It’s that time of year when one needs to review their long term financial situation. Things to review include 401K participation, your Will(s), Health Care Directives, and of course, your Credit Profiles at all three credit bureaus.
The 401K plan usually has an employer contribution. Your question is: Am I getting the most out of this program available to me? It’s free money into your retirement; don’t pass it up!
Along with many other benefits, Last Will and Testimony (Will), Health Care, and other life Directives are FREE for you and your spouse to those that enroll in the Legal Shield program. To find out more click here.
The Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) affords all consumers a set of Free Annual Credit Reports. These can be ordered via toll free telephone call at 1-877-FACT ACT (322-8228) from all three bureaus (Experian, TransUnion, and Equifax). These individual comprehensive reports will be sent via USPS to your mailbox within 3-weeks (usually 15-days). They do not include credit scores nor do they add an Inquiry to your profiles.
The purpose for getting your reports is to make sure you find no surprises! If you do find surprises you can take the steps for corrective action. I had a client in here yesterday that didn’t know he had a Business Credit Card at Capital One since 2003. His initial reaction was that he should close this account, to which I advised, closing this account would hurt his credit score. It was suggested he call the bank and explain he had misplaced the card, and ask for a new one to be issued; use the card and pay it down to at least $10 in advance of the Statement Ending Date.
After you have ordered these credit reports, and should you be concerned about your scores, I recommend enrolling into PrivacyGuard.com. The cost for PrivacyGuard is only $1.00 for a 14-day evaluation period, and then the cost is $19.99 per month until you cancel. Their program includes a $1million ID Theft benefit. If you are going to engage in a credit improvement program it might be a good idea to stay with this program to track your progress.
Once you have received the credit profiles in your mailbox it is recommended you have them reviewed with you by a professional to discover what you can do to improve your scores. Austin Credit Group has a Profile Review Program designed to do just that at a cost of only $90 ($85 for Veterans). We will point out the surprises and offer suggestions on what to do about them
If you have any questions just give us a call at (512) 697-9784.
Best Wishes for a Happy, Healthy, & Prosperous New Year!!!