Credit Coaching by Kristi
By Kristi Nowrouzi
or email email@example.com
Credit Coaching by KristiNov 07, 2023
Collections and Date of Last Activity
I am asked more about collections than any other credit topic. The majority of the time is what to do with collections, what happens if I dispute it, what happens if I try to talk with the creditors, and what do I need to know to help in situations with collections.
Listen in as your credit coach explains what you need to know, what affects your credit the most when it comes to handling collections, to help position your credit profile as best as possible.
Interview with D. Saul- Credit Expert
D. Saul is a credit expert. He had started off fixing his own problems, then became so well versed solving issues for his friends and family, that he got into credit repair. He shares his wisdom and gems with us in this episode. And connect with him!
D.Saul's connection contacts:
Student Loan Repayments
If you have student loans, you know that they are going back into repayment status. What's unfortunate is many people have moved or have new contact info, so is the new loan servicer even able to track you down to start collecting your payment? Because Navient isn't servicing federally backed loans any longer!
Who you paid in the past may not be who you will be paying now (ohhhh, and I just thought about this, what about fraudulent scammers???).
Listen in to learn some national statistics and also how this will impact your credit report.
Check out my newest book! Finish Financially Free: https://a.co/d/0c7SBZc
Being an Authorized User - The Best Way to Quickly Improve or Build Your Credit Profile
Looking for quick way to build a credit profile or improve an existing one? THIS is my #1 tip to quickly bring your score up with being added as an authorized user of an existing, good standing credit card. Your credit coach will share the details on how this can benefit your profile from adding debt utilization, long standing history and adding to your credit mix-quickly!! And without a credit inquiry!
College Bound Students- What To Know About Starting Credit
Are you headed off to college or care about someone who is? Listen in as your credit coach shares about the challenges of starting new credit, warnings about getting tripped up with new debt and bills, and some ways to cautiously begin your credit and money management journey.
'Til Debt Do Us Part
What Does money and marriage have in common!? If you are married, you are already listing the ways! Money management is one of the most important factors in a healthy marriage, and it necessary to work through together. 22% of divorces in the US list money as the predominant cause. Money is intimate, sensitive, and required to discuss in a healthy marriage. Listen in as your Credit Coach drops some knowledge when it comes to money and marriage.
Brief overview about collections, and how medical and non-medical collections differ. What impact does a collection have on your credit profile?
What Are Your Money Beliefs?
Have you ever stopped to think about what you believe to be true about money? Likely not, most have not. So we live into what we think we know, but it is actually keeping us stuck, likely broke, and confused about why we can't make our money work more powerfully for us. Listen in as your credit coach breaks down how to question what you believe about money and how to create a new, positive relationship money.
Credit Card Accounts and Loans Are On The Rise- Breaking Down the Transunion Report
Transunion puts out a report each quarter showing stats and trends.... I know... yawn. But it can be very telling to see what kinds of trends are out there with new credit card accounts, balances, and new personal loans.
Friends, it looks a little scary to me. Balances are up almost 15%, new cards are up over 20%, and new personal loans are skyrocketing. We know why- the cost of living is out of control, inflation is for real, incomes are not increasing in sync with what it costs to survive. It's a problem and the data is showing what people are doing. We are relying more and more on debt to help make ends meet. But it's going to cost in the form of interest and fees. Slippery slope.
The Rules of the Game
How can you win a game that you don't know the rules of? Learn how to play the credit reporting bureau's games by knowing some basics.
Money Mindset and Habits
Let's talk about the money beliefs which creates our habits which creates our predicaments! Where we find ourselves with our credit and money situation is often a result of what we believe to be true. But what if, just what if what we believe isn't actually fully true? What if those beliefs were someone else's beliefs and you aren't meant to keep them. Let's talk about it.
Lexington Law and CreditRepair.com Experiencing Some Big Changes
If you have looked into credit repair, you have likely come across (or even worked with) Lexington Law and CreditRepair.com. I believe Lexington Law is the largest credit repair company in the nation.
The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has a lawsuit against them and some major changes are unfolding (not to mention large sums of money on the table due to false statements made by Lexington to it's clients.
What If You Are Declined When You Apply For Credit?
Have you applied for a loan or a credit card and were declined? Wonder what to do now? What happens with that information? Who knows about this besides you and the creditor? Is it reported someplace that will come back to haunt you?
