focus that lenders are putting on good credit ratings. However, it is important to understand that there are still credit cards that you can obtain even if you have no credit history. In fact, there are many companies today that are dedicated to offering credit to people without any credit history, such as young adults and new entries to the country. Here is some advice to keep in mind when you are searching for one of these cards:

A card offered to people with no credit will typically come with a high annual fee and a high interest rate. So when looking for a card, keep in mind that you will not be able to obtain a great card with low rates. In fact, it will be detrimental to your credit rating if you apply for a card that you won't be accepted for, as every application for credit negatively affects your credit rating, especially if you are declined. Therefore it is very important to do your research and only apply for cards that you will be accepted for.

Once you receive a credit card the next thing you need to do is make sure you use it very carefully to build up your credit score. If you currently have no credit because you are new to the country or because you are a young adult it is important to start your financial life off with a good start, and that means building a good credit rating. This is easy to do, all that is required is that you use your new card regularly and repay your account balances by the due date. Not only will this save you in interest charges it will also build a strong credit history.

After building your credit score for a while with your first card, you will find that you now have credit history and it is quite favourable. You can then use your new score to go out and apply for a new credit card that has lower interest rates, better rewards and no annual fee.

If you follow the advice we have given here you will be able to build a strong credit rating, and ultimately get a better card in the future. Don't make the same mistakes other people are making, start you financial life the right way!

For more advice about credit cards for no credit please check out our site. We also have some great advice to help you find a credit card for bad credit if you are suffering with a bad credit rating.

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Credit Cards - A Starter's Guide to Credit Cards

Plastic money is the foremost mode of payment these days, so it seems. In almost every establishment you go to, they accept these as payment facilities and not only that, when paying for goods or services using a card, consumers are offered discounts, rewards or points and other promotional strategies that make the usage of credit cards for transactions all the more attractive than good old cash.

If you're new to the world of credit cards, it will be wise to first familiarize yourself with how they function before getting one. Knowing how plastic money works will help you become a responsible card-holder and avoid the risks that usually come with owning this type of payment tool. Although having a credit line can make transacting easy and hassle-free, it also makes it easy for one to plunge to indebtedness which can really make life difficult, especially for one who is just starting out.

Here's a simple guide to plastic money for beginners which you can use to choose the right type of account for you.

First, There Are Different Kinds of Credit Accounts

Creditors offer the following account types:

• standard credit cards

• student charge plates

• premium account

• limited purpose accounts

• secured accounts

• prepaid or debit

• business or corporate accounts

As a beginner, your best option is the standard type, or if you are still a student, the student account. A standard payment facility allows you to have a revolving balance up to a set credit limit. When credit is used up, it will be replenished once payment has been made. The student account works the same way however it has a lower credit limit and rate. All credit accounts have a minimum payment that needs to be paid by the due date to avoid late-payment penalties.

Second, Creditors Have Requirements that Need to Be Met

For a beginner, it may not be easy to get approved for your first credit card. Providers and banks will of course have qualifying criteria that can more or less decide your chances of getting approved. Most banks and companies will require the following:

• Applicant must be of legal age (18 years old and above)

• Applicant must have a suitable income (South African banks and companies usually require an annual salary between R24,000 to R36,000 for the standard type. For the student type, it's as low as R2400 a year or R200 a month)

• Applicant must have a good credit score

Since you may not have a credit record yet, don't expect to be approved on your first application. Once you get approved however, protect your credit score by keeping your plastic money applications at a minimum.

Third, Credit Cards Have Certain Features

These payment facilities come with various features as well like credit limit, balance, interest rate, grace periods, and incentives or rewards. These features should influence your decision-making as they can greatly affect the cost of the credit account you're applying for. If you're not going to use the charge plate frequently or if you want one for emergency purposes only, then look for a creditor that offers interest-free days and be sure to pay each bill in full before the interest-free days expire. If you need an account for cash advances up to the credit limit for short periods at a time then look for an account that comes with low annual and cash advance fees. Be sure that the interest rate charged for cash withdrawals is reasonable as well.

The rewards and incentives that creditors offer should also be weighed according to how you plan to use your plastic money. Some providers offer frequent flyer miles, cash backs on credit spent on shopping at certain stores or online, etc.

