Archive for October, 2016

Credit Bureaus Make Mistakes

Thursday, October 27th, 2016

Credit Bureau reports have an incredible impact on the day to day life of the average consumer. You may not be aware that the information these companies are reporting about you may be wrong.

credit cards

The three major bureaus have long come under scrutiny for persistent credit reporting errors, which can have a severe impact on a consumer’s ability to get a loan, rent an apartment or even secure a job offer.

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau said in a May report that 77 percent of all consumer complaints it had received about credit bureaus were related to incorrect information on credit reports. Consumers have continued to experience long, drawn-out fights over credit report errors decades after passage of the Fair Credit Reporting Act in 1970.

Disputing and correcting a credit report error typically involves writing a letter to the bureau that made the error and providing evidence to support your case. You can take a credit bureau to court if it continues to verify the bad information — but that may not be an option if you dispute the error online.

It is unclear whether all of the issues that came to light in Mississippi exist in other states. In any case, Attorney General Hood’s comments on the matter underscore the fact that consumers still face an uphill battle when trying to rectify errors reported by the three major credit bureaus.

“These corporations were too busy making money and listing debt that they didn’t bother to take the time to delete errors or verify whether the debts were correct,” Hood said in a statement. “Even worse, consumers had to fight tooth and nail to get these significant errors corrected.”

If your credit is a problem for you, consider having a consultation with Carolyn Secor. Carolyn Secor P.A. focuses its practice in the areas of Bankruptcy and Foreclosure Defense in Clearwater, Florida.  For more information, go to our web site
or call (727) 254-1704.

Pay Off Your Credit Cards While Interest Rates are Low

Friday, October 21st, 2016

If you are sitting there with a significant amount of credit card debt, consider dealing with the problem now before interest rates go up. Part of your strategy probably will involve a debt consolidation loan. It would be wise to get that loan now, while rates are low.

credit card, computer

With the Federal Reserve planning to raise interest rates soon, consumers should take stock of their current debt and consider refinancing or paying down mortgages or credit cards. Increases in interest rates will be “measured” and likely to occur in the 0.25% to 0.5% range. If the Fed believes there is further tightening of the economy, interest rates may not change.

“The Fed uses short term interest rates as a way to jump start the economy when it’s running slow and to hold prices in check and to keep the economy from overheating when it’s doing better,” he said. “The Fed will raise them gradually and is very deliberate in their decisions.”

Interest rates are expected to increase only modestly later this year, which bodes well for consumers who are faced with mounting credit card debt or auto loans. The Fed ended its quantitative easing program in 2014, which was intended to boost the economy and keep borrowing costs low for consumers after the Great Recession in 2008.

While the impact on monthly credit card payments is “pretty minimal,” it is more advantageous for consumers to pay down debt when rates are low, rather than when they are rising. Despite the lower rates, consumers should not fall into the habit of carrying credit card balances from month to month.

A habit of carrying balances can be hard to break when interest rates start to increase on variable rate accounts, leaving the cardholder with a costlier debt to repay.

Many credit card companies are currently offering 0% balance transfers, but the number of offers will dwindle as the Fed raises rates. Grab those rates now while you still can. As the Fed eventually moves away from a 0%, credit card issuers will do the same. Over time those offers will dissipate.

Low Mortgage Rates Will Rise

The smaller increases in interest rates means consumers have greater purchasing power and can borrow money at a lower cost. Mortgage rates will remain “well below” 5% throughout 2015 and increases in mortgage rates won’t start until the second quarter and will “work their way higher slowly,” which presents a refinancing opportunity for homeowners who missed previous opportunities because they lacked enough equity, he said.

While mortgage rates remain very low, homeowners who are on the fence about refinancing should take advantage of them. Buying a house should still remain a decision for consumers who are financially prepared and are looking before they leap.

If the amount of debt that you have is troubling, you should probably get some advice. Carolyn Secor has been helping people develop a strategy to reduce debt for many years. Carolyn Secor P.A. focuses its practice in the areas of Bankruptcy and Foreclosure Defense in Clearwater, Florida.  For more information, go to our web site
or call (727) 254-1704.

Avoid Bankruptcy If You Can

Sunday, October 9th, 2016

Bankruptcy sounds like the easy way out.  You hire an attorney, they file some papers, and your slate is wiped clean. Well, it’s not quite that easy, and many people take filing for bankruptcy lightly nowadays. Here are three reasons why you should try to avoid bankruptcy at all costs.ur broke

1.You’ll be dropping a bombshell on your credit. The bankruptcy will stay on your credit report for 7 to 10 years, and you’ll be treated like an untouchable when it comes to getting a loan in the future. The only people you’ll attract are sub-prime loan sharks. The worst part is that it will take at least 3 years to be bankable again for a mortgage. You’ll need to pay for everything on time and not slip up ONCE if you want to think about buying a house after a bankruptcy.

2.It puts an emotional strain on your relationships. You’ll be getting sued, dealing with attorneys, and going to trial hearings. It’s not a walk in the park, and if you’re married, it will definitely affect your relationship. Ramsey is very candid about the fact that his marriage was hanging on a shoestring while they were going through a bankruptcy and raising two kids. It’s not a fun and easy process. It’s not the “start over fresh” feeling that some portray it to be.

3.It Can Be Expensive. That’s right, filing for bankruptcy isn’t for free, and if you want to do it right, you’ll need a decent attorney to handle it for you, and attorneys aren’t free! If you don’t use an attorney, you leave yourself vulnerable to possible liability for debts you can’t pay. Remember, it can be expensive to go broke!

Most people don’t need to file bankruptcy to get out of their financial mess. Most times it only requires you to get organized, take control of your life, and start systematically paying off debt. Get on a written budget, work another job, sell a bunch of stuff, and get your debts paid off. It sounds so simple, but the hard part is overcoming the person that got you into this mess…yourself. If you can overcome yourself and make wiser decisions, you can win with money and avoid bankruptcy. The first thing that you should do is have a consultation with Carolyn Secor.

Carolyn Secor P.A. focuses its practice in the areas of Bankruptcy and Foreclosure Defense in Clearwater, Florida.  For more information, go to our web site
or call (727) 254-1704.