Broadly defined, consumer credit is any form of loan extended to individuals in order to buy consumer goods. Most people living in Wickliffe, Ohio deal with at least one form of consumer credit every day: credit cards. In fact, credit cards are one of the biggest sources of consumer debt in the United States.

Why can't I Get Credit in Wickliffe, Ohio?

If you can't get credit in Wickliffe, Ohio, the most likely explanation is that you have a bad credit score. In Wickliffe, Ohio, 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 equations that calculate a numerical score. Precisely how these scores are calculated is known to very few people, since the formulas used are tightly-guarded trade secrets.

Under federal law, you are legally entitled to see your credit report for free, once per year, which will let you view what factors are affecting 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 start charging you a monthly fee once your free trial period is up, unless you explicitly opt out.

How Can I Improve My Credit Score in Wickliffe, Ohio?

To improve your credit rating, there are various things you can do. First, you should check your credit report for mistakes and report them to the credit bureau. These companies can make errors like anyone else, and sometimes these errors can damage your score. 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 Wickliffe you may 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 every month. This takes a bit of discipline, but it is a good way to rapidly establish a good credit rating.

Credit reports are primarily meant to be used by lenders to determine 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 keep a high credit score.

How Can a Wickliffe, Ohio Lawyer Help?

A good attorney who practices consumer bankruptcy or other financial practice areas in Wickliffe, Ohio can be extremely helpful in resolving consumer debt issues. These issues can be very complex, and an lawyer can make it much easier to navigate them.