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 Rochester, New York probably deal with consumer credit every day in the form of credit cards.
Why can't I Get Credit in Rochester, New York?
The most likely explanation as to why a Rochester, New York bank won't give you a credit card or loan is that you have bad credit. In Rochester, New York, private companies called "credit bureaus" compile a person's credit score using all available information about their finances, including their debt-to-credit ratio, records of evictions, and late payments. All of this information is fed into complex mathematical algorithms that calculate a numerical score. Exactly how these scores are calculated is known to very few people, since the formulas used are tightly-guarded trade secrets.
U.S. law states you are entitled to one credit report per year for free. This will allow you to see your credit score, and any factors that might be hurting it, which can help you improve it in the future. You should be aware, however, that many websites offering a "free" credit report will begin charging you a monthly fee a month after you register, and then make it very difficult for you to cancel your membership, requiring you to do so over the phone rather than online. They also sometimes only tell you about this fee in the fine print.a
How Can I Improve My Credit Score in Rochester, New York?
To improve your credit, there are many things you can do. First of all, you should report any errors you see on your credit report to the credit bureau. These companies sometimes make mistakes, 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 inexpensive purchases per week in Rochester, then paying the entire balance at the end of the month.
Credit reports are primarily meant to be used by lenders to assess the risk of a prospective borrower. For this reason, how one handles debt is a major factor in one's credit score. Paying all of your debts in a timely manner is a good way to maintain a high credit score.
How Can a Rochester, New York Lawyer Help?
An experienced Rochester, New York attorney specializing in consumer financial issues can help if you believe that your credit score reflects false information, or if you think a third party has maliciously damaged it.