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How To Buy A Car With Bad Credit

If you dont have the greatest credit score, getting a loan for a big-ticket item like an automobile can be difficult. But with reliable transportation being a basic necessity for many Americans, there are some potentially painful steps on the path back to good credit.

Shop around for a lender

See what interest rate you can get from various dealers and credit unions, and choose accordingly. Also consider swallowing your pride and accepting some help from a family member, either to co-sign the loan or to lend some of the money to you at a better interest rate. Where the money comes from can easily represent a difference of thousands of dollars in the total price of your car.

Boost your credit

Identify reasons your credit score is low and see if there are any that you can resolve before you try to get a car loan, even if it means cutting back elsewhere to catch up on a few bills. Some low scores may even just be an error on the part of the reporting companies. Anything you can do to raise your score will help you get a better interest rate.

Choose a cheap car

Its always tempting to get something fancy or to avoid something thats small or junky-looking. But thats a luxury that you may have to sacrifice if you dont have good credit. You dont want to get something so cruddy that youll be dumping your paycheck into repairs, but $5,000 should buy you a fuel-efficient and decently reliable economy car like an eight-year-old Ford Focus or Hyundai Accent. Spend a little bit more for a Kia Optima or Nissan Versa if you really need a roomy interior.

Note that there are sometimes better low-credit financing deals on new cars instead of used, to the point at which a new car is actually going to be no more expensive than a used one, but the same advice applies. You may qualify to buy an expensive car, but settle for something cheap until your credit score improves. The Nissan Versa and Hyundai Accent are among the best new cars for a very tight budget.

Brady Holt, a Washington DC newspaper reporter, has had a lifelong interest in cars in the automotive world, and hell share his thoughts at every available opportunity. Brady has written for since 2008, publishing hundreds of car reviews, automotive news pieces and other features. His work can be found on

Geddes to parking scofflaws: pay the fine or risk a bad credit report

Geddes, NY – Parking scofflaws in Geddes have been given a months amnesty to pay their outstanding tickets or come Aug. 1 the overdue fines will be reported to credit bureaus.

The town is seeking to recover about $20,000 in fines owed on 273 tickets, said Supervisor Manny Falcone.

In June, the town board hired Med Rev Recoveries Inc. to recover past due parking fines from 2009 to now. The agency will send out a past due notices and collect the fines. Fail to pay up, and the agency will notify no less than three credit bureaus, a town press release said.

Firefighters Union says city saving money at the cost of safety

By: Bill Schammert

The Lincoln Firefighters Association and the city have been at odds for the past few months. The issue: a pick-up truck now used for medical responses at Station One. The city says its in a testing phase, but association president Ron Trouba says its saving money at the cost of safety.

When a safe and proven method of emergency response takes a backseat to short-sided desires to reduce spending on public safety, these kind of incidents are the predictable result, he said.

On May 12th, Fire Chief John Huff issued an order that the Automated Response Vehicle or ARV, to be used on all medical-only related calls at Station One. Director of Public Safety Tom Casady says since that day, its gone out 490 times.

International Association of Firefighters Local 644 has filed a grievance.

Trouba cites a July 3rd incident when a victim fell off the Pedestrian Bridge into the train yard just north of Memorial Stadium. The ARV was used, but didnt have the necessary tools to break through or climb over the fence blocking the area.

They had to call dispatch and request an actual fire truck be sent with the appropriate equipment, Trouba said.

He says it took 20 minutes from the time the first call came in, until the victim, still in critical condition, was taken to the hospital. But, Public SSafelyDirector Tom Casady says that couldve been solved with one simple addition.

A few steps away was a gate with a padlock, Casady said. A pair of 14-inch bolt cutters wouldve cut that pad lock.

Casady says its in a testing phase and these are the types of things they need to learn to better equip ARVs.

The current ARV isnt as fuel-efficient as Casady wouldve liked, but he says theres already a request for an upgrade. He believes the new experimental tool can decrease fuel cost, but more importantly, is much cheaper to purchase and maintain than a fire engine or fire truck.

Both sides agree, its part of a much bigger problem – aging vehicles and equipment that need replaced. Casady says the city is still trying to rebound from the financial crisis of 2008 that hit so many municipalities. He says ARVs could save money without sacrificing safety, money that could be used on equipment and to help replenish a depleted pension fund.

Trouba says the issue has now gone to arbitration and will likely be decided by a third party mediator.

Nationwide Mortgage and Refinance Lender, Complete Home Loans, Offers Bad …

Nationwide Mortgage and Refinance Lender, Complete Home Loans, Offers Bad Credit Home Loans Through the Month of July
For the month of July, home shoppers can quickly and easily get a home loan from the trusted lending resource, Complete Home Loans.

Is saving money your biggest financial battle?

Saving money continues to be a losing battle for many Americans. Even though the Great Recession technically ended five years ago, just over one in four Americans have no emergency savings in their financial arsenal. Adding insult to injury, people in their prime earning years are in the worst condition.

