Posts tagged: debts

Best Loans for Building Credit History

good credit historyIndividuals who have poor credit or little to no credit history typically struggle with low self-esteem as they may find it difficult to qualify for credit or a loan. Naturally, they often wonder how they can start to repair or build their credit. If you fall under one of those categories, you are not alone. A credit builder loan can help as it is tailored to specifically improve or build credit. Over time, it allows you to develop a good credit score, which can help you to qualify for a credit card or loan with better rates.

What are the Requirements for a Credit Builder Loan?

You generally don’t need good credit to qualify for installment loans to build credit history. However, you must prove that you have sufficient income to make payments back toward the loan. The amount that you ultimately receive on the loan is stored in a bank account as you pay it back. When you pay back the credit builder loan, your timely payments are reported to the three major credit bureaus, TransUnion, Equifax, and Experian. Your payments will help to improve your credit score and credit reputation over time, which can also improve your social reputation and self-esteem. The loans are commonly referred to as “fresh start loans” and are usually acquired through small financial institutions like community banks and credit unions.

China’s Social Credit System can serve as a guideline for improving a person’s social reputation and standing in comparison with an American consumer’s good credit history. The country has instituted a law that places restrictions on both people and businesses with low credit ratings and creditworthiness. This is essentially similar to restrictions that American consumers face when they have poor or no credit history as they are limited in terms of qualifying for credit and loans.

How to Secure a Credit Builder Loan

There are specific steps you can take toward securing a loan to build credit. They include the following:

• Find a credit builder loan: Search for loans that include payment levels that are comfortable for you to afford. It’s wise to avoid spreading your budget too thin with higher payments as you can end up having trouble paying back the loan. The best thing to do is opt for lower payments and terms lasting no longer than 24 months.

• Apply for a loan: If you are approved after applying for a loan, the money is placed into a savings account from which you have no access until after you have fully repaid the loan. Essentially, this is in place to protect the lender.

• Make timely payments: It’s important to make timely payments toward the loan. In return, the lender sends positive reports to the credit bureaus. Avoid making payments over 30 days late as that can have a negative impact on your credit score.

• Monitor your credit score: You can regularly monitor your credit score through personal finance websites or services.

• Collect loan proceeds, plus interest: At the end of the loan’s term, you will receive the funds and will see an improved credit score.

Finding Credit Builder Loans

It can be challenging to find credit builder loans. You can search online for institutions in your state that offer them and search for online lenders as well. Generally, credit unions usually have the best interest rates due to their membership requirements.

You can also find a loan through a Community Development Financial Institution, which helps individuals with lower incomes. Lending Circles is a program that is operated by a nonprofit that can also offer credit builder loans.

Avoiding the ATM Pitfalls: 7 Credit Card Tips for Traveling Abroad

card using tipsHere are some pointers on how to use your credit card wisely abroad and suggestions for using a travel card plus other savvy tips that should ensure you get the benefits of using your plastic on foreign soil without costing more than it should.

Before you go

It should be remembered that some credit cards are more attractive than others when it comes to overseas use and it would be a smart move to check out which of the cards in your wallet are international-friendly.

Using your credit card abroad will often incur a transaction fee and a withdrawal fee at the ATM, but you will find that some card companies either don’t charge any extra fees or offer much lower transaction charges than some of their rivals.

Shop around and check to see which is the best card to have with you abroad.

ATM agony

Drawing cash out of an ATM is quick and easy but it can be one of the most expensive ways of using your credit card, especially abroad.

The card company will likely charge you a cash advance fee and interest on the amount you take out and there may well be a foreign transaction fee on top of that too.

Try to plan your trip so that you don’t have to use an ATM unless your card provider is one that doesn’t apply punitive charges and interest.

Keep it local

Another potential sting in the tail is when the merchant offers to convert the transaction into your local currency rather than theirs.

This is invariably a bad idea as the conversion rate is not normally as good as the “mid-market rate” that card providers use when they make the conversion on your statement.

Tell your credit card company

Having chosen the card or cards that you are going to use abroad it makes good sense to tell them of your travel plans in advance.

If your card starts being used abroad and you haven’t told them beforehand they might assume that the transactions are fraudulent, which could mean they decline a purchase or block the card altogether.

Save the hassle by notifying the card provider so that they won’t flag foreign purchases as suspicious.

A bit of peace of mind

It is worth pointing out that there are definite benefits to using a credit card abroad too, and one of those plus points is the fact that you should get payment protection.

If you buy something that is faulty and it is not feasible to get a refund from the retailer your card company should offer payment protection and cover any potential loss you might otherwise have suffered if you paid for something in cash.

Find a secure connection

If you are using a banking app or accessing your account over the internet while abroad make sure that you find a secure connection rather than rely on somewhere more vulnerable like an Internet cafe.

You don’t want to find that your personal details have been compromised.

Lost or stolen

If your credit card is lost or stolen don’t waste any time telling your credit card company.

