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WeWork Wants to Design Your Office + How to Design Your Credit

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WeWork, the company that is the largest co-working provider in the world, has decided to get into office design. They are helping clients like UBS make their workplaces “more convivial” according to Bloomberg. The co-working giant is doing its best to move away from expensive, long-term leases — and they are also looking to “justify a $20 billion” valuation.  The new Powered by We unit, made $13.7 million in revenue last year and currently has 30 clients. While WeWork is trying to pivot and design offices, you need to pivot and design your credit score.

Many people are aware of the important role the credit rating plays in their lives. However, understanding what goes into a credit score (the credit score breakdown) might present some difficulty. There are several different methods of scoring, but most lenders and banks rely on the FICO method that has been in existence since the 1980’s when it was developed by the Fair Isaac Corporation. The three prominent credit bureaus (TransUnion, Experian, and Equifax) all worked with Fair Isaac in order to come up with the FICO algorithm.

Your credit score may be any number from 300 to 850. The average American falls at about 690 which is deemed relatively good credit. However, while this score should secure you a loan, it will not get you the very best interest rates on a loan. In fact, 300-640 = Bad Credit, 641-680 = Fair Credit, 681-720 = Good Credit, and 721-850 = Excellent Credit. Excellent credit should be the aim.

Following is the credit score breakdown:

Payment History

The biggest chunk of your score (35%) is derived from your payment history. This score is influenced by how well (or not) you pay your bills on time, how many have been sent to collection agencies, bankruptcies, tax liens, etc. Keep in mind that missing a payment is worse than making a late payment and that being late or especially missing a mortgage payment is a bigger blow to your credit score than missing a credit card or utility payment.

Usage Ratio

The amount of debt you have (compared to the amount of credit you have not used) accounts for 30 percent of your score. Try not to max your credit cards out. In fact, it is recommended that you only use 25 to 50 of the credit that is available to you. A way to balance this out is to obtain more lines of credit and not use them. However, you do not want to apply for a bunch of credit cards all at once as this is marked against you. If your credit is in good standing, apply for a reputable card every six months or so and save it for a rainy day.

Length of Credit History

Fifteen percent of your credit score is based on how long you’ve established credit. This is common sense. The longer your credit history, the better your overall score will be. More data about your past leads to a more accurate prediction of your future credit worthiness.

Credit Mix

Having several types of credit will actually boost your score if they are managed well. This counts for 10 percent of the overall rating.

New Credit

As mentioned earlier, opening new credit accounts all at once will negatively affect your score in the short term. It’s also important that you are aware that your score can be lowered for too many “hard inquiries” about your status. A “hard inquiry” is one that you have authorized a lender to perform. If you are inquiring about your own score, this will not count against you.

Understanding what goes into the credit score breakdown is the first step in improving your score and what will allow you to design your score and begin you on the journey to financial freedom.

Ash Exantus aka Ash Cash is a speaker, bestselling author, personal finance expert, and business consultant. Ash has established himself as a thought leader and trusted voice with Corporate America, Colleges, Churches, and Community based organizations. He is the Head of Financial Education at BankMobile and Editor-in-Chief at Paradigm Money.

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Your Credit Score May Be on the Rise + Why This May Be Good News for Your Insurance Premiums

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Effective immediately many Americans… Well, actually millions of Americans have begun to see their credit scores bump up after the credit reporting agencies began stripping out some non-loan collections accounts and other negative credit information from people’s credit reports. This is because of settlements made with state attorneys general dating back to 2015. The negative credit information removed is mainly medical-debt collections that have been paid by an insurance company, inaccurate information or accounts that failed to reflect repayment efforts. It is said that one collection account is worth 11 points once removed.

So how will this jump affect your Insurance premium? When dealing with insurance, there are a lot of factors that determine just how much your premiums are. Anything from your gender and age, to your driving record or criminal record. But there is your credit score is another factor that a lot of people might not know about. Your credit score can play a huge role in determining just how much you have to pay for insurance.

Insurance Rates based on your credit is not a very well known fact, but it has become one of the norms in recent years. Insurance companies will now look at your credit history, and if you have bad credit, you can expect to pay much higher premiums.

Many people will argue that your credit score has nothing to do with whether or not you will file a claim on your insurance policy but the insurance companies beg to differ. Regardless of how you feel, the policy is here to stay. That means you should be aware of your credit score when attempting to get insurance. If you have a bad credit score, you should make plans for paying higher premiums.

Keep in mind that insurance companies will look at various things, such as pending bills, loans, bankruptcy and more when determining your premium. But here’s the bright side to this. A lot of people who are sick of having to pay high premiums are taking better care of their finances in an attempt to raise their credit score so that they do not have to pay as much. So in some twisted way, it can be a bit beneficial since it gives more incentive to be more careful with your money.

