There Is No Shortcut to Credit Restoration

Got a Low Credit Score? Avoid Quick-fix Solutions Claims like “We can improve your bad credit instantly, no questions asked!” “Contact us to make a new credit identity – legally” or “Credit problems? Fix them in a month” are common in TV ads, radio, flyers, emails, and online space. According to the attorneys at the … Continue reading “There Is No Shortcut to Credit Restoration”

Got a Low Credit Score? Avoid Quick-fix Solutions

Claims like “We can improve your bad credit instantly, no questions asked!” “Contact us to make a new credit identity – legally” or “Credit problems? Fix them in a month” are common in TV ads, radio, flyers, emails, and online space. According to the attorneys at the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), no legitimate credit restoration company claims credit repair is a quick-fix solution.

There is no shortcut or quick fix to improve your credit. It takes time, conscious effort and following a stringent debt repayment plan. You need to know your rights before hiring a credit restoration services company. Some people say that you don’t need any help to fix your credit and it is advisable to try it yourself. However, that will involve a lot more time and effort on your part.
Your Rights

In any case, you need to be aware of your rights:

– Each of the three nationwide credit bureaus – Equifax, Transunion and Experian are obligated by law to provide a free credit report to all consumers once a year. You can order the three free credit reports at the same time or leave a gap of 3-4 months between each report. The latter is a better idea because it allows you to monitor the progress of your credit status periodically.

– You are entitled to receive a credit report for free if any organization has taken an “adverse” financial action against you. This includes denial of credit, insurance application or employment. You need to ask for the report within 60 days of receiving the notice of an adverse action. People, who are unemployed, are allowed one free credit report if they are planning to find a job within 60 days. People on welfare and whose report is inaccurate due to fraud, such as identity theft are also entitled to a free credit report.

– There is no cost associated with disputing inaccuracies in your credit report. You can raise a dispute both with the credit bureaus and the information source that provided some of your personal financial details.

What to Do When You Need a Real Solution?

If you are wondering, “How can I restore my credit now?” it may be a good idea to delegate this task to seasoned professionals with years of experience in credit restoration. Legitimate and reliable credit restoration companies would first scan through your credit report and leverage their years of experience to find items that can be disputed successfully. They not only detect inaccuracies and errors, but also verify their authenticity with the concerned parties.

Easily Build Your Business Credit Simple Steps

Business Credit is credit that is obtained in a Name. With credit, the business builds its own credit profile and credit score. With an established credit profile and score, the business will then qualify for credit. This credit is in the name and based on the business’s ability to pay. Since the business qualifies for the credit, in some cases there is no personal credit check required from the business owner.

A starts building a brand new credit profile much the same as a consumer does. The starts with no credit profile. The business gets approved for new credit that reports to the business credit reporting agencies. The uses the credit and pays the bill timely. A positive business credit profile is established. As the business continues using the credit and pays bills timely it will qualify for more credit.

A cell or home phone number as your main business line could get you “flagged” as an un-established business that is too high of a risk. DON’T give a personal cell phone or residential phone as the business phone number. You can forward a virtual number to any cell or landline phone number.

Credit providers will research your company on the internet. It is best if they learned everything directly from your company website. Not having a company website will severely hurt their chances of obtaining business credit. There are many places online that offer affordable business websites so you can have an internet presence that displays an overview of your company’s services and contact information.

It is important to get a company email address for your business. It’s not only professional, but greatly helps your chances of getting the thumbs up from a credit provider. Setting up a business email address is just too easy and inexpensive to neglect.

One of the most common mistakes when building credit for your company is non-matching business addresses on your business licenses. Even worse is not having the “required” licenses for your type of business to operate legally. You will need to contact the State, County, and City Government offices to see if there are any required licenses and permits to operate your type of business.

A business credit report can be started much the same as a consumer report commonly is, with small credit cards. The business can be approved for small credit cards to help them build an initial credit profile. These types of initial cards in the business world are commonly referred to as “vendor credit”.

