Credit, broadly defined, is the provision of money on the assumption that compensation for it will come later, or over time. Consumer credit is simply credit extended to individuals in order to purchase consumer goods or services. Many people in Dutchess County, New York deal with 1 type of consumer credit almost every day: credit cards. These tiny pieces of plastic are one of the biggest sources of consumer debt in the United States.

Why can't I Get Credit in Dutchess County, New York?

If you can't get credit in Dutchess County, New York, it could be because you have a poor credit score, or simply don't have any credit history. Credit scores in Dutchess County, New York are calculated by private companies known as "credit bureaus." These entities gather all the available information about your finances, look at how much debt you have, if you've paid it back in a timely manner, and other factors, and calculate a numerical score. This number provides potential lenders with a quick determination of how risky it is to lend money to a person. The exact formulas that these companies employ to create credit scores are trade secrets.

Under federal law, you are legally entitled to view your credit report for free, once per year, which will let you see what factors are hurting your credit, and report any errors to the company. Many websites have been set up to give you easy access to this information. However, most of them require registration with a credit card, and will begin charging you a monthly fee once your free trial period is up, unless you specifically opt out.

How Can I Improve My Credit Score in Dutchess County, New York?

To improve your credit rating, there are many things you can do. First, you should check your credit report for errors and report them to the credit bureau. These companies can make mistakes like anyone else, and sometimes these errors can damage your rating. Also, it's good to show that you know how to use credit responsibly. For example, a person in Dutchess County with no credit history can quickly build up a good credit rating by getting a credit card, making a few small purchases with it, and then paying the whole balance at the end of each billing cycle.

Because credit reports are meant to be used by potential lenders to assess somebody's risk as a borrower, showing that you always (or close to it) pay your debts in a timely manner is the best way to improve your credit score, and to keep it high.

How Can a Dutchess County, New York Lawyer Help?

A good lawyer specializing in consumer bankruptcy or other consumer finance issues in Dutchess County, New York can be instrumental in resolving consumer debt issues. These issues can be complex and frustrating, and a lawyer can make the navigation of them much easier.