The Truth on Paying Collections

 

Why do your credit scores drop when collections are paid?  That’s right, fact is stranger than fiction. We have reviewed credit reports that scores have fallen from a few points to well over 100 points after paying just one or multiple collection accounts to a zero balance. So here’s the other question.  How does one avoid damaging their credit scores while trying to pay their past due bills?  Be sure and continue reading this article to learn more.

Our society has taught us that if we pay our bills that all will be well. And that should be the truth, but not necessarily when it comes to collections listed on your credit report. If the collection is not listed on your credit report, then paying it will not have any affect on your credit scores. (but that’s a different blog for a later date).

Click here to get our credit reports for $1

Why you should be concerned about paying debt collection companies.  May times you may not owe the collection or at least the amount that they are attempting to collect.  WHY?

  • The debt collector may not collect more than you owe.
  • The debt may be too old to collect.
  • The statue of limitations for collecting debt varies from state to state, but Alabama is 6 years from the last payment made.  If no payment was ever made, then it is probably when the debt first occurred.
  • It may belong to someone with the same name as yours.
  • It may have been filed incorrectly with the insurance and you may owe something but not all of what the debt collector is trying to collect.
  • The U.S. Fair Debt Collection Practices Act says collectors can add fees or interest only if the amount is “expressly authorized by the agreement creating the debt or permitted by law.”

There are several reasons why it may not be yours.  Did you make a debt with the debt collector? No you didn’t, but they can legally purchase or collect on the debt as a third party, but you have the right to validate that the debt is completely correct and is yours.

 

ReScore Solutions validates debts and balances all the time for our clients.  We are very successful in getting debt collections removed from credit reports and most of the time our clients will never have to pay them.  No, we aren’t trying to help people avoid paying their bills, it’s just that you have the right to have the debt validated and pay only what you owe.

If I called or sent you a letter and said that you owed me $500, would you just pay me?  If you have never done business with me you need me to prove that you owe me.  The same principle with paying a debt collector.

So a you may get a tax refund and decide to repair their credit by paying all those collections that are reporting on your credit reports.  The feeling is great to get all those collections paid, but short lived when you apply for an auto loan, mortgage, or credit card and told that you are declined.  I can hear you now, “But, but, but I don’t understand, I have paid all those negative accounts on my credit reports.” Guess what?  It’s actually surprising to learn that paying off collections will actually lower credit scores.

credit mistakes

Here’s why….

Collections are usually reported on the credit as a “9” status or collection account. This means the account has already been “written off” and assigned to collections by the creditor.  Once an account is reported this way on the credit report, the damage to the credit score is irreversible, unless that item is removed completely from the report.  That’s where our services are so valuable.  We handle all of this for you and watch for any violations of the Fair Credit Reporting Act and the Fair Debt Collect Practices Act.  These laws are very powerful and are working for you.

If the account is paid off, the collection company will report that the account now has a $0 balance, but usually will not delete the item off the report.  It’s actually legal for a debt collector to continue to report a paid collection.  The account has already become a collection, and the risk of the consumer defaulting on another account is already very high, due to that collection.

So your credit score will not go any higher if it is paid off, because paying off a collection after the fact, doesn’t lower the risk of defaulting in the future.

However, the DATE OF LAST ACTIVITY is updated to the date the account was paid off. So if that account was sent to collections 3 years ago, the date of last activity is 3 years old and the impact to the credit score is not as much.  But if you, the consumer pays off that collection today, they just update the date of last activity to today’s date, sometimes causing the scores to go DOWN as a result.

Crazy isn’t it? You are trying to do the right thing and pay off collections, but your scores can be lower as a result.

ReScore Solutions is very successful in getting paid and unpaid collections removed from credit reports and many times our clients will never have to pay them.  We use a factual dispute process to get these removed.  We get far more collections deleted than not. But when the collection is properly validated, we can help our clients work with collection companies to have their negative item removed completely from their report, if they pay it off.  This will help their credit while satisfying the collection company.

Click Here to help understand how Bob got his credit improved.

Fill out the above form to have a sales representative contact you about getting started with getting your credit back on track.  You pay after work has been completed and we have payments as low as $100 a month for individual and discounts for couples.

family in safe neighborhood
Financial peace of mind….good credit.

