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Tracey Espinoza remembers the day in 2013 when she had to leave the home she loved due to foreclosure. As she was packing up her bedding, she thought, “Well, at least they can’t take my pillows. At least I don’t think they can.”
Like many Americans, Tracy and her family got caught up in the aftermath of the economic downturn of 2008 to 2011. By 2012 neither her nor her husband’s salary had increased and getting another job at higher pay wasn’t panning out.
Complicating matters, they’d had two children in the previous four years, and Tracy cut back work to part-time to care for them. When Tracy could not find full time work in her field, they were unable to keep up with mortgage payments and fell into foreclosure, ruining their credit. When her husband’s 8-year-old Toyota Acura needed a new transmission, they turned to a “bad credit” credit card to pay for it. He needed to get to work reliably—without missing a day—after all.
Even now in 2020, wages have not caught up with the stock market rebound. A Wall Street Journal article quoted the senior human resources manager of Ohio’s First Solar manufacturing saying, “Wage pressure? I don’t think we’ve necessarily seen that.” After all, at their last job call, 700 people showed up for 120 positions. They had their pick.
Surmounting the “Bad Credit” Stigma
“Bad credit” loans and credit cards suffer from a somewhat undeserved reputation. Where “good credit” typically starts at the 700 score and above, “fair,” “poor” and “bad credit” make up the tiers beneath. With over 50% of Americans now in these “subprime” categories, many turn to higher rate loans to keep their computers, cars and even bodies working so they can earn a living.
Where “Bad Credit” Loans Do the Most Good
These three situations prompt borrowers to gather their courage and get a “bad credit” loan to keep going.
Building Credit: If you’re in the subprime credit category, most likely you’ve learned that every credit card you apply for checks or “dings” your credit record. Every “ding” drops your credit score by 10 points or more. Ironically, those with the best credit use credit cards the least. They have the most “available” credit. Of the $30,000 that their banks, mortgage holders and auto lenders feel they can afford to borrow, they may currently be using $3,000 of it. We all should be there someday! Borrowers working to build their credit rating, on the other hand, can avoid incurring a credit check and subsequent credit “ding” by getting a bad or low credit loan. Typically, the lender requires no collateral and will not contact Experian, TransUnion or EquiFax, the three largest credit reporting agencies. It simply needs bank statements, pay stubs, proof of residency and limited other documents.
Keeping Income Earning Tools Functioning: Many Americans today are abandoning corporate careers for freelance work. In fact, software giant Intuit performed a study of thousands of American workers and found an interesting draw to an independent lifestyle. Their findings prompted them to declare that by the year 2020, 40% of the American workforce will be freelance. While the freedom and the endless pajama-wearing is great, freelancers have to pay for lots of things that don’t even cross the corporate employee’s mind. These items include: computer repair, subscriptions to SaaS services, and transportation. When any one of these breaks down, the time and the repair budget fall on the freelancer. With work mounting, rectifying issues as quickly as possible becomes paramount. If clients have not paid but bills are due, freelancers and other entrepreneurs often have to resort to credit cards. The start-up business may not even have a credit line established. Therefore, they fall into the “subprime” category. Should they give up on their business? Is THAT the American Way? The most successful freelancers work back channels and creative pathways to reach their goals. Many businesses have resorted to “bad credit” loans and even credit cards to stay in business until their breakthrough.
When Fees and Penalties Are Burdensome: A 5% late payment on a $2,500 rent runs to $125 of money-for-nothing. A bad credit loan, on the other hand, comes in handy when big payments come due. When an unavoidable fee or penalty comes within just a few days of a paycheck or accounts receivable avalanche of past due payments from clients, it makes sense to pay the expense and then quickly pay off the short-term loan.
First Financial Welcomes Bad Credit Borrowers
First Financial can find the right loan instrument, even for those with poor, fair or bad credit. Because more than 50% of Americans fall into the subprime category, enterprising alternative banks (with all the security the big, bricks and mortar banks offer) deliver affordable loans. Apply for a bad credit or low credit score in minutes here. Follow us on Facebook to get smart about building your fin
According to reports by the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, 107 million Americans have auto loan debts. This data shows more Americans have car loans than mortgages.
Borrowers able to get auto financing at reasonable rates access larger and amounts than before. This sounds appealing to individuals with a solid credit history, but what if you are just starting off in the world of credit and have no history at all? The good news is that even with poor credit you can still get car financing by opting for a No Credit Auto Loan with First Financial.
But how can this happen? Read on to find out.
First, you need to understand the meaning of a No Credit Auto Loan. As the name suggests, this is a car loan extended to an individual with either no credit history, poor credit or limited history. Therefore, you can get an auto loan even without having a credit history, or with a bad credit history.