Any delay could give someone the chance to wreak havoc with your card if it’s fallen into the wrong hands.

Even though it might be a pain to interrupt your holiday to call your bank it could save a lot more hassle later on.

Avoid the classic credit card pitfalls and if you choose your card provider wisely it should make using it abroad a breeze.

Applying for an appropriate loan during retirement – Know the ins and outs

retirement loansRetirees can own cars and houses but does that mean that they can never use a loan? From offering tax benefits to paying for urgent expenses, loans can often be of immense benefit for the elder Americans for more than one reason. It is pretty common for the retirees to realize that they usually require getting their hands on lots of money. Seniors can have costly expenses like medical emergencies, they can suddenly realize that a part of their home requires a big renovation or even decide to help their grandchildren with bearing some kind of expenses.

Irrespective of the reason that a retiree can have in obtaining a loan, the application process is similar to working adults and retirees. However, the older applicants can require going through few other steps like showing an added income stream to display their ability to repay the loan on time. While there are several types of installment loans and online loans to take resort to, you should know the ins and outs of borrowing funds.

The process of choosing the appropriate loan

The senior Americans can be eligible for several loan types, personal loans backed by collateral, home loan, auto loan to name a few. Among these options, refinancing a home loan can be appealing due to the fact that you can deduct the interest from your tax returns. While there are several forms of income in retirement like IRAs, traditional 401(k)s which are not taxable, but they should never borrow from these as they can have an adverse impact on retirement income.

There are seniors also who may watch out for personal loans or payday loans from online sources like PaydayMe. These loans can also be enough for them to meet their immediate personal financial needs. The best way to make sure you are on the right track is by speaking to a loan expert who totally understands your financial situation. Watch out for all the options that are there in the market.

Have realistic thoughts about your repayment ability

Just because a senior can qualify for any loan type, this doesn’t mean that he should take out any loan that he wants. Those retirees who are living on a tight budget should understand their needs and wants before considering a loan. Due to the fact that seniors have restrained money to stretch over, the present life spans are making it tough for people to reach 80s, 90s and even more than that. Spending your entire retirement life on repaying debt could make it tougher for you to sustain the savings for a certain time period.

No matter whichever option you choose for borrowing money, you have to be sure that you’re able to pay back the money on time. If you’re not able to do that, you will start incurring high interest debt which will push you towards a vicious cycle of debt. Debt can spoil your golden years and hence it is best when you take steps to keep debts at bay.

What Is a Debt Consolidation Loan and What Are Its 7 Most Notable Advantages?

deal with debtsGrowing up, we are often told to avoid loans for the sake of maintaining good financial records (e.g., credit). We are also often taught that being financially independent is important and that we should avoid, whenever possible, borrowing money even from family and friends.

But there are situations where debt is essentially inevitable. In fact, almost 50 percent of the reason many are in debt is because of medical-related expenses which, as well all know, are not cheap and are often not avoidable. Of course, there are many other origins of debt, but nevertheless, it can be difficult to get rid of without the proper help at hand.

For the latter reason, let’s talk more about debt consolidation loans and what benefits these loans can propose if you are already in debt and need quick assistance in paying it off.

What Exactly is a Debt Consolidation Loan?

It may sound ironic, but a debt consolidation loan is a loan one receives to help them manage their current debt. You may already know this, but there are other aspects of a debt consolidation loan that are important to understand.

To get down to the details, when one receives a debt consolidation loan, all of their preexisting debt from multiple accounts and payments goes into one big account. All debt is consolidated as a single payment under just one lender, making it convenient and easy for the borrower.

One can receive a debt consolidation loan from many sources including, but not excluded to: banks, credit unions, payday lenders, and more.

However, know that debt consolidation loans are not for everyone. They won’t always provide financial advantages in all scenarios. Regardless, debt consolidation loans can also be useful for many and something they do not regret getting. For that reason, let’s talk about some of the specific advantages of opting for this refinancing option.

Advantages of Debt Consolidation Loans:

1. Helps you pay off debt quicker

One of the main reasons people turn to a debt consolidation loan is because they wish to eliminate their debt as quickly as possible. People want to get rid of debt quickly for two main reasons: 1) to avoid further penalties, fees, and interest rates and 2) to eliminate the stress of having debt.

But with everything consolidated under one source, you can better focus on tackling your debt. Your monthly payment may also be smaller, meaning no more delays in paying off debt on time as you’ll better be able to keep on top of your game.

2. Makes it clearer how much debt needs to be paid off and when

When you have multiple accounts, knowing how much to pay off and when is a juggling act. If one doesn’t have everything properly organized, things can get messy quickly. This alone may be why one is drowning in debt: because they lack the structure and ability to plan ahead to keep up with bills and current debts.

But with all debts in just one account via a debt consolidation loan, you will always know the deadline and how much you still owe. This makes paying off debts significantly easier for some people.