A vendor line of credit is when a company (vendor) extends a line of credit to your business on “Net 15, 30, 60 or 90” day terms. This means that you can purchase their products or services up to a maximum dollar amount and you have 15, 30, 60 or 90 days to pay the bill in full. So if you’re set-up on Net 30 terms and were to purchase $300 worth of goods today, then that $300 is due within the next 30 days.

Always apply first without using your SSN. Some vendors will request it and some will even tell you on the phone they need to have it, but submit first without it. When your first Net 30 account reports your “tradeline” to Dun & Bradstreet, the DUNS system will automatically activate your file if it isn’t already. This is also true for Experian and Equifax.

Auto Sales Training: Business Advantages of a Car Sales Course

Auto sales training is normally carried out in-house, but there are many business advantages to be gained from an external car sales course provided by a specialist training company. Whether it is for your staff or yourself, such courses can offer more than just how to deal with prospective customers. Here is a quick resume of how such a course can benefit you or your sales staff.

Learn the Business

Experienced sales staff can recognize a stroker or flake almost immediately they walk on the lot, but do you even know what these terms mean? Most people learn how to sell cars and talk to potential buyers on the job. However, comprehensive auto sales training will accelerate this learning process and get you selling more cars faster.

Yes, experience is invaluable, but even experienced sales personnel benefit significantly from a structured training course where their skills can be fine-tuned to maximize conversions. It also helps to understand the psychology of the prospect. Most will be looking for a bargain, and will walk into a dealership expecting to pay less than the MSRP.

How to Approach Prospects

The way you approach a prospect on the lot can make or break a potential sale. Too pushy and you might scare them away. Too hesitant, and you might fail to make the sale. Some people need to be talked into buying a car while others prefer to walk around themselves until they see something they like.

A car sales course can show you how to identify each type of prospect, and how to approach and talk to them in a way that gains their confidence. Some customers might try to hide the fact they like a particular car by pointing out its faults. If you know how to spot these prospects, you can more easily talk them into buying.

Technical Aspects of Auto Sales Training

All car sales staff should understand every aspect of buying and selling cars, including essential financial and technical details. You or your staff must be aware of all the financing deals available on every car on the lot, details of insurance and any local or state regulations regarding car purchase and finance.

Servicing and warranties are two critical aspects of selling a car. Most car courses will show you that these two factors can make the difference between clinching a sale and the prospect walking off to look elsewhere.

You must also understand the common aspects of each car you are trying to sell: engine capacity, horsepower and even its state of repair. You should also know how a hybrid works, and the difference between diesel and gas engines. Which is ultimately most economical and which type of engine gives most power, what type of car is best for long distance driving and which is best for town. If you display such knowledge then potential customers will come to trust you more.

Keep Current with a Car Sales Course

Times change and so does the knowledge of potential buyers. Prospects today are more aware of your sales tactics than they used to be, and it is a must for you to be aware of this. They are also more aware of what to look for in used car, and how to spot frame damage. In order to become a truly successful car salesperson, you must be prepared for the common and not so common questions that you may be asked.

You must keep also up with changes in legislation, insurance and finance. It is highly likely your customer will have researched finance options in particular, and also ask questions about service and warranties. Auto sales training will likely show you how a lack of knowledge of warranties and service agreements can stop a sale stone cold dead.

A car sales course will teach the most common, and some not so common, reasons for you failing to persuade a prospect to buy. This itself will improve your sales figures, and keep in mind that just one extra sale will likely pay the cost of such courses.

Filling Up With The Wrong Fuel – A Customer Experience

October 17th 2014 – Accidentally putting petrol in my VW Passat instead of Diesel

The following is my tale of woe about my wrong fuel experience. Please don’t make the same mistakes that I made and save yourself the hassle.

