Finance Globe

U.S. financial and economic topics from several finance writers.

Consumers' Top Debt Collection Complaints

Year-after-year, the debt collection industry tops the FTC’s complaint list. In 2011, the FTC received 117,374 complaints against third-party debt collectors. The complaints the FTC receives may not represent the true number of debt collector complaints since consumers may not realize they can go to federal agency with these types of complaints. Many of those complaints fell within just a few categories. The biggest complaint category was with harassing phone calls. This includes collectors calling continuously,...
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Unpaid Medical Bills Can Hurt Your Credit Score

Most people realize that credit cards and loans affect their credit score. Even the occasional blemish from an unpaid utility bill won’t surprise many people. But who’d expect medical bills to affect credit scores? To clarify, not all medical bills will hurt your credit score. Particularly, if you receive a medical bill and you pay it off within a few days or weeks, your credit score is usually safe. However, unpaid medical bills that wind up...
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Some Lenders Must Provide You a Free Credit Score

While you can get a free credit report through AnnualCreditReport.com, your credit score isn’t included in the deal. But, you may be entitled to a free credit score after certain credit and loan applications.Credit Score Disclosure Requirement Lenders are required to send credit score disclosure notice to all applicants who are denied credit or who are given unfavorable terms because of their credit score. That’s if your credit score was a factor in the decision. The...
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Life After Bankruptcy May Be Better

Bankruptcy has a bad reputation for ruining lives. Truth be told, if you're considering bankruptcy, life may not be that great right, especially where your finances are concerned. But, bankruptcy's negative reputation might keep you from filing even though it could be the best solution for your debt. For some consumers, life is actually better after filing bankruptcy. Once you file bankruptcy, you’ll get an automatic stay from most collection activity. That means that many of...
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Consolidating Debt With a Personal Loan

Multiple payments, various interest rates, and different balances can make it difficult to pay off credit card debt. Not to mention the nuisance of juggling various due dates and payment amounts. Consolidating credit card balances can make debt repayment easier even if it’s just because you have one monthly payment instead of three or a dozen. How You Could Save With a Personal Loan Let’s say you have five credit cards with a combined balance of...
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Cosigned Debts in Good Standing Still Affect You

Cosigning is generally discouraged because of all the things that could go wrong. For example, the other person might not keep up with the payments. If that happens, the late payments are added to your credit report and the creditor will eventually come after you for payment. If the other cosigner files bankruptcy, you’re left on the hook for the entire debt. Even if things go as planned, cosigned debts can still affect your credit score...
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How Your Income Can Affect Your Credit Score

Even though the banks that issue credit cards and loans consider your income when they qualify your application, how much you make isn’t a factor that influences your credit score. In fact, your income isn’t even listed on your credit report (your current employer is listed, but that doesn’t affect your credit score either). Credit scoring calculations don’t use your income to determine your creditworthiness, but your salary and wages can still have an impact on...
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Mistakes That Could Cause Bankruptcy Dismissal

Bankruptcy comes with many rules. It’s important that you follow them all, otherwise your bankruptcy case could be dismissed. If that happens, you’ll have to wait several months before you can file bankruptcy again. Or, you may have to figure out another way to deal with your debt. Here are a few mistakes that could lead to bankruptcy dismissal. Hiding assets so you won’t have to give them up to creditors. In a Chapter 7 bankruptcy,...
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Famous People Bankruptcies Show More Money Isn’t Always the Solution

Many of us have probably been guilty of thinking that a just a few extra hundred dollars in our paychecks would forever end financial problems. But that’s not always the case. Each time a famous/rich files bankruptcy, the rest of us wonder how they could possibly blow so much money. “If I had that much money…” we think. But with more money comes the tendency to spend more and perhaps the same problems as celebrities who...
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Expect an Explanation for Being Denied

Waiting for a response to a credit card or loan application can be nerve wrecking. You might half-expect to be turned down if you know you don’t have a good credit history. On the bright side, if your fears are realized and you are turned down, lenders have to tell you why, even if your credit isn’t the blame. ECOA Adverse Action Notice Under the Equal Credit Opportunity Act, the lender must tell you the specific...
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