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4 Essential Credit Questions and Answers

Aug 17, 2007
Whether you are getting your first credit card or trying to find a home when the credit you already have isn't the best it can be, here are a few questions that might help you through the maze of credit rating and erasing bad debt. Even though the outlook may seem bleak at the moment, remember there is always hope and you can repair your credit if you are willing to do a little work and a little research. Here's a look at some questions that come up often in discussion about credit and the answers you need to know.

Is it necessary to read the fine print in the credit card agreement?

Of course it is! Not everyone reads the fine print, but everyone should. The small print looks complicated and bothersome to slog through and that is why most people tend to disregard it. Often there is information contained in that tiny print that might save you money. There might be instructions regarding hidden fees, or fees you might be charged should you go over your spending limit. You might also find information regarding rate increases after a certain period of time. "I didn't know" is not a valid excuse no matter how much you mean it.

How important is good credit when it comes to getting a job?

If you had asked that question twenty years ago you probably would have gotten laughed at. Today, more and more companies are using credit checks as a standard part of the new employee hiring process. A prospective employer cannot refuse an application because the applicant suffered a bankruptcy; however there are other things such as foreclosures and collection actions that might be used against you. While the background check still reigns first and foremost in the hiring process, the credit check is gaining ground in popularity.

My credit was fine a week ago, now it's not - what happened?

There are a few things that can cause your credit to take a dive without you knowing it. The first is an inquiry. In this case a credit card company, utility company or mortgage company might request a look at your credit information. You might have done some work to better your rating in the last couple of months; however it takes a few more months for that information to show up.

Another more obvious problem might be the failure to pay your bills on time. And lastly charge offs might be another reason for receiving bad credit. A charge off is when you didn't pay a bill, forgot to pay a bill, and it has become obvious to a company that you are never going to pay the bill. The company will write off your incompetence as a loss on their books for their taxes.

Will I still be able to purchase a home with bad credit?

It won't be as easy as if you had good credit, but it is possible. We all suffer setbacks in life and sometimes an illness or loss of a job isn't entirely our fault. We may have even done some hard work to get our credit back on track after the difficulties but that stain still lingers on our credit report and always will.

You have already taken the first step in securing a home loan, you have tried to get your credit back on track. The best thing you can do for yourself is to order a credit report and go over it very carefully. Look for any discrepancies and contact the companies you might have discrepancies with. Once these are cleared up you can request a new report sent out to all of your creditors.
About the Author
John Edmond runs Credit Card Debt where you can read many more articles on debt consolidation and for the latest information on bankruptcy checkout the blog.
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