 

 

Credit After Foreclosure

Call reScore Solutions (a Kirkpatrick & Associatescompany) if you have had a foreclosure and ready to purchase another home.  We can advise you of your rights and help you rebuild your credit.

Foreclosure in Alabama
Had a foreclosure?

If you have recently experienced a foreclosure or short sale, it is important to know the effects those events will have on your credit report and credit scores.  You may be concerned about being able to qualify for another mortgage, car loan or even a credit card.

Yes, you can #regain your credit status.  This is where we can help you in rebuilding your credit and credit scores.  Let’s take a look at some valuable information regarding your credit after a foreclosure.  Even with this information, it can be confusing to how and when to rebuild.  There are many loan and credit card companies that are ready to capitalize on your situation and charge exuberant fees and interest rates to “help” you rebuild.  Here, at Kirkpatrick & Associates, we can help guide you through the process without you paying those loan sharks.

1.    Question: I was told that I would not be able to have credit for 10 years after Bankruptcy and not sure how long after a foreclosure.

Answer:  A Bankruptcy can remain on your credit reports for up to 10 years, but you can rebuild your credit immediately after your Bankruptcy is dismissed.  With re-established credit and credit scores, you can purchase a home after 2 years of Bankruptcy, that did not include a foreclosure and 3 years with a foreclosure.

2.   Question:  How will your FICO score consider a foreclosure?
Answer:   There’s no denying that foreclosures are considered a very negative event by your FICO score. With that said, it’s a common misconception that a foreclosure will make it impossible to rebuild your credit. In fact, if you keep all of your other credit obligations in good standing, there’s a good chance that your FICO score could begin to rebound in just 2 years. Try to pay your auto loans, credit cards and any other credit obligations on time to limit the effect of this foreclosure.  [FICO.com]

3.  Question:  Are other options better for my credit standing?
Answer:  Recently, several alternatives to foreclosure have become popular – some of these include “short sales” and “deeds-in-lieu of foreclosure”. These may be viable options for you, and you should definitely do research to determine if these options make sense for your situation. However, as far as your FICO score in concerned, there is no difference between foreclosures and short sales or deeds-in-lieu of foreclosures. Each of these actions is considered an account that was “not paid as agreed”, and will have the same impact to your FICO score.  [FICO.com]

Better FICO scores
Rebuilding your credit without the high fees and interest rates.

4.  Question:  How long will a foreclosure affect my FICO score?                                                                                                                                     Answer:  A foreclosure remains on your credit report for 7 years, but its impact to your FICO® score will lessen over time. While a foreclosure is considered a very negative event by your FICO score, it’s a common misconception that it will ruin your score for a very long time. In fact, if you keep all of your other credit obligations in good standing, your FICO score can begin to rebound in as little as 2 years. The important thing to keep in mind is that a foreclosure is a single negative item, and if you keep this item isolated, it will be much less damaging to your FICO score than if you had a foreclosure in addition to defaulting on other credit obligations.  [FICO.com]

Thank you for allowing us to help your with your current credit issue.  We would love to talk to you and invite you to call our office if you have concerns regarding your credit situation and feel that we may be able to assist you.  Our number is 205-352-3448 Monday – Friday 8:30 to 5:30.  We value our patrons and do our best to answer every call.  If we are not available, the receptionist will be happy to forward your call to the voicemail.  Please leave a message or email her at Gale@reScoreSolutions.com or Regina@reScoreSolutions.com

Understanding Credit Scores

ReScore Solutions can assist in improving the worst credit scores and even improving healthy credit scores.  Higher credit scores means paying less in interest rates.  Lower credit scores will result in higher insurance premiums and higher interest rates.   approved for credit card

FICO, or Fair Isaac Corporation, has been the leader in credit scoring since the 1950s. The FICO score is used by more than 90% of lenders and is considered the industry standard. Your score will range from 300 to 850, the higher the better. It is calculated as follows:

FICO Scores
How credit scores are calculated

Have you ever been turned down for a loan or an apartment lease and wondered why? It could be due to your credit history. Let’s face it–our credit says a lot about who we are. It is our financial report card, and can affect many aspects of our lives.  If you are experiencing being turned down and high interest rates call us today.  We can help you rebuild your credit and raise your credit scores.