On the Friday morning in question, I was driving my 6 month old VW Passat to work in Worcester as usual. The car is a B7 model 2 litre turbo diesel, not as good to drive as my previous VW Passat which was the B5.5 2 litre petrol model but not a bad car either. I had only had the car for 3 days and I picked it up with about a third of a tank of fuel in it on the previous Tuesday. I was sitting in the crawling traffic going into the town centre when the low fuel warning light lit up with a ping. I could easily have made it to work and back home on the remaining fuel but as there was a fuel station on my route into work and I was early anyway, I thought I would stop off and fill up with diesel before the weekend as I had a lot of running around to do on Saturday with the kids.

I pulled up at the pump and I remember running through the day’s tasks in my head so I wasn’t really concentrating on putting in the fuel, I was just doing that on autopilot. I filled the tank right up and then went to the kiosk to pay. I got back into the car and started the engine. It sounded rough which worried me and as I drove to the exit the engine stalled altogether. It then dawned on me what I had just done. I’d filled up with the wrong fuel. I’d had my previous car for 10 years and had got so used to filling up with unleaded petrol that I had just done what I was used to doing. I’m sure I probably turned as pale as a ghost and I just had an almost overwhelming feeling of panic because I was sure that I had just ruined a £14,000 car. To make matters worse I was blocking the station exit and there was a line of motorists behind me waiting to leave the station. I had to sheepishly explain to the chap behind me what I had done and I asked him if he would help me push the car out off to one side. He refused and told me to get it moved. Nice. The young lady in the next car, however, did volunteer to help and together we managed to move the car with her steering and me pushing on my own.

Wrong Fuel Removal – The Wrong Approach

The forecourt staff were sympathetic but I could tell this was a hassle for them too, one of them handed me a card that someone had left on the desk from a firm of wrong fuel removal engineers. I didn’t realise that the industry even existed until I saw the card, I did think that I should call my breakdown assistance firm and ask their advice first and they explained that they could have someone out to me in an hour and a half and that if they could remove the fuel from the car then it would cost me £250. I didn’t fancy sitting around for that long and I thought the cost was a bit steep so I called the firm on the card I had been given and spoke to a bored sounding lady who said they could have someone with me in about 30 minutes as there was a van in the area and that the cost would be £150. Whilst I waited I used my smartphone to search for “wrong fuel Worcester” to see what came up on Google. I found quite a few other companies offering the wrong fuel removal service but I couldn’t find the company named on the card who I had just called. I decided to sit tight and see what happened anyway.

About 45 minutes later a scruffy, dented Ford Transit pulled up next to me and door opened and clattered into the driver’s door on my car, my mood wasn’t good as it was and I got out of the car to confront this individual who had gone around to the back of the van. Thankfully, there was no damage to my car as the van had a plastic protector on its door. The van driver then appeared and announced that he was here to do the fuel drain. He was dressed in a paint covered overall and had paint all over his face and head. Quite obviously, he had just been painting. I followed him to the back of the van where he had an array of large 5 gallon plastic containers, a length of rubber hose and some sort of electric pump contraption. The equipment looked like it had just been thrown in to the back of the van along with various bits of rubbish and paper towels and the smell of petrol coming from the back of the van made my eyes water. I began to feel the panic rising again and had visions of a huge explosion occurring with me in the middle of it. When the “engineer” started to attempt to feed rubber hose down into my new car’s fuel tank (with no care being taken of the car bodywork which was now filthy all around the fuel tank aperture) something told me that this just wasn’t right and was probably downright dangerous. My sense of duty towards my fellow motorists on the forecourt kicked in and I asked him to stop what he was doing. I explained that I thought what he was doing was putting everyone at risk and he became somewhat aggressive and began to demand payment for wasted time. I had no intention of giving this chap my credit card and so I locked the car and told him I was going to speak to the police which, unsurprisingly, changed his attitude. As I walked off towards the kiosk I looked behind me to see him hurriedly packing the hose and container back into his van which then sped off in a cloud of smoke.

