Things to Know About Your CreditTHINGS TO KNOW ABOUT YOUR CREDIT Tips 1-3
1. Freebies are lethal. Those low introductory offers sound great, but they are designed to get you hooked on the service. The ploy works way too often. A company gives you 2 months of service for cable, Internet and cell phones at a low rate (Example- $39.99)
The consumers tried the service at the initial low price and kept it on even after the bill went back up to the normal rate.
Be sure you can afford the extra bill with your current income and budget.
2. If you co-sign for a loan- that debt is yours. If your son or daughter wants you to co-sign for a car, apartment or loan, just say no, unless you can afford the payment without the assistantance of your child. Often, the other person defaults, leaving the co-signer to pick up the payments. Having to suddenly shell out an extra $350 per month can really squeeze a family budget.
3. Bouncing a couple of checks can cost you your bank account. Not only can your own bank kick you to the curb, but it can put you in a financial database that acts as a kind of black list. Result: For up to five years, other banks could be leery of giving you an account.
A host of technological advances have exacerbated the problem. Among them: widespread use of debit cards, which don't necessarily stop working when the account is empty and new financial regulations and processing methods that have cut the "float time" (the period it takes to process a check) that many people build into their bill-paying schedule.
Use online banking or toll-free numbers to keep tabs on your accounts, especially if you're a debit card addict.
Stay tuned for the 12 other tips in the days to come!
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