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. Most people in Merrick, New York probably deal with consumer credit every day in the form of credit cards.

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

The most likely explanation as to why a Merrick, New York bank won't give you a credit card or loan is that you have bad credit. Credit scores in Merrick, 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 U.S. law, you have a right to view your own credit report once a year, for free (you can, of course, view it more times than that, but you'll likely have to pay a credit bureau. You should be cautious, however. Many websites claim to offer "free" credit reports, but require a credit card number in order to register. If you do not explicitly cancel your membership (which can usually only be done over the phone, and not online), they will start charging you a monthly fee.

How Can I Improve My Credit Score in Merrick, 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's also good to show that you can use credit responsibly. For example, someone with no credit history in Merrick might get a credit card, and use it for a few inexpensive purchases each month, and then pay down the entire balance at the end of the month. This is a good way to quickly obtain a good credit score.

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 Merrick, New York Lawyer Help?

A good lawyer who practices consumer bankruptcy or other financial practice areas in Merrick, 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.