The Wrong Fuel – The Right Approach

It was more than an hour since I had put the wrong fuel in my car by this time, so I called work to keep them updated and then looked at my smartphone search page again for another wrong fuel removal company. The company that came top for the search “wrong fuel Worcester” had a great website, tailored for mobile display and had images showing uniformed engineers with well-maintained vans and also, many positive customer comments. I called the number and explained my predicament to a kind and sympathetic operator who assured me that an engineer was close and would be with me very quickly. My previous experience had left me a little suspicious and so I questioned her about the company, their engineers and their vehicles and she explained clearly to me about the procedure and the professionalism with which their representatives conducted themselves. This was good enough for me and 20 minutes later a smart looking van with company livery pulled up next to me on the forecourt and a uniformed engineer with a big smile on his face, got out.

He was a real breath of fresh air after the last chap. He was kind and courteous and spent a couple of minutes talking me through the process of removing the wrong fuel from my vehicle, explaining what the sparklingly clean equipment in his van did and roughly how long this would take. He explained about the cost involved and made sure that I was comfortable with this before going ahead. As he put protective padding onto my car around the fuel tank aperture, which he cleaned up beforehand, the engineer explained about the SPA passport that he held and he also gave me his Environmental Agency paperwork which allowed him to handle and transport dangerous chemicals, legally. This information and the engineer’s general attitude and consideration put my mind at ease and filled me with confidence that, this time, I had done the right thing.

I also discussed my fears about the damage done to the vehicle engine when the wrong fuel is introduced to the system and he supplied me with the following information which put my mind at ease on that front. Firstly, it is very rare that damage occurs to the engine of fuel system of a diesel vehicle when petrol is added. Only in circumstances where common sense is not applied, is there a risk of long term damage. Petrol is a solvent and doesn’t have the lubricating qualities of diesel fuel, therefore, if any amount of petrol is introduced to the system and is allowed to remain in the system then there is potentially a risk that, where there is metal to metal contact of components within the fuel system and the normal lubrication is compromised, excessive wear of those components can occur leading to failure in extreme circumstances. Also, the seals within the system can be affected by the solvent properties of the petrol which may lead to damage. There is a myth that it is OK to top up with diesel fuel if you’ve only added a little petrol to the tank, and to continue driving. This will lead to fuel system damage as described previously resulting in potentially expensive repairs being required. The most sensible and cost effective action is to get the fuel system completely drained and flushed through with fresh diesel to remove all traces of unleaded petrol.

This is just what the engineer did to my VW Passat and within 25 minutes I was ready to go. I was very impressed with the second wrong fuel removal company that I called out, they were prompt, efficient and the customer service and general attitude were brilliant, unlike the first company. The engineer explained to me about the problem existing within the industry whereby various “cowboy” companies had been set up and were being run by inexperienced and unlicensed individuals who were taking advantage of motorist’s vulnerable positions when they had put in the wrong fuel. Many people were being intimidated into paying up front for a fuel drain that was then performed by dangerously ill equipped individuals with no regard to the customer’s safety or the safety of others in the locality. He told me of many cases where he had been called out to jobs that he had to rectify after the “cowboy” wrong fuel company had done an incomplete job and had still made off with the money. It seems that I had had a lucky escape.

Once the fuel drain and fuel system flush was completed, the engineer started my car and it ticked over as if nothing had happened. I paid him with a credit card and thanked him for his assistance, in just 45 minutes he had come out to me and carried out a professional service with which I was very happy.

