credit score – 4 Walls And A View http://4wallsandaview.com/ Thu, 17 Mar 2022 13:40:12 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=5.9.3 https://4wallsandaview.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/06/icon-5.png credit score – 4 Walls And A View http://4wallsandaview.com/ 32 32 What to know about the Teacher Loan Forgiveness Program https://4wallsandaview.com/what-to-know-about-the-teacher-loan-forgiveness-program/ Thu, 17 Mar 2022 13:40:12 +0000 https://4wallsandaview.com/what-to-know-about-the-teacher-loan-forgiveness-program/ Our goal at Credible Operations, Inc., NMLS Number 1681276, hereafter referred to as “Credible”, is to give you the tools and confidence you need to improve your finances. Although we promote the products of our partner lenders who pay us for our services, all opinions are our own. Educators who meet the eligibility criteria may […]]]>

Our goal at Credible Operations, Inc., NMLS Number 1681276, hereafter referred to as “Credible”, is to give you the tools and confidence you need to improve your finances. Although we promote the products of our partner lenders who pay us for our services, all opinions are our own.

Educators who meet the eligibility criteria may be able to get student loan forgiveness. (Shutterstock)

Student loan debt can be overwhelming, especially for borrowers who aren’t in a high-paying field. If you are a teacher with student loans, you may qualify for loan forgiveness choice. Here’s what you need to know about the Teacher Loan Forgiveness Program.

If you are considering refinancing your loans, you can use Credible to compare student loan refinance rates from various lenders in minutes.

What is the Teacher Loan Forgiveness Program?

Teacher Loan Forgiveness is a federal program for full-time teachers who work in low-income schools or educational service agencies. It was created to encourage teachers to work in areas where there is a shortage of qualified teachers. To qualify for the teacher loan forgiveness program, you must have federal loans and be considered a highly qualified teacher by the US Department of Education.

How much can we forgive?

The Teacher Loan Forgiveness Program offers up to $17,500 in forgiveness. You can receive the full $17,500 if you are a highly qualified special education teacher at the elementary or secondary level, or a highly qualified math or science teacher at the secondary level.

You could be eligible for up to $5,000 in loan forgiveness if you work in a different field, as long as you meet the other requirements.

What are the eligibility requirements for teacher loan forgiveness?

You may be eligible for teacher loan forgiveness if:

What does it mean to be a “highly qualified” teacher?

According to the US Department of Education, you are a highly qualified teacher if:

  • You hold at least a bachelor’s degree.
  • You hold a state teaching diploma.
  • No certification or licensing requirements have been waived, revoked or suspended for any reason.

Unfortunately, you will not be eligible for teacher loan forgiveness if you are a school administrator, school counselor, school librarian, or other education staff. You must be a teacher working in a classroom for an eligible employer.

What is considered a low-income school or educational services agency?

You can use the Directory of Low-Income Teachers (TCLI) to determine if your workplace qualifies as a school or low-income educational services agency.

You will need to click on yearbook search and select the school year and state you live in. To narrow your search, you can also enter the name of your school or educational agency.

If you are considering refinancing your student loans, you can use Credible to compare student loan refinance rates without affecting your credit score.

How do I apply for teacher loan forgiveness?

If you qualify and want to apply for teacher loan forgiveness, follow these steps:

  1. Complete the Teacher Loan Forgiveness Application. You can find the application on the Federal Student Aid website. You will need to provide your personal information as well as your employment details. You must also indicate if you have ever applied for teacher loan forgiveness. Make sure your teaching start and end dates include the month, date, and year.
  2. Contact your administrative manager. Contact the chief executive officer (CAO) of your school or agency to complete the certification section of the form. This person will likely have access to your academic records and will be able to confirm your employment. This could be your manager, your assistant manager, your superintendent or someone from human resources.
  3. Send the form to your loan officer. Once your application is complete, submit it to your loan officer(s) at the end of your fifth year of teaching. Make sure you have a copy for your records before sending it.

Keep in mind that if you have taught at different schools during the five-year period, the superintendent of each school must complete the certification section. And if you have multiple loans from different loan servicers, you’ll need a separate form for each.

If you’re not sure how many loans or services you have, check your Federal Student Aid account. Once logged in, you will be able to find all of your student loans and loan managers.

Your loan manager will determine how long it will take for your application to be processed. To avoid delays, make sure you have completed your application accurately. Remember to verify that your account has the correct contact information and continue to make your student loan payments to stay in good standing.

Can teachers benefit from the Civil Service Loan Forgiveness Program?

Civil Service Loan Waiver (PSLF) is another option you might want to explore if you’re a teacher. It is a loan cancellation program for public service workers, including teachers.

To qualify for the Civil Service Loan Relief, you must be a qualified full-time employee of a government entity or non-profit organization. You must also have direct federal loans under an income-based repayment plan. Once you have made 120 qualifying payments, you may be eligible to have the remaining balance on your loans forgiven. Federal Family Education Loans (FFEL) and Federal Perkins Loans are only eligible if you consolidate them into a direct consolidation loan.

Can you get both teacher loan forgiveness and utility loan forgiveness?

You may be able to take advantage of both the teacher loan forgiveness and the civil service loan forgiveness. But you will need to have separate periods of teaching service to do so. For example, if you receive teacher loan forgiveness after five years of teaching, you will not be able to count any of those payments toward the civil service loan forgiveness. You must make 120 additional eligible payments beyond this teaching period if you wish to benefit from the PSLF.

State Student Loan Forgiveness Programs for Teachers

If you are not federally eligible student loan forgivenessIt’s a good idea to look into state loan forgiveness options for your profession. The available forgiveness programs and their eligibility requirements depend on where you live. You can use the American Federation of Teachers Database to find out what’s offered in your state and school district.

Can private student loans be forgiven?

Private student loans are generally not eligible for loan forgiveness. The good news is that you may be able to refinance or even postpone these loans. Although refinancing doesn’t forgive your loans, it can lower your monthly payments, reduce your interest rate, or allow you to pay off your debt sooner.

With deferment, you may be able to temporarily defer your payments, especially if you are having financial difficulty. You will need to contact your lender to find out if this is an option and how it works.

You can compare student loan refinance rates quickly and easily with Credible.

