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Answers to 3 Top Credit Score Questions

credit score, credit rating, consumer credit, Credit Score & FICO Score Explained

The basics of personal finance include a general understanding of credit scores, FICO scores, and how the numbers may impact your life.  Unfortunately, many folks don’t learn about the importance of credit scores until they are declined for credit.  Here’s your chance to get ahead in the game.
 

What is a Credit Score?

A credit score is a three-digit number which represents the likelihood that debts will be repaid in full.  (Your credit-worthiness.) The number can be found on your credit report and ranges from 330 to 850.  720 or higher is considered to be a good score. The higher your number, the less of a risk that you are to lenders.  Simply stated, this means that a higher score will equate to better interest rates and credit limits than what you may receive with a lower score.  Really low credit scores may get you denied for any credit…or even insurance.

Lenders no longer have to rely on subjective judgement to determine who they feel would pay back a loan.  Although your score may vary between credit reporting agencies; scoring models today are less biased, and based upon historical data. When calculating your credit score, most agencies will take at least the following references into consideration:

  • Payment History
  • Debt to Income Ratio
  • How long you’ve had credit history
  • If you’ve applied for new credit lately
  • Number of credit accounts & type

 

Where Can I Find My Credit Score?

You can find your credit score by inquiring at any of the three major credit reporting agencies:  Experian, TransUnion, and Equifax.  Each of these agencies offers a free copy of your annual credit report.  You can also find your score in other places such as credit.com, freescoreonline.com, creditkarma.com and freecreditreport.com.  Keep in mind that joint credit accounts affect your personal credit score.  In addition, it’s important to note that many of the credit scores are going to be slightly different than your FICO scores. There is a growing number of financial institutions that will who you your FICO score for free if you hold certain credit accounts.  (Discover, Capital One, American Express, Chase, etc.)

What is Difference between FICO and Credit Score?

You may notice a discrepancy between a banks FICO score and the online credit scores found on Experian, TransUnion, and Equifax.  This is because there are different scoring systems used. Lenders can decide which combination of the major credit reporting agencies they prefer to use.  If you are going to apply for a loan, know that it’s your FICO score that matters most to lenders.

If you have no established credit, or poor credit, your FICO score doesn’t have to be the end of the road.  There are ways to build good credit score, or possibly secure a loan through an alternative lender.  Ask an attorney at Debt Advisors for more information about your credit report, the 720 credit score program, or obtaining a loan after bankruptcy.

I Can’t Pay My Mortgage; What Now?

save your home from foreclosure, my home, keep my home, stop foreclosureCan’t pay your mortgage?  Wondering, “what now?” The good news is that there is a way to save your home and help get you out of debt, but timing is everything.

Defaulting on Mortgage Home Loan

When a mortgage loan is established, it basically means that the buyer agrees to pay back the lender within a determined time and for a specific cost.  When payment is not made, the lender has procedures to handle the situation.  Most mortgage lenders have some sort of “grace period.”   Even if you’re payment is late, if it arrives within the grace period, you may avoid a late fee.  However, if you have not attempted to contact the lender to negotiate payment and the grace period has expired, the lender will assume that your mortgage is “in default.”  They will make attempts to contact you, and to collect.  If these attempts are unsuccessful, the lender will begin the foreclosure process.

A mortgage loan is considered a “secured debt,” meaning that the lender can ultimately take back your property if the loan goes into default.  File for Chapter 13 bankruptcy to save your home.

Home Foreclosure Facts

  • A foreclosure is started when a summons and complaint is filed by request of your lender.
  • Charges to your account continue, even after it has been deemed as “in-default.” Your mortgage company may charge for property inspections, property preservation services, legal fees, postage, etc.
  • The longer the mortgage is in default, the more difficult and expensive it becomes to bring the account current.
  • The bank may serve an eviction noticecannot take possession of your home until Foreclosure is complete.
  • You have a limited number of days to dispute information you have been served.
  • Contact a bankruptcy lawyer as soon as possible to discuss how to stop the foreclosure from proceeding, and save your home.
  • If you want to take advantage of a Chapter 13 bankruptcy, it must be done before the mortgage company sells your home.
  • All foreclosures must through a court.
  • There is a redemption period is the minimum amount of time you have in the home before the house is sold by auction.
  • If your property forecloses, it is public record.
  • Foreclosure will have a negative impact on credit score making it difficult to get loans in future.

Visit the Foreclosure Resource Center for answers to more of your questions.

The longer you wait to do something, the fewer options you may have.  Don’t fall victim to mortgage relief scams or home rescue scams.  Talk to an experienced bankruptcy attorney today.  The consultation is free.

Your Free Bankruptcy Consultation

What to Expect from Your Free Bankruptcy Consultation

free bankrutpcy consultationIf you don’t feel comfortable talking to family or friends about your debt problem, you’re not alone. Many people who are considering bankruptcy have already tried to fix the problem on their own. The feeling of failure is as overwhelming as the debt itself.

At Debt Advisors, the attorneys don’t want you to feel like a failure. Desperate financial times are often a result of events which were unavoidable from the beginning. The attorneys understand your situation and ARE the people you can talk to without judgement during  your free consultation.  Given that understanding, feel proud that you have recognized the seriousness of the situation and reached out to find someone who CAN help. So, now that you have found Debt Advisors, you may wonder what to expect in your free initial consultation with an attorney. Have your questions ready.

Here are a few items that are commonly discussed during the free bankruptcy consultation:

Is bankruptcy right for me? There are many factors to consider. The attorney will be able to gather a decent amount of information about the details of your financial situation. You should receive solid guidance about potential choices, such as chapter 7 or chapter 13….pros vs cons, and what steps should be taken next. This call should provide you with lots of good advice.

Do I qualify for bankruptcy? After your initial consultation, and if you are interested in moving forward, your attorney will ask you to provide more detailed financial information including the completion of a bankruptcy means test. The test will determine if you qualify for Chapter 7 bankruptcy. Even if you think you make too much money your expenses may be high enough to qualify.

How much does bankruptcy cost? Debt Advisors Law Offices has represented thousands in Wisconsin fairly and responsibly. Online reviews are a good indicator regarding client satisfaction. During the free consultation, your attorney will explain fees and discuss easy payment options.

You’re likely to have lots of questions and the attorneys will as well. Be prepared for the call before you request it by gathering financial data and understanding basic bankruptcy terms.

Take a look at Debt Advisors online Google reviews and customer testimonials from real people…just like you. We hope that you find our website informative and your first call with us encouraging. Also note our professional licensing, time in business, social profiles, resources and six Wisconsin locations to serve you! Debt Advisors is a practice dedicated to bankruptcy and focused on providing each and every client with the fresh start that they deserve.