The Top 10 Most Important Questions About Tradelines: Answered
While doing routine informational searches for data regarding tradelines we've seen an extreme amount of heresy, misinformation, disinformation, misunderstanding, errors, lies, incorrect opinions, and even outright deceit. What we're witnessing in addition (and as a result of the above) is that a there are a whole lot of important questions from real people that never get answered.
Today we're here to set the record straight on what we feel are the top ten most important questions about tradelines.
Since nobody can be correct 100% of the time, and while it's difficult to find all the answers in one place, we always make our best effort to keep you informed, on top of things, and if possible - ahead of the game.
So let's take a look at the most common questions about tradelines and dive into some facts.
Question #10: If I Buy Tradelines, Will My Bank / Lenders Punish Me?
Absolutely not. First of all, buying tradelines is a private transaction between two parties who are in mutual agreement. Banks, who may frown on the process since they're not making profits on the person selling their tradeline. However, the fact that you've bought a legal financial instrument has no bearing on your status as an account holder. Likewise, while some people say that lenders disregard authorized user tradelines while considering financing, this is almost always false.
Your status as an authorized user is integrated into your credit score. Lenders use that score, and since they themselves are not credit unions, they have no method for determining a proper score by simply leaving tradelines out of the equation. While it may be possible that some credit bureaus offer products to lenders that display a credit score without the consideration of tradelines, we've never seen any proof of this - and we work directly with many loan officers who are also tradeline brokers. If things change, they'll let us know and we'll be the first to inform you.
Question #9: Can I use Tradelines To Help Me Finance A Home?
Yes, of course you can. Tradelines are nothing more than a mark on your credit report which clarify that you have an open line of credit on the account of another cardholder. While buying tradelines may not have as much pull as if the card were your very own (any ONLY Yours), they work wonders for millions of people. Yes, you heard that correctly. It's estimated that about 1/3 of Americans are an authorized user on someone else's card. And just because you purchased your tradeline rather than adopted or inherited it as a favor from a friend or family member is irrelevant. Your credit score can shoot up to impressive numbers in record time, and your credit report clearly reflects the authorized user status.
Many people have been known to say that if a mortgage lender knew you had bought the tradeline, they would invalidate your mortgage. Unless you have a contract from your lender stating this - which we have yet to see - it's not true. In fact, many mortgage lenders recommend tradelines for people as a method of increasing their credit score rapidly and legally and so again, this is completely normal. The only reason it's not an overly-common practice is that not everyone is aware, and there aren't many answers out there regarding these types of questions.
Question #8: Are Tradelines Really Illegal?
No. And while this has been a big question of debate, the facts stand. There are people who will swear up and down that they're illegal, or that you're begging for legal problems if you purchase authorized user tradelines. There is continual debate about this, as well as the morality of the act, or the potential consequences. At the end of the day, laws are laws. Nobody has ever been criminally prosecuted for buying or selling legitimate credit card tradelines. We have a whole article dedicated to exactly this question where you can learn much more. Anyone who tells you that buying tradelines are illegal is simply incorrect and ill-informed.
Question #7: Do Tradelines Stay On My Credit Report Forever?
This is one question that is slightly complicated, yet rather cut and dry. First, we must consider the difference between paying a tradeline broker become an authorized user of a third-party cardholder and obtaining your authorized user status directly from someone you know. As we mentioned earlier, roughly 33% of Americans benefit as authorized users of someone else's card. With that said, these users are typically added for the long-term. As an example, if your parents or spouse add you as an authorized user to help grow your credit profile, they usually won't be in a rush to remove you and therefore the status will remain on your credit report month after month and year after year.
On the other hand, the whole purpose of paying a broker is to boost your credit as quickly as possible and for a short, strategic time frame (usually the pricing is for a 2 month period). After that, you'd be removed as an authorized user, and, at some point shortly thereafter - which could be weeks or could be months, depending on the issuing bank or the credit union - your credit profile will no longer show that user authorized status. This brings us to the next question...
Question #6: When I'm Removed As An Authorized User, Does It Negatively Affect My Credit Score?
The correct answer here is not that the affect is negative. Of course when you no longer have a powerful line of credit in your credit report, your credit score will decrease. But it's not something you're being penalized for. If anything, your credit score would drop back to where it was before you began using the tradeline. However, you don't need to worry about seeing a 200 point loss to your credit after removing a line that originally boosted your score by 80 points. That is to say, there is no real "punishment", it's simply the algorithm taking the current status of your credit profile into account and creating a proper number that reflects your currently open accounts.
Question #5: I heard Tradelines Aren't Worth It Because They Don't Make Much Of An Impact. Is this true?
Absolutely not true. Tradelines, generally speaking, are worth every penny you spend. In fact, prices vary wildly from a mere $200 to upwards of $2,000 depending on the age, credit limit, and history of the card in question. The better the card is, the better your score will be. We have seen users make minimal gains because they didn't want to spend $500 on a tradeline, or because they made a purchase that was not strategic and inline with their personal needs. We've also seen people have absolutely incredible gains, upwards of 150 points with mid-range purchases simply because they bought what their report lacked, and because they understood the cost vs. value in the transaction.
