Broadly defined, consumer credit is any form of loan given to individuals in order to buy consumer goods. Many people in West Columbia, South Carolina deal with at least one common form of consumer credit on a regular basis: credit cards. Credit card debt is one of the biggest sources of individual debt in the U.S.
Why can't I Get Credit in West Columbia, South Carolina?
The most likely reason as to why a West Columbia, South Carolina bank won't give you a credit card or loan is that you have poor credit. Credit scores in West Columbia, South Carolina are calculated by private companies known as "credit bureaus." These entities compile all the available information about your finances, look at how much debt you have, if you've paid it back in a timely manner, and other factors, and calculate a numerical score. This number provides possible lenders with a quick assessment of how risky it is to lend money to a person. The exact formulas that these companies employ to create credit scores are 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 chance 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 normally have to do so over the phone, and can't do it online.
How Can I Improve My Credit Score in West Columbia, South Carolina?
To improve your credit score, you can do a few fairly simple things. First, you should check your credit report for mistakes, and report them to the credit bureau so they can be corrected. Also, it's good to show that you know how to use credit responsibly. For example, a person in West Columbia with no credit history can rapidly build up a good credit rating by getting a credit card, making a few small purchases with it, and then paying the entire balance at the end of each billing cycle.
Credit reports are usually 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 West Columbia, South Carolina Lawyer Help?
An experienced West Columbia, South Carolina 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.