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A bad credit rating can cripple your financial life, and it may seem like an insurmountable obstacle. If your credit score is bringing you down, don't give up! You're not alone, and it's not hopeless. You can survive with bad credit, and you can improve your score break out of the bad credit trap. You just need to understand how you got into this situation and what you need to do to get out of it.

We live in a credit-based economy. 84% of American retail purchases are cashless transactions using debit or credit cards, and 39% of major purchases like furniture, appliances, and travel are made with credit cards.[1] A 2016 survey of spending preferences reported that 40% of Americans listed credit cards as their first-choice payment method.[2] Homes, cars, and other significant transactions usually involve loans.

Your score sometimes seems to rule your life. That little three-digit number determines whether you get a loan, and how much interest you will pay. Your score influences your ability to rent an apartment or even get a job. A low score can impose a terrible financial burden on the people who can least afford to carry it. Unfortunately, millions of Americans are carrying that load right now. Almost 20% of Americans are "credit invisible," with no history or score, and 51% of credit users have scores in the "subprime" category or below.[3] Poor scores are helping to keep many Americans locked in a cycle of economic deprivation.

Why are scores so low? In many cases, people just don't understand what their score is, how important it is, or what they can do to improve it. A third of American consumers have never seen their credit report, only a third have obtained a copy in the last year, and misconceptions about scores and reports are widespread.[4] Many people just don't understand where their scores come from and why they matter, and that lack of understanding is putting many people in deep financial trouble.

This site is designed to help you understand what your credit score is, why it's important, how you can get by with bad credit, and how you can improve your score and your financial opportunities. Knowledge is power, and this basic knowledge has helped millions of people break out of the bad credit cycle. We hope it helps you too!

Bad Credit Survival Guides
For Home Loans - Buying a house without a loan is close to impossible, and getting a loan with a bad credit score can be very difficult. If your credit score is low, don't give up. You can buy a house, but you'll have to make the right moves. Here's where to start.

For Rentals - Your credit score affects your ability to rent a house or apartment. If you have bad credit and you're looking for a place to live, you'll need these tips to make the process easier.

For Auto Loans - A bad credit score can make it more difficult to get a car loan, and you're likely to pay a higher interest rate. If you're shopping for a car with less than prefect credit, here's how to get the best deal.

For Auto Leasing - If a bad credit score has kept you from getting an affordable car loan, you may have considered leasing. It's a viable option, but your credit score will have an impact on your lease. Follow these steps to get the best deal.

For Personal Loans - Any time you borrow money, your credit score is going to be a factor. A low credit score will make a personal loan harder to get and more expensive, but there are steps you can take to get a better deal!

For Credit Cards - Is your credit rating so low that you can't get a conventional credit card? Secured cards get you the convenience of a card and a way to start restoring your score. Here are some of the top options.

For Bank Accounts - A bad credit score affects everything you do that involves money, and that includes opening a bank account. Here's how to get started with a bank even if your credit score is poor.

For Student Loans - Most students have a short credit history, and that makes it hard to have a good credit score. You can get a loan to finance your education even with a low credit score. Here's how.

Everything Credit Score
What Is My Credit Score? - Your credit score is a little number with a big impact on your life. Here's an explanation of where it comes from and how you can check it for free!

How To Improve Your Credit Score - Your credit score has a huge impact on your life. A better score will make it easier to get a credit card, get a loan, rent an apartment, or even get a job. A better score means lower interest rates and more money in your pocket. If your credit score is dragging you down, do something about it!

How To Read A Credit Report - Reading your credit report is an essential part of understanding and improving your finances, but these reports can be difficult to understand. Here's what you need to know.

Check Your Credit Score For Free - Many Americans know how important their credit scores are, but did you know that you can find them online for free? Our helpful article breaks it down.

How To Survive & Thrive With Bad Credit - Having a poor credit rating can seem like the end of the world, but there's no need to fear. Here's a helpful list to show you how you can survive, and even thrive, while living with bad credit and trying to fix your score.

Top Ten Credit Score Mistakes - Certain decisions and oversights could be dragging down your credit scores. Here's a helpful list of the mistakes you could be making, and how you can go about righting them.

How To Dispute Credit Report Errors - Your credit report can contain errors, and those errors can affect your credit score. You need to check your reports regularly and challenge any errors you find. Here's how.

Why Did My Score Drop? - Your credit score can fall for many reasons. Some of those are temporary; some are not. You need to keep on top of your score and know why it changes and what you can do about it!

Do Credit Repair Services Work? - You've probably seen lots of advertisements from companies or individuals who promise to fix your credit score overnight. Be careful, because many of these are scams and some may involve steps that are illegal and can get you into serious trouble.

Financial Assistance
Tips For Shredding Debt - Many Americans are buried in high-interest credit card debt. If you're in this trap, you need to get out now, because it's not going away by itself. Here's how to do it!

Should I Consider Debt Consolidation? - If you're struggling with a complicated debt situation, debt consolidation might seem like the answer to all your problems. It might be, but you need to know what it is and how it fits into your financial picture.

Guide To Credit Counseling - Credit counseling is one of the most efficient ways to develop a plan to get out of debt and improve your credit score. It can also help you avoid problems in the future. You'll need to choose the right counselor, though, and avoid some potential scams. Here's where to start.

Best Credit Cards For Rebuilding Credit - To rebuild your credit you need to use credit responsibly, but how do you do that if you can't get any credit? Secured credit cards are one of the best answers for many people with bad credit. Here are some of the top options.

Personal Bankruptcy Realities - Bankruptcy is a loaded topic. There are those who see it as an indelible mark of shame, and those who see it as a quick miracle fix. You need to know the facts before you make up your mind.

Personal Loans: Things To Consider - Borrowing money is a risk, and you shouldn't be too hasty! Before you make a big commitment, it's important to be informed about the deal you're making. Consult our helpful list for a heads-up on some essentials.

Authority Sites is a one-stop information center offering information on a wide variety of topics related to living with bad credit. We strongly suggest you also visit the Federal Trade Commission's resource page on credit scores for additional information. We also suggest further research online; there's lots of information available and the more you know, the better off you'll be.

We Want To Hear From You
We thank you for visiting this site. If you found programs that ended up working (or not working) for you and your family, please let us know. If you are seeking help and didn't find a guide or article that provided details on your specific topic of interest, please let us know. Write us at [email protected]. We look forward to hearing from you.

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