Broadly defined, consumer credit is any form of loan provided to individuals in order to buy consumer goods. Many people in Washington, Pennsylvania deal with consumer credit every day in the form of credit cards. In fact, credit cards are one of the biggest sources of individual debt in the U.S.

Why can't I Get Credit in Washington, Pennsylvania?

If you can't get credit in Washington, Pennsylvania, it could be because you have a bad credit score, or simply don't have any credit history. Credit scores in Washington, Pennsylvania are compiled by private companies known as "credit bureaus." These companies collect all the available information about a person's finances, and then give them a numerical score, which provides a quick determination of the risk they represent to a lender. The exact formulas that these companies use to generate credit scores are closely-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 numerous websites offering a "free" credit report will start charging you a monthly fee a month after you register, and then make it very challenging for you to cancel your membership, requiring you to do so over the phone rather than online. They also may only tell you about this fee in the fine print.a

How Can I Improve My Credit Score in Washington, Pennsylvania?

To improve your credit, there are numerous things you can do. First of all, you should report any mistakes you see on your credit report to the credit bureau. These companies sometimes make errors, and some of them can seriously damage your credit score. It will also help to show that you can use credit responsibly. For example, if you have little to no credit history in Washington, and want to rapidly build a good credit score, you can get a credit card, and make a few very small purchases with it every month. Make sure you don't run up a balance that you can't immediately pay off in full, and at the end of each month, pay the whole balance.

Because credit reports are generally meant to make it easier for possible lenders to assess your risk as a borrower, showing that you pay back your debts in a timely manner can go a long way in creating a good credit score.

How Can a Washington, Pennsylvania Lawyer Help?

An experienced Washington, Pennsylvania lawyer specializing in consumer financial issues can help if you believe that your credit rating reflects false information, or if you think a third party has maliciously damaged it.