I remember all of those fears and thoughts when I have been declined before and I know exactly how (crappy) it feels. Listen in to learn what you need to know if you have been declined: some potential reasons why, what to aim for to improve upon your situation, and what to do next.
Debt Management Plan vs. Debt Settlement
Hi friends! It's our anniversary! 3 Years today launched this podcast! And this is the 99th episode- so THANK YOU! for being part of this journey. I hope this information has helped you have a better understanding of credit. Would you please provide a great review if I have helped teach you something new, maybe share what you like (so I do more of it each episode!). Appreciate ya!
Debt management plans and debt settlement companies are two VERY different things. Their business model is different, their impact on your credit is different and most people don't know they are two very different entities.
Debt management plans are non-profits with certified credit counselors (which require 60 hours of training and passing an intense exam through FINRA and they help negotiate terms to HELP you get your debts paid back by negotiating lower APRs and beneficial terms to make on time and total repayment.
Debt settlement companies are out to make money, serving themselves first, and then, after having your credit destroyed with late payments, your accounts being closed by the creditor, late fees added and possibly new collections or charge-offs now being created, they wait until your creditor and you have been hurt by lack of repayment methods and TRY to negotiate terms to settle for less than owed. VERY different ways to approaching debt that might be strangling you. Consider a debt management plan over a debt settlement plan.
I had mentioned credit.org in the episode, and I have NO affiliation with them, they are just one of the bigger good guys there to help if you need help paying off debt and want to consider options.
Solution for Immigrants Seeking to Build a U.S. Credit Profile
In this episode, Credit Kristi interviews Danielle Hill of Upwardli to talk about a solution for immigrants trying to establish a credit profile in the U.S.
She is the co-founder of Upwardli, who's purpose is to help credit invisible people establish a credit to build a profile and history that creates credit-worthiness opportunities for only $6 a month!
Note: Kristi has not used this product and is not affiliated with Upwardli, but simply providing some information that could be useful to listeners that are looking for a way to build credit that is inexpensive ($6 a month) and not a secured credit card. There are no kickbacks and no affiliations, simply sharing a possible option for those seeking info.
Top 10 Reasons for a Low Score - According to the Credit Bureaus
You may have heard me preach and teach about how too high of credit card balances can lower your score, not having long/deep credit or too many inquiries can keep your score low. Of course collections reporting or late payments are negative marks that will lower your score.
But what do the bureaus report on your actual credit report for why your score is where it is at (possibly lower than you want it to be)? I am sharing the top 10 reasons listed by the bureaus that I had learned from my Certified Credit Counseling training.
What Can Cause Your Credit Card APR Go Up?
If you carry a credit card balance, there is a good chance that you are experiencing a higher minimum payment or have seen that more of your monthly payment is going towards interest rather than paying down your outstanding balance. This is because the interest rate has gone up. How can this be? Listen in as Credit Kristi shares with you the various ways your APR of your credit card can increase.
Website mentioned in the show to stop receiving credit card offers: optoutprescreen.com
Ideas for Reducing Bills and Cost of Living
Feeling like your money isn't stretching as far as it used to? Yeah, me too. Listen in as your coach pokes fun at an article she recently read on how to make a little extra money and then Kristi will share some real ideas for reducing your bills and cost of living.
You have 2 choices when it comes to managing your funds: Make more money or Spend less money.
If you are looking for ideas to cut your spending and reduce your outflow, your credit coach has some suggestions.
Listen to the end where you will get a tax tip which, in her example, can save about $5000 in taxes by knowing and reducing your tax bracket.
Disputes and How It Impacts Your Credit Profile
Do disputes impact your credit profile and scores? You betcha! I have seen where many "credit repair companies" will just go in an dispute everything listed on your credit report. I suppose that is one way to go about it. I don't love that plan.
A dispute will temporarily improve your credit score because that "thing" you are disputing is removed from the credit scoring algorithm (that negative mark is temporarily removed) for the first 30 days. If it is found that your dispute is not valid, the remarks stay attached to that tradeline.
When it comes to a mortgage, when disputes are listed, and over a specific amount, it can cost you where your dispute has to be removed or you must pay down that amount of the collection a dispute might be attached to.
You really don't want to be making changes to your credit profile in the middle of a loan application as it can impact your approval.