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Payday loans: your solution in the event of a financial crisis… but only as a last resort https://4wallsandaview.com/payday-loans-your-solution-in-the-event-of-a-financial-crisis-but-only-as-a-last-resort/ Wed, 16 Mar 2022 19:00:49 +0000 https://4wallsandaview.com/payday-loans-your-solution-in-the-event-of-a-financial-crisis-but-only-as-a-last-resort/ Pexels.com If you’re in a bind and need cash fast, payday loans might seem like the perfect solution. But before taking out a payday loan, it’s important to understand how they work and what the risks are. Payday loans are short-term loans with high interest rates that are designed to help people cover unexpected expenses. […]]]>

Pexels.com

If you’re in a bind and need cash fast, payday loans might seem like the perfect solution. But before taking out a payday loan, it’s important to understand how they work and what the risks are. Payday loans are short-term loans with high interest rates that are designed to help people cover unexpected expenses. They should only be used as a last resort when you have no other options available.

What are payday loans and how do they work?

Payday loans are short-term loans that are usually due on the day of your next payday. They are often used to cover unexpected expenses or to tide you over until your next paycheque. Payday loans are usually small, ranging from $100 to $500, and they come with high interest rates, usually around 400% APR. This means that if you take out a $100 payday loan, you’ll have to pay back $140 just two weeks later.

Payday loans are easy to get because no credit check is required. All you need is a stable source of income and an active checking account. The process is quick and easy – you can often get approved for a payday loan in just minutes.

The pros and cons of payday loans

There are a number of advantages and disadvantages to payday loans. On the plus side, payday loans are quick and easy to get, they don’t come with any credit checks, and you can usually have the money in your account within minutes.

In contrast, payday loans have high interest rates, they must be repaid quickly, and they can often trap borrowers in a cycle of debt. Payday loans should only be used as a last resort when you have no other options available. If you decide to take out a payday loan, be sure to read the terms and conditions carefully so you know what you’re getting into.

Merjen Novosel from PaydayNow.net identifies bad loans like bad credit payday loans, where you can get payday loans even with bad credit. “There are plenty of payday lenders who are happy to work with borrowers whose credit isn’t perfect, and there are also payday loans specifically designed for those with poor credit,” Novosel says. So if your credit score is preventing you from getting the payday loan you need, don’t worry, many lenders will be happy to help.

How to get a payday loan if you need it

If you find yourself in a situation where you need a payday loan, there are things you can do to increase your chances of getting approved. First, make sure you have all the required documents – most payday lenders will require proof of income and an active checking account. You should also take the time to shop around and compare rates from different lenders. And finally, be sure to read the terms and conditions carefully so you know what you’re getting yourself into.

payday now Payday loans can be a useful tool if used correctly, but they can also be dangerous if used incorrectly. Be sure to research payday loans before taking one and only use them as a last resort when you have no other options available.

What to do if you can’t pay off your payday loan on time

If you find yourself in a situation where you can’t repay your payday loan on time, the first thing you should do is contact your lender and try to work out a payment plan. If that doesn’t work, there are a number of other options available, including:

– Consolidate your payday loans: If you have several payday loans, you may be able to consolidate them into one loan with a lower interest rate. This can help you manage your debt more easily and get it under control.

– Refinance your personal loan: another option is to refinance your personal loan. This means taking out a new loan with a lower interest rate and using it to pay off your existing payday loans. This can help lower your monthly payments and make it easier to pay off your debt.

Debt consolidation loan: If you are having trouble repaying your payday loans, you can consider a debt consolidation loan. This is a personal loan that can be used to consolidate all of your high interest debt, including payday loans. It usually comes with a lower interest rate than payday loans and can help you get out of debt faster.

If you’re having trouble repaying your payday loan, don’t despair: there are several options to help you get out of debt. Be sure to explore all of your options before making a decision and always make sure you can afford the payments before taking out a loan.

]]> Mortgage rates today, March 12 and rate forecast for next week https://4wallsandaview.com/mortgage-rates-today-march-12-and-rate-forecast-for-next-week/ Sat, 12 Mar 2022 15:18:33 +0000 https://4wallsandaview.com/mortgage-rates-today-march-12-and-rate-forecast-for-next-week/ Today’s Mortgage and Refinance Rates Average mortgage rates rose slightly yesterday. But that doesn’t reflect the whole week. That was bad for those rates, pushing them to their highest levels in nearly three years. Again I predict that mortgage rates could rise next week. But we are in a volatile time and the recipe for […]]]>

Today’s Mortgage and Refinance Rates

Average mortgage rates rose slightly yesterday. But that doesn’t reflect the whole week. That was bad for those rates, pushing them to their highest levels in nearly three years.

Again I predict that mortgage rates could rise next week. But we are in a volatile time and the recipe for every prediction contains cups of speculation.

Current mortgage and refinance rates

Program Mortgage rate APR* Change
30-year fixed conventional 4.24% 4.262% +0.01%
15-year fixed conventional 3.592% 3.626% +0.01%
20-year fixed conventional 4.138% 4.175% Unchanged
10-year fixed conventional 3.565% 3.627% +0.05%
30-year fixed FHA 4.308% 5.097% -0.02%
15-year fixed FHA 3.779% 4.439% +0.02%
30-year fixed PV 4.264% 4.476% -0.02%
15-year fixed VA 3.5% 3.833% +0.01%
Pricing is provided by our partner network and may not reflect the market. Your rate may be different. Click here for a personalized quote. See our rate assumptions here.


Should you lock in a mortgage rate today?

I would lock in my rate on the first morning when mortgage rates look likely to rise. Recently it was most mornings.

Of course, you risk missing out on future falls. But I expect a lot more ups than downs. And continuing to float your rate over several days or weeks is, I believe, very risky.

Yes, events could prove me otherwise. It would not be the first time. But I doubt they will this time.

So my personal rate lock recommendations remain:

  • LOCK if closing 7 days
  • LOCK if closing 15 days
  • LOCK if closing 30 days
  • LOCK if closing 45 days
  • LOCK if closing 60 days

However, with so much uncertainty right now, your instincts could easily turn out to be as good as mine, or even better. So let your instincts and personal risk tolerance guide you.

What’s Moving Current Mortgage Rates

Federal Reserve

The Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) of the Federal Reserve begins a two-day meeting next Tuesday. And it will release a report at 2 p.m. ET the next day (March 16), with a press conference scheduled 30 minutes later.

