Tuesday, March 07, 2006

Lessons learned

Fellow blogger Kev is getting a really hard time from a credit card company, and it's well worth a read what he had to write to them. Take a look, and if you deal with the same company, be forewarned. Go here:
Credit cards are fantastic to have, but use them wisely. Don't make the mistakes I've made. First off, guard your personal information. Never let anyone have your Social Security number and date of birth. Those two are the keys that unlock the door to identity theft. Secondly, never, ever entrust your finances to someone else, even if it is your spouse. If you do chose to have joint accounts, make sure you see what's going on, weekly. Never let it go solely into the other person's hands or terrible things will happen to your credit rating. Check your credit report yearly, and go over it with a microscope. If you find anything abnormal, report it immediately. Don't screw around.
I hadn't checked my credit report for several years and had one done after my divorce. I discovered several maxed-out credit cards in my name that I had never signed for, and ironically the address listed for them was my ex's place of employment. I never knew about them. My credit is destroyed because I trusted someone to do the right thing, and in trusting that person got stabbed in the back.
So I've learned some really hard lessons, but I've learned them well. Thankfully Kev is nowhere near where I was a few years ago and he's smart enough to be on top of it as soon as it happens unlike me.
Remember this, that credit rating is your life. It's all that stands between you and buying a house, car, getting a student loan, buying airline tickets and in a lot of places now, even getting a job.
Check your credit rating yearly!
Scrutinize your credit card statements monthly!
Copyright 2006 Thomas J Wolfenden

10 comments:

Courtney said...

That's really good information to have...
Thanks for that :)

Kev said...

Thanks for the link, Tom! Perhaps you might also want to check out Customer Disservice Unappreciation Letter Two.

http://mistericeguy.blogspot.com/2006/03/customer-disservice-unappreciation_07.html

yep, it's me.... said...

one of my credit cards provides me with monthly updates on my credit rating. If it fluctuates up or down more than 20 points or if an inquiry was made.

Sherri said...

Yikes!! People need to be very careful when it comes to credit cards, they can get out of hand in no time.

DivineMsN said...

I am in the process of cleaning up my reports now. Not fun and it has made me learn how to handle money better. I'll email you sone credit sites you should look at.

Cheryl said...

credit card debt scares me. It's one of my biggest fears, really. Poor guy, 30%?! unbelievable. That letter was well-deserved.
My mom taught me how to use those cards, thank God.

tsduff said...

I'm perfectly anal (pardon the expression) when it comes to my credit. My ex ran up credit card debt and I was left cleaning up the mess. Now, many many moons later, I have very good credit, and I do my best to protect it. Thanks for the reminder - great post.

berly02 said...

Credit card companies are evil and ran by the devil's minions.

Lindsey said...

I learned the hard way too...don't feel bad.

Lisa said...

I have heard this story often. That is so sad and I would be so angry! That really sucks that trusting person is left with all of the debt and ruined rating.

I go over my hubby's and my statements each month with a fine toothed comb.