Understanding Your Credit Score

Your credit score is a number that most lenders use in order to determine your credit worthiness. If you are considering applying for a home loan, an auto loan, a credit card or personal loan, your credit score can play a massive role in the interest rates you are offered, the loan terms available and even whether or not you are approved. Additionally, your credit score can have an effect on other aspects of your life as well. Most landlords check your credit score when you apply for a lease or rental agreement, and many insurance companies and employers review your credit score these days when you apply with them as well. Because of the impact that your credit score has on a variety of life situations, it is critical that you understand how your credit score is determined, and the factors that can affect it.

Understanding your Credit Score

Understanding your credit score is an important step in being able to maintain a good credit rating. While your credit score is determined by your credit history, there are numerous factors that are combined to make up your credit score.

• Your Total Debt and Debt to Income Ratios

• Types of Credit Accounts

• The Number of Late Payments

• The Number of Past Due Accounts

• The Age of Credit Accounts

• Collections and Public Records

• Recent Credit Inquiries

It is important to remember that not all factors will affect your credit score equally. A high number of recent inquiries, for instance, is not nearly as devastating as an equally large number of late payments or accounts in collections.

Improving your Credit Score

If you have less than perfect credit, there are a number of things that you can do to improve your credit score. While understanding your credit score is extremely important, knowing what to do with that information can be critical in the wellbeing of your credit report.

It is important to check your credit report and score regularly, and make a note of any changes or discrepancies. If you notice incorrect information on your credit report, contact the credit reporting agency as soon as possible for information about filing a dispute.

Pay off high credit card balances as soon as you can. Although making timely payments on accounts like mortgages and car loans can have a big impact on your credit score, paying down credit card balances demonstrates your ability to manage your available credit, and can have a much bigger impact on your score.

Make all of your payments on time. Keep in mind that payments that are received more than 30 days past their due date can be detrimental to your credit score. Payment history makes up approximately 35% of your credit score.

Apply for additional credit in moderation. Too many inquiries on your credit report can set off alarms for lenders, and can be a sign that you are in a financial bind.

Pay off collections accounts as soon as you are able. Accounts that have been sent to collection demonstrate your inability or unwillingness to repay your debt, and are a red flag for lenders.

Try not to overextend yourself when it comes to your finances. The amount of debt you incur in relation to your income can not only have a big impact on your credit score, but too much debt can be a sign of poor credit management and automatically place you in a higher risk bracket.

If you find that you can’t meet your savings goals or that you have fallen behind on that ever-mounting credit card debt, you might be living beyond your means. Your spending habits really can impact your financial future. Let’s take a look at some signs that indicate you are living beyond your means. No, or Little Savings It’s time to curb your spending when you notice that your savings aren’t increasing over time. Sure, you probably have a heap of bills to pay, but you should still be able to dedicate some money from each paycheck to your savings or investments. Before you spend your paycheck, consider that spending it today will reduce your ability to clear debts and enjoy financial freedom. A Seemingly Insurmountable Debt If you have built up credit card or school loan debt that just seems to keep on growing due to high- interest rates, you might be living beyond your means. Instead of reaching for the plastic for each purchase, use cash. Also, mind your spending. Think about how nice it would be to pay down your debt instead of buying coffee each morning, splurging on video games or running up a tab at the bar. A Reliance on Cash Advances If you use your credit card for cash advances, you are undoubtedly living beyond your means. Cash advances through your credit card company come with exorbitant interest rates that make the loan incredibly difficult to pay off in full and in a reasonable amount…

Since we’re in the business of helping alleviate stress during those unfortunate financial emergencies, the team here at Northcash just took it one step further: we’ve officially opened the new Self-Service Customer Center! So, consider this our official invitation to create your Self-Service account, which was designed to make managing your lending needs as straightforward as possible.  #digitalhighfive  “But What Does It Do?”   As you can probably guess from its name, our Self-Service Customer Center lets you do just that: streamline your account management independently and easily through our secure, online portal. Our customers now have easy, on-the-go access to account details like: Balance information; Up-to-date payment history; A schedule of upcoming payment dates; Promotional Email and SMS communication preferences; And access to a new loan application if the need arises in the future. Put simply, this platform tailors our customer services to your unique needs, any time you need it. While you can still call one of our Customer Care Representatives, you now have all your account details right at your fingertips. It’s lending organization at its finest.  