This is potentially very important. The FOMC is the Fed’s monetary policy committee and has enormous influence over the entire economy, including mortgage rates. And his focus at the moment is how to reduce inflation.

We know the views of Fed Chairman Jerome Powell on March 2-3 because he testified before House and Senate committees on those days. The report and the press conference next Wednesday will tell us if the events in Ukraine and his colleagues at the meeting succeeded in changing his mind.

What Powell predicted

When testifying on Capitol Hill, Mr. Powell made comments in two areas that are particularly relevant to both inflation and mortgage rates. He expected that:

  1. The federal funds rate will increase by 0.25% next Wednesday – This will drive up rates on almost all variable rate borrowings. But we expected it since January
  2. The FOMC would not release its plans to sell its vast stock of bonds next week. But he was working on those plans and Mr Powell would reveal them soon

Mortgage rates are not directly affected by changes in the federal funds rate. But the rises and falls of this rate tend to influence them in the long term.

However, mortgage rates will almost certainly be directly affected by the Fed’s plans to sell off its stock of mortgage-backed securities (MBS). It is the type of bond that largely determines these rates. And the Fed owned $2.69 trillion value of them as of Wednesday.

Mortgage bonds

These mortgage bonds are like any other bond. The less you pay for the same fixed income, the higher your return. It is a mathematical fatality. And it is MBS yields that are directly linked to mortgage rates.

So when the Fed starts offloading its mortgage obligations, yields and mortgage rates will rise. Because all that extra supply will drive prices down and increase yields. It’s just supply and demand in action.

Of course, if the Fed were to dump all of its $2.69 trillion in MBS all at once, mortgage rates would skyrocket and spiral. But it won’t because it’s not stupid. Instead, it will sell them off as quickly as the markets can absorb them without destabilizing them.

What to expect next Wednesday

Of course, the Fed has been pointing all this out for months. And the markets already know the things I outlined above.

This is why mortgage rates have been rising for much of this year and why investors have already priced current expectations into MBS prices. Indeed, the pain ahead may prove mild compared to what we have already endured.

But next Wednesday could provide more information that could drive those rates up or (probably briefly) down. Although there have been no new announcements since Mr. Powell’s recent testimony, markets will be on the lookout for changes in tone and emphasis. And they will want to know if the Fed:

  • Seems more aggressive (“hawkish”) or less (“dovish”) when talking about his anti-inflationary measures, including rate hikes and bond sales
  • Appears frightened by the war in Ukraine and in what way. If he fears Russian aggression could tip the world into a global recession, he may be more conciliatory. But if he’s more fearful of the extra inflation the conflict creates, he might be more hawkish.

The way the Fed “sounds” and “appears” may seem barely remarkable to you and me. But, believe me, investors will be analyzing in detail every word written and spoken by Mr. Powell and his colleagues on Wednesday afternoon.

Economic reports next week

There are a few important economic reports on the calendar for next week. Wednesday sees the release of retail sales figures for February. And Tuesday and Wednesday bring some future inflation indicators with the producer price index and the import price index.

But Wednesday’s FOMC report and press conference (see above) should dominate the week.

The potentially most important reports below are highlighted in bold. The others are unlikely to move the markets much unless they contain surprisingly good or bad data.

  • Tuesday – February producer price index
  • Wednesday – FOMC Events. More retail sales and import price indexboth for february
  • Thursday – February Housing starts and building permits. Plus weekly new claims for unemployment insurance through March 12
  • Existing Home Sales Friday through February

Wednesday is the day to watch.

Mortgage interest rate forecast for next week

I suspect that mortgage rates could rise next week. But it all depends on Wednesday’s FOMC meeting. If it’s accommodating, we might see drops, though I doubt they’ll last long. If it’s hawkish, expect more upside.

Mortgage and refinance rates generally move in tandem. And the removal of unfavorable market refinancing charges last year has largely eliminated the gap that had grown between the two.

Meanwhile, another recent regulatory change has likely made mortgages for investment properties and vacation homes more accessible and less expensive.

How your mortgage interest rate is determined

Mortgage and refinance rates are typically determined by prices in a secondary market (similar to stock or bond markets) where mortgage-backed securities are traded.

And it depends heavily on the economy. Thus, mortgage rates tend to be high when things are going well and low when the economy is struggling.

Your part

But you play an important role in determining your own mortgage rate in five ways. And you can affect it significantly by:

  1. Find your best mortgage rate – They vary widely between lenders
  2. Boost your credit score – Even a small bump can make a big difference to your rate and payments
  3. Save the biggest down payment possible – Lenders like you have real skin in this game
  4. Keep your other borrowings small – The lower your other monthly commitments, the higher the mortgage you can afford
  5. Choose your mortgage carefully – Are you better off with a conventional, conforming, FHA, VA, USDA, jumbo or other loan?

Time spent getting these ducks in a row can earn you lower rates.

Remember it’s not just a mortgage rate

Be sure to factor in all of your homeownership costs when calculating how much mortgage you can afford. So focus on your “PITI”. It’s your Pprincipal (repays the amount you borrowed), IInterest (the price of the loan), (the property) Jaxes, and (owners) Iassurance. Our mortgage loan calculator can help you.

Depending on your type of mortgage and the amount of your down payment, you may also need to pay for mortgage insurance. And that can easily hit three figures every month.

But there are other potential costs. So you will have to pay homeowners association dues if you choose to live somewhere with an HOA. And, wherever you live, you should expect repair and maintenance costs. There is no owner to call when things go wrong!

Finally, you will have a hard time forgetting closing costs. You can see those reflected in the annual percentage rate (APR) that lenders will quote you. Because it spreads them effectively over the term of your loan, making it higher than your normal mortgage rate.

But you may be able to get help with those closing costs. and your down payment, especially if you are a first-time buyer. Read:

Down payment assistance programs in every state for 2021

Mortgage Rate Methodology

Mortgage reports receive daily rates based on selected criteria from multiple lending partners. We arrive at an average rate and APR for each loan type to display in our chart. Because we average a range of prices, it gives you a better idea of ​​what you might find in the market. In addition, we average rates for the same types of loans. For example, fixed FHA with fixed FHA. The result is a good overview of the daily rates and their development over time.