Below are the reasons why you need to take a No Credit Auto Loan with First Financial.
Can you get a car loan with bad credit? This is a question asked by many people and you might be surprised to find out that of nearly 50% of American borrowers have a tarnished or limited credit history.
In other words, their credit scores lie in the subprime category, which means they have limited options for accessing loans. This category of people will find First Financial their best option since they can place their application regardless of their situation, whether its bankruptcy, poor credit, or no credit.
If you want to make a major purchase like a car or a truck and your credit history is not appealing, then this is the best website to turn to. You will be able to access the loan in the convenience of your laptop at the lowest possible rates you can ever imagine. The process is easy and confidential and you are sure to get a quick email response to update you on the progress of your application
First Financial is an online lender which means it is accessible 24/7 anytime, anywhere. Some of the conveniences you are certain to enjoy:
First Financial believes that obtaining a No Credit Auto Loan should be hassle-free because this is a long-term financial decision you are making. You should not be under duress by auto-dealers whose main concern is the interest they get for every client they bring on board.
Working on your car loan from home will give you the freedom to check on different prices and options available so that you are sure to make an informed decision.
The requirements of getting an auto loan without credit on this website are so easy you may think it’s too good to be true. While the requirements are stringent enough to avoid liability to the borrower, they are also “loose” to ensure that most of the applicants get approved. The following are the only qualifications for auto financing:
Even if you have been declared bankrupt, you have a reason to smile because First Financial will sort you out. Such financial hurdles will no longer deter you from obtaining a loan for your vehicle or truck.
Members of the armed forces both on active duty or retired and struggling with bad credit may wonder how they may qualify for a car loan. First Financial has tailored made auto financing programs that helps them to obtain auto loans in spite of their poor credit scores.
First Financial understand the difficulties encountered by these military men and women in their effort to maintain safety and that is why they have specialized programs dedicated to them. Military auto loans are different from normal civilian loans because they are often offered on lower interest rates, require lower down payments and come with special discounts.
The rate of approval is high mainly because of the stability of their income. Military workers should not put off buying a car because of the demand of their duties but should embrace this enticing opportunity
As mentioned earlier, First Financial is an online provider of bad credit car loan that partners with hundreds of authorized and licensed car dealers. This site will allow you to shop for dealers while comparing prices and interest rates.
To crown it all, you will be able to get several preapprovals using only one application. So don’t allow yourself to be limited by the car dealers or the financial institutions in your area, browse through our website for an array of choices.
It may seem daunting at first but it is not impossible. A few tips will help you navigate the murky waters of credit even with no credit history to back you up.
Engaging a co-signer with an excellent credit history in your auto loan will increase your chances of approval. Also, a reasonable down payment will show the potential buyer that you are serious about buying a car despite your bad credit history and may serve to reduce the total cost of your loan. Finally, shop around to explore the options available in the market and compare various interest rates and the payment plans that suit your budget.
Remember, First Financial will offer you the best financial support irrespective of your credit history. Apply for your No Credit Auto Loan today in less than three minutes.
43 million Americans have bad credit, with the bulk of these being young consumers.
While student loans and tough economic times can be blamed for this, poor planning and a low comprehension of credit facilities are partly to blame as well.
Cash advance loans are very convenient and can be hard to resist, but they can also put you in trouble.
How do these loans work, and how can you ensure to get the most out of them?
Here is an in-depth cash advance guide.
Your credit card lets you use your credit card to get a short term loan at an ATM or a bank. This is then paid back in the same way you pay for anything you put on your credit card.
In a way, this is like using your credit card to ‘purchase’ hard cash, which you then use to buy goods and services. In this way, you get to borrow cash against your credit card limit.
The same way you use your debit card to get cash from an ATM, you get cash from a credit card to be repaid with interest.
The difference between a credit card advance and a payday advance loan is that the latter is not dependent on your credit card.
If you typically do not carry paper money for your day to day spending, you might run into trouble when you need to pay for something at a business that only accepts cash payments.
In such cases, being allowed to convert your credit card limit into cash becomes very convenient.
Most credit card companies allow their clients to convert a percentage of their credit limit into cash, as opposed to the entire amount.
For most people, this translates into a couple of hundred dollars. This is therefore useful for smaller emergencies purchases and should not be dependent on for larger purchases.
While getting a credit card advance is easy, the interest rates can be a bit high.
Here are some of the associated costs that make it so:
These are determined by the financial institution that processes a transaction. This can be a bank or an ATM where you get your cash advance from.
If you use a bank outside your card issuer’s network, expect the fees to be higher.
