Before I had a credit card — before I even knew what a credit card was — I knew credit card debt was something to be avoided at all costs. I hadn’t yet graduated from banking of the piggy variety, and my mom already had me thinking about debt. She used my childhood curiosity as a teaching opportunity. She’d be balancing her checkbook, paying bills at the department store or checking out at the market, and when I asked, “Whatcha doin’?” (which happened a lot), something about financial responsibility came up. I figured it was just something accountants did — incorporate money lessons into every day chatter.
As the U.S. economy recovers from the recession, many lenders have eased financing standards, resulting in an increase in loans available to consumers with poor credit. The earliest and strongest recovery came in the auto market, and while a bump in subprime used-car lending has triggered some murmuring of a bubble, it appears to be more a resurgence of a market that was tightly restricted during the recession.
The nation’s second-largest mortgage lender recently raised eyebrows after suggesting it might stop making FHA loans.
In America, we believe that everyone deserves a second chance. If you’ve seen your credit suffer due to bankruptcy, joblessness, medical bills or just a pattern of poor decisions, there is always a way for your to re-establish your credit.
Home buying can be a whirlwind and, unless you are a lottery winner or heir to a fortune, likely includes taking out a mortgage. Choosing the right mortgage loan for your budget includes assessing your income, lifestyle, credit history and qualifications. But it’s not just a matter of finding an affordable option – it’s also finding the best fit. Here is a list of common borrowing options so you can be an educated homebuyer.
They are the knickknacks of your personal financial lives: those old credit cards you seldom use. You might dust them off occasionally and charge something, but they often remain tucked away in a drawer or wallet, unused and overlooked.
Imagine you’ve been in a car accident. You have health insurance as well as coverage for medical bills through your auto insurance – or through the policy of the person who was at fault – so you aren’t worried about the bills. But to your shock, you find out months later that some of your medical bills have been turned over to collections and your credit has been damaged.
If you go to the store to buy a furnace filter and then get home and discover it’s the wrong size, you can usually return it and buy the one you need. But if you get a credit card and realize it’s not going to do the job you thought it would, you don’t have a similar option. A reader, Rachel, applied for a new card but now realizes she can’t use a promotional offer the way she planned and she doesn’t want the card. But she is worried about what canceling that card and applying for a different one will do to her credit score.
It is not unusual to see a credit card offered in versions for both consumers and business users. In addition, there are many business credit cards that offer competitive rewards and benefits. Therefore, some sophisticated credit card users will carry both business and personal credit cards for everyday use.
Call it naïveté, healthy optimism or a unique outlook on the future — whatever the reason, young Americans are much more confident in what lies ahead of them than their older compatriots are.
Receive emails about special offers, financial education, industry news and the latest eCredable news.