Tradelines And Credit Cards: Tips For Cutting Long-Term Debt
If you want the best advice for using tradelines and credit cards to cut your long-term debt, this article is one you'll definitely need to bookmark. It doesn't matter if you have a lot of credit or no credit, and it doesn't matter if you're deeply in debt or up to date on your bills. Whether you've made a few late payments in the last year or have never made a late payment in your life, there's still something for everyone to learn here.
Your credit score - at least from our perspective as experts in a niche industry - is the single most powerful financial tool you have at your disposal. We've said it before, and we'll say it again. There's good reason for this, and it's a important key point to understand if you really want to make financial progress in the most effective and efficient way possible.
While our focus today is cutting long-term debt, the foundation of the information we're going to provide begins with credit lines (technically known as tradelines) and credit cards. They're both excellent tools to have at your side yet they're often seen as totally irrelevant tools for minimizing long-term debt. Let's have a quick look at exactly why there is an immense need to focus on your credit lines (and your credit report as a whole) before we go any deeper.
Your Credit Score Is More Powerful Than Cash
Well, at least for the majority of us it is. If you had enough actual cash available, there'd be no need for credit. If you wanted something, you'd simply make the purchase and pay in cash, or with a debit card which pulls cash directly from your bank account. Unfortunately, even people with higher incomes and large cash flows still use credit and financing because they don't have the actual cash or savings to make the immediate purchases they require or desire (take a mental note on the difference of those two words - "require" and "desire").
So, we've quickly established the fact that the vast majority of people - regardless of their income level - simply don't have the actual cash available for buying what is considered necessary. While realizing that, we keep in mind that the loose definition of "necessary" can vary greatly from person to person for obvious reasons. Some people make much more money than others, and so we often have completely different perspectives of what's considered to be a priority. Regardless, we think it's pretty safe to say everyone can agree that credit and lending play an extremely important role in our lives.
Your credit score and the details of your credit profile (which appear in your credit report) are what determine your financial value and worthiness as a potential recipient of a line of credit. Any type of financing that you seek, whether it be a personal loan, business loan, auto loan, home mortgage or even a simple department store credit card is going to be based on your credit history.
The longer your credit history is, the easier it becomes for institutions to determine how reliable you are and how likely you'll be to repay any money they lend you as credit. Aside from the age of your history is your performance. Do you pay on time? Have you always paid on time? If you've had late or delinquent payments, how much were they, how far behind were you, and what type of credit line was it? All of this data goes into the major credit bureaus' information calculator where a three digit credit score is generated based on very complex, specific, and always-changing algorithms.
Apart from seeking financing or lines of credit, there are other reasons that your credit score is more powerful than cash. Let's consider that you're ready to move up in the world and you just applied for a new job. Before you qualify for an interview, or, possibly after an interview when deciding which potential candidate is the most promising, the company might decide to run your credit score. This is not uncommon, and it's completely legal. Can you imagine being the most qualified and losing the position of your dreams because you're behind on your mortgage, auto loan, or had a few bad years of credit during hard times? That's a real bummer to consider yet it occurs every day. In this instance, cash usually won't help you buy your way into a job.
Are there other circumstances? Yes, there are. Renting a home is another great example. If you had enough cash you could simply buy a home in a single transaction, but when a potential landlord runs your credit score to see if he/she feels you're likely to pay your rent on time, you don't want them to see a bad result. If they do, you may be able to pay a larger deposit by explaining your situation and still get your rental, but this is rare. And if you have enough cash to pay even a whole year up front yet have a bad credit score, you may be seen as suspicious and be considered a less-than-desirable tenant.
The list goes on and on but we think we've made a good case for why your credit score is more powerful than cash - at least for starters.
Using this general train of thought as our baseline, let's start digging into the tips for cutting long-term costs, along with how and why tradelines and credit cards play such a significant role for doing so.
Credit Cards Are Tradelines
We mentioned up above that the formal term for a line of credit is a tradeline. This means that your credit report could show multiple types of tradelines depending on your credit history. Revolving credit is one type of credit line that appear on your report, and installment loans are another. Well quickly explain each below:
This is a type of credit where a specific amount is available and can be accessed as needed. A perfect example of revolving credit is a credit card. You have a set limit, but what you chose to borrow and what you chose to pay back each month is up to you. However, there will always be a minimum amount due if you hold a balance from month to month, and that amount will accrue interest.
This credit line usually comes in the forms of a set amount, paid at once, with a fixed payment plan in place and agreed upon before the actual credit is issued. Excellent examples of installment credit include auto loans, home mortgages, or personal loans.
