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 Waterloo, New York probably deal with consumer credit every day in the form of credit cards.
Why can't I Get Credit in Waterloo, New York?
If you can't get credit in Waterloo, New York, the most likely reason is that you have a poor credit score. Credit scores in Waterloo, New York are compiled by private companies known as "credit bureaus." These companies compile all the available information about a person's finances, and then assign them a numerical score, which provides a quick assessment of the risk they represent to a lender. The exact formulas that these companies use to generate credit scores 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 opportunity 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 Waterloo, New York?
To improve your credit rating, you can do a few relatively simple things. First, you should check your credit report for errors, and report them to the credit bureau so they can be corrected. It's also good to show that you can use credit responsibly. For example, someone with no credit history in Waterloo might get a credit card, and use it for a few affordable 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.
Credit reports are meant to be a tool for lenders to easily assess a person's risk as a borrower. Therefore, showing that you are able to pay back your debts on time can be very effective in creating a good credit score.
How Can a Waterloo, New York Lawyer Help?
A good lawyer specializing in consumer bankruptcy or other consumer finance issues in Waterloo, 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.