Credit, broadly defined, is the provision of money on the assumption that payment for it will come later, or over time. Consumer credit is simply credit extended to individuals in order to buy consumer goods or services. Most people living in Higginsville, Missouri deal with at least one form of consumer credit every day: credit cards. In fact, credit cards are one of the biggest sources of consumer debt in the United States.
Why can't I Get Credit in Higginsville, Missouri?
If you can't get credit in Higginsville, Missouri, the most likely explanation is that you have a bad credit score. In Higginsville, Missouri, credit scores are created by private corporations called "credit bureaus." These companies compile all the available financial information on a person (such as the amount of credit currently available to them, and its ratio to their debt) and use it to calculate a simple numerical score. This number gives would-be lenders an easy way to assess a person's risk as a borrower. It is not known to many individuals exactly how your credit score is calculated, because the formulas used by these companies are closely-guarded trade secrets.
In the U.S., you have a legal right to view your credit report for free, once per year. This is a good chance to perform a financial check-up, and see if there are any errors on your report which need to be corrected. While some third-party companies will give you a free credit report through their website, you should be aware that many of them (without making this clear up-front) will begin charging a monthly fee afterwards, in exchange for continued access. If you just wanted the one free report, you can opt out of this, but you usually have to do so over the phone, and can't do it online.
How Can I Improve My Credit Score in Higginsville, Missouri?
To improve your credit, there are many things you can do. First of all, you should report any mistakes you see on your credit report to the credit bureau. These companies sometimes make errors, and some of them can seriously damage your credit score. Also, you should show that you are willing to use credit, but able to do so responsibly. For example, using a credit card for a few modest purchases per week in Higginsville, then paying the entire amount at the end of the month.
Credit reports are a tool for lenders to determine how risky it is to loan money to someone. Therefore, showing that you consistently pay your debts in a timely manner is the best way to maintain a good score.
How Can a Higginsville, Missouri Lawyer Help?
An experienced Higginsville, Missouri Lawyer specializing in consumer financial issues can help if you believe that your credit rating reflects false information, or if you think a third party has maliciously damaged it.