These are determined by the company that issues your credit card.
These are charged in three different ways.
The first is by charging a percentage of the amount advanced. This can be as high as 5%.
The second way is by charging a flat fee per cash advance. For example, you can be charged $5 to $10 per advance, irrespective of the amount.
The third one is by charging the higher figure between the percentage or the minimum amount. An example of this is $5 or 10% of the withdrawal amount; whichever amount is higher.
To begin with, the interest charged on credit card loans is always higher than that charged on a credit card purchase.
Secondly, while you get a grace period with credit cash purchases, interest on cash advances starts accruing immediately.
It might be impossible to avoid this loan facility altogether.
For this reason, it’s key to know how to keep the costs low and avoid getting into unmanageable debt.
Here are a few tips.
The amount available for you to convert to cash is lower than your credit card limit. Exceeding this amount can result in higher interest rates and other over-limit charges.
Ensure to find out your card limit when you get a new card so you can adhere to a safe limit.
The key information to look out for is the one-off payable cash advance fee and the applicable APR as well.
If you are unclear on any terms of your contract, ensure to engage your service provider’s customer care representative.
Limit the use of this facility to emergencies you cannot use your credit cards on. It’s also important to create an emergency fund to draw from when needed.
If used without caution, credit card advances can spiral out of control making it difficult for you to make timely repayments. Consequently, this has the potential to lower your credit score.
Aside from only using this facility as a last result, limit your withdrawals to only what you need.
Resist the temptation to take out more because the higher you take, the higher the interest you will pay.
While this might seem like much, these amounts add up to a significant figure over time.
Taking out this facility does not directly impact your credit score, but it might have some indirect consequences.
The first one is that it raises your credit utilization ratio. This is among the benchmarks used to calculate your credit scoring. A high utilization ratio positions you as a high-risk borrower and may lower your scoring.
The other one is tied in with the costs of repaying a credit card advance. If you are not able to afford the high-interest rate, you may resort to late payments or even default.
When this information makes its way into the credit bureaus, it can negatively affect your scoring as well. As a rule of thumb, avoid making payments 30 days past the due date. Timely payment could help improve your credit score.
Ensure you understand all processing costs, the applicable APR and your ability to repay before taking out the loan.
“It comes as a surprise to some that you have the ability to remove negative credit issues from your credit report. If you have been subject to identity theft or involved in late payments, bankruptcy, repossessions, or foreclosures from over 7 years ago, you may be able to remove these credit dings from your history to improve your score. Should you find any information in your credit report that is simply wrong, you also have the ability to contest the issue using the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FRCA) ”
Until April of 2021, the three major credit bureaus are allowing you to check your credit score on a weekly basis (rather than yearly). This is a great opportunity for you to see how making healthy financial decisions can quickly raise your credit score — and in real time.”
Did you know that Americans now have more debt than ever?
In fact, this debt amounts to a hefty $13 trillion–and this number is likely on the rise.
Debt can sneak up on all of us, especially given life’s range of expenses. Student loans, vehicle financing, and mortgages may grant education, mobility, and home ownership, but they still all equate to debt.
Luckily, if you are struggling with debt management, there are options. One of these is debt consolidation.
How does debt consolidation work, and is it right for you? In this post, we answer these questions and more.
Keep reading for insight!
Most people accrue debt from a variety of sources. You may, for example, have credit card debt in addition to an auto loan or home mortgage.
This is very common, and it’s not necessarily a problem. It is possible to have “healthy debt” if you are a responsible borrower and if you can comfortably make your monthly payments.
Yet healthy debt can be hard to come by. Plenty of loans have high-interest rates, which can quickly get burdensome and keep you from saving what you need to be saving!
A lot of people also juggle multiple monthly payments. It can be tough to meet these, especially if you’re living paycheck to paycheck. (In fact, most Americans do!)
Unexpected situations such as family emergencies or medical expenses can be an additional challenge. These can add more to your debt and stress levels.
If you find yourself missing payments on any of your loans, you may face late payment fees. Credit card balances are also subject to potentially high-interest rates.
Debt consolidation strives to alleviate the stress of these potential situations. When you consolidate your debt, you lump your debt into one, single loan. This results in just one monthly payment and–in most cases–less interest due.
Debt consolidation sometimes sounds too good to be true. How does it work?
First, it’s important to note that there are, in general, two ways to consolidate debt: with a credit card balance transfer or a debt consolidation loan.
Both of these have the same goal, which is to get all of your debt into one monthly payment. Plus, they also strive to reduce interest and fees.
For people with a lot of credit card debt, this is a great means of consolidating. Users simply transfer all of their debt to one credit card. They must then pay off this balance within a given time frame.