Fourth, Don't Take the Fees For Granted

As you may well know, creditors charge fees as this is how they make money out of card-holders. Credit cards don't all come with similar charges or fees though. One creditor may charge a lower annual fee than another but will charge a higher interest rate on balance transfer or cash withdrawal. To attract customers, creditors may offer really low monthly or annual account fee which is actually good but be sure that there is no catch. Go through their list of fees and check on their charges for balance enquiries, statements, balance transfers, purchases, cash advances, etc. These other charges can greatly add up to the overall cost of your credit account.

Find out ways to avoid these charges like not drawing cash if you can use the charge plate to pay for a good or service, checking on your account balance on the bank's or creditor's own ATM if it's for free, not getting a secondary charge plate if it's not necessary and more importantly, not going over your limit. Over-limit charges are often hefty, no matter the creditor, and are not so good on credit records.

Lastly, Commit to be a Responsible Card-holder as Early as Now

Don't apply for a credit card only so you can experience transacting with plastic money or so you can practice paying without cash. Always keep in mind that creditors always favor those who are responsible in utilizing credit. As a beginner, once you're approved and you get your first charge plate, don't go on applying for another one. Your first credit account can be used to establish a good credit rating which you can take advantage of in the future in case you want a better credit account with a higher limit or if you need a loan for your first brand new car or house. Use your card responsibly:

• don't go on a shopping spree every other day

• understand your creditor's billing process in order to understand how you are being charged and why

• always pay on time

• don't go beyond the set credit limit

If you practice being a responsible card-holder as early as now, it'll become a habit and you will have lesser financial troubles in the future.

Take A Look Here

South Africa has a plethora of credit card options and if you want to know and compare them, click here now.

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Thursday, 22 December 2011

How To Remove Collections From Your Credit Report

Do you have collections on your report? Did you know these items are bringing down your FICO score? This information is viewed as your payment history, this roughly accounts for 40% of your overall score. By removing these negative entries and paying your current bills on time you can start to build a trail of positive payment history.

How to Remove Items

The Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) a piece of legislation says that you can dispute any item you feel is inaccurate on your report. The bureaus are then required to investigate the item in which they will contact the lender and ask them to verify the account, the dates, and the balance.

Often the lender will not verify the account and an investigation will result in the removal of an item. Frequently lenders are not willing to verify an account because either they have sold it or are unwilling to spend the time and money to keep the information or locate it.

For example, if you have an unsecured card and stop making your monthly payments eventually the card issuer is going to sell your debt to an agency. They will also 'charge off' your card, in other words they can write it off for tax purposes. Now, after this has happened if they are contacted by a bureau to verify the account they are very unlikely too.

They have gotten everything they can from your account and now that they have sold the debt they have no legal right to collect it. Thus, to verify the item they would only be spending money and resources to keep that information and then to access it.

Why Do I Hear This Is Hard?

The reason you hear about the difficulty is because of our politicians. The FCRA has been weakened over time from what we suspect to be big business interest influencing our law makers. Now, before the bureau will investigate the mark they must deem your dispute valid.

We are highly suspicious of law makers when they enabled the bureaus to do this because they have a horrendous track record for complying with the FCRA and have been fined time and time again by the FTC. The most publicized instance was in the early 2000's when all the bureaus were forced to open phone lines for consumers to file their disputes.

Sounds great right? Yea and that is about as great as it was how it sounded. In practice the bureaus neglected to have employees answering these phones. Why? Doesn't the bureau want to have accurate information in my file?

Unfortunately the bureau doesn't care if the information they have about you is accurate or not. This is because there is no financial motive; the bureaus do not earn money from correcting reports. In fact they lose money and money that otherwise would be profit. Their only motive to even respond to a dispute is to comply with Federal Law and avoid more fines from the FTC.

For a free credit consultation call 1-800-483-0256 or for more about how you can Remove Collections from your credit report visit us or to learn about Online Credit Repair visit

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Credit Cards With Low Interest

Ever since credit cards appeared, people have been fascinated by them. Even though they are commonly the reason for people's bad financial situation, people still apply for new cards regularly and often without thinking this decision through. The main problem with the "plastic" is that many people use it as an almost never-ending source of money. Of course, these cards have a limit, but people often use them, as if they didn't have a limit and when they actually do reach the limit, they just put this piece of plastic back into the wallet, pull out another one and the game can go on. The basic idea of a credit card is simple - people should use this payment method only when they are in need of something necessary, and they cannot afford it at the moment. However, this idea was never truly accepted by people, as most of them use "plastic" whenever they can. This bad habit has resulted in people seeking debt management tips and applying for bankruptcy, and this has almost become a common thing to do.

