What To Watch For In 2014-Happy Credit New Year!

1. Be heads up for creditors raising fees. Regulators are cracking down on banks in recent years and making interest gains more complicated for banks and creditors. This combined with consumer carrying lower debt loads is accounting to lower interest returns for banks. Just be heads up, their losses may be passed onto you the consumer.

2. Consumer confidince is up in 2014. Forecasts are predicting that credit cards are bouncing back from the most recent recession. Consumers are using credit cards to do more spending recently. Store credit cards have become attractive to consumers also as they are easier to obtain.

3. Anticipate a decline in Foreign transaction fees. Foreign transaction fees are diminishing and becoming less competitive. It should be easier to find a card without these fees. Travelers should be on the lookout for such cards.

4. Is your FICO sub par? Folks with less than superior can expect to have some doors open for options this year. Creditors are extending their credit offers by using non traditional underwriting i.e.Lexis Nexis reports to find riskier borrowers.

5. Points have emerged over the last year with creditors vs. cash back rewards. Points offer more flexibility and are more economical for consumers.

How Soon Should I Payoff The Balance On My Credit Card?

Have a "Payoff game plan"      

Payoffs! We're talking about Payoffs?! If you follow American football then you will recognize this famous melt down from former Indianapolis Colts head coach Jim Mora. But We are referring to payoffs vs. playoffs. That is correct paying off your credit card and what is a good game plan to have.

A solid plan to implement is prepare to payoff the credit card within 90 days or less. If you are not ready to payoff your card in 90 days I would suggest holding off on any purchases until you have saved enough money to do so. it is very easy to fall into a pattern of convenient spending with a credit card without monitoring how much is being spent. It's so simple. Just swipe your card and exit the store. You can get into trouble if you don't watch your spending closely. Stay within yourself. Keep your spending habits within your means by checking your account balances frequently. Credit card debt can spiral out of control fast if you're not careful.

Be aware that using a credit card to supplement your income can result in years of repayment. Using your credit card for living expenses should only be done in a critical emergency.

I've Filed For Chapter 13 - Now What?

Going through a bankruptcy is a hard pill to swallow. It can be mentally grueling, emotionally debilitating, and financially devastating.

However, filing a Chapter 13 bankruptcy is not the end of the world.

First, it is perceived as a much better alternative than a Chapter 7 where you don't pay your creditors back at all.

Second, in many cases it falls off of your credit history after only 7 years instead of 10.

Finally, many creditors will allow you to obtain credit from them much sooner than if you were to file a Chapter 7 bankruptcy. You can even get a credit card after Chapter 13 after only a year in most cases!

Chapter 13 is perceived as a much better alternative than Chapter 7 because you do pay some of your debt back. Because of this many creditors only look at the last 7 years when it comes to Chapter 13 bankruptcies which is 3 years quicker than a Chapter 7. Getting a credit card is as simple as 1-2-3, with a few key points to keep in mind.

First, you will want to apply for one about 1 year after your bankruptcy... no sooner.

Second, you will, more than likely, need to open a "secured credit card" account to begin with. This is a special type of credit card account where you deposit money into a savings account and that money is the "security" for your credit account.

For instance, a bank might want you to deposit $400 into a savings account and you might have a credit limit of $300. This is typical when rebuilding credit.

Third, watch out for the "opportunistic" banks when looking for your card. Most banks will charge a fee and your interest rates will be at the top of the market, but don't make the mistake that you must pay an exorbitant amount in fees and interest. There are very fair banks that want your business even after bankruptcy that don't cost an arm and a leg.

It takes patience and a determined effort but rebuilding your credit after Chapter 13 is not hard.