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The 2017 Equifax data breach exposed the confidential credit files of more than 145 million Americans. Information accessed by the hackers included first and last name, date of birth, Social Security numbers, and in some cases even driver's license numbers. Equifax has reached a settlement with the federal government through a class action lawsuit, but the devil is truly in the details on the deal. Why You Should Say No To The Equifax Settlement Offer 1. You Are Not Going To Receive $125 The $125 amount was an early estimate based on the anticipated number of claims. At this point,... Read more →


James L. Paris is the author of the Amazon best-seller Credit Scoring Secrets, How To Raise Your Credit Score 100 Points In 100 Days. The so called 609 letter is not a magic bullet. In fact, it may actually lower your credit score. The key to raising your credit score quickly is focusing on your present open accounts and not worrying about older accounts that are no longer reporting. Disputing old negative accounts is likely to lower your score. Read more →


Why you should consider using a personal loan to payoff high interest rate debt. The standard deduction is now $12,000 per person or $24,000 for a married couple filing jointly. As a result, there is likely no tax benefit to borrowing against your home, and a better option could be a personal loan to pay off high interest rate credit card debt. Make the same payment you are making now but refinance it to a low single digit rate and pay it off in 3 to 5 years, saving 15 years of payments. Here is a link to comparison shop... Read more →


Most people have at one time or another gotten that phone call from a collection agency seeking payment on a past due account. The call may or may not have been preceded by collection letters. Tactics used by debt collectors run the gamut. Some are legitimate businesses following the law, and at the other end of the spectrum you have complete scammers. If you are in the unfortunate circumstance of owing a debt that you can't pay, you don't have to accept harassment. A cease communication letter may be a temporary solution until you have the necessary funds to pursue... Read more →


Former mortgage brokers James L. Paris and Robert G. Yetman, Jr. detail exactly how credit scores are calculated and how a consumer can quickly raise their score. The book is based on years of working with individual clients with credit situations as difficult as recent bankruptcies, foreclosures, and even IRS tax liens. Includes letters that can be used to dispute inaccurate information from a credit bureau report. Step by step information on what you need to do if you are currently attempting to get approved for a credit card, auto loan, or mortgage. Includes sources of no qualifying credit accounts... Read more →


Credit Sesame is a fantastic and free online service that provides consumers with a host of tools to manage and improve their finances. Unlike many similar sites, they do not offer a free trial which is followed up by a $10 per month charge - it is free and continues to be free without any strings attached. There is one feature, in particular, that I want draw your attention to, their credit scoring module. Not only do you gain access to your credit score, but they provide a great amount of detail which explains your score, and offers suggestions on... Read more →


Most tend to think of the problems with having poor credit in terms of the higher interest rates charged, or even the inability to be approved at all for a home or auto loan. As you may have heard, many employers nowadays make a review of your credit a standard feature of the screening process, as credit history has come to be seen…fairly or unfairly…as a measure of your personal integrity. This means that your checkered history can not only stand in the way between you and a competitive, money-saving interest rate, or approval to buy a “big ticket” item... Read more →


By Robert G. Yetman, Jr. Editor At Large Whenever we at Christian Money.com talk about credit cards, it’s typically in terms of the basics: what’s the interest rate, what are the fees, that kind of stuff. Also, we will often discuss credit cards as lines of credit that may or may not help your credit score, depending on how you’re using them. All of that said, there’s a good reminder out from Consumer Reports that using credit cards for retail purchases, as a matter of course, can provide you with extra benefits, in the form of various purchase protections not... Read more →


Will Greece Ignite A Worldwide Financial Collapse?

On this episode Jim digests and comments on the defeated Greek referendum and what it may mean to word financial markets. Also discussed is the financial collapse of Puerto Rico and the stock market in China. Is the rise in the value of Bitcoin connected to the situation in Greece? Jim also comments on a new smartphone app that can be used to steal your credit cards, and how bankruptcy courts are dealing with social media account. Read more →


$150 Roundtrip Flights - Jim Shares His Experience On Recent Travel Deal

Jim shares his experience flying on Allegiant Airlines this past week (roundtrip from Florida to Ohio for $150). New app monitors your credit cards for fraud, the dangers of writing a postdated check, Chicago school system considering bankruptcy, New York prisoner manhunt costing $1 million dollars per day, and Jim's recommendation on a great coupon website. Read more →


With the many protections in place today for cardholders, most people today don't worry all that much about a credit card falling into the wrong hands. The reality is, however, that being the victim of a credit card theft can represent much more than just an inconvenience. 7 Ways To Protect Yourself 1. Understand The Law - Never Share Your PIN Federal law limits your loss on a stolen credit card to a maximum of $50. Things get much more murky on debit cards, however. If you don't report the loss of a debit card within two business days you... Read more →


What To Do When You Can't Pay Your Bills It may be one of life's scariest moments. You realize that there are significantly more bills than you have money to pay them with. It might be the result of overspending for months or even years, on the other hand it could simply be the loss of a job and no emergency savings to fall back on. We don't seem to have much to offer people in such predicaments within the Christian community. Consider it tantamount to offering an exercise program or a cholesterol pill to someone having a heart attack.... Read more →