The Solution to Financial Troubles

There are many different types of credit cards available to people today, but low interest credit cards are probably the most interesting and appealing type. Namely, it would really be great if you could change all of your cards and make them all into low interest credit cards. This would probably significantly lower your monthly payments and make it easier for you to make these payments on time, or to make them at all in many cases. The dream of all people who own "plastic" is probably close to this, if not exactly this, but the real question is not how to do this, but rather whether this is possible at all.

Are Low Interest Credit Cards A Myth or Reality?

The fact is that people use "plastic," and they use it commonly. They go shopping on credit. They go to vacations on credit. They buy their meals on credit and so on. All of this can be done with much lower interest rates than most people are paying and this is a fact, but are these lower interest rates available to everybody? The answer is, unfortunately, negative.

Low interest cards are available only to people with excellent credit, which is at the same time logical and pretty much illogical. Namely, if you have excellent credit, this means that you have no problem with making any of your monthly payments. If you can make all of your monthly payments on time, then you probably do not have any financial problems. Therefore, low interest credit cards are available as a reward for people who have excellent credit, and they are not meant to help those who are having serious financial problems. After all, if you really are having serious financial problems, a few percent lower interest rate is not something that is going to get you out of trouble, is it?

Low Interest Credit Cards and How to Get Them

Basically, if you have excellent credit, and if you want to take advantage of this fact, you should apply for this type of credit card. It will offer you lower interest rates, which will automatically result in lower monthly payments. It is all about saving money, and if you really want to find the best interest rates, you should take your time and do some serious online research before applying for any particular low interest credit cards. This way, you will make sure that you have found the perfect credit card which will cater to all of your financial needs.

For further information regarding low interest credit cards, please visit MyReviewsNow Online Shopping.

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Cashback Credit Cards for Business Owners

Business owners can choose from a variety of credit cards, including low interest credit cards, rewards credit cards, cash back credit cards, and more. Many cash back credit cards are featured with discounts at locations of Shell, Alamo, and other merchants. Cash back can be redeemed for gas, travel expenses, business entertainment, merchandise, and much more.

If you are looking for Canadian cash back credit cards, you will find plenty of lucrative offers, featured by the big banks and second-tier banking establishments. The American Express Business Card allows cardholders to earn up to $1,250 in cash rebates, depending on the months they are carrying a balance and their spending habits. The card is offered with an annual interest rate of 19.99 percent, and flexible terms to pay outstanding balances over time. In should be noted that rates may increase up to 25.99 percent, depending on one's payment record. There is no annual fee, and additional cards can be requested for one's employees free-of-charge. The card is offered with disability plan for small business insurance. In addition, cardholders are entitled to emergency card replacement and travel accident insurance. Online reporting and expense management tools are another beneficial feature. Finally, cardholders enjoy front of the line entertainment. The card can be used for a variety of business purchases such as entertainment, office supplies, business travel, and more. Clients earn up to 2 percent cashback. In terms of payment options, there are different ways you can do this. You can pay your account at an automated teller machine, at your local bank branch, or through Internet banking. You can also pay it by telephone or by mail.

It should be noted that this card is offered by various financial institutions in Canada, and fees may apply. In addition, clients must qualify annually in order to receive rebates. Rebates are calculated on purchases charged to the card only. Certain restrictions and conditions may apply as well.

Another credit card suitable for business owners is the BMO CashBack MasterCard for Business. The card goes with no annual fee and allows clients to earn cash back and get rebates to their accounts. Cardholders earn 0.5 percent cash back on all purchases charged to the card, as well as 1.5 percent on purchases at locations of Alamo Rent A Car, Shell, and National Car Rental. The CashBack MasterCard for Business is featured with no annual fee and 19.5 percent interest rate or annual fee of $50 a year and low interest of 12.9 percent. One beneficial feature of this card is BMO Premium BizAssist, going with online business support 24/7. This service is offered for $149 a year. MasterCard Easy Savings is another service that allows automatic rebates offered at participating merchants. Supplemental employee cards are also offered, allowing business owners to delegate purchasing authority. Thanks to the liability waiver program offered with this card, one's business is protected against employee abuse.

If you prefer reward credit cards, you can check the American Express Business Gold Rewards Card, American Express Business Platinum Card, and a variety of other cards.

