Consumer Credit Services Organization Shall Include these in Their Terms
A surety bond is a promise to pay for or repay a debt to a party if the other party fails to pay. Surety bonds are common in consumer credit services. However, when working with a surety bond agency there are a few things to keep in mind.
First, when choosing a consumer credit services organization one must make sure that the particular organization has experience and can process the type of debt being sought. Most entities that assist individuals with debt will be able to process most debt types. However, this is not always the case. Some entities may have specific tie-ins to certain debt types such as mortgages and requires that one be associated with a mortgage lender prior to seeking the service.
Second, one should inquire whether or not the service offers any type of financial counseling. A debt management or credit service should offer some type of non-profit consumer credit services counseling. The counseling should be provided at no cost to the consumer. This counseling could include budgeting tips and steps to avoid future financial missteps.
Third, inquire about any and all discounts that are available. In most cases it is not required that you pay any additional charges for an individual to obtain a copy of their credit reports. There are three major credit bureaus that provide reports on credit reports. Each bureau updates its records on a regular basis and one can request a free credit report from each bureau at least once per year. Normally, you must pay to obtain the reports from all three bureaus, but this does not apply to all reporting agencies.
Fourth, inquire about the accuracy of the credit services reporting. Most consumers do not realize that creditors are permitted to dispute information that is contained in a consumer’s credit report. If you have questions about this, ask the consumer credit services reporting agencies. Once again, you should never pay for an item to be reviewed. There are many legitimate companies online that will provide a free consumer credit services report.
Fifth, there are three types of consumer credit reporting agency accounts. You should make sure that you understand which type of account (i.e. secured, unsecured, or trust account) that you are being charged for. Additionally, you may want to inquire as to what type of transaction shall include and what transaction shall not include.
Sixth, be sure to ask about any and all fees associated with your consumer credit reporting agency account. There are generally fees ranging between a few dollars and $50 per report. Be sure to check and make sure you understand exactly what you are being charged for. Finally, be sure to inquire as to what type of a surety bond is required to open the account. A surety bond is simply a way for the consumer reporting agency to protect itself in case something happens.
As you can see, it is very important to make sure that you understand what your consumer reporting agency needs from you. Remember, the consumer reporting agencies need your trust, but they do not need your money. Keep this in mind when using your credit bureaus. And most importantly, use this information to avoid spending money in the future, hopefully without incident.
Also, a good rule of thumb is to always make sure you read the fine print of any contract or agreement before signing it. The fine print is not always the most helpful part of any contract, but it is there nonetheless. A consumer credit service organization should never attempt to force you to sign an agreement in a rush. Always read the terms first and then make your decision.
Another very important and valuable consideration is how easy it is to reach the organization. How many and what types of phone numbers do they have and how easy are they to contact? These are very important factors that should never be overlooked and should certainly not be overlooked because someone else is calling you. Contacting the consumer credit reporting agency yourself is also a very valuable consideration because you will have the ability to ask any questions that you may have while reviewing the information.
One other very important thing that the consumer credit service organization shall include is that they shall also include the various fees that may be charged for their services. Such fees may include application fees, startup fees, monthly service fees, etc. Therefore, the organization shall make sure they list all charges and shall provide you with a complete breakdown by section to make it easy for you to understand what you will be paying for. This is an extremely important part and one that I believe every consumer banking customer should look out for.