HOW DOES CREDIT WORK

When you apply for credit (say a loan or a credit card), the lender has to decide if you are a good candidate for receiving the loan. The lender’s decision is based heavily on your credit history. They have to assess the level of risk involved if they are to extend credit to you. If you have displayed a poor repayment history, it is less likely that you will be approved for the loan or a line of credit.

The data available through the credit reporting agency that’s been selected to calculate your score (Equifax, Experian or TransUnion) will determine that three-digit number, whether that data is right or wrong. That’s why it is so important to review your credit reports; at a minimum get your free credit reports from all three bureaus once a year look them over to determine if all of the accounts are yours, any late payments that aren’t accurate, liens or judgments that aren’t yours or updated as paid.

One of my former clients did not realize that he had a judgment on his credit reports that was not his.  Mr. Smith’s daughter had provided his name as an emergency contact for the apartment she ;had previously rented.  She defaulted on the apartment rent and was sued and she paid the judgment through a payroll garnishment.

Although this had been taken care of the apartment management placed the judgment on Mr. Smith’s credit reports.  It was illegal and had affected his chances of getting a loan.  We were able to take care of this and had it removed within 35 days or less.

Since the three agencies don’t share information with each other, you’ll want to check all three. After all, you never know which reporting agency a lender will use to obtain your score, so you want all of them to be as accurate as possible.

Better FICO scores
Rebuilding your credit without the high fees and interest rates.

FREE CREDIT SCORES

In an effort to obtain your credit score for free, you may have signed up with Credit Karma or Credit Sesame. But then you applied for a credit card or car loan and realized your FICO score was different than the free score. Why is this?

Both Credit Karma and Credit Sesame calculate your credit score based on proprietary scores from two of the major credit reporting bureaus. However, this is not the same thing as a FICO score. Instead of using the FICO algorithm, the bureaus use their own algorithm for free scores.

Does Checking Your Own Credit Lower Credit Scores

Checking Your Own Credit Does Not Affect Your Credit Score
Your credit scores are determined by formulas that assess your creditworthiness. Lenders evaluate the risk of extending credit to you in part by using credit scores, which measures your credit risk — namely, how likely it is that you’ll pay them back and pay on time. Credit scores constantly adjust as the information in your credit report changes. You’ll benefit from knowing your Experian, Transunion, and Equifax credit scores and keeping track of changes and setbacks.
A credit score is an additional service that can be requested when getting your credit report. Along with your credit score you will know what factors influence your risk.
Credit reports have mistatkes
Repair your credit reports and scores. We provide free credit report review.

SOURCE:  Experian website

Job Hunting for 50+

Does your age shut you out?  Looking for a job?  For those in the 50+ age bracket, you may have found that the economy in 2008 may have affected you too.  You may have taken an early retirement or was let go.  You were possibly in your 40’s or early 50’s at the time, well experienced in your field and thought that it would be fairly easy to move on in the work force.  You may have found that finding steady employment has been more than a daunting task.

Then too, there’s a perception that people over 50 or 60 will be just passing through as a transition into retirement.  Employers are reluctant to hire someone they think will be out the door in a year or so.

The fact is that compared to their younger colleagues, workers with a few decades of experience under their belt are typically better problem-solvers and people -managers and have honed leadership skills over time.  I know that I am preaching to the choir, but you need to show that to potential employers.

Here are several strategies that can help you fight back against stereotyping and discriminating against individuals or groups on the basis of their age.

new life in retirement
Take a new direction in your best years

1.  Ask for help and advice

Networking is just one letter off from not working.  In this era of online resumes, it’s all about who you know that can get you in the chair for a face-to-face interview.  When companies are looking for new employees, they rely on employee referrals.  In 2011, employee referrals accounted for 28% of new hires, followed by job boards 20.1%, career pages on company web site.

You need to pick up the phone and call everybody that you know, ever knew, ever worked with and every employer that you ever worked.  That’s the way to get an interview.  You need to establish personal connection to the company.

2.  Brainstorm

Call or sit down with a spouse, friends, neighbors, church friends and ask for help.  Write down the names of previous employers and former colleagues, immediate and extended family.  Don’t be embarrassed to call family members when you’re out of work.  Get over it.  Call friends, people in your place of worship, athletic club, volunteer organizations, parents of children’s friends.

