Friday, December 11, 2009

Debt Consolidation Tips: An "All in one" Guide! By: Marsha Claire

A Debt consolidation loan is a loan used to repay several other loans or other debts. A Debt Consolidation Loan is a low cost loan secured on collateral in the form of any securable property, your home, your vehicle or any valuable asset. Debt consolidation loans consolidate all debts incurred through personal loans, credit cards, overdrafts, or any number of unpaid bills that have built up over time. These loans can give you a fresh start, allowing you to consolidate all of your loans into one - giving you one easy to manage payment, and in most cases, at a lower rate of interest. A debt consolidation loan can reduce both your interest costs and your monthly repayments, putting you back in control of your life.

Debt consolidation solutions are practical means for eliminating credit card and other high interest debts, and getting your financial health and future back on track. Being concerned about debt 24 x 7 is extremely stressful, both on you and your family. So take a few minutes right now and educate yourself about your options.

1. Go with a debt consolidation company that has a good reputation.
Don't assume that every non-profit company is necessarily going to look out for your interests more than for a profit. Shopping around will give you the means to decide on the one that best suits your circumstances and your budget. Spend time researching different lenders and get quotes from a handful before deciding on one.

2. Do the math yourself.
Take the time to work through the expenses yourself and see how much you will be paying, how long it will take to pay off the loan, etc. Look for hidden costs, creditor charges, etc. Many lenders add payment protection insurance to their loans without the borrowers' knowledge, which is often more expensive than those available elsewhere. People keen to consolidate their debts, take the first opportunity available, unaware of lower rates and other available options.

3. Is it cost effective in the long run?
Paying off an existing debt may incur charges for early settlement and there may also be a fee for arranging your consolidation loan. A debt consolidation loan should be cheaper than the individual loans and debts since that's its purpose. Otherwise how is it different from any other secured loan? Also, by taking a new debt consolidation loan, you will be extending the period in which you are paying off debts - and that might mean a greater interest cost in the long run. So read the fine print on your credit agreement statement before signing it.

5. Interest rates:
Make sure you understand the difference between variable and fixed rate loans. If you sign up for a variable rate loan, you may get a lower rate initially, but within a few years it may go up. On the contrary, a fixed rate option does not fluctuate with any changes in rates. However, you do not gain when the interest drops either.

6. Debt Consolidation counselling:
Debt consolidation with debt counselling can provide you with expert debt advice for financial planning. This would help you sort out your present debts as well as prevent you from getting into future debt. Debt counselling services can talk to your creditors about reducing your interest rate, eliminating late fees, altering repayment options and extending your loan term. Look up an agency that is the member of the National Foundation for Credit Counselling (NFCC) or the Association of Independent Consumer Credit Counselling Agencies (AICCCA).

Secured on your collateral low interest debt consolidation loans can sweep away the pile of repayments to your credit and store cards, loans and replace them with one, low cost, monthly payment - one calculated to be well within your means. Never take a loan that is over the top, take something that suits your needs.

It has been found that a significant number of residents are not aware of the benefits of the debt consolidation options and are suspicious about how it works. There is a need to increase the awareness of the debt consolidation solutions and evolve new varieties and features for debt consolidation loans. There is a great potential to increase the benefits of debt consolidation loans.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

5 Tips for Repairing Bad Credit. By: Gretchen Reese

Almost all of us are fond of overspending! We buy things we don't really need. Once we see something that catches our eyes, we automatically buy it - often without even thinking if we still have money or not.

People usually do this in order to please themselves. And lots of them have their own credit cards as a reserve once they run out of cash. They tend to spend a large amount of money in order to serve their caprices or to make them feel better about themselves. Unfortunately, this never really works, and it causes more damage than it cures.

Almost everybody has a credit file, maintained by a credit reference agency. Many people have bad credit facts on their files, such as defaults and bad payment history. This means that when these people apply for credit, such as loans, mortgages, credit cards, car finance or even for a simple bank account, they may be turned away.

Sometimes these people are not even aware of their credit information and credit files, which cause them to have a bad credit.

Having bad credit can adversely affect every aspect of your life. A low credit score means severe financial limitations and difficulties. As if this is not enough, you will also have handfuls of credit councilors and other so called money managers trying to take even more from you with their debt consolidation plans that promise to "cut your payments in half", "save you thousands", or our personal favorite - "get you out of debt with the click of a mouse".

If only our computer mouse had the debt relief magic that those bad credit spam emails promise. Although getting out of debt can't be done with a click of a mouse button, it's probably not as difficult as you think.

If you are in this kind of predicament, it is imperative for your financial stability that you do everything you can to repair it.

Now, you might be thinking exactly what is bad credit repair?

"Bad Credit repair" is a common term often used to describe a systematic process of rehabilitating an individual's creditworthiness, or financial credit reputation.

It is a process that you can carry out yourself, and sometimes the steps you can take are simple. However many people find credit repair a difficult and discouraging procedure.

This process is usually initiated by obtaining copies of your credit report, reviewing the credit report for errors, omissions, and misleading information, and requesting corrections to such information by means of a formal dispute.

If you are worrying too much about your credit, conquer that feeling! No matter how bad your credit is, you can take the following steps to make it better:

1. Pay all of your bills on time. Decide if you have the income to meet all of your obligations. Remember, late payments (payments that are 30 days late or more) have a negative effect on your credit rating.

2. Lessen the number of credit cards that you have. This will reduce the tendency to overspend. Contact your creditors about your plan and close your other accounts.

3. Avoid bankruptcies. Bankruptcy may not the end of the world but it will be with you for years. It will stay in your credit report for at least years and hamper your ability to get credit in the future.

4. Request in writing that your creditors reduce the credit limits on your accounts to lower your amount of available credit.

5. Monitor results and stick to your plan. Review your file every few months to make sure that any errors that you have disputed have been corrected. After a period of time inquiries will no longer count against you provided you haven't been applying for credit.

These steps can help anywone with bad credit. If you are in that situation, don't be troubled. Bad credit can almost always be improved or corrected. JUST:

> avoid overspending

> establish a realistic budget

> get out of debt now

> build a financial cushion

> read and understand your credit report

> get mistakes on your credit report fixed

> get positive information added to your credit report

> negotiate with creditors

> Set up your plan and stick with it!