The information contained on The Mortgage Reports website is provided for informational purposes only and does not constitute advertising for products offered by Full Beaker. The views and opinions expressed herein are those of the author and do not reflect the policy or position of Full Beaker, its officers, parent company or affiliates.

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What to know about student loans before borrowing https://4wallsandaview.com/what-to-know-about-student-loans-before-borrowing/ Thu, 10 Mar 2022 08:36:43 +0000 https://4wallsandaview.com/what-to-know-about-student-loans-before-borrowing/ One Billion Photos / Shutterstock.com Editor’s Note: This story originally appeared on Live on the cheap. Are you considering taking out a student loan for your studies or those of your children? This is not a decision to be taken lightly. Here is the basic information you need to know. Federal student loans aren’t always […]]]>
One Billion Photos / Shutterstock.com

Editor’s Note: This story originally appeared on Live on the cheap.

Are you considering taking out a student loan for your studies or those of your children?

This is not a decision to be taken lightly.

Here is the basic information you need to know.

Federal student loans aren’t always superior

Man giving stop gesture with one hand and holding money with the other
Krakenimages.com / Shutterstock.com

A long time ago, private student loans were given for ridiculously high amounts and interest rates varied, which meant that over a 10-year repayment period, you could have an interest rate of 4% at some times and 12% at other times.

Payments could not only exceed $1,000 per month, but also vary by hundreds of dollars due to changes in interest rates.

Now, private student loans are available at fixed interest rates that do not change and are often lower than the parent PLUS loan interest rate. Compare federal parent loan rates with rates from lenders such as SoFi.

There is a big difference between student loans and parent loans

University student on a laptop
Studio F8 / Shutterstock.com

Parent PLUS loan interest rates are higher than traditional undergraduate student loans, income-contingent repayment plan prices are higher, and the only limit is the cost of attendance.

For example, let’s say a school costs $30,000 per year, including room and board, books, etc. The limit for dependent undergraduate students for the first year is $5,500.

If parents qualify, they can borrow significantly more, up to the full cost of tuition minus any other student financial aid. So a parent could easily end up in debt of $100,000 because of a child’s undergraduate degree.

Credit score and income determine eligibility for private student loans

Man checking his credit score
Andrey_Popov / Shutterstock.com

Whether it’s a private loan for parents or students, credit rating and income matter. Students who obtain a loan in their own name with a limited credit history can obtain loans with a parent or other co-signer with more established credit.

A co-signer is someone who agrees to repay the loan if the primary borrower cannot. Thus, they are also responsible for the loan, and the loan payment history also appears on the co-signer’s credit report.

The credit rating can also determine the interest rate. For example, someone with a better credit rating may qualify for an interest rate two or more percentage points lower than another person with a lower credit rating.

There are different types of federal student loans

Student
pathdoc / Shutterstock.com

For students, most federal student loans are issued as subsidized or unsubsidized loans. Interest on subsidized student loans is paid by the federal government while students are in school with at least half-time status and a few other circumstances. These loans must be used up to their limit before taking out any other type of student loan.

Unsubsidized loans are available for the remaining amount a student is eligible to receive within normal borrowing limits. The gaps are filled by PLUS parent loans or PLUS graduate loans. Private student loans also fill in the gaps.

Remember that you are never obligated to borrow the full amount granted. I can’t stress that enough. Compare financial aid programs and call the financial aid office to apply for more scholarships and also inquire about local and state scholarships. If you are still or recently in high school, ask your high school counselor to help you find scholarships.

Repayment term and terms vary

Black man in office thinking about possibilities
Roman Samborskyi / Shutterstock.com

Repayment periods vary from 5 to 30 years. The five-year repayment is only for private student loans, but it depends on the lenders. Some lenders will have the option of a 15 year repayment term. Longer repayment periods generally mean smaller payments. Although you pay more interest because you are borrowing for a longer period, you can still pay off the loan sooner. Usually there is no penalty for this.

The standard repayment term for repaying federal student loans is 10 years. There is a 20 year plan where payments are based on earnings and up to 25 years for an extended payment plan.

There are consolidated loans with repayment periods of up to 30 years, with payment never increasing as income increases.

An advantage of loan consolidation is that it can make you eligible for civil service loan forgiveness., a program in which you can potentially have your remaining balance canceled for working for a public service employer for 10 years. Student loan consolidation allows borrowers to combine multiple federal student loans into one federal student loan. Although consolidation allows you to pay off multiple loans with one simplified payment, it will likely increase the amount of interest you pay over time.

Sound complicated? It can be. A student loan is a decision that involves comparing interest rates, long-term protections for financial emergencies, and avoiding over-indebtedness.

The best way to make the decision easier is to complete the FAFSA so that you know all the federal options available to you. Then talk to your financial counselor and a college financial aid counselor or high school counselor about what your options might mean for your family’s future. It’s better to spend a few hours making an informed decision about borrowing now than to spend years worrying about the financial impact of loan repayments later.

Disclosure: The information you read here is always objective. However, we sometimes receive compensation when you click on links in our stories.

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How to save on gas when prices are at record highs https://4wallsandaview.com/how-to-save-on-gas-when-prices-are-at-record-highs/ Wed, 09 Mar 2022 00:16:36 +0000 https://4wallsandaview.com/how-to-save-on-gas-when-prices-are-at-record-highs/ Drivers across the United States have faced record high gasoline prices at the pump in recent weeks. According to AAA, the national average price per gallon reached $4.07, up a staggering $1.30 from a year ago. Prices across the country have been rising since last week and aren’t expected to stop anytime soon. 5 ways […]]]>

Drivers across the United States have faced record high gasoline prices at the pump in recent weeks. According to AAA, the national average price per gallon reached $4.07, up a staggering $1.30 from a year ago. Prices across the country have been rising since last week and aren’t expected to stop anytime soon.

5 ways to save money at the gas pump

To save fuel and spend less at the pump, consider making a few adjustments to your normal driving.

1. Drive the speed limit

Regardless of your vehicle’s fuel economy, following the speed limit will help you save fuel. Your gas mileage will decrease if you drive over 50 mph. In addition to driving at the posted speed, it’s a good idea to avoid extreme acceleration or braking, which will also result in low gas mileage.