With this understanding, you'll know how and why there are terms like "thin" or "seasoned" are often used by lenders when referring to credit reports. If a potential lender tells you that you don't qualify because you have a thin credit report, it means that it's lacking in either revolving credit, installment credit, or both. Additionally, a thin credit report could be one with a good score, but not enough instances of revolving or installment credit lines. For example, you might have 5 different credit cards with great history, but they all lack age and you've never had any type of installment loan. Someone with a robust credit history consisting of various credit lines dating back for a long time would be considered to have seasoned credit. Individual credit cards may be considered "seasoned" all on their own if the age of the account is old enough, and this is an especially common phrase used by companies who have tradelines for sale - another subject altogether, but one we can easily explain.
Credit card tradelines (again, which are lines of credit) are a term commonly used to describe a product that is used by individuals with thin credit profiles, low credit scores, or a lack of credit history to help them increase their credit score. Buying tradelines (credit card tradelines) is the practice of purchasing the status of an authorized user from the card of a complete stranger. This is done by people with all types of credit scores and histories in an attempt to squeeze every possible benefit available into their credit report and help them increase their credit score. The resulting increase helps them to secure the best possible opportunity when it comes to obtaining other lines of credit from lenders.
Using Tradelines And Credit Cards As a Method For Cutting Long-Term Debt Finally, with a solid understanding of how important your credit score is and why, along with some knowledge about the types of credit lines and how they work, you're ready to begin learning some tips on how you can employ these tools into your financial strategy to cut your long-term debt.
What are some of the benefits of cutting your long-term debt? By now, it should be blatantly obvious. First, you're going to make less payments. Second, you'll save untold sums of money which would otherwise be spent on interest which accrues from holding long-term debt. Third, you'll open up the doors of opportunity for increasing your credit profile and ultimately be seen not only as an excellent potential client in the eyes of lenders, but you'll be ready to finance things that you never thought possible.
The ability to acquire new lines of credit doesn't only depend on your credit history or your credit score, but often on your income. If you'd like to walk out of a mortgage lender's office with the best rates possible while paying the smallest down payment possible, you'll need an excellent credit score and a robust credit history. This can take decades to achieve, sometimes longer. But there are shortcuts that can be taken when the proper strategies are applied in the correct order.
Let's assume that you have 2 credit cards, they both are only 1 year old, and while you've always paid on time and in full, your credit score is sitting around 630. That's not very impressive when you submit an application for a third credit card, and it's not likely to win you a card with a limit much higher than your first two. However, if you had another card on your credit report with an age of 20 years and a $40k limit that's never missed a payment, your score could potentially break well over 700 in less than a month or two. That number would make you look much more appealing, help you secure a third card in your name, and likely a card with a respectable limit compared to your other two. It may also be the leverage you need to secure your first personal loan - even if it's only for $1,500 which will help you begin to thicken your profile since you'd now have an installment loan on your report.
You see, each step forward you make in the world of credit is a step towards saving more money in the long-run, as long as you are responsible about paying on time and maintaining balances that correspond with your ability to pay in relation with your income.
That is, to say, even if you make $500k a year, you may not qualify for a simple $10k personal loan if your amounts owed exceed (or are too near) your debts. It's easy to overextend your credit with too much financing at a single time, and once that happens, you get into a sort of gridlock. Even if you're completely capable of making all your payments and have an perfect history of doing so, lenders won't finance a vehicle for someone who already has too much debt owed because it doesn't make mathematical sense. Now, by cutting your long-term debts, you'll have much more money available in each credit line, and therefore be able to utilize it when you need it. You'll also be able to move balances from higher interest cards to 0% APR cards through consolidation, literally avoiding interest payments altogether for a certain amount of time.
The smart use of credit cards can include an endless number of strategies. One of the best that we're aware of is the authorized user tradeline that we briefly touched upon. While you won't be the primary account holder, this kind of credit line will be reported to credit bureaus, and if the card is well-seasoned and has a high limit, can help you at exactly the time you need it most. It's estimated that over 33% of Americans utilize authorized user tradelines, but it's unknown which percentage of them are cards issued by spouses or family members, and which percentage are tradelines that have been deliberately purchased by an individual to meet a specific goal. Either way, if you buy a tradeline and it helps you get a better rate on a fixed-rate 30 year mortgage, you have the potential to not only save hundreds of thousands of dollars, but also to pay more quickly, free up more cash (which can be used for a down payment on another mortgage that may be used as a cash-generating rental property, and to build your credit along the way with easy-to-make payments instead of struggling to make ends meet, creating longer periods of debt, and losing your hard-earned money to interest payments.
