One in Five Could Not Maintain Lifestyle
Without Credit Cards

By Gail Cunningham The ability to put away the plastic and successfully live on a cash basis is an indicator of financial stability, as it proves a person’s lifestyle is in line with their income. However, the recent NFCC online poll revealed that one in five people could not make ends meet without the use […]



 What is a Credit Score Hard Pull?

By Melinda Opperman When your credit report is pulled for any reason, it is counted as an “inquiry”. There are two kinds of inquiries; hard and soft. A hard inquiry is when your credit report is pulled by a financial institution for credit purposes. That is, if someone is considering whether or not to give you a […]



 Ask Stacy:
Why Does My Credit Score Change So Much?

By Stacy Johnson If you monitor your credit score you may be like this reader — scratching your head wondering why it changes so much. Here’s this week’s reader question: My Discover card started providing my credit score free each month. What I don’t understand is why it was 814 one month, then 794 the next, […]



 Demystifying Credit Scores

By Jason Alderman One of the few positive outcomes of the 2008 financial crisis was that it helped shine a light on the importance of understanding and staying on top of your credit profile. Along with that heightened visibility, however, has come a great deal of confusion and misunderstanding – particularly around the all-important credit […]



 The Pros and Cons
of Freezing Your Credit Reports

By John Ulzheimer Given the number of recent data breaches the topic of protecting your credit has been all over the place. That’s the silver lining of all of these retailer’s data breaches. The two most commonly referenced methods of protecting your credit is credit monitoring and a credit freeze, more formally known as a […]



 For A Better Credit Score
Should You Carry A Balance On Your Cards?

By Mark Foster A question our financial educators are often asked by people is if it is better for their credit score to carry a balance on their credit cards every month instead of having a zero balance. Actually, that is one of the most popular credit myths – that it’s better to carry a […]



 Raise Your Credit Score in 2014
in 5 Steps

By Karen Carlson Poor credit could be costing you thousands of dollars a year. If you’ve suffered from a ‘so-so’ or even poor credit score for most of your life, make a commitment to yourself to raise your credit score in 2014. 1. Face your credit history and score: Like many things in life, the […]



 Raise Your Credit Score in 2014 in 5 Steps

By Karen Carlson Poor credit could be costing you thousands of dollars a year. If you’ve suffered from a ‘so-so’ or even poor credit score for most of your life make a commitment to yourself to raise your credit score in 2014. 1. Face your credit history and score: Like many things in life, the […]



 How Can I Correct Negative Credit Reporting
From Fraud

By John Ulzheimer “John, I’ve been watching with interest the stories about Target’s data breach and how the information compromised has evolved from payment information to now include personal information. If someone uses my personal information, opens a new account in my name, and never makes payments how can I get that off my credit […]



 Credit Cards Can Be Friend or Foe
to College Students

 By Gail Cunningham While parent’s mail boxes are filling with credit card bills from summer vacations and back-to-school shopping, their college-aged child is likely receiving offers for credit cards of their own. Due to the Credit Card Accountability, Responsibility, and Disclosure Act of 2009 (CARD Act), young adults under the age of 21 applying for […]