If there is a particular industry you’re hoping for, join an association affiliated with it and seek out volunteer opportunities.  Attend industry and professional meetings and conferences.

College and university placement offices are there to help no matter how long ago you graduated.  Seek out career centers operated by your area colleges or lacal lgovernment agencies offering career counseling, workshops on resume writing, job fairs and retraining programs.

Don’t be timid.  You have to take the risk of picking up the phone and having someone to say no, and maybe.  No matter how good your resume might be, unless it helps you get a face-to-face interviews with hiring managers, your efforts are wasted.

3.  Market your age as a plus

It’s all in marketing.  Brand yourself.  You are responsible for your own image.  Workers 50+ tend to be self-starters, know how to get the job done, and don’t need as much handholding as those with less experience.  A great benefit to being older is that you have a good deal of knowledge and leadership ability.  So pitch your age as a plus.  You need to be able to articulate your value.

4.  Roll with the latest technology.

If you don’t have core technical skills, check out your local libraries, community colleges and other venues where training is offered.

Take the time to get savvy with the following:

  • Smartphones
  • E-mail
  • Computers
  • Social networking
  • Video interviews
  • Web navigation skills
  • Employer web sites and Google alerts
  • Learn the latest resume tricks
  • Fine tune your interview skills
  • Don’t be a know-it-all with a chip in your shoulder
  • Look your best and make sure that you are styled
  • Practice positivity

There are opportunities available for those needing extra money.  Depending on work experience, here are are a few to consider.   couple over 50

  1. Librarian Assistant/Aide
  2. Alumni Event Planning
  3. Bookkeeper
  4. Personal and Home-Care Aide
  5. Handy Jack / Handy Jill (odd jobs)
  6. Medical Assistant
  7. Project – Based Consultant
  8. Blogger
  9. Personal Assistant
  10. Athletic Coach / Umpire / Referee
  11. Teacher’s Aide
  12. Tour Jobs
  13. Convention Center Jobs
  14. Pet Groomer
  15. Wal-Mart Greeter
  16. Limo Driver
  17. Shuttle Bus Driver on Campus
  18. Tax Preparer
  19. Tutor
  20. Park Service Employee
  21. Nursery Worker
  22. Pet Sitter
  23. Amusement Parks
  24. Athletic Event Ticket Services
  25. Call Center Representative
  26. Restaurant Greeter
  27. Hairdresser
  28. Car Transporter
  29. Travel Nurse
  30. Cruise Liners has a full array of jobs and some hire couples
  31. Realtor

Great Holiday Jobs

  1. Santa Claus
  2. Retail Sales Cashier
  3. Retail Salesperson
  4. Product Demonstrator
  5. Holiday Decorator
  6. Package Delivery

Landing a holiday job:

  • Stop by for a face-to-face
  • Offer future help
  • Be flexible
  • Network
  • Go where they know you
  • Don’t wait for a help-wanted sign

Great Snowbird Jobs

  1. Resort Hospitality Worker
  2. Resort Services Worker
  3. Disney “Cast Member”
  4. Second Home Property Manager/Concierge
  5. Hairdresser
  6. Spring Training Staff for Major League teams
  7. Car Transporter
  8. Travel Nurse
  9. Cruise Liners has a full array of jobs and some hire couples

Work at Home Jobs

best-work-at-home-jobs-for-older-workers
Work from home
  1. Translator-Interpreter
  2. Legal Mediator
  3. Graphic Designer
  4. Writer/Editor
  5. Blogger
  6. Grant/Proposal Writer
  7. Virtual Customer Service Representative
  8. Virtual Assistant
  9. Online Tutor
  10. Crafter
  11. Direct Sales such as Mary Kay Cosmetics, The Pampered Chef, Tupperware, Avon, Cutco, Stanley Home Products and Silpada.