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A Global Attack on ATM’s Seems Imminent + How to Protect Yourself From a Credit Card Fraud Attack

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BREAKING NEWS: According to a cybersecurity expert, The U.S. government has told banks that cybercriminals are preparing to carry out a global attack on ATMs. The FBI issued this warning of an “ATM cash-out” hack that would allow the criminals to withdraw large sums of money using stolen information. Something similar happened to a Virginia bank over eight months in 2016 and 2017 where hackers stole a reported $2.4 million.

Technology has become the gift, and the curse and when it comes to your debit card people are always trying to figure out how to defraud you. Credit card fraud has become a major problem in modern society as well. It continues to get worst, so it’s important we protect ourselves. The following are precautions you can take to prevent fraud:

Keep Your Actual Card In a Safe Place

In order to thwart credit card thieves, you should have your credit cards always with you in your possession or locked up in a safe place where no one has access. Some people like to keep credit cards in their car for emergency reasons, but that is a bad idea unless its put in an inconspicuous place or enclosed in something that doesn’t make it obvious. Keep in mind that not every card involved in credit card fraud is physically snatched. Some thieves will use only the credit card number and leave the card behind.

Stay Focused

Make sure you are alert with each credit transaction you make and get your card back immediately after it is finished. You do not want anyone to have access to your card without your knowledge where they take a picture of it or writing down the numbers.

Take Caution When Buying Online

Cyberspace has become a breeding ground for credit card fraud. You need to be cautious about the online companies and website that you supply your credit card number with. Make sure you only shop at trusted and reputable brands.

Don’t Fall for E-mail Scams

Do not enter your credit card information into websites that you are linked to through emails. The best thing to do is to avoid giving out your credit card number online at all costs. But if you have to make an online payment, there are several reputable services that will allow you to pay without supplying your credit card information to a third party.

Invest in a Shredder

Some thieves will sink to any level to get access to your credit card information. Many will go through your garbage cans searching for credit card receipts or bill stubs with the complete account numbers on them. These numbers are then used to purchase things over the internet or to create a new credit card using your number and credit information. Any document containing your credit card account number should never be left lying around, and although it seems a bit extreme, you should never throw away sensitive items unless they are completely destroyed.

Check Your Statements and Credit Reports

Lastly, you should check your credit report periodically and add a feature where they will alert you to any unusual activity happening with your credit cards,  like increased balances or new accounts. Also check your statement regularly to make sure you catch unauthorized payments early. If you do find that unauthorized charges have been made to one or more of your credit cards, there are choices to be made and steps to be taken.

First off, you should call your credit card company and let them know that your credit card or credit card number may have been stolen and you want the card canceled. Now, the person who has taken your card cannot make any further purchases. Calling immediately will lessen your chances of having to pay for the charges made to your card and limit the amount of harm that has already been inflicted to your credit.

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Google Is Following Your Every Move + How to Follow the Moves of Successful Entrepreneurs

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Sometimes I feel like… Somebody’s watching me!!! And now we know who… According to a recent AP study, Google tracks your whereabouts even when you’ve opted out and told them not to. Researchers found that the leading search-engine automatically stores time-stamped location data through some apps after users turn off Location History on their smartphones. Google who is owned by Alphabet, makes money by selling data such as foot-traffic metrics to advertisers. This is a plus for them but can be a burden on your budget because with this information advertisers can target you directly for things you want and the time you may not have the control to say no to. Data has been the winning formula for technology companies as of late so if you want to be a business person you must also take advantage of data. The following are ways to follow the moves of successful entrepreneurs:

Have the Right Business Mindset

Many entrepreneurs are running successful businesses because they have a routine and a recipe for success that they follow diligently. When most successful entrepreneurs are asked about their secrets of success, they often point to their mental attitude. There isn’t a one size fit all secret except to have the right mental attitude to win in whatever your business is.

Take Advantage of Technology

Technology has proved to be beneficial in any business but especially for entrepreneurs. With technology, a small company can look and function like a fortune 500 company and attract the clients that it wants.  Most successful businesses make sure they leverage technology in order to run their businesses more efficiently.

Be Clear About Your Goals

This goes without saying, but it is going to be difficult to hit a moving target. Those who are successful as entrepreneurs are crystal clear about what they are trying to accomplish. They have a tight laser focus on their goals and make sure they are working towards those goals every single day. If an activity doesn’t align with their ultimate destination, they do not participate. Understanding when to say NO is an important part of being a successful entrepreneur.

Be Decisive

Most successful entrepreneurs are very decisive and know how to make the right decision under tight deadlines. With being clear about your goals, there will be many times that something may seem like it is aligned with your vision but you must not only look at the short or mid-term, you must look at all decisions in the long term as well to decide whether this is beneficial or not. Most successful entrepreneurs know how to follow their business is and gut feeling to make the right choice. And even if they make the wrong choice, they are decisive enough to pivot when needed.

Follow these four steps, and you will be on your way… But I know there are more… What are some other success traits that successful entrepreneurs have? Comment below and let us know your thoughts

 

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