Most people will seek out new cards that offer a 0% balance transfer APR and/or a $0 balance transfer fee. Plenty of credit cards offer these terms!
These terms mean that balance transfers won’t be subject to any fees. Once you transfer a balance, you won’t have to pay interest on that balance for a given period of time (sometimes up to a year).
If you aren’t eligible for such offers for any reason, have no fear. You can always transfer your credit card balances. These, however, will be subject to APR and/or transfer fees according to your card’s terms.
For this reason, identify your card’s balance transfer terms before you make a decision.
Another way to consolidate your debt is to take out a debt consolidation loan.
With this, borrowers take out a loan valued at their total debt. Generally, this loan is fixed-rate, meaning that its balance will have the same interest rate for the entire repayment period.
With this debt consolidation loan, borrowers pay off all of their existing debt. They will then work on repaying that loan in a given amount of time, generally at a lower interest rate.
Debt consolidation loans are ideal only if they do offer lower interest rates and fees than a borrower is paying on other loans.
You can get debt consolidation loans from a variety of sources. What’s more, they don’t have to be called a “debt consolidation loan” to count. Low-interest personal loans can also suffice.
Debt consolidation can be a relief for most borrowers, especially when it comes to reducing payments, interest, and fees. But is it right for you?
In general, debt consolidation is ideal for people who could benefit from a single monthly payment (rather than several).
It’s also the right choice for individuals who aren’t 100% drowning in debt. In general, your debt shouldn’t be more than half of your current income. If it is, it will be really tough to pay off that debt, even after it is consolidated!
Credit score can also play a role. In general, people with good to excellent credit are more eligible for 0% balance transfer terms on credit cards and low-interest consolidation loans.
If you have a lower credit score, you may struggle to find a consolidation method that actually saves you money.
It’s also important to have a plan in place once you do consolidate your debt. This plan should incorporate income sources and repayment terms.
Remember: debt consolidation doesn’t get rid of your debt. It only reorganizes it, in an attempt to reduce interest paid.
If you’ve decided that debt consolidation is right for you, begin by choosing how you wish to consolidate your debt. Is credit card consolidation right for you, or is a debt consolidation loan the way to go?
Next, start researching. Take your time to identify the best balance transfer terms and/or low-interest consolidation loan.
If you do intend to take out a loan for debt consolidation, browse lenders wisely. There are a lot of scams out there when it comes to debt consolidation, so look only for reputable lenders.
We also recommend inspecting your credit score before you hunt for offers. Remember: the higher your score, the better for securing terms likely to make debt consolidation worth it.
How does debt consolidation work? Debt consolidation involves lumping all of your debt into one loan to reduce payments and interest.
In general, debt consolidation can be a useful tool for individuals with debt that doesn’t surpass half of their income.
Are you ready to consolidate your debt? Apply for a loan now!
16% of Americans have a credit score of below 579. This is the lowest level of the FICO score and is categorized as “very poor”.
A poor credit score can have a serious impact on your personal life and can affect your business negatively as well.
While no one can guarantee that you will hit an exceptional score, there are steps you can take to improve your credit score.
Here are seven tips to raise your credit score quickly.
The very first step to take is to get a copy of your credit card report. This is the only way to know where you stand before you figure out the specific actions to take to make things better.
This is, however, not all you will be doing with your report. Go through it carefully, checking for any error and omissions.
Look for things like a repaid debt that’s been listed as a default or a loan you repaid on time that is not listed.
If you identify any of these issues, move to have them corrected. This action in itself can add a few points to your rating.
You will be surprised at how helpful your creditors can be. Unfortunately, if you never ask, you will never find out.
If you are having trouble making payments, make contact with your credit card issuer and communicate this with them.
Most providers have temporary hardship programs you can take advantage of. The benefit of this is that you can have your repayment amounts reduced until you get back on your feet.
Smaller, more manageable installments mean you can pay a lot more comfortably. This is better than skipping payments and having a creditor send a negative report that sheds a few points off your score.
This is a great way of giving your credit score an immediate boost. This works particularly well if you are just starting out and have little information on your credit rating.
You do this by getting someone with a high credit card limit and an even greater repayment history. Their card issuer sends them a card with your name on it.
Legally, you are not obligated to make payments on any debt accrued on the card. But its usage reflects positively on your credit score.
The key is finding someone with above board transactions. In a sense, you inherit the person’s positive credit history.
However, not all credit card companies report authorized users. Before you get on it, do your research and find out if it will be reported.
It’s not uncommon to fall behind on payments from time to time. However, these small mistakes lower your credit score.