2. Shop around for the cheapest options

Before parking at the first gas station you come across, research the cheapest options in the area. You can download apps like GasBuddy, Gas Guru, and the AAA app to see where the lowest gas prices are near you.

3. Stick with regular gas options

Unless your vehicle requires premium gasoline, there’s no need to dish out the extra cash for the premium option. Sticking to regular gasoline will save you around 50 cents per gallon – a small number that can quickly add up.

4. Join a rewards program

Many grocery stores offer Loyalty programs that reward drivers who fill up at their station. Some credit cards also offer points when used at the pump. If a traditional gas station is more your style, look for the brand-specific rewards options you prefer, like the one offered by 7-Eleven.

5. Map out routes in advance

To save money on gas and time in the car, use apps like Waze to take the most efficient route available. Also plan your route in advance to make sure you don’t waste gas backing up to different areas.

Other ways to save money on vehicle costs

While it is true that the cost of powering your car can be quite high, especially now, the true cost of vehicle ownership is made up of many factors. And there are still other ways to save money as a driver.

Maintain your vehicle

Keep up to date with maintenance of your vehicle will help you avoid any unforeseen problems. Try to have your vehicle professionally checked a few times a year to avoid costly road related issues.

Limit long journeys

More miles clocked on your odometer means more trips to the gas station, but it also means more chance of mechanical problems. If you can avoid it, it might not be the best time for a long road trip. It could also be a good time to carpool or rely on public transportation when available.

Buy cheaper insurance

If you’ve had the same insurance for a long time, now might be a good time to shop around and see what other options are available. Make sure you compare quotes from multiple vendors to ensure you get the best deal.

Refinance your current car loan

You may be able to get better terms and save on your monthly payment by refinance your car loan. This is especially true if you have improved your credit score. Compare your current rates with refinanced terms to see if you can save more money by refinancing.

The record prices are due to a combination of factors

The record prices the country is facing are partly due to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and the resulting sanctions. These penalties have resulted in a dramatic increase in the cost of crude oil, which serves as the primary ingredient to power your vehicle. As the price of crude oil rises, prices at the gas pump also rise.

Combined with potential Fed rates up and the impending impacts of the pandemic, gasoline prices are unlikely to drop any time soon. Take advantage of every available opportunity to save money in this expensive environment.

The bottom line

When it comes to owning a vehicle, the costs can add up – and the price attached to the gas pump can cause a lot of frustration. While much of the rising gas prices are out of your control, focus on the choices you can make to save.

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Looking for credit card relief? Don’t Believe These Debt Consolidation Myths | national company https://4wallsandaview.com/looking-for-credit-card-relief-dont-believe-these-debt-consolidation-myths-national-company/ Tue, 08 Mar 2022 16:39:48 +0000 https://4wallsandaview.com/looking-for-credit-card-relief-dont-believe-these-debt-consolidation-myths-national-company/ PHOENIX–(BUSINESS WIRE)–March 8, 2022– As Americans’ credit card debt levels rise, 29% are facing trouble with their liabilities, according to New York Life. This means that millions of people may need solutions such as debt consolidation, but may find information about the process confusing or misleading. “Debt consolidation offers a way to combine multiple debts […]]]>

PHOENIX–(BUSINESS WIRE)–March 8, 2022–

As Americans’ credit card debt levels rise, 29% are facing trouble with their liabilities, according to New York Life. This means that millions of people may need solutions such as debt consolidation, but may find information about the process confusing or misleading.

Debt consolidation offers a way to combine multiple debts into one payment to provide a streamlined way to repay. It’s often a great solution for people overwhelmed by multiple bills looking to regain control of their money,” said Michael Sullivan, personal financial consultant at Take Charge America, a non-profit housing and credit counseling agency. “But like other forms of debt relief, it can be difficult to separate truth from fiction.”

Sullivan busts five common debt consolidation myths:

  • You cannot pursue the consolidation yourself. False. Despite what you may hear elsewhere, debt consolidation is a process that you can initiate yourself. Consolidation can take many forms, including a debt management plan, balance transfer credit cards, and personal loans. Research the different solutions to determine which works best for you. A non-profit credit counseling session can also offer an unbiased assessment of your unique situation.
  • Consolidation eliminates your debt. False. Although consolidation is a great way to control your debt by combining multiple debts into one payment, you still have to pay off the balance. Consolidation is not forgiveness.
  • You must have good credit to pursue debt consolidation. Mostly false. When applying for a consolidation loan, good credit can help you get better terms and a lower interest rate. If you explore a debt management planyour credit score is not a factor in qualifying for the plan or obtaining lower interest rates.
  • You always save on interest. False. You can save on interest, depending on the terms of your consolidation loan. But even with a lower interest rate, you might end up paying more interest over the life of the loan if you extend the repayment period.
  • Consolidation traps you in a cycle of debt. False. Like other debt relief options, consolidation is a tool to help you regain control of your financial situation. It doesn’t solve the underlying problem, which is often overspending and mismanagement of money. If you don’t solve these problems yourself, you can easily get into debt.

To learn more about debt consolidation or other debt relief options, visit take over america.

About Take Charge America, Inc.

Founded in 1987, Take Charge America, Inc. is a non-profit agency providing financial education and counseling services, including credit counseling, debt management, student loan counseling, housing advice and bankruptcy advice. He has helped over 2 million consumers nationwide manage their personal finances and debts. To learn more, visit takechargeamerica.org or call (888) 822-9193.

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CONTACT: Tim Gallen

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tim.gallen@akerink.com

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SOURCE: Take Charge America, Inc.

Copyright BusinessWire 2022.

PUBLISHED: 08/03/2022 11:39 / DISK: 08/03/2022 11:39

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Copyright BusinessWire 2022.

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What is a Signature loan and how does it work? https://4wallsandaview.com/what-is-a-signature-loan-and-how-does-it-work/ Thu, 03 Mar 2022 21:48:17 +0000 https://4wallsandaview.com/what-is-a-signature-loan-and-how-does-it-work/ If you’re looking for a loan that doesn’t require collateral, a signature loan might be a good option. A signature loan can be used for almost any purpose. Plus, you can receive funds quickly – some lenders issue funds the same business day. However, like all financial products, these loans have drawbacks. Some lenders charge […]]]>

If you’re looking for a loan that doesn’t require collateral, a signature loan might be a good option. A signature loan can be used for almost any purpose. Plus, you can receive funds quickly – some lenders issue funds the same business day.

