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Debt Help & Advice

Debt Management Plan:

When shopping around for a loan, whether it be auto, home or consolidation, most individuals turn toward banks for the money that they need. There are a number of factors that can determine how much, or how little, money you can save.

Are you familiar with your credit report and FICO score? If not, you should be. Visit annualcreditreport.com to receive a free copy of your credit report, from each of the three credit reporting agencies, once every 12 months. Typically, these reports are $9.00 each but many consumers do not realize that they are entitled to a free copy every year. There are no catches, no gimmicks and no trial period in any type of paid service in order to gain access through this website. The information contained in your credit file is one of the top factors in determining your loan amount, interest rate and ultimately a decision as to approval or denying the loan request. Everyone should be familiar with their credit report, verify the accuracy of their contents and correct any mistakes that are present. The FICO score is a number that is calculated based on previous payment history, debt to balance ratio and length of credit history. The higher your FICO score, the lower your interest rates.

During the loan application process, banks will retrieve a copy of your credit report. They will also request certain other information, which only you can provide. Among the items that banks request when processing a loan application include current pay stubs, a copy of the previous two years of tax returns and possibly even bank statements and proof of employment. When applying for a large loan, patience is the key. Some banks respond within 24 hours while others may take up to a week. Even if one bank denies your request, don't give up. Try other banks, who may be enticed to extend a loan in hopes of gaining you as a future customer.

These days, there are loan opportunities for practically everyone. No credit, bad credit, slow credit. You name it and there are banks out there who want your business, but there may be a catch. Depending on your credit history, you may end up spending more than twice as much in interest as someone with a spotless credit record.

Some banks do not specialize in large loans, such as home and auto, but rather extend smaller lines of credit to consumers. These lenders typically issue credit cards to those who are approved. While your credit history does play a large role in determining your interest rates with credit cards, it does not determine other miscellaneous fees. Certain fees, which are charged by banks issuing credit cards, are blanket fees issued to everyone who carries a line of credit. Late fees, overlimit fees and annual fees are among the miscellaneous fees charged by many credit card companies. Avoid banks that charge excessive fees upfront and reduce a large amount of your available credit with said fees. With credit cards, keep in mind that interest rates can skyrocket after only one missed payment. You will save a lot of money by paying on time, every time and by keeping your credit card debt to a minimum.