A barrage of stagnant wages, higher living expenses, and an overall weak labor market are taking their toll on piggy banks across the nation. Twenty-six percent of Americans do not have any money placed aside for emergencies, according to a new survey from Bankrate. In fact, 76% have saved less than six months worth of expenses, and 50% have saved less than three months expenses. Over the past year, the number of Americans with at least three months expenses in savings declined from 45% to 40%.

The lack of savings is not contained to lower-income households. Americans continue to show a stunning lack of progress in accumulating sufficient emergency savings, explains Greg McBride, CFA, Bankrates Chief Financial Analyst, in a press release. Even among the highest income households — those with annual income of $75,000 or above — fewer than half (46%) currently have a six-month savings cushion.

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Bankrate finds that people between ages 30 and 49 are more likely than any other age group to have no emergency savings, while those between 18 and 30 are the most likely to have up to five months expenses saved up. McBride adds, Many of those under age 30 have the benefit of lower expenses due to roommates, living with their parents, or being students. Ages 30 through 49 are high-spending years when expenses often rise faster than emergency savings can keep up.

If you dont currently have an emergency savings fund, you should find a way to start one as soon as possible. Saving money on a regular basis will gradually increase your financial security and help you become less dependent on debt when expected expenses arise. If you have trouble committing to a savings plan, consider automatic withdrawals that go into a separate account designated for savings.

Aside from improving your financial health, saving money is good for your emotional state. A recent survey from Ally Bank found that saving money is one of the best habits people can take to increase happiness. Among those polled with savings accounts, 38% of people said they felt extremely or very happy. In comparison, only 29% of those without savings accounts felt the same way. Overall, 84% of people said saving money makes them feel good — ahead of eating healthy at 74% and enjoying work at 68%.

Wall St. Cheat Sheet is a USA TODAY content partner offering financial news and commentary. Its content is produced independently of USA TODAY.

Don’t Let Bad Credit Card Habits Tank Your Homeownership Plans

Its a good time to think about the ins and outs of buying a house. One factor that can have a big ripple effect on your ability to qualify for a mortgage is your credit card habits.

Not sure how plastic plays a role in your homeownership plans? Lets dig into the details.

What mortgage lenders are looking at
Before discussing how your credit card habits could affect your ability to get a home loan, its important to understand what mortgage lenders are looking at when you apply for a home loan:

  • Your income. Youll need to demonstrate that you have an income substantial enough to make your monthly mortgage payments. To verify this, youll probably need to provide tax returns and pay stubs.
  • Your credit report and score. In general, your score will need to be above 640 to get a mortgage. The higher your score, the better your financing terms will be.
  • Your job history. Lenders want to see a steady employment history. If youre self-employed, you might need to jump through some extra hoops to secure financing.
  • Your overall wealth. Your assets (retirement accounts, property you own, etc.) will be taken into account on your mortgage application.
  • Your other financial obligations (your debt-to-income ratio). Banks generally like to see a debt-to-income ratio of 36% or lower. That indicates that your monthly obligations probably arent eating into your ability to make mortgage payments.

Your credit card habits play a big role in your ability to buy a home
It might not be immediately obvious how your credit card behaviors play into your ability to qualify for a mortgage. But these bad plastic habits will make the path to homeownership rocky:

  • Paying bills late. If you dont pay your credit card bills on time, your credit score will take a major hit. Thirty-five percent of your score comes from your history with paying your bills by their due dates, so its important to take this point seriously.
  • Getting into debt. Racking up credit card debt will hurt your mortgage application in two ways. First, if youre using more than 30% of your available credit on any of your cards, expect your credit score to take a hit. Second, it will raise your debt-to-income ratio, which will make you seem like a riskier borrower. If you have credit card debt, now is the time to pay it down.
  • Applying for too many cards at once. Again, this will shave points off your credit score. If you plan on getting a mortgage soon, dont apply for a new credit card unless you absolutely need it.
  • Delaying credit card use. Mortgage lenders like to see a long history of responsible credit card use. Plus, 15% of your credit score comes from the length of your credit history. If youre a credit novice, getting a card and using it carefully will bolster a future home loan application.

What to do if plastic is interfering with your American Dream
If this information is making you panic, dont worry — theres a lot you can do to bolster your chances of getting a mortgage. Follow these tips from the Nerds, and youll be on your way to realizing the American Dream:

  • Pay your bills on time. Getting your bill payments in on time is the most powerful thing you can do to boost your credit score. Make this a priority!
  • Apply for a credit line increase. Increasing the limits on your credit cards will help reduce your credit utilization ratio, which will help your credit score. Just be sure to avoid the temptation to spend more.
  • Pay down your credit card debt. This will improve your credit utilization ratio and your debt-to-income ratio. Win-win!
  • Save up a bigger down payment. Sometimes lenders are willing to accept a lower credit score if you bring a bigger down payment to the table.
  • Wait a bit. It takes time to save money and improve your credit. Your best tool in the mortgage application process might be time, so use it wisely by employing the tips discussed here.