Credit bureaus use such complex algorithms, and everyone's history is so different that we can't possibly predict or guarantee specific numbers, but the vast majority of informed buyers are extremely satisfied with the results of their purchase. If they were not, we would not be in business today. So that's that! Tradelines are an extremely valuable credit building tool for those who understand them and know what they're trying to achieve.
Question #4: Do Tradelines Always Post To Your Credit Report?
No, not always. In fact, there are specific banks of lenders who don't even report authorized users to credit bureaus, which means that being an authorized user of these cards is basically useless for the purpose of improving your credit. To gain a comprehensive understanding of how tradelines work, see our Ultimate Guide to Authorized User Tradelines and take your time to learn everything there is to know about the process so you can be sure that any efforts you make to buy are successful.
It's very important for us to mention that there are rare cases where a cardholder may not comply with their half of the deal, or their account may be closed without notice after you've ordered your position (among other unexpected possibilities). When this happens, any reputable tradeline company will be quick to remedy the situation and provide you with a tradeline of equal or greater value at no cost. This is one of the important aspects of making the decision to buy tradelines: protect yourself and only purchase them from a trusted and proven source with high-quality customer service.
Question #3: Can I Be Charged For Falsifying Information If A Credit Bureau Discovers That I Bought Tradelines?
Credit bureaus are the ones who actively report the status of authorized users. They append this information to your individual report as it is fed to them by banks and other lending institutions. Some banks strictly prohibit the selling of your tradeline to an authorized user, and if this is the case, they would not permit nor report any authorized user status that was not deemed to be a direct family member. However, the Fair Credit Reporting Act prohibits lenders from discriminating against people for several things, including their marital status.
While credit reporting agencies have tried to challenge the legalities of this and to prevent authorized users from being allowed on their reports, they have never been successful. One of the obvious pieces of evidence is that they continually claim they are working on processes to exclude authorized user statuses from their reporting, however, they continually provide the information and allow these statuses to deliver substantial increases to the credit score of the end user. In a nutshell, it's something that is not a favorable subject for lenders or credit bureaus, however, they continue to allow the process to continue, and people continue using these tools to improve their financial futures through the use of tradelines, 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.
There is no "falsification" involved in purchasing or selling a tradeline, and this must be understood. As long as the information you provide is honest and truthful, there is nothing that can possibly be considered false. With this said, there are some tradeline companies who use CPNs which is something you want to stay far away from. You can learn more about that here, and be sure to stay far away from anyone offering to sell you a CPN as a solution to improving or repairing your credit.
Question #2: Can I Lose My Cardholder Status For Selling Tradelines To Other People?
Yes, you can. You can also lose your cardholder status for a variety of other reasons - often without any explanation from the lender. In the fine print of any credit card contract it is stated that the lender reserves the right to demand the full payment on any and all balances at any given point in time, and that they also reserve the right to close your account for any reason they want to. With that being said, if you abuse the ability to make extra cash by adding an authorized user to your card or cards too often, it's very important to understand the risks involved. Having your account closed is not a common occurrence, but it's true that it's also not a rare occurrence for those who become greedy and/or change authorized users frequently.
Card issuers are not stupid, and while they may not be able to judge you based on certain factors such as age, race, or marital status when applying for a card, they are surely allowed to make the decision to terminate your contract when they feel that you're abusing the line of credit that they've extended to you. Proceed with caution, however, this is generally not a cause for paranoia. If you only have 1 or 2 credit accounts and a thin credit profile, selling your tradelines may not be a great option for you. Weigh the risks and benefits, do your research, and make the best decision based on the feedback of professionals, those who have experience selling tradelines, and your own needs and requirements.
Question #1: How Do I know if a Tradeline Company Is Legitimate?
This is something we see being asked time and time again. And it's an important question to be asked. There are several tradeline companies who are are strongly trusted, highly recommended, and hold an excellent track record from real consumers of delivering great services and high-quality tradelines for thousands and thousands of customers, while simultaneously delivering the same trustworthy experience for sellers.
One thing that we can never stress enough and that we have said again and again is to do your research. Just as you would with any product, do your homework. Check for reviews. Ask questions. Call the company to get a feel for their personnel, their level of attention, and their ability and willingness to answer even the toughest questions. While we don't want to brag, we are confident that GFS Group (yep, that's us) delivers superb services to our customers, and our reviews speak for themselves. But regardless of who you go with when deciding to buy tradelines, make sure you can count on them to handle your personal information, and be sure that they'll be there to assist you in the case that you have a problem. All in all, use your common sense and intuition. If you don't feel comfortable with a certain company, simply forget about them. Eventually you will find an agreeable place to make the purchase you need that fits the personal goals you've set your sights on.
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