Here are the numbers for each of the credit reporting bureaus to call and request the removal of the dispute language:
if you have ever experienced identity fraud or know someone who has, you know it's no joke. There are some protective measures you can put into place to help. You can freeze your credit profile with each of the three credit reporting bureaus, you can add a fraud alert and you can also get credit monitoring services placed on your credit.
If you are a victim of credit fraud, go to http://www.identitytheft.gov/ and create a report there. Follow their instructions and they have a sample letter you can use to help you format yours as well.
To set up credit fraud alerts and/or a freeze:
https://www.equifax.com/personal/credit-report-services/ (800) 685-1111
https://www.experian.com/fraud/center.html (888) 397-3742
https://www.transunion.com/fraud-alerts (888) 909-8872
Raise Your Credit Scores
Listen in as your credit coach shares 6 tips on how to raise your credit scores. Easy to implement and will have a long lasting positive impact on your credit profile and credit scores.
Do You Feel Over-Leveraged?
Using credit and loans to leverage oneself to do more with what you have is likely the goal. For instance, putting down a required down payment and then financing your home vs. saving $400,000 to pay cash helps you be a homeowner much sooner in life. But what happens when you feel too stretched, over-leveraged and unsure if you can make the payments? That is the reality for tens of millions of Americans, right now. In fact, over 20 million people are several months late on their electric bill, at risk of being turned off. With record breaking borrowing, payments and nearly all-time high's of APRs, at least in the most recent few decades (which might be your entire lifespan so far!), many people are feeling the pressure and not sure what to do.
A *NEW* Credit Scoring Model for Mortgages! Could Help Over 10 Million People!
If you are working towards a great credit score to obtain financing for a home or intend on ever getting a mortgage, purchase or refinance, listen up! the Federal Housing Finance Agency has just accepted 2 new scoring models- the first change in 20 years!! It is a BIG deal! Listen in to the details. They are saying this could help over 10 million people that currently don't have a credit score due to lack of credit tradelines reporting and how things such as medical debt is reported. Incredible news that can change the lives of millions of people!
Here is the link to details from the report I had read: https://www.fhfa.gov/Media/PublicAffairs/Documents/CS-Fact-Sheet-2022.pdf
How Are Minimum Credit Card Payments Calculated?
If you have credit cards with balances, you may notice that your minimum monthly payment might fluctuate. Because the balance is variable, the payment can be as well. Listen in to learn how the credit card companies calculate your minimum credit scores on higher balances for most bank issued credit cards.
Many people had purchased a new car in the last year or so, millions more than "usual." What's interesting is the average car price, loan amount and what now stands as the average new car payment and length of the loan term. I bring you this information because I am predicting a wave of repossessions based on the loose standards that the auto financing industry has followed since late 2020. With very little in the way of standards to ensure people can actually afford the monthly car payments, I believe repo's will surge and many people will experience damage to their credit profile (and wallet) because of it.
Personal Loans, Pay Day Cash Advance and Title Loans
What do you do when you are in a financial bind? 36% of Americans can't cover a $400 emergency with cash. There are somewhere around 21,000 cash advance locations around our communities throughout the US. There is a financial epidemic and it's costing us more than ever to borrow money in a pinch. Listen it to some of the statistics of personal loans, pay day cash advance and car title loans. You see the commercials and stores, now learn what you need to know about them. There is a cure for needing these kinds of terribly high cost loans.
National Consumer Debt
Our debt as a nation is increasing at rapid speed, which is scary because a financial storm is brewing. In just one month, our nation took on much more debt than anticipated. Yeah, the Fed Reserve tracks what they think those numbers should be. What does this mean for us, the consumers? What is happening with rates and payments? Listen in as Credit Kristi lays some foundation that she will be building on, because soon this IS going to affect you.
When We Hear "Interest Rate" - Which One? There Is More Than One?
You are likely hearing a lot in the financial arena about rates going up. But what rate are they talking about? There are various rates that affect different parts of your finances, so listen in as your Credit Coach breaks down the three different interest rates that most affect you: the Fed Funds rate, Prime Index Rate and the 10 Year Treasury Yield. Say what? It's not as boring as you might think- and important to have an overall idea of what each one is.
Debt Consolidation vs. Debt Restructuring
If you are looking at ways to reduce your debt and trying to learn about the different options out there, listen in to learn about debt consolidation and debt restructuring affect your credit and long term goals.
