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It’s the “most wonderful time of the year!” but it’s also the time when families tend to spend the most money. There’s often this unseen pressure to keep up with everyone else, and that can lead to busted budgets, late payments, and bad credit.
Germaine and I have been there.
About a decade ago we were spending money we didn’t have and wondered why we couldn’t manage our bills. One day we decided enough was enough and started a journey to financial wellness. We got brutally honest about our spending, prompting us to connect with agencies who could help increase our financial literacy and formulate a plan.
This time of the year for us is now “the most wonderful time of the year” because we are in control of our finances, have excellent credit scores and can spend without worry.
How did we fix our finances?
Over the years I did a lot of research to learn how to repair my credit and gain control of our income. Countless hours were spent reading through the benefits of credit repair services like Lexington Law Firm and educating myself on the options.
Everything I learned I shared with my husband and we put together a plan to settle delinquencies, start paying our bills on time and repair our credit.
We had no choice but to take action because we were overwhelmed with late payments and felt like we were drowning. Financial literacy, consistency and time played a big role in taking back control of our financial future and credit worthiness.
Today we are making our holiday gift list, planning holiday get togethers and just booked a getaway for early 2020!
Because I want you to have a happy holiday from a financial perspective, I’m sharing my top holiday tips with you.
Tips on How To Take Care of your Credit Score through the Holidays
The holidays are a prime time for spending on gifts, travel, and more, and if you’re not careful can lead to overspending and late payments going into 2020 that can hurt credit scores. I’ll share tips on how to take care of your credit score during the holidays by budgeting ahead. In fact I budget yearly for the holidays, use my credit card to shop and earn flyer miles and pay it off in full using the money I budgeted. That and other tips will be highlighted alongside the benefits that Lexington Law Firm offers to customers who are looking to improve their credit score.
1- Know your credit score.
You can access your credit report for free from a variety of sources. In fact when you call Lexington Law Firm’s credit consultants, they will provide you with your TransUnion Summary Report and FICO® Score for free. Once you know your score, they will provide you with tools to figure out a strategy to improve it.
2- Understand what’s on your report.
Your credit report includes information regarding your positive payment habits plus current and past delinquencies. If you’re like we were years ago, you may have some late payments or delinquent bills you’re not particularly happy about, but own it. Start by making a list of where you are and what needs to be reconciled. That’s the first step to putting together your credit repair plan. If there are things on there that are inaccurate and you need some help, get it. Sites like Lexington Law Firm believe you have a right to a fair, accurate, and substantiated credit report. If you’re scared to do it alone they can navigate the credit repair process with you, just don’t bury your head in the sand about your situation.
3- Create a plan for addressing negative items.
Facing what’s on your credit report can be overwhelming especially if you don’t know where to start. Improving your credit score may take time, but it can be done with a plan. If you’re unsure where to start, especially if facing delinquencies regarding stolen identity or collection agency issues, Lexington Law Firm can help fix mistakes, challenge hard inquiries and help with navigating the law.
4- Budget ahead for holiday spending.
Budgeting for the holidays is not just gifts, so keep that in mind when creating your holiday budget. If you’re having guests over or attending social events, consider the cost in those areas as well. If you’ll be traveling over the holidays or paying for your college students to travel home, don’t forget to add those expenses in. Gift-giving during the holidays is just one part of spending that can bust the budget, but it’s not the full picture. Germaine and I create a holiday sinking fund, an entertainment fund, and also have a travel fund that covers those end of year expenses. We charge most of those expenses to credit card that rewards us with sky miles and we pay off the balance in full within thirty days. Saving for those expenses in advance to ensure they don’t become a burden and using our credit card helps us maintain an excellent credit score.
5- Consider non-monetary alternatives
If you’re pressed for money this holiday season, consider non-monetary alternatives. When we we’re working on repairing our finances we opted not to exchange gifts or travel for a few holidays. We also did not attend social events that cost too much money. Instead, we threw that money into getting current on our bills and delinquencies. Opting for non-monetary holiday alternatives and taking extra money to work on your finances is a gift that keeps on giving. Investing in our families financial future has paid off a thousand times over. Maybe this year you need to gift yourself with better credit, but you’re not sure where to start. You can check out Lexington Law Firm’s packages that meet every client’s needs.
6- Be disciplined and consistent.
Getting your finances on track this holiday season isn’t a one day event. It’s an ongoing process that needs nurturing. I didn’t get an excellent credit score by making a resolution and then forgetting about it. My budget kept me accountable, and I utilized the services I’d invested in.
Checking my apps weekly to monitor progress and also tracking milestones kept us motivated. If you’re a digital nerd who’s working on your credit and you like apps, Lexington Law Firm has an app that gives you access to their member services if you prefer. There are a lot of resources available to help you turn things around, if you devote the time, focus and energy.
Germaine and I have excellent credit today because one day years ago we decided to create a better financial representation of ourselves. We sought the help we needed and did the work required. We hope our tips help you start your journey this holiday season and we’re here to answer any questions you might have.