John Stevenson writes for Credit Cards in Canada.

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Improving Your Credit Rating: It's Easy

Even if your credit rating is abysmal, you can improve it, provided you are willing to do some hard work and be disciplined.

One of the most important thing that you need to do in this regard is to pay all your pending dues on deadline. You may not believe at first but it is true that late payments ruin your credit rating.

In addition, you also need to minimize the quantity of credit cards that you possess. Make sure that you write a letter to the financial institution asking them to shut down your accounts. More importantly, report this latest development to the credit reporting agencies. After all, they are the one, who is going to update your credit report on the basis of your actions.

Do not follow the route of bankruptcies or tax liens. Talking about tax liens, it is a lien for not paying property and income taxes. The worse part about bankruptcy is that it is going to be there in your credit report for a period of ten years. On the other hand, tax liens will be there in your credit report for a period of seven years.

It is also a good option that you request in writing to the financial institutions you are dealing with to minimize your credit limit so that you can manage your finances in a much better way. Point to be noted here is that the complete amount of credit available in your account is taken into consideration by financial institutions even if you owe nothing.

Take the help of your friends and family members with regard to co-signing on a credit card or a loan package, so that you can improve your credit rating quickly. As usual, pay all your dues on time otherwise this move can easily backfire on you. Another option that you have is to opt for a secured credit card.

The beauty of secured credit card is that it plays a pivotal role in ensuring that there is some improvement in your credit rating. But for that to happen, you need to have specified amount of money as a balance in your account, so that charges can be covered. Last but not the least, get an annual copy of your credit report. This is important because when you analyze your report carefully, you may find some discrepancy there. If that is the case, contact credit reporting agency immediately.

Joe Arias writes advice and articles on various topics regarding but not limited to just credit

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Wednesday, 21 December 2011

Merchant Payment Processing - How to Set Up an Account

A merchant account is an account maintained with a credit card merchant payment processing company that enables you to accept debit and credit cards and accept payments online. In today's fast paced and rapidly becoming paperless world, customers do not like to carry as much cash on them. The most popular alternatives are debit and credit cards and if you are still operating your business without the option of accepting cards, there is a strong possibility that you are losing business to competitors who do accept merchant credit and debit cards.

How do you setup a merchant account?
For this, you first need to select a payment processing company. These types of companies can be found on the Internet and that is a great place to start your research. Compare service charges and fee structures to determine a suitable service provider. Payment processing companies charge fees for setting up an account as well as for support and individual transaction fees. By comparing their fee structure and available services, you can shortlist a handful of choices.

Customer Service and Support
Customer service is another important criterion to consider for selection of a merchant payment processing company. When you are just starting your merchant account, customer service can be an important factor to ensure smooth functioning of your operations. Business owners new to a credit card processing system will be in need of well-qualified support and training staff to setup their account successfully. There may be an extra charge involved with some companies, and on the other hand there might be companies that do not offer any training at all.

Security Concerns
Cyber crimes are on the rise and credit card information is the most sought after commodity these days for cyber criminals. This makes data and transaction security a big concern for merchants. It is imperative to select a reputable merchant payment processing service provider that can protect your sensitive customer data and has an impenetrable security system in place.

Whether you like it or not, payment via credit and debit cards is to way to go these days. The time is not far off when cash dealings will become unheard of. Businesses who will not adapt themselves to these popular trends will be left with fewer customers. Applications like merchant accounts and small business accounting services are designed to improve not only your day-to-day functioning, but are also a great help for increasing your revenues.

Paul is a professional writer, with a background of business and accounting. He is specialized in small business accounting services and work in merchant payment processing company.

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How To Use Credit Wisely And Achieve An Abundant Life Part 3

Do you want to spend less on your credit cards? Do you need to develop good money saving habits? By using credit wisely, you can be on your way to abundant living! If you are one of the 75% of American households with credit cards-and therefore credit card debt-then I have some more tips for you!

That's right, only 75% of American households have credit cards. What are those other 25% doing that keeps them from incurring credit card debt? Some (the smart ones) never applied for cards in the first place. Some have probably already paid off their debt, done away with their cards, and now live the rich life. How in the heck did they pay off the debt and get free of their dependence on cards, you think? Read on to find the answer, hon!