If you are in good standing with your creditors, it does not hurt to request them to delete some of the reported late payments. Financial institutions regularly communicate with Credit Referencing Bureaus, and all it would take is a quick phone call on your behalf.
If the request goes through, then you will have fewer negative reports, which will add some points to your credit rating. Nevertheless, try and restrict your late payments to 30 days. Creditors will not report late dues failing in this time frame.
If your issue is forgetfulness, rather than availability of funds, you can have your banker or employer make direct payments if this facility is available. If not, there are numerous software tools you can use to remind you when your payments are due.
You might be eager to forget about your car loan or student loan debts once you make the final payment.
However, as long as you completed your payments promptly, those records may help your scoring. The same is true for credit card debt.
All you need to do is keep these debts on your record. If they were entirely left out, then provide all the information to the credit Reference Bureau so they can use it to calculate your credit score.
Bad payment histories are deleted with time. However, bankruptcies stay on your report for 10 years and late payments for seven years. You don’t have much leeway with these.
Credit utilization is the amount of credit card balance you have compared to your credit limit.
This is the second largest factor affecting your credit score. The first is your credit repayment history.
The more credit you use on your credit card, the further down your credit rating drops. This trend indicates you are spending a significant portion of your income to repay debt, which makes you likelier to default on payments.
The best credit utilization is 0, which means your credit card limit is untouched. This defeats the purpose of applying for a credit card in the first place.
As a rule of thumb, keep your credit utilization ratio at 30%. This means using less than 30% of the credit limit availed to you. Anything above this can cause your rating to drop.
Under the FICO system, people with the highest scores have a utilization rate of 7%. The lower your utilization, the better.
The average age and number of accounts you have held are an important consideration in evaluating how you handle debt.
This tends to disadvantage people with a limited credit history.
UltraFico and Experian Boost allow people with limited credit histories to puff it up using other information.
Experian requires access to your online banking data and allows Credit Referencing Bureaus to add utility payments to your history.
In the same way, UltraFico allows you to give permissions for savings and checking accounts to be used alongside your report when calculating your credit score.
All in all, while it is possible to raise your credit score quickly, expect a few bumps along the way and allow yourself some time.
At First Financial, we understand that while you work on your credit rating you might still need help from time to time. No matter your credit score, we have a financing solution for you. Contact us today for more information.
For too long, consumers had little control over the subtleties of their credit scores. One forgotten payment dings a score by 10 points. Signing up for a department store credit card can take it down by 20 points. Most Americans don’t learn how to build their credit until they learn their credit score is so low, they have to pay far more than others for a car or home loan.
Waiting to check your credit score until you’re in the mortgage broker’s office is like showing up at the marathon after sitting on the couch for the previous six months. Why not condition for optimal performance now?
The good news is that there are now two, brand new programs that give you extra control over the key number that reflects your financial responsibility. These programs come from credit bureau Experian and credit analyst FICO (FICO uses Experian, TransUnion and Equifax to calculate your score. The credit bureaus do not calculate the score.)
Experian Supports the Consumer, Finally!
The Experian Boost program lets consumers report their on-time utility, phone and cable payments. Demonstrating reliability in making these payments can help a borrower improve how a credit bureau perceives his or her trustworthiness. While this idea may seem new to you, alternative lenders have used information from monthly bills for a few years now with great success. It allows them to make more loans and broaden their businesses with little increased risk. It turns out that those who prove they pay these typical monthly bills are good credit risks, even if they’ve forgotten a payment or picked up a new credit card.
Experian claims that of those who have tried the program so far, 64 percent have raised their credit scores.
To get started, all you need to do is give Experian access to your bank account. They need to see your payment history. Once this connection is made, you can calculate your score right away. Experian predicts that eight million Americans could move from poor to fair or fair to good credit with this new program. With better credit, they are more easily able to qualify for apartments, insurance, credit, mortgages and loans. It should only take a few minutes to set up and will jump start your credit repair efforts!
FICO Finds Its Heart, too
As with Experian Boost, FICO’s UltraFICO links with your checking, savings and money market accounts. It reads whether you:
In other words, it monitors your banking habits. FICO estimates that 15 million Americans can raise their FICO scores by opting into UltraFICO. This program will be available soon. You can sign up to be notified when they’re ready to take your bank information.
Safety in these Two Programs
Today, Americans are more concerned about safety and privacy than ever. Experian and FICO have the most secure systems in the world. Both new programs involve sign-in verification, during which consumers grant read-only permission to connect to their online bank accounts. All of this information is encrypted so that no individual at either entity can know bank details. The algorithms crunch numbers and data. Use the links above to advocate for your credit worthiness and finally have some sway over your credit score.
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