Overall, the systematic use of tradelines and credit cards to help build a stronger, healthier, bulkier, and more powerful credit profile is only limited by your ability, motivation, and determination. Why take the long route and lose money and time in the process when you can streamline things and build your creditworthiness as well as your tangible assets? Nobody wants to be in debt, but it's often a requirement for modern-day survival.
If you're at the point where your credit is clean and without bad marks and you want to begin strengthening it, or are preparing to make a big purchase with the assistance of a credit line or loan, be sure you take a hard and long look at what position you're entering. Consider the fact that even in the long-run, there are many steps along the way and each step is an opportunity for advancement or staying on the same path. Why remain stale when the chance to advance is so simple?
Tips For Leveraging Your Credit Score
Never Spend More than You Can Afford This is a big, big mistake that will almost always end up in a tough situation. It can even lead to complete financial failure. Plan your purchases, never take the "I'll worry about it later" approach, and never sign on the dotted line without understand exactly what you're getting yourself into. A little research goes a long way, and that's what this article is all about - cutting your costs and cutting your debt over the long-term so that you can enjoy a comfortable life without worrying about the basic costs of living.
Always Check Up On Your Credit Score & Report
Check your score monthly to see where you stand. Performing a quick scan is helpful at this point. As far as your report itself, you'll want to review and audit everything at least once a year. If you suspect something is wrong, don't wait to run a check of your report. The quicker you resolve any error, the better. You don't want to make a purchase or apply for a loan without being sure that you're in the clear beforehand. Even if you pay on time, card companies, lenders, and even credit bureaus make mistakes from time to time.
Whether you get added by a friend or family member if you're newer to credit, or buy tradelines to help bump your already solid score to it's optimal possible height before that next big loan, tradelines are a lifesaver for many. They're what we consider to be the fastest and most effective financial tool for the rapid increase of credit scores. Keep in mind, if your credit isn't clean & clear of delinquencies or negative remarks, the decision to buy tradelines will have a less positive effect for you. Hence the importance of always monitoring your credit score. Buying tradelines costs money, so it's always worth it to check all of your credit reports before purchasing them to be sure your info is correct and in order.
Personalize Your Credit Strategy To Cut Expenses
Since each person's financial situation is different, you'll want to build your knowledge of how the credit system works, how reporting works, and what is the reasoning behind rises and drops in your credit score at any given moment. Make it a goal to continually learn about credit and how your score responds to your spending, payment, and financing habits. Once you find a groove, make it your strategy and stick with it until you see the opportunity for even more improvements. Remember and never forget that the credit game is not one-size-fits-all. Certain aspects may apply to everyone, but no two people are doing the exact same thing and spending in the exact same way. There is always opportunity to leverage a strength or eliminate a weakness if you're willing to pay attention.
Think Outside The Box
When you make a loan application, apply for a new credit card, or decide to make the purchase of a large asset like a boat, automobile, RV, or a home, always think about the credit line you're asking for. Does it suit you at this time? Is it a need or a want? How does it tie into your other financial responsibilities and where does it place your credit in terms of the immediate future and the long-term? Where do you really stand to benefit? No, we're not saying don't buy things you need or enjoy, we're simply implying that there may be a better way to do it, especially if you're willing to put more money down, or wait a few months, or use your excellent credit score to negotiate better terms. Again, don't just sign on the dotted line. Consider the consequence, do your research, and plan accordingly by implementing your own personal financial strategy that you continually develop based on experience.
Always think about the future. If you're in doubt, consult with someone who has more knowledge then you. Shop around rather than settling for the first opportunity that falls into your lap. Take things into your own hands by making smart decisions, and rejecting offers that don't lead you in the direction you want to go.
Tradelines are always a great option too, but you need to understand very clearly what you're dealing with and why. If you need more assistance or have questions about how tradelines can help you and which tradelines are best fit for meeting your goals, contact the professionals at GFS Group today. With almost 10 years specializing in nothing but tradelines for sale, we're your go-to source for expert knowledge, top-tier customer service, and a selection of authorized user tradelines that are incomparable to other tradeline companies. You deserve the best, and that's what we offer.
We hope this article has given you hope, insight, and a financial advantage on how to become and remain a winner at mastering your finances and cutting your long-term debt. We're continually striving to deliver the best solutions available anywhere.
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