The Conclusion To The Wrong Fuel Situation

It’s fair to say that I learned a few things on that day when I put in the wrong fuel. Hopefully, someone else in the same predicament may come across this article before taking action and avoid some of the potential pitfalls. In summary, this would be my advice:

Pay attention to which fuel nozzle you pick up on the forecourt (this one goes without saying!)
If you have put in the wrong fuel, let the forecourt staff know, so that they can help you move your vehicle, if necessary.
Once you have told the staff or if you have left the forecourt, do some quick smartphone internet research and choose a wrong fuel recovery company with good customer feedback and a good informative website that shows a well organised and professional outfit.
If you don’t trust the engineer that arrives or you feel there is anything amiss with his/her conduct, don’t be afraid to speak up and, if necessary, turn them away from the job. Your safety is paramount and your vehicle was probably expensive. Don’t take a risk either way.
Don’t pay up front. Make sure you’re happy with the cost and the work involved. A good engineer will be courteous and will check with you beforehand anyway.

Improve Your Credit Before Getting a Mortgage

One of the best ways to improve your chances of getting a home loan is to improve your credit score. It is because better credit scores may give you access to better interest rates and more beneficial home loan products.

Here is a list of some quick tips to help you get the best possible credit score. While there is no guarantee that all of these options will immediately boost your credit score, they may help you establish habits that will strengthen your credit score.

Show you can pay your bills on time, every time

Lenders/credit providers will want to see that you can repay a home loan on time. So, here is a list of bills that you should pay on time, every time:

>> Your credit cards;

>> Your rent;

>> Your medical and utility bills; and

>> Any other service that may use a collection agency for the recovery of delinquent accounts.

If you miss a payment date by a few days, call the service provider immediately to make the payment, and don’t be afraid to ask the provider for a one-time forgiveness.

Check your Credit Rating

You should regularly check your credit report with a credit reporting agency (such as Veda Advantage and Dunn and Bradstreet), as it will:

>> Give you an idea if you have any defaults or negative repayments history recorded in your report;

>> Give you time to get the credit report corrected before a lender/credit adviser accesses your report; and

>> Enable you to verify your credit score with a credit reporting agency.

Note: You should be aware that due to the changes in the Privacy Act in March 2014, lenders/credit providers have the ability to access your credit reports and can see the past 24 months of your repayment history.

Maintain your Available Credit

Before applying for a home loan don’t open any other credit cards or lines of credit. It is because lenders/credit providers will see you as being a risk if you suddenly take out loans for cars, electronics, furniture, etc.

Also, refrain from closing your credit cards or other lines of credit. Instead, consider paying off your balances as a lower debt will improve your debt-to-credit ratio.

This is best illustrated by the following example:

Having a total debt of $4,000 with a $20,000 available credit will look better than having just $500 in debt with $800 available credit.

Establish a Savings History

If you are borrowing more than 80 percent of the purchase price of the property, you will be required to meet the “genuine savings” requirements of lenders/credit providers. Your savings will need to add up to around 5 percent of the purchase price of the property.

For example, on a purchase price of $700,000, you will need to have savings that add up to $35,000.

Note: Saving a larger deposit should help to reduce or avoid paying “Lenders Mortgage Insurance” (LMI) and you may even be offered a more competitive interest rate by the lender/credit provider.

Avoid applying with too many Lenders/Credit Providers

Avoid submitting your home loan applications to several different lenders/credit providers at once. It is because these loan applications will appear on your credit report. You should only submit your home loan application:

>> After you have compared lenders/credit providers; and

>> After you have decided to go with a particular lender/credit provider.

Your Employment Stability

If you have had the same job for several years, then this is a big tick. So, prior to applying for a home loan, Try to establish a stable employment history as it will enable you to make regular loan repayments.

If you have changed your job recently, do not worry. You may satisfy the requirements of lenders/credit providers, if:

>> You have been in a similar role; and

>> You have been in the same industry.

Disclose all Information

Lenders/ credit providers may think that you have other debts that have not been disclosed. So, always be upfront and disclose all information as non-disclosure of relevant information may result in your home loan application being declined.

Seek Expert and Professional Advice

All these tips should help you to improve your credit score. However, you should speak to a professionally qualified and expert finance broker who can help you to create a personalised credit improvement plan. Establishing this relationship with a finance broker will help you to determine which potential lender/credit provider best meets your needs.

All the Best!