The bottom line: Understanding how your credit card habits affect your ability to get a mortgage is an important step on your path to homeownership. Keep this information in mind as you get ready to look for your new place!

Bad Debt but Good Income? Your Credit Can Be Fixed

Dear Opening Credits,

Lets say my credit score is 567, and my past wasnt that good financially. When I decided to get serious with my credit, I found that its pretty bad. Ive had just one open credit card for the last two years. And I have a child support for $38,000. I have a pay plan but it doesnt show in the credit, and I have about $12,000 in hospital debts. Well, my point is this: Now I need to have a credit card (not prepaid). What are the chances that I have to get one? I have a steady job, I make around $4,600 a month, gross, and have been at the same company for last four years. Thats my question with a little bit of my backround. Thank you.

- Juan

Dear Juan,

Id like to relieve any anxiety you may have right away: Yes, you can probably get a real — not just a prepaid — credit card now. It would not be the best on the market, true, but if you must have a line of credit soon, a restarter product is likely within reach.

But back to your specific situation. Some of the information you provided is relevant to a credit issuer, while other pieces of your back story are not. All of it is important to you, of course, but its a good idea to focus on the two factors that creditors use to determine eligibility. The first is credit rating and the second is income.

A credit rating is a general way of referring to your past borrowing and repayment activity. Your rating will be high if the data on your consumer credit reports is positive. Essentially, that means that it shows an established pattern of on-time payments, and possessing a low debt-to-credit limit ratio.

Credit scores, such as the FICO (which is almost certainly what you referred to when you cited that three-digit number), take the financial information listed on the credit reports and feed it into a special mathematical model. The result is a risk score that lenders and other businesses often use to determine your credit rating. FICO scores range from a low of 300 to a high of 850. Those in the mid 500s are firmly on the low end of the spectrum, known as subprime credit.

Any financial institution would hesitate to lend money to someone who demonstrated that he hasnt managed to repay his obligations in full and on time, or who owes so much already that borrowing more is a recipe for further disaster. However, you do have something on your side, which is a substantial amount of money flowing in. Your income can help a creditor gain confidence that you can handle another account.

Compare bad credit cardoffers to see whats available in your credit rating category. Youll see that many are secured accounts. Dont worry, though. Theyre not prepaid cards loaded with your own money, but actual credit cards guaranteed by a cash deposit. The bank is still lending you money each time you swipe, but if you dont pay as you promise, it can claim the funds that you put down and that its holding in a separate account. With this type of card, you can rebuild your credit rating. Just use it regularly, pay before the due date and dont keep a running balance. All will be recorded on your credit reports and then factored into your scores.

Now to your personal economic problems. Youve got what seems to be child support payments, and maybe some major arrearage, though usually that will show up on credit report. If its not evident, youre extremely lucky. Get this situation under control immediately, if you havent already. Wage garnishments and other brutal collection activity can occur if you dont.

The medical bills are no trifling matter, either. They are almost certainly on your credit repots and whatever debt collector is holding them may eventually decide to take you to court. Therefore, if the debts are well within the statute of limitations for lawsuits, pay them down. A zero balance on those, plus charging with your new card in a healthy way for a year or so will increase your credit rating dramatically.

See related: FICOs five factors and what each means to your credit score

Bad Credit Auto Loans with No Money Down Now Offered through Popular Auto …

>PRWEB.COM Newswire

Seattle, WA (PRWEB) June 28, 2014

Car shoppers frustrated by auto loan denials due to bad credit are now receiving instant approval auto loans with no money down. Complete Auto Loans has a 100% approval rate on applications, the only requirement is that the applicant make at least $350 per week. Get approved for a car loan in as little as 60 seconds.

The 60-second application process is simple. Once an applicant has filled out the application, Complete Auto Loans matches their information to a local lender who will provide the person with a car loan.

As an extra service, helping people save even more, Complete Auto Loans also provides a complimentary credit score tool online which has helped drivers save thousands of dollars. Upon completing the 60 second car loan application, loan applicants are given the opportunity to save thousands of dollars on their loan. For more information, visit Complete Auto Loans website.

About Complete Auto Loans

Complete Auto Loans is a Seattle-based company that is dedicated to helping their customers acquire national car financing. They design and develop customized no credit financing, bad and good credit loans. Voted the best for Quality Customer Service and Best National Service by thousands of people, their finance experts focus on providing their customers with the following: information and tools available for different loan offers, how to choose the best loan that fits their budget, as well as related eligibility guidelines.

Read the full story at

60-Second Approvals on Home Mortgage Refinance for Bad Credit Now Offered …

60-Second Approvals on Home Mortgage Refinance for Bad Credit Now Offered by Complete Home Loans
For the month of June, mortgage refinance shoppers are now experiencing quality lending rates and instant approval despite bad credit, thanks to lending approval expansion through the nationwide lending network.

Tips for saving money on a theme-park visit

Crowds stand outside the Despicable Me gift shop at Universal Studios in California. Experts suggest setting a spending limit for each child — and sticking with it.


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