Broadly defined, consumer credit is any type of loan given to individuals in order to buy consumer goods. Most people living in Lake Oswego, Oregon deal with at least one form of consumer credit every day: credit cards. In fact, credit cards are one of the largest sources of consumer debt in the United States.
Why can't I Get Credit in Lake Oswego, Oregon?
If you're having trouble getting credit in Lake Oswego, Oregon the most likely explanation is that you have no credit history, or a poor credit score. In Lake Oswego, Oregon, credit reports are prepared by private companies that have access to a great deal of financial information about almost anyone who has a Social Security Number. These companies are called "credit bureaus." They gather relevant information, such as one's credit-to-debt ratio, and past-due payments, and use complex mathematical equations to generate a numerical score. Relatively few people know what these exact formulas are, since they are well-guarded 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 clearly opt out.
How Can I Improve My Credit Score in Lake Oswego, Oregon?
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 Lake Oswego might get a credit card, and use it for a few modest 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 usually 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 Lake Oswego, Oregon Lawyer Help?
A good lawyer who practices consumer bankruptcy or other financial practice areas in Lake Oswego, Oregon 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.