3. Allows you to avoid higher interest rates from creditors and credit card companies

In many cases, opting for a debt consolidation loan means getting to avoid higher interest rates. In fact, interest rates are often negotiable between 0 and 11 percent with a debt consolidation loan. Yet, many credit card companies charge a whopping 20 percent interest rate, which many cannot afford.

When paying reduced interest rates with a debt consolidation loan, you can have more money in your pocket and will be on your way to better financial security.

4. May raise your credit score

Some people when they have bad credit tend to believe that it can’t get much worse yet that it can’t get much better. They feel like they are stuck in a loop. It’s understandable why some people would think this way.

But debt consolidation can potentially help you receive a better credit score, and probably much faster than you’d think. With a better credit score, there are a plethora of benefits at hand including a better chance of getting approved for a credit card and an easier time renting or buying property.

5. Helps you avoid penalties and fees

When one can’t seem to keep up on paying their debts, penalties and fees may arise as a consequence. But it doesn’t just end there. With penalties and fees comes more stress and less money in one’s pocket, and in turn, a potentially even harder time tackling future debts.

Paying off debts quicker and smoother with a debt consolidation loan can eliminate these pesky penalties and fees as monthly payments may be smaller. Plus, debt consolidation can make it easier to plan ahead exactly what you’ll need to pay by your next due date.

6. Stops unwanted collection calls

When in debt, collection calls are not uncommon as creditors turn the account over to a collection agency. Collection agencies can appear threatening at times. That said, these calls can be frightening, annoying, and stressful to receive.

But when you are paying off debt quickly through the help of a debt consolidation loan, you can in turn avoid collection calls, allowing you to regain peace.

7. Reduces financial stress

As a result of having debt paid off quickly and getting to avoid paying higher interest rates, stress related to debt and finances in general can be reduced significantly. With less stress comes a happier, calmer mind.

With less stress, one can achieve better performance at work and stronger relationships with friends and family. Having a calmer mind can also bring better health. After all, stress can practically affect every aspect of our lives, and it isn’t until stress is eliminated that we begin to feel like our true selves again.

If you are interested in seeing how you can receive a debt consolidation loan, you can find more information here.

Conclusion

For some people, managing debt can be fairly easy. However, for others, tackling debt can be a long, stressful, and seemingly impossible process that never seems to end. In the latter case, considering getting a debt consolidation loan may be a great option. While debt consolidation isn’t for everyone, it has a plethora of advantages that many can receive from it.

But before taking the next step, be sure to research the debt consolidation loan consto ensure the benefits will outweigh the potential disadvantages in your specific case.

Buying a New Home Is No More a Distant Dream

money for homeEvery individual dreams of purchasing their own home. A safe place where they might want to raise a family, or look after their parents. While the rising cost of real estate often dissuades people from the task, it’s important to remember that with the help of a home loan, your dream home is no longer just a distant hope that won’t be fulfilled.

If you’re hoping to realise your ultimate dream of owning a home, let’s take a look at a few steps that will help you along your journey.

1. Get Your Priorities in Order

Before you even start looking for a house, it’s important that you understand what you’re looking for. Do you want a home that’s in the middle of the city where you work, or do you want something that’s a bit quieter and closer to your hometown? Think about whether you want a large house with a garden or park nearby, or if you’re content with a smaller home with a good view. Figure out what is most important for you to have in your home. This makes the selection process much easier.

2. Outline Your Budget

Whether you’re funding the house by yourself or applying for a loan, it’s important that you have an estimate of how much you can afford to spend on a home. Even if you do take out a loan, you’ll have to factor in the EMIs that you will have to repay into your monthly budget. For a better understanding of what you can afford every month, you can use an online home loan EMI calculator. Once you have your budget and priorities in order, you’ll be able to find a home that meets your needs.

3. Create a Shortlist

The house-hunting process is generally quite a long-drawn one. You may see several houses before you find one that you truly identify with. If you’re lucky, you may like a home the instant you walk in and see it. However, this isn’t always the case. Once you’ve seen a wide selection of houses, you should make a list of the ones that you would definitely consider buying. Then you can list out the pros and cons of each home before making your final decision.

4. Find Financing

Unless you’ve won the lottery or you’ve been saving incredibly well over the last few years, you’ll probably require a loan to cover the cost of your new home. There are a number of loan options available to you, and you will need to find one that fits your needs. Depending on your requirements, you could find a loan that offers higher financing, better interest rates, or quicker disbursals. You could also use a home loan calculator to find out the kind of EMIs you would be required to pay based on the interest rates being offered.

5. Budget for Your EMIs

Now that you’ve found your perfect home and got a loan to finance it, it’s a good idea to come up with a repayment plan. You may have to readjust your monthly budget to factor in your EMIs and curb your expenditure a little. Of course, it goes without saying that you should also ensure you put away some amount of your savings for any financial emergencies that may come your way.

With our 5 quick tips, you could soon be on your way to finding your dream home and settling down with your family. Remember, a home loan doesn’t have to be a burden, it could be the stepping stone that helps you achieve your dreams.