How Hard Are You "Working On Your Credit"?
I hear a LOT of people tell me they are "working on their credit" but that can mean everything from: I kind of care now and will try to avoid collections to paying off "bad" debt and righting the wrongs.
This is a re-record of the original "How hard are you willing to work" since it was my most listened to episode and my 2nd episode I ever recorded- and I sounded terrified and didn't edit out the mistakes and big blank moments. Oh well! So I re-recorded the same info and hopefully it's easier to listen to! Listen it to see what Credit Kristi recommends to actually work hard to heal your credit.
Credit Card APRs Are Going To Change
It's all over the news- rates are going up. And there is no exception to credit cards. I have some warnings for you in this episode about what is going to be happening in the world of credit cards with payments, APR (interest rates) and how this will effect you. You may be tempted to do an "opt-out" but please do not. It can have terrible ramifications for your credit profile. What should we do with these rate increases- how should I plan? Credit Kristi has some helpful suggestions. Thanks for listening!
What Are Specialty Consumer Reports?
I am often asked if banking information such as NSF (Non-Sufficient Funds) fees and negative balances left for the bank to close the accounts. These types of transactions are typically not reporting anywhere on your "regular" credit report. However, there are various specialty reports that this information and all sorts of other information report to. Listen in to get an overview and here is the link to the PDF version of the report from the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau:
How to Rebuild Your Credit Score
Has your credit score been lower than you desire it to be? Or did you start off struggling as a broke college kid/young adult with very little guidance on how to create a credit profile that reflects well for you? Join the masses that seem to be in the same very big boat. There is something you can do about it! Let's get into action with the proper steps to rebuild a credit profile that reflects positive money management and provides you a high credit score that will save you money when you go to borrow for things like a car loan or home loan.
7 Ways That Good Credit Helps You!
Credit is so much more than a number you can brag about at dinner parties. LOL
Your credit score can affect a lot of things, or even keep you from qualifying for certain things. A poor credit score can negatively impact your finances and cash flow and a great score can help you build up net worth with lower interest payments, allowing you to pay your debts off with greater ease.
Here are my thoughts on the top 7 ways good credit can help you!
Answering some Frequently Asked Questions on Credit and Scores
Every situation is different. But for many of us, we have some of the same main questions when it comes to credit and credit scores like what about a new credit card? Debt Utilization and why my score always changes and looks different, depending on where I view it. Your credit coach addresses these questions in this episode.
To purchase Kristi's book for first time home buyers: https://www.amazon.com/First-Home-Where-Start-How/dp/B09SNRQT74/ref=sr_1_1?crid=3V6KZAAJC1CQ4&keywords=first+home+where+to+start+and+how+to+win&qid=1651433584&s=books&sprefix=first+home+where%2Cstripbooks%2C118&sr=1-1
BIG Changes with Medical Collections beginning July 1, 2022 and It Will Benefit YOU!
There are big changes FINALLY coming to credit profiles when it comes to medical collections. Some 70% of millions of credit reports have some kind of medical collection reporting. Collections can have a significant negative affect to your credit score and overall profile and with these changes, millions of people will benefit!
Interview with a Small Business Credit Expert!
Interested in knowing more about how to start and establish small business credit? I got S.E. Day of For Small Business Only, to share his tips and suggestions on how to establish business credit effectively and quickly. THE RIGHT WAY! He has started dozens of businesses and has more authority in this field than most people put together. Let's listen in and follow his advice on how to get started the right way if you are starting a small business.
Start with your State Department of Corporation. Create a business.
Apply for an EIN through IRS: https://www.irs.gov/businesses/small-businesses-self-employed/apply-for-an-employer-identification-number-ein-online
Dun and Bradstreet: https://www.dnb.com/
Start a business bank account with a local bank or credit union, get a few business checks to start off with
https://www.naics.com/ to set up your NAICS code for industry classification code
Magic Jack for landline for your company: https://www.magicjack.com/account/mjLandingpages.do?page=index
Quill.com to establish a foundational account/Net 30 "primary piece of establishing credit to get charge accounts and structured loans"
Thanks for listening!
Credit Protection Acts
Listen in as Credit Kristi shares information on the 5 credit acts that have been created to protect our credit information, what can and cannot be reported on credit to prevent discrimination, and the handling of debt collections.
