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 Erie 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 Erie County, New York?
If you can't get credit in Erie County, New York, it could be because you have a poor credit score, or simply don't have any credit history. Credit scores in Erie 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 Erie County, New York?
To make your credit score better, there are a few simple things you can do. First of all, you should check your report for errors and report them to the credit bureau to be corrected. It also helps to show that you are willing to use credit, but can do so responsibly. For example, if you have little to no credit history in Erie County you might consider getting a credit card, making a few small purchases each month on it, and then paying off the balance in full at the end of each month. This takes a bit of discipline, but it is a good way to quickly establish a good credit rating.
Because credit reports are generally meant to make it easier for potential lenders to assess your risk as a borrower, showing that you pay back your debts in a timely manner can go a long way in creating a good credit score.
How Can a Erie County, New York Lawyer Help?
A good Lawyer who practices consumer bankruptcy or other financial practice areas in Erie County, New York can be very helpful in resolving consumer debt issues. These issues can be very complex, and an Attorney can make it much easier to navigate them.