Here's what you've got to do. First, call each credit card company and try to negotiate a lower interest rate, even if just for a few months. Armed with the info on which companies will give you lower rates, you can decide which cards to shred and which to keep. Begin by calling the company you've had a card with for the longest amount of time. Explain that you've been their customer for a number of years and need them to lower your interest rate. Let them know you're thinking about closing your account and transferring the balance to another card with a lower interest rate.

Be firm but agreeable and upbeat on the phone. These people can help you--They are your friends, not your enemies. Treat them nicely but remember you are in a position of power--You could in fact transfer your balance and close down your account. You are their customer and they want to keep you happy, so approach it that way. Begging is for dogs, not folks like you trying to negotiate a lower rate on their cards!

If they won't lower your rate, do some research and transfer your balances to a lower rate card--as long as the fees for the transfer aren't larger than your projected interest savings. If you don't already have a lower rate card, look online to find one that will let you transfer your balance. Pay attention! Oftentimes companies will even give you zero percent interest for period of time just to get you to transfer your balance to their card. So take a look around, hon and remember that you DO have choices. See what's out there.

Also, stop viewing the credit card offers that clutter your mailbox as an annoyance. Use them to your advantage. Collect them for a couple of weeks and compare the various offers. Pick the one with the longest "too good to pass up" offer, usually an offer of no interest for a six months, a year, 16 months, or the like. Take note that in this period of time, you can make HUGE headway in paying down your balance if you follow the money saving and spending strategies in the part 1 and 2 of this article series.

Next, take the best offer you can find and transfer the balance from your highest interest card there (again, only if the fees for the transfer are less than the interest you can expect to save). Cancel the other card and shout "Hasta la vista" as you celebrate your new lower interest rate card. And remember, if you pay the new card off fast (why not within the zero percent interest period, hon??), then your credit score will go up and life will be much easier when you want to buy a house, refinance your current home, or even get a new cell phone plan.

See? Learning how to use credit wisely is not as hard as it seems. Just stop using your cards to spend until you get them paid down, watch your interest rates like a parole office watches his "charges," and remember--YOU DO HAVE CHOICES! To find out the essential final steps to take to work your way through your credit cards and pay them ALL down, tune into part 4 of this article series. You don't want to miss out on learning how to pay credit cards down as quickly as possible so you can achieve the abundant life you desire!

Professional speaker and coach Dr. Barnsley Brown loves helping people like you save thousands of dollars and start living the life of their dreams! Check out Dr. Barnsley's exciting e-book and audio package, Get Out of Debt and Get On With Your Life, at

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Credit Card Suppliers Compete for Balance Transfers

With tight credit seemingly becoming a footnote of history, several credit card issuers are fighting it out to be able to acquire customers with many dangling the attractive offer of zero percent interest on balance transfer offers as the incentive to get the consumer to change their provider.

Despite the fact that issuers offering up a zero percent account balance transfer alternative are undoubtedly providing an extremely useful resource to help intelligently take care of finances, there are some hurdles which should be avoided at all costs in order to make the most of the outstanding deals in the market. Be careful to always make sure to read through the stipulations before you apply.

Without a doubt, credit card deals supplying 0% interest rates on either expenditures, or as in this case, transferring balances, are unable to maintain this permanently and so they consequently supply this APR for an introductory period only. It is usually known as a teaser rate and often lasts anywhere from around six months to eighteen months.

In cases where a cardholder transferring their credit account has the ability to pay off their balance while the reduced rate applies, the move may possibly save a sizable amount of capital, but for the people whose obligations take a tad bit longer to repay, they may end up paying out a more expensive interest rate compared to their prior charge card issuer.

Even if your charge card features a greater than average APR when the offer ends, that doesn't mean it isn't worth switching the account balance. However, it in fact does signify a serious attempt ought to be made to pay off the debt prior to the zero percent interest period expiring, or perhaps uncover a different bank card to switch to.

Consequently if you take a holiday vacation and end up forgetting to pay for your bill before you leave, after you return you may very well find that the bank card provider has cancelled the 0% special offer and switched the balance onto its standard interest rates, as well as incorporating a penalty fee for overdue payment.

The rivalry in the credit card marketplace is unquestionably to the cardholders' advantage, with issuers no longer limited to a small handful of creditors. It's now a lot more common to discover many vendors credit cards within wallets and handbags across the country. These credit cards are usually very competitively priced and review web pages will help discover the companies providing the greatest deals.

To compare the top credit card deals available on the market right now we suggest you visit

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