Reasons To Consolidate

Stop Collection Calls
Lower Monthly Bills
Free Credit Counselors
Repair Your Credit
Get Out of Debt For Good
Foreclosure Facts
Loan Modification
Debt Elimination
Debt Settlement
Debt Negotiation
Personal Debt Freedom
Debt Management Plans
Debt Consolidation Guide
5 Steps To Debt Relief
Types of Debt Relief
Tips To Reduce Debt
Understanding Tax Debt
Payday Loan Relief
Debt Negotiation Letter
Debt Verification Letter
Credit Card Help
Credit Card Rules Changes
Store Credit Cards
Fix Credit Card Debt
Debt Consolidation Loans
How Debt Consolidation Affects Credit
Free Bill Consolidation?
Reduce Your Debt
The Debt Snowball
Financial Planners
Medical Debt Guide
Seniors in Debt
How to Keep Your Job
What if You Don't Pay Bills
Wage Garnishment
Mortgage Hardship Letter
Get Out of Debt
Bad Credit Personal Loan
Life After Bankruptcy

Back to Credit Rebuilding Basics

If you have recently declared bankruptcy or gone through some major life change which threw your credit score through a loop, you are probably obsessing about that all-important three digit number. How do you get it back to where it used to be, or if you never had good credit, how do you reach that magical 720 when you’re stuck sitting here in the gutter of 300’s?

One of the key points to rebuilding your credit is to get a good and lengthy credit history. In other words, you want credit accounts which have been open for a long time without any late payments. You will also want to use less than 30% of your total credit limit at any given time. These two factors together with the healing properties of time will eventually get your credit score closer to what you want - but make no mistake, depending on your personal situation, it could take a year or more before you see significant upward movement in your credit score.

Video: Know Your Credit Score!

Pros and Cons to Store Credit

store credit cardsStore credit cards often provide a shining light out of the credit score gutter, but not without a cost. Although they are typically much easier to get than a bank-issued credit card, the interest rate on store credit is usually much higher, and unless you can get a co-branded card with a Visa, American Express, or MasterCard logo, you will be pretty limited on what and where you can purchase things. However, cards without the co-brand are easier to obtain, and a lot of stores without the co-brand charge the same interest rate to everyone, regardless of their credit history. Another downside to store credit cards are their low limits. In order to keep that credit score going up, you will have to be pretty careful not to spend more than 30% of your total credit limit. All the while, you should definitely keep in mind that you are trying to rebuild your credit. Pay off the entire balance of the card each month - not only will you save a good chunk of change by not paying their high interest rates, you will also make sure that debt doesn’t get out of control again.

Alternatives to Store Credit Cards

If you’re rebuilding your credit, then chances are your credit isn’t all that pretty right now. Any kind of unsecured credit is going to cost an arm and a leg, while secured credit will just cost an arm. A debt consolidation loan probably wouldn’t be a good idea at this time, since the goal is to get a lower rate of interest on your debts, and with bad credit that isn’t likely. Better options include a secured credit card or a secured loan. Approval is pretty easy and you have little chance of messing up your credit since you can close the account and withdraw the balance if you can’t pay the bill. Some people take a chunk of their tax return to open up secured accounts, so if you don’t have the cash now just be patient.

Video: You Don't Need Outside Help to Fix Your Credit

A list of companies that offer store credit:

Macy's Card

Target REDCards

Wal-Mart Credit Cards

JCPenney Credit Card

Sears Credit Cards

Nordstrom Credit Cards

TJX Rewards Credit Cards

Bloomingdale's Credit Cards

Costco TrueEarnings Credit Card

Kohl's Charge Card

Saks Fifth Avenue World Elite MasterCard

Neiman Marcus Credit Card

Bergdorf Goodman Credit Card

Sam's Club Credit Cards

BJ's Visa

Mervyns Credit Card

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