Retired Teachers

  1. Personal Trainer/Physical Conditioner
  2. University Bookstore Retail Specialist
  3. Adjunct Professor/Instructor/Lecturer/Visiting Professor

    retired and tutoring
    Retired and tutoring
  4. Substitute Teacher
  5. Career Center Counselor
  6. Market and Survey Researchers

Nonprofit Jobs

  1. Administrative Assistant
  2. Volunteer Manager  to bring awareness to the non-profit’s cause
  3. Marketing/Communications Manager
  4. Fundraiser

Soul-search for the issues that you care about.  What skills do you have to help move into the sector.  Research the nonprofit world and understand what you can do for the specific field you’re getting into.  Volunteering first can give you an insider’s view and networking contacts that may lead to a job.

Consider taking a course to fill in any holes in your background.  Credentials help in the nonprofit world.

Find work that keeps you happy and healthy….and pays the bills.

We find that many people in or nearly in their retirement years are using credit and credit cards to supplement their income, thus causing debt that can not be recovered from.  We at reScore Solutions may be able to help.  Call us today for a free credit report evaluation.  If we can’t help you, we have a pipeline of professions in many industries that may be able to save your home, save your credit and assist in other avenues.  205-352-3448

Additional information regarding this blog can be found in the book: AARP Great Jobs For Everyone 50+   By Kerry Hannon

 

I DO and Bad Credit

birmingham red bride100dpiIt’s been so exciting planning the Special Day!  You had a beautiful wedding, the guest celebrated with you, the cake was eaten, the limo whisk you off for the beginning of a relaxing honeymoon, but wait…what about your credit!

After the honeymoon the real fun begins-starting your life together. From a financial standpoint, that involves exciting stuff like buying a home and trading in your sports car for a minivan (okay, maybe not everyone thinks minivans are exciting).

Your FICO scores are a big part of many of your financial decisions now that you are a couple.  Here are a few important facts regarding your FICO scores.

  • You both have individual FICO scores.  You do not have a joint score.
  • When applying for a loan and stating both incomes, the lender will only look at your individual scores when evaluating your loan application.
  • Joint accounts, such as  credit cards or auto loans will affect both of your scores

pink-house-hi When applying for a home loan lenders look at the three FICO scores from Experian, Equifax and TransUnion and your middle score is the score that your approval is based on.

Let’s say that Bob and Sue are married.

  • Bob has poor credit and Sue has good credit.
  • Bob makes more money than Sue.
  • Sue’s income qualifies for a 100K home and Bob’s income qualifies for 300K home, but they want to purchase a home for 375K.
  • Bob would not qualify for a loan because of his low scores.
  • Sue’s credit would qualify her for any home providing that her income is sufficient, but all that she can purchase is a 100K home.
  • Sue can NOT use his just his credit and just her scores.
  • Bob can not use just her credit and just his income.

So what can Bob and Sue do so that they can purchase the home of their dreams?

Call reScore Solutions!  We can evaluate Bob’s credit reports at no charge and identify the accounts, collections and overall credit to be repaired, deleted or paid.  We can save you money using our techniques in getting your credit scores lender-ready.

Watch video by clicking link below and see how Bob get’s started on getting his credit back on track.

http://www.kirkpatrickassoc.com/Services.html

Marriage and credit score myths.

  1. Our credit reports will merge together when we get married.   NO
  2. Marriage will lower my credit scores.  NO
  3. When I change my last name my credit history will be erased or deleted.  NO
  4. My spouses poor credit will hurt my credit scores.  NO
  5. I will automatically become a joint user or authorized user of my spouse’s accounts. NO
  6. You will be responsible for your spouse’s previous debt.  NO
  7. Being unemployed while raising children will damage my credit score.  NO
  8. Having a good job improves my credit score.
  9. My spouse filed Bankruptcy and now my credit will be ruined too.  NO
  10. Since we are married, any loans or accounts that we get must be a joint account.  NO
  11. Whew!!  I don’t have to worry about my spouse’s credit.  NO.  This will affect you when you want to purchase a home or other large purchase that both incomes will be needed to qualify.  If you are a co-signor on any accounts or loans with your spouse, you are equally responsible for those obligations as your significant other. Any mishaps, such as a missed payment, will reflect poorly on both of your credit reports.  

So while you were reading the credit score myths, Bob’s credit was repaired and his credit scores are improved.

Being that Bob’s credit is repaired they can now buy the home that they need.  Bob and Sue are now happy and recommend reScore Solutions to their friends and lived happily ever after.happy couple glad their credit is repaired