Many families wonder how to reduce electricity bills, which can save them big in the long-term. In case you aren’t convinced, check this stat out: 7.3% of the average consumer’s total annual income goes to energy costs. The good news is that reducing your electric bill does not have to be a time consuming or expensive project. There are a lot of little things you can do around the house to start saving money and electricity right away. So read how to reduce electric bills in 4 easy steps and count the savings today. Step 1: Hang dry your laundry Whether you get a drying rack for the living room or clothesline for your backyard, there are a lot of benefits to hang dry your laundry. If your family does 8 loads of laundry a week and you hang dry most of those instead of using the dryer, you’ll save over $70 a year! Step 2: Install a programmable thermostat A programmable thermostat can cost $50-100, but the savings will add up fast. This is because they allow you to turn down the temperature in your home when no one is around or at night when people are sleeping. If you are wondering how to reduce electric bills, this can make a huge impact as most households spend hundreds of dollars on heat, not to mention A/C as well. Step 3: Adjust your hot water heater Turning down your water heater 5-10 degrees can do a lot to help. Many…

When you get married, there’s a lot of advice for newlyweds thrown your way. People are quick to advise you on how to keep your love life sizzling and your relationship happy, but there’s one type of advice for newlyweds that you really should heed, and that’s how to keep your finances in good shape. A great financial future starts by saving money wherever you can, so here’s how to save when buying items for your new household after you get married. Furniture If you’re lucky, one or both of you lived on your own before you got married. If so, you probably have furniture that you can use to furnish your new home, at least temporarily, until you can save up to buy new things for your new house. When you are ready to buy, save money by shopping during peak holiday times, which is when stores typically hold their big sales. Don’t be afraid to ask for a discount or free delivery. You could be surprised by a “yes” that brings savings, too. Consider buying the floor model, and skip “customized” furniture as it usually costs more. Appliances While you should try to buy the best quality large appliances that you can afford, since you’ll be using most of them daily for years to come, you can still save money with savvy shopping. For washers, dryers, and refrigerators, look out for “scratch and dent” sales. These are sales stores use to get rid of display models that have…

If you or one of your loved ones is headed off to school, you may be searching for a reliable vehicle to transport them to and from their college campus. However, it’s important to make sure that you don’t fall into the trap of purchasing a vehicle that overextends your budget. That’s why we’ve compiled this list of great tips for buying affordable cars for students! A car doesn’t have to be expensive to get you where you need to be. In fact, you should seriously consider buying a used car if you can find a reliable make and model that is suited to your needs. However, be careful when buying used cars because those with too much wear and tear can actually be more expensive in the long run because of the repairs and replacements needed to keep them running. On a related note, take the costs to keep a car running in mind when comparing price. Take into account the fuel efficiency of each vehicle, as well as the monthly premium that must be paid to keep them insured. Take the time to shop around by visiting local car dealers as well as websites that have cars for sale. By shopping around, you get a better sense of the options available to you, meaning that you are more likely to find one suited to your purposes. Be sure to check their reviews to make sure that you are dealing with a reputable seller at all times. Don’t hesitate…

Does the thought of spending excessive amounts of money on costumes, candy, decorating supplies and parties have you scared this Halloween? Never fear. If you are searching for ideas to save money, we’ve got some BOO-tiful tips that will help you cut back on Halloween spending in order to make the holiday less frightful for your bank account. Ideas to Help You Scare up Some Savings this Halloween Costumes: Don’t let the high price of brand new pre-made costumes take a bite out of your budget this Halloween. You can get a ghost of a deal on second-hand items from your local thrift store. Although many thrift stores and second-hand shops offer actual costumes, many times you can save even more by purchasing clothing and accessories to create your own. If these savings aren’t ghoulish enough for you, consider rummaging through your own closet and the closets of friends and family members for clothing that can be altered or added to in order to create something free and one of a kind. Candy and Treats: Haunt the Halloween aisle the day before or the day of Halloween. Some stores significantly discount Halloween items at the last minute in order to make room for Christmas themed items. Additional ideas to save money include purchasing gum or less popular candy varieties, buying Halloween treats in bulk or purchasing or making inexpensive party favors in place of edible items. Decorating Supplies: Purchasing store bought decorations during the weeks prior to Halloween can leave…