However, like all financial products, these loans have drawbacks. Some lenders charge fees and you may receive a high interest rate. Before applying for a signature loan, review the details of these loans to make sure it’s the right choice for you.

What is a signature loan?

A signature loan is an unsecured personal loan. Unlike a secured loan, this type of loan doesn’t require you to post collateral — something of value, like a bank account or a house — that a lender can seize if you don’t repay the loan. Instead, the loan is secured by your signature, which represents a legal promise to repay the loan funds.

Since the loan is unsecured, lenders generally charge a higher interest rate than secured loans, such as mortgages and car loans. The average interest rate for signature loans is often lower than the average credit card interest rate.

Also, loan funds can be used for almost any purpose, such as medical emergencies, debt consolidation, and major life events.

How does a signature loan work?

When you apply for a signature loan, a lender considers factors such as your credit history, income, and credit score to determine if you qualify for a loan. These factors also help a lender determine your interest rate and loan amount.

If you are approved for a signature loan, a lender will give you a cash lump sum. You then repay the loan amount, plus interest, over a set repayment period that typically ranges from 24 to 60 months or more.

What are the best uses for a signature loan?

The best use of a signature loan depends on your unique financial situation. Here are some scenarios where using one might make sense.

Debt Consolidation

If you have high-interest debt, such as credit card debt, using a signature loan to consolidate debt might be a good financial decision. Debt consolidation involves paying off your existing debts with a new loan. If you qualify for a signature loan with an interest rate lower than the average rate of your current debt, you can save a ton of money on interest.

Emergencies

Signature loans also work well for covering unexpected expenses, such as medical emergencies, auto repairs, and home repairs. If you don’t have emergency funds or the expense is too large to cover, you may be able to receive funds quickly.

Major life events

If you need to pay for an expensive event, like a wedding, moving to another state, or a birthday party, a signature loan could help. Remember to only borrow what you can afford to repay.

Where can you get a signature loan?

You can get a signature loan from several financial institutions, including banks, credit unions, and online lenders.

Banks

Traditional banks offer signature loans. If you already have a relationship with a bank, contact their customer service to see if they offer signed personal loans. You may qualify for an interest rate reduction for being an existing customer. Alternatively, you contact a bank by phone to see if they offer unsecured personal loans.

credit unions

Some credit unions offer signature loans, and the interest rate is often lower than those offered by banks. For example, the average rate for a three-year unsecured personal loan at a credit union was 8.95 percent on June 25, 2021, according to the National Credit Union Administration. In contrast, the three-year average rate on a personal loan at a bank was 10.09%.

To take out a personal loan from a credit union, you must be a member or apply for membership.

Online lenders

Several online lenders offer unsecured personal loans. To find them, you can visit an online marketplace or search for individual lenders. One of the benefits of applying with an online lender is that most allow you to prequalify to check your estimated rates and terms, without hurting your credit score.

Advantages and disadvantages of signature loans

Before taking out a signature loan, be sure to weigh the pros and cons.

Benefits

  • Quick funding. Do you need cash fast? Some lenders may issue your loan funds the same business day or a few business days after loan approval.
  • No collateral needed. Since all signature loans are unsecured loans, you don’t have to worry about a lender repossessing your car or foreclosing your home (unless a court grants judgment to the lender) .
  • Lower interest rates than credit cards. The average personal loan interest rate is generally lower than the average credit card interest rate. For example, since March 3, 2022, the average personal loan rate is 10.28%.

The inconvenients

  • Some lenders charge fees, such as application fees, late fees, and prepayment penalties. These fees can significantly increase your borrowing costs.
  • Potentially high interest rates. If you have bad credit, a lender may charge you a high interest rate. Some lenders have advertised maximum interest rates above 30%.
  • Late payments can hurt your credit score. If your payment is more than 30 days late, it can cause significant damage to your credit score, making it harder to qualify for future loans.

How to get a signature loan

If you think getting a signature loan is right for you, follow these steps to get one:

  1. Review your credit report. Inaccurate and incomplete information can lower your credit score. Before applying for a loan, review your credit reports to make sure they are accurate. You can view your Experian, Transunion and Equifax credit reports for free each week until April 20, 2022, by visiting com. If you find a credit report error, dispute it with every credit agency that lists it.
  2. Prequalify with multiple lenders. Compare your loan options by prequalify with as many lenders as possible. After you submit your application, a lender will perform a soft credit check to review your credit, which has no impact on your credit score. If you prequalify, you will receive an estimate of rates and terms.
  3. Submit a formal loan application. Once you have chosen a lender, complete a loan application. You will likely be asked to provide personal and financial information, such as your name, employer, social security number (SSN), income, and bank statements.
  4. Sign the loan agreement and receive the funds. If your application is approved, a lender will send you a loan agreement to sign. Read the conditions carefully and sign if you accept them. Then the lender must deposit the funds into your bank account within a few business days.
  5. Repay your loan. Be sure to repay your signature loan as promised. If you make late payments, you could pay late fees and it could hurt your credit, preventing you from taking out future loans. Sign up for autopay or use a spreadsheet to stay on top of your due date.
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5 Ways to Improve Your Credit Score in 2022 https://4wallsandaview.com/5-ways-to-improve-your-credit-score-in-2022/ Wed, 23 Feb 2022 16:18:45 +0000 https://4wallsandaview.com/5-ways-to-improve-your-credit-score-in-2022/ Building your credit history can be as simple as checking your credit report for errors and improving your on-time payment history. (iStock) Having good credit can help you get favorable terms on a number of products, from mortgages to credit cards. On the other hand, having a bad credit rating can make it harder to […]]]>

Building your credit history can be as simple as checking your credit report for errors and improving your on-time payment history. (iStock)

Having good credit can help you get favorable terms on a number of products, from mortgages to credit cards. On the other hand, having a bad credit rating can make it harder to get loans and new lines of credit.