Interest Rates Are Going UUUUPPP!
One thing is clear, everything is costing more. But I have many people asking me about rates, and they often confuse mortgage rates with other types of interest rates out there. Listen in as Credit Kristi explains mortgage rates, the Fed Funds rate and the Prime Index rate. There is a difference, they each have their own role, and it all impacts YOU.
Want a simple but thorough budget? Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org
Are You "Working On Your Credit"?
I speak with so many people that say they are "working on their credit." When I ask them what that means to them, they share all sorts of answers but it is often along the lines of: paying my bills on time, not allowing new collections, or disputing prior negative accounts. That's just maintenance and a little temporary help. If you have prior negatives, and they are truly yours, disputing will be a temporary fix and the dispute removed within 30 days. You you should be paying your bills on time anyway! That is not "working on" that is simply maintenance.
Working on credit should mean improving. So removing or settling past mistakes (sometimes, not always!), getting new and positive tradelines and keeping your debt utilization low. That is "working on" your credit profile. Lower credit scores costs you more in interest charges so work on getting your scores as high as possible!
How Your Credit Scores Impact Insurance Costs
It's a shorty but a goody. Did you know that your auto insurance, homeowners insurance (or renters insurance) can cost you more if you have a lower credit score? It's true! Washington State is trying to change that and made a new rule that is going into effect in March 2022, however, the insurance associations are trying to fight it.
Many people don't realize just how deep the cut can be if you have lower credit scores. It can even impact insurance.
What Is The Difference Between Collections and Charge Offs?
You have likely heard of a charge off and a collection, but what is the distinction between them? What makes them different and should I pay it or ignore it? Does a charge off mean I don't have to pay it? Listen in as your coach explains the difference and the impact each can have on your credit profile and credit report.
The Top 5 Money Problems in America
According to a survey I just read about, I share with you the top 5 problems we face when it comes to money. Do any of these apply to you? Do all of them? Listen in to learn what the majority of those surveyed shared in their responses to their top money problems.
Source: USA Today with the survey conducted by Money Rates
What to Know About Credit Repair Companies and Should You DIY?
Hey friends! I am asked ALL the time about credit repair companies. You can't just erase past mistakes, although you can clean up inaccurate or erroneous information. Learn what can and cannot be removed or changed on your credit report with these helpful tips from your coach.
Tips to Not Overspend This Holiday Season
The holidays can get the best of us! Crazy schedules, overstretched budgets, dinner parties, get togethers, and all sorts of tidings and joy!
Don't break the bank and don't max out those credit cards! Listen in for some tips on how to create your list (check it twice!), set a limit and keep track of your spending.
Happy holiday to you! Wishing you the best this holiday season. Thanks for listening!
What can I negotiate on my Credit Card?
Did you know there are certain things you can negotiate on your credit card terms? From the date your bill is due to be paid to your APR, there are several things you can control when it comes to your credit card.
Listen in to learn some tips and pointers from your credit coach.
@Credit Kristi on all social media platforms
Changes to Credit Reports for Mortgage Loan Approval
Big changes coming into the arena for credit profiles when it comes to what is reported and HOW it is viewed with the scoring model. If you are working towards becoming a homeowner in the near future, listen in! In less than 5 minutes, you will learn 2 major changes taking place right now in the mortgage world when it comes to viewing credit.
What is Ultra FICO?
What About Credit Repair Companies?
I am asked about credit repair companies quite often. In full disclosure, I haven't personally worked with them. I just know that MOST credit reports I see don't require hiring a credit repair company. In most cases, it's a matter of paying off or making right some past wrongs, getting on time payments and current debts reflecting on your report and cleaning up some inaccuracies that might appear. It's a HUGE industry making a ton of money so listen it to see if credit repair is something you need to pay for. You might be able to correct and improve some things on your own.
5 Things I Wish I Knew Earlier In My Life
Being in my 40s, I can tell you some lessons we have to learn the hard way, and some we CHOOSE to learn the hard way because we just don't always listen to those wiser and more experienced. I wish I had someone teaching me and guiding me financially and with my credit decisions so it didn't take me years to bail out of my poor money choices.
Listen in as you credit coach discusses 5 things she wished she learned earlier in life. Maybe you can avoid a lesson learned the hard way!