The world of short term lending holds a lot of possibilities for people who are looking for assistance when their bank account falls short, or are in a situation of financial hardship. Unfortunately, there is also an unsavory side to lending that borrowers can fall victim to if they are not careful when applying for funds. This article will explain how short term lending works and how to choose safe, reputable lenders.   Sticking to the Traditional Route   If you’re looking into short term lending it’s probably because you didn’t qualify for a traditional loan. Whether it’s the application process, credit check, or collateral requirements; there’s a lot about a bank loan that makes it difficult for struggling borrowers to get approved. There are no guarantees that the bank can handle short term lending in house.   Word of Mouth, It Gets Around   If you are unable to find information on short term lending through your bank, the next place to go is a short term lender. Do some research online to find reputable lenders who can lend you the money you need. Once you have a list of possible lenders you can take a two-fold approach to verify they have a trusted reputation:   1. Since you may have found these lenders online, you should be able to find evidence of any required certifications or performance reviews. If it’s not there, contact the lender directly and request the information.   2. Back-up your findings with customer rates…

Your 20s is a time where you will do a lot of learning; with learning comes mistakes. However, you shouldn’t let the mistakes of your 20s hurt your future. To that end, you should strive to avoid common money mistakes that 20-somethings make that have a huge impact on your financial future. Ignoring your retirement We realize that your retirement seems like it’s a million years away, but the golden years of your life will sneak up on you if you aren’t prepared. One of the biggest problems that retirees have is managing their finances, because their retirement fund isn’t big enough to effectively sustain. Start investing in your retirement right now so that this isn’t a problem for you.

Many of us strive to be a more eco-conscious but at the end of the day, actions speak louder than words. If you are having trouble finding the best ways to go green and you feel like you just can’t afford to adopt a greener lifestyle, you’re in luck! Here are 7 ways to be green while staying on a budget. Buy Local: Organic cuisine is all the rage in the green circles these days. But organic can get kind of pricey. Rather than break the bank to buy organic, why not consider shopping locally? Head out to farmers’ markets, farm stands, or just go out and find the different vendors yourself. Not only will you be buying fresh, quality produce but you can save some money as well. Digital Subscriptions: If you get subscriptions to magazines or newspapers and you’re worried about all the excess paper being wasted, cancel your subscription now! Recycle your older magazines and get yourself a digital subscription. The digital subscription is not only more environmentally friendly, but you can also browse the magazine more easily and they won’t take up space in your home! Reusable Bags: Another habit that is easy to cut back on is the use of plastic bags. If you are really interested in finding ways to be green, get yourself a reusable bag and use it to carry groceries, books, laundry or anything, really. If you are going to use plastic bags, you should make an effort to recycle them…

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Northcash is an economic arm of the Fort Belknap Indian Community, a federally-recognized Indian tribe located in Hays, Montana. The Tribe and its businesses have governmental sovereign immunity and have not and are not waiving that immunity for any purpose associated with the consumer lending business of Northcash and therefore Northcash is not subject to suit by you or any third-party for any reason. CAUTION: IF YOU ARE NOT COMFORTABLE DOING BUSINESS WITH A SOVEREIGN INDIAN TRIBE THAT IS NOT SUBJECT TO SUIT, YOU SHOULD IMMEDIATELY DISCONTINUE USING AND ACCESSING THIS SITE. We may from time to time in our sole discretion and without notice to you modify the terms of this Agreement and/or change the rules that govern your use of our Site.

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North Star Finance, LLC d/b/a Northcash, an economic arm of the Fort Belknap Indian Community.

This is an expensive form of borrowing, and it is not intended to be a long-term financial solution. Northcash loans are designed to assist you in meeting your emergency borrowing needs. The Annual Percentage Rate (APR) applied to your loan will vary depending on the pay period with the maximum APR on any Northcash loan being 795%. This is a term installment loan with approximate equal payments, but you have the right to prepay at any time. Any instances of late or non-payment may be subject to additional fees, such as NSF and late fees, as well as collection activities Before borrowing, we ask that you assess your ability to repay the amount you borrow.

You acknowledge that by submitting and completing the loan application that you are applying for a loan. We verify loan applicant information through credit reporting agencies such as Clarity, Factor Trust, and DataX. We may obtain your credit information in order to determine your eligibility and ability to repay.

Northcash does not lend to residents of Arkansas, California, Georgia, Maryland, Minnesota, Montana, New York, Pennsylvania, Virginia and West Virginia, or to members of the military or their dependents.

The availability of online installment loans are subject to change at any time at the sole discretion of Northcash.


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