If you’ve set a goal to boost your credit score in 2022, here are five strategies to consider:

  1. Review your free credit reports
  2. Improve your on-time payment history
  3. Pay off credit card debt
  4. Keep old accounts open
  5. Open a secure credit card

Learn more about each credit repair strategy in the sections below and visit Credible to sign up for free credit monitoring services. You can also purchase a number of financial products, such as credit card consolidation loans and secured credit cards, for free without affecting your credit score.

WHY IS GOOD CREDIT IMPORTANT?

1. Review your free credit reports

The first step to increasing your credit score is to identify areas where you can make improvements. An effective way to do this is to review your credit reports with the three major credit bureaus: Equifax, Experian and TransUnion.

Check your credit reports for errors, such as missing accounts or clerical errors that result in erroneous missed payments. Then dispute any errors by contacting the credit bureau, which is responsible for correcting inaccurate information through the Fair Credit Reporting Act.

You can request free weekly credit reports until April 20, 2022 at www.AnnualCreditReport.com. After that, you can pull your credit reports once a year for free. You can also sign up for free credit monitoring services on Credible, so you can identify errors or fraud as quickly as possible.

HOW YOUR CREDIT RATING IS EFFECTED BY HARD AND SOFT APPLICATIONS

2. Improve your on-time payment history

Your payment history has the biggest impact on your credit rating, accounting for 35% of your score using the FICO scoring model. Derogatory marks, including missed payments, can last up to seven years on your credit report, although they have less of a negative impact over time.

Signing up for automatic payments to pay your bills and utilities is an easy way to improve your on-time payment history and boost your credit score. It may also be useful to download a free budgeting app to track your expenses and bills across all your bank accounts.

HOW MUCH CREDIT DO YOU NEED FOR A MORTGAGE?

3. Pay off credit card debt

Another factor with a strong impact on your credit score is your the credit utilization ratio, which is the amount of debt you owe relative to your available credit. For example, if you owe $500 on a credit card with a credit limit of $4,500, your utilization rate on that account is approximately 11%.

Borrowers who regularly have high balances on their credit cards may have a high credit utilization rate, which can lower your credit score and cost you money over time due to interest rates. students.

Let’s say you have $3,000 in credit card debt on an account that has a $5,000 line of credit and an interest rate of 17%. If you only make the minimum payments, your credit utilization is 60%, which is about twice what credit reporting agencies recommend. Plus, you’ll likely pay hundreds of dollars in interest charges while you pay off your debts.

One way to reduce your credit usage and save money on interest is to consolidate credit card debt at a lower interest rate with a personal loan. As a bonus, personal loans can diversify your credit mix, which can further boost your credit score. You can compare personal loans for debt consolidation on Credible with a soft inquiry, which will not impact your credit score.

HOW TO CHECK YOUR CREDIT SCORE FOR FREE WITH NO PENALTIES

4. Keep old accounts open

Credit bureaus like to see a well-established credit history, which includes the average age of credit accounts in your name. If you have old credit accounts that you may not be using, it may be useful to keep them open to demonstrate a sufficient length of credit history.

Likewise, it may be wise to avoid opening new credit card accounts while you’re building your credit score. New accounts will shorten your average credit age, and they will also have a temporary (and minimal) negative impact due to thorough investigation when you apply for the account.

You might also consider becoming an authorized user on a trusted friend or relative’s credit card account. If they have a consistent and on-time payment history on an old account, it can help you build your own credit report without much effort on your part.

HOW STUDENT LOANS CAN HELP YOU DEVELOP GOOD CREDIT

5. Open a secure credit card

If you don’t have an established credit history, it can be difficult to qualify for a traditional unsecured credit card. But without new lines of credit, it can be difficult to build your credit.

Some credit card issuers offer secured credit cards, also known as charge-to-credit cards. These accounts allow you to borrow money from a line of credit that you secure with a cash lump sum. With a secured credit card, you may need to pay $1,000 upfront – then you can use the credit card up to a certain limit.

Secured credit cards can help you establish a timely payment history and diversify your credit mix. This can help you boost your credit score quickly while avoiding interest charges. You can visit Credible to compare a variety of credit cards, including secured cards.

BUY NOW, PAY LATER LOANS WILL BE FORMALLY INCLUDED IN EQUIFAX CREDIT REPORTS

Do you have a financial question, but you don’t know who to contact? Email the Credible Money Expert at moneyexpert@credible.com and your question might be answered by Credible in our Money Expert column.

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Factors to Consider Before Applying for a Consolidation Loan https://4wallsandaview.com/factors-to-consider-before-applying-for-a-consolidation-loan/ Mon, 21 Feb 2022 15:32:18 +0000 https://4wallsandaview.com/factors-to-consider-before-applying-for-a-consolidation-loan/ Posted on Monday, February 21, 2022 at 10:32 a.m. Join AFP’s more than 100,000 followers on Facebook Buy an AFP subscription Subscribe to AFP podcasts on Apple podcast, Spotify and pandora News, press releases, letters to the editor: augustafreepress2@gmail.com Advertising inquiries: freepress@ntelos.net (© fizkes-stock.adobe.com) More people than you think are in debt. It’s a part […]]]>
business financing
(© fizkes-stock.adobe.com)

More people than you think are in debt. It’s a part of everyday life to juggle bills and many households juggle more builds than they can handle, struggling to pay for them all. Consolidation loans can help put consumers on the right path to paying off their debts and living a life more within their means. However, there are factors to consider before applying for consolidation loans. Here are a few :

Can you simplify your invoices?

You might have a lot of bills coming in every month. As you lay them out in front of you, it can feel overwhelming – with good reason. But there may be things you can do to make your life and the bills you have to pay each month easier. Once you’ve done a few things, like placing large bills on autopay and budgeting for credit card minimums, you’ll be able to more easily see whether or not consolidation loans are good for your situation.

Would that lower your interest rates?

If you have decent credit, you’ll probably be able to get a personal loan that gives you a lower interest rate than you currently have on your credit cards and other types of debt. Spending less on interest can help you apply more on interest, reducing debt faster. But not everyone has good credit, and if yours is bad, the interest rates on a loan might actually be higher or even higher than what you currently have. You will want lower interest rates to make consolidation loans worth your time.

Can you avoid damaging your credit?

Whether you have good or bad credit, you don’t want to damage it. Having consolidation loans can help boost your credit score, but if you miss those payments, it’s even worse than missing a credit card payment in terms of what it will do to your credit. Before getting a loan of this nature, you must feel that you can make these payments – guaranteed – so that you do not end up in a worse situation than what you already have in front of you.

