Does Experian Boost Work?

Boosting your credit score often requires months of ‘good’ financial behavior. But a new tool from Experian allows you to instantly add utility and cellphone payments to your credit report, potentially increasing your credit score and helping you pay less to borrow.
 
How it works?
 
You first give Experian permission to scan bank account transactions so it can identify utility and cell phone payments. Information about these payments will then appear in the Experian credit report and be used when certain credit scores are calculated from that data.
 
The idea is to help customers with thin credit files by incorporating signs of responsible financial behavior that traditionally aren’t seen by credit reporting bureaus. Boost also may help people who are rebuilding their credit after financial setbacks. Experian estimates the product could affect up to 100 million consumers’ scores.
 
Experian Boost works with the most commonly used credit scores by lenders: FICO 8, FICO 9, VantageScore 3 and VantageScore 4. The average increase was more than 10 points and 13% of users on average moved up a credit band.
 
If a lender relies on a TransUnion or Equifax credit report for its application process, the tool won’t help your approval chances.
 
Who will benefit?
 
Experian expects that two-thirds of consumers will see an improvement. Those with thin credit histories (defined as less than five accounts) and FICO credit scores between 580 and 669 will benefit the most, Experian said.
 
Ten percent of people who previously didn’t have enough information in their credit file will now have a score. Fourteen percent of those with scores of 579 or lower moved into the 620 to 679 range, enough to get better credit terms.
 
How Do I Sign Up for Experian Boost?
 
Signing up for Experian Boost is simple. Just go to the Experian Boost page and create a free Experian account to start the process. You’ll then connect your online bank accounts so Experian can search for any qualifying on-time payments. Once you verify that you want to add the accounts to your credit file, your credit scores will be calculated using the newly added payment information.
 
The process is simple, and if you receive a boost, you’ll see your FICO® Score increase in just a few minutes. If you have any questions about this product or process email us at asktheexpert@thdcreditconsulting.com.
 

-Erik Kaplan

Coming Soon!

Is Tax Debt Holding You Down?

Do You Owe Tax Debt?

Are You Responsible for Penalties from Late Filings?

Do You Have Tax Levies & Liens or a Wage Garnishment?

We know how intimidating and stressful tax debt can be. Which is why THD Credit Consulting has teamed up with a nationally recognized tax relief company that will offer you a Free Consultation!

They have helped thousands of people lower stress, lower tax debt and will provide guidance and expertise within the government’s continually changing tax laws.   

If you are interested in finding out more about this company and would like a free consultation from them, email me at erik@thdcreditconsulting.com and I will make the introduction. 

We know IRS tax debt can be confusing. That’s why our partners are here to help!

-Erik Kaplan

Education is Key to Your Financial Success

Many people don’t understand the credit scoring system or their credit score-until they attempt to buy a home, take out a loan to start a business or make a major purchase. Educating yourself about your credit is an important tool that can help you build, defend and achieve financial success regardless of your age or income.
 
THD Credit Consulting can help you:
  • Understand the concept of credit and the analysis that results in a credit rating.
  • Identify the components of a credit score and what factors are involved.
  • Acquire techniques for building a strong credit history.
  • Learn how to get medical collections deleted from your credit report.
  • Gain information on how to get evictions deleted from your credit report. 
THD Credit Consulting can help you to better understand your credit score, credit report and credit history while providing the foundation for making the right credit decisions for your future.
 
Click here to get started with a free consultation.
 

-Erik Kaplan

What should I do if I think I may be a victim of identity theft?

The discovery of identity theft is bound to be a very anxious and stressful experience and it can certainly wreak havoc on your finances and credit. If you suspect identity theft, act quickly to minimize any negative consequences.

Here are 5 key steps to take to stop an identity thief in their tracks.

1) Put a fraud alert on your credit reports – To place a 90-day fraud alert on all three of your credit reports, you only need to contact one of the three credit reporting agencies (Experian,Equifax or TransUnion). When you place the initial alert, the agency will automatically notify the other two for you. Be sure to request a copy of your credit reports to ensure there aren’t any transactions you don’t recognize.

2) Call the fraud department at the companies and financial institutions where you know the identity thief used your personal information. Part of this step may include freezing your accounts that have been compromised. For example, If you know your credit card was stolen, report the theft to the credit card issuer. If your checkbook or debit card was stolen, contact your bank.

3) Contact the Federal Trade Commission (FTC). File an Identity Theft Affidavit and create an Identity Theft Report. The FTC will provide you with information about what to do next, depending on what type of fraud was committed.

4) File a police report. Contact your local law enforcement office and report the theft. Be sure to get a copy of the police report and/or the report number. Both your police report and the FTC Identity Theft Affidavit combine to create your Identity Theft Report.

5) Report identity theft to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau by submitting a complaint. Your complaint helps law enforcement officials across the country in their investigations. Visit the CFPB’s website to find out more information on submitting an identity theft complaint.

Remember, identity theft can have a negative effect on your credit score. For instance, if a thief opens three new credit cards in your name, the inquiries can each lower your score, the credit card balances will affect your utilization ratio, and the payment history (or failure to pay) can have a big impact on your credit rating.

The key thing to remember is that identity theft hurts your credit the most when it goes unnoticed. Once you catch on, you can take steps to shut down fraudulent accounts and clean up your credit.

If you have questions or were a victim of identity theft and need help cleaning up your credit report, THD Credit Consulting can help. Click here to schedule a free consultation today.

-Erik Kaplan

What is the dark web? How it can threaten a consumer like you!

What exactly is the dark web?  It is a network of untraceable online activity and websites on the internet. They cannot be found using search engines and to access them you need to use specific software, configurations or have authorization. It is accessed by using masked IP addresses to maintain anonymity for users and site owners. This way, people who use the dark web for illegal purposes can’t be traced.
 
Because of its hidden nature the dark web can be a haven for all kinds of illegal activity. For example, one can buy credit card numbers, hacked Netflix accounts, login credentials to a bank account or prepaid debit cards etc.  
 
How to protect yourself from the threats of the dark web:
 
While there’s no fail-proof way to keep your information off the dark web, you can be vigilant about looking for red flags and protecting your accounts, including:
 
  • Use different passwords for every online account. This way, if your password is stolen, only one of your accounts will be compromised.
  • Monitor your accounts and statements for any information that looks off.
  • Use passwords that are considered strong i.e. has a mix of different types of characters (numbers, symbols, lower and upper case) to make the password harder to crack.
  • Change passwords often.
  • Use Experian’s Free Dark Web Scan to see if your Social Security number, phone number, or email address is on the dark web.
  • Monitor your credit report on a regular basis, so you can easily identify fraud and take immediate action.
 If you have questions or would like to work with us to improve your credit reports and raise your credit score, schedule a free consultation today.
 
-Erik Kaplan