Credit Reports

How you can potentially boost your credit score by up to 20 points!

Wealth Building Tip of the Day:

Hello! I want to share some valuable information with you to help you in achieving your financial dreams.

This year, a “new” type of credit scoring system is being rolled out to give you an alternative way to increase your credit score.

It’s called the Ultra FICO score. According to those offering this alternative scoring system, you can potentially increase your credit score up to 20 points by using this option!

This can make possibly a major difference for you if your score is poor or low.

Or if you’re on the brink of the next credit scoring category (for example, if your score is “fair” at 669, 20 points would boost your score into the “good” category).

Here, I talk about the new criteria that’s being used for the Ultra FICO Score.

Of course, there are several things that need to be in place for your score to be positively affected by using this alternative scoring system. Click here for the details.

Plus, it’s still being rolled out; however, you can sign up to be updated when this option is available at

Just like with all things, there are benefits and disadvantages. You’ll want to weigh out using the regular FICO score against this option to determine what will help boost your credit score more, along with the increased risk that often comes with more of your financial data being shared and transmitted.

However, this could be a very useful option for you if your borrowing history has been less than stellar.

Don't Forget Your Annual Financial Check-Ups


Wealth Building Tip of the Day:

2018 will be wrapping up in the blink of an eye. 

So, this is your reminder to complete one very important part of your annual financial check-up: check all 3 of your credit reports.

Go to to get your FREE full credit report from each of the three bureaus: Equifax, Experian and TransUnion.

(This is the ONLY safe, federally authorized website to get your FREE credit reports.)

Every 12 months from when you last received your report, you’re entitled to a free copy of your most recent credit report from each of the bureaus

Even if you check your report (and score) regularly using Credit Karma or similar sites, you’ll want to get a full copy of your report directly from the reporting bureaus, so that you can look it over yourself.

Your credit report is a VITAL part of your financial health.

Make sure you do your annual check-ups!

Are you STILL risking identity theft?


Financial Tip of the Day

Did you do a credit freeze to protect yourself yet? Last year I did a credit freeze with all 3 bureaus after I found out about the Equifax data breach.

This piece tells you what you need to know to freeze your credit, "Credit freezes will be free, thanks to banking deregulation law and Equifax changes."

If you haven’t done so yet, set aside 20-30 minutes over the long holiday weekend to do this.

ESPECIALLY if your information was definitely hacked. Check here to see if your information is “out there” vulnerable:

The longer you wait, the more your personal and financial data is at risk.

There is NO excuse for putting it off, because almost all of us WILL have the time to do it over the long weekend.

No, it’s not fun. But the FEW minutes you spend protecting your money and identity doesn’t compare to the long-term devastation that identity theft causes.

And you’ll still have plenty of time to enjoy yourself this weekend. Peace of mind is worth it to me. What about you?

4 Tips to Deal with the Equifax Breach (and Others That Follow)


Financial Tip of the Day

I heard about the Equifax breach yesterday and sighed. It can get downright frustrating and discouraging to work so hard to build good credit and a good credit score, and then find out that hackers may be able to destroy all your hard work in minutes. But no matter how disturbing and frightening this news is, it only strengthens my resolve to protect my own personal information. Even if Equifax apparently doesn’t care to do so. According to the NY Times: "Equifax Says Cyberattack May Have Affected 143 Million Customers" - this is their 3rd major security breach within 2 years. Here are 4 tips to further protect yourself from identity theft:

1)      Equifax is providing free 3-Bureau credit monitoring services to ALL consumer for 1 year at Take advantage of this by following their steps to enroll – deadline to enroll is November 21, 2017.

2)      In the meantime - or in addition to this service - check 2 of your credit reports regularly using Credit Karma (which is free) or a similar site. Also, visit to review all 3 credit reports (12 months from when you last ordered each one) to see if any new accounts have been opened without your knowledge.

3)      Check your financial accounts frequently and regularly. I monitor all of mine daily. However, if you’re not able to do that, I suggest doing so weekly. Apps like allow you to access all accounts and balances in one place.

4)      Consider doing a “credit freeze” with each of the credit bureaus. Just keep in mind, if you decide to apply for new credit, you’ll need to notify the bureaus ahead of time to ask them to temporarily remove the freeze and to put it back on afterwards. Read more about it here: Credit Freeze FAQs. Or as mentioned in the NY Times piece above, you can also request Fraud Alerts from any of the 3 bureaus.

How to Decide When to Use Debit (Cash) or Credit

In working with clients, I’ve often encountered those who are hesitant to use their credit cards and opt for debit cards most of the time. These days, a great deal of people use debit instead of carrying large amounts of cash around.  And while using debit cards can be a good practice in some cases, there are few key instances when it is typically best to use your credit card.

When It's Better to Use Debit Cards

  • For small purchases under $20
  • When buying something that you know you won’t need to return
  • When paying in person (with a reputable merchant)