Are you able to make financial changes?

You have credit card debt for a reason. You are going to have to make changes in order to make a consolidation loan worth your time and effort. Learn more on how to make a budget and stick to it. If you are certain you will be able to make changes to the way you spend, getting the loan can help you right away and in the long run. If you continue to spend as you do, the loan will not help you as much as you would like.

Which lender is right?

There are a lot of lenders in the market today and while some are trustworthy and honest, some will try to get you to sign something which will make things worse for you overall. Research the history, reliability, and trustworthiness of the lender before approaching them. You don’t want to borrow money from someone you don’t trust. Look for surprise fees, check loan origination or closing fees, and understand everything you can about the lender before moving forward with options.

If you want to regain your financial freedom and pay off your debts, loan consolidation could be the right path for you. But there are many factors to consider before applying for consolidation loans. You’re going to want to be sure this is the right path for you before you take it. Your goal is to improve your debt situation, not to fall into something that could lead you further astray. Consolidation loans can certainly help your situation, if they are right for you.

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]]> Do I need a co-signer for my credit card if I’m under 21? https://4wallsandaview.com/do-i-need-a-co-signer-for-my-credit-card-if-im-under-21/ Fri, 18 Feb 2022 12:00:22 +0000 https://4wallsandaview.com/do-i-need-a-co-signer-for-my-credit-card-if-im-under-21/ Getting a credit card in your name can help you build a good credit history, which can come in handy later when you’re ready to buy a car or a house. But do you need a co-signer for a credit card if you’re new to using credit? If you are under 21, the general answer […]]]>

Getting a credit card in your name can help you build a good credit history, which can come in handy later when you’re ready to buy a car or a house. But do you need a co-signer for a credit card if you’re new to using credit?

If you are under 21, the general answer is yes, unless you have independent income. The Credit Card Accountability and Disclosure (CARD) Act of 2009 created new rules for card issuers regarding applicants under the age of 21. debt.

Unfortunately, most major credit card issuers have stopped allowing co-signers. While that doesn’t mean you can’t get a credit card at all if you’re under 21, it can limit your options.

Why you might not qualify for a credit card on your own

Technically, you can apply for a credit card at 18. However, the CARD Act requires card issuers to exercise discretion when approving young applicants. To get a credit card in your name before age 21, you must have one of the following:

  • A co-signer willing to share responsibility for the card
  • Proof of independent income

These rules are designed to protect young consumers from abusive credit card practices that could lead them into debt. They can also help young adults develop good credit habits. You may be less likely to have a high balance, for example, if your parent has co-signed your card and is monitoring account activity.

Having a co-signer also benefits the credit card company because there’s someone else who can be held responsible for the debt if you can’t pay. The credit card company can take collection action against the co-signer, including suing them for the debt. But getting a credit card with a co-signer has become more difficult because most major card issuers no longer allow co-signers.

This means that if you are under 21, your ability to get a credit card in your name will depend on your income or not. However, the CARD Act does not specify a certain amount of required income. If you don’t have independent income, which may be the case if you go to school full time or have a job but don’t earn much, you are less likely to be approved.

What credit cards allow co-signers?

Most major card issuers have stopped allowing co-signers of any kind. As of January 2022, the list of card issuers that do not allow co-signers includes:

Bank of America offers an alternative to the traditional cosigner arrangement. If you apply for a Bank of America credit card and are approved, you can ask them to add a co-applicant to your account. However, this is not exactly the same as having a co-signer up front. And if you’re under 21, you’ll still need to show proof of income to be approved.

You may be able to find credit cards issued by smaller banks or credit unions that still allow co-signers. If you have a student checking account with a local bank or credit union, this might be a good place to start looking for cards that allow co-signers. Or you can check with your parents’ bank to see if they’ll co-sign a credit card on your behalf.

Alternative: Become an authorized user

If you can’t get a credit card in your name because you’re under 21 and don’t pass the income test, there’s another option. You could become an authorized user on someone else’s credit card account.

An Authorized User is someone added to the Account by the Primary Cardholder. As an authorized user, you will have your own credit card with your name on it which is linked to the account. You can use the card to make purchases, but you are not responsible for any debt created. You won’t be able to do things like:

  • Request credit limit increases
  • Add other authorized users
  • Redeem rewards unless authorized to do so by the primary cardholder

Becoming an Authorized User can be a backdoor way to establish credit since most major card issuers report Authorized User status to the three major credit bureaus. As long as the primary cardholder has good credit habits (paying on time, keeping balances low, etc.), your credit score can benefit. The impact is not exactly the same as having a card in your name alone. But you can always piggyback on someone else’s good credit to help you build your own credit history.

There are pros and cons to being an authorized user, with the main benefit being the ability to build credit. On the other hand, you may not reap any credit benefits if the card issuer does not report authorized user status to the credit bureaus. And if the primary cardholder pays late, has high credit usage on the card, or worse, defaults on the balance, your credit score could be negatively affected.

Overall, it’s worth considering becoming an authorized user if you’re trying to get a credit card before age 21. If you’re considering asking someone to add you to one of their credit card accounts, be sure to choose someone who has a history of responsible credit use. And it might be a good idea to agree some ground rules in advance about how you’ll use the card and what you might pay for the balance.

Credit cards for your 21st birthday

The good news is that these CARD Act regulations no longer apply once you turn 21. At that time, you will be able to apply for student credit cards or other cards in your name without the need for a co-signer. However, the app will probably still ask you for your annual income. Keep in mind that your approval may depend on your credit score. If you don’t have a long credit history yet, your best option might be starter credit cards or secured cards.

Beginner credit cards tend to have lower credit limits and may or may not charge annual fees. A secured card requires a cash deposit to open, which usually acts as a credit limit. Either could be a good stepping stone to building credit so you can eventually get approved for cards that offer more features and benefits.

The bottom line

Getting your first credit card under 21 can be daunting if you don’t have independent income or if the card you’re interested in doesn’t allow co-signers. You can wait until you’re 21 to apply for a credit card, but going the authorized user route could get you credit sooner. The most important thing to remember when getting a credit card at any age is to use it responsibly, which means paying on time and keeping balances low.

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