Shop your way to a better credit score this holiday season
Freecreditscore.comTM reminds consumers to make their holiday list, check it twice and shop responsibly this holiday season
Irvine, Calif., Nov. 23, 2010 — With Black Friday only a few days away, freecreditscore.comTM has holiday shopping tips to help people navigate holiday sales and promotions. According to a recent survey commissioned by freecreditscore.com, a part of Experian, the holiday trend of using credit cards for purchases this year spans all age ranges and is split almost evenly between men and women.
The nationwide survey asked people about their buying plans; how they intend to purchase their gifts and manage their spending. Based on the results of the survey, as well as the impact the economy has on many cardholders, adults of all ages can benefit from reviewing the freecreditscore.com tips below.
“We want to ensure that consumers know how their shopping behaviors can affect their score before they hit the malls this season,” said Mike Dean, president of Experian Consumer Direct. “Since the holidays are typically the one time of year when people spend beyond their means, we want to arm them with facts that will help them understand the effects of overspending during the holidays.”
Following are holiday shopping tips from freecreditscore.com.
• Pay before you go
Of all the variables, paying debt on time has the most significant impact on your credit score. Eighty-eight percent of survey participants ranked “paying bills on time” highest in terms of activities to help manage credit scores.
Freecreditscore.com reminder: As noted above, it is important to pay your bills on time. Keep this in mind before racking up holiday-related debt.
• Gather your cards
More than 76 percent of those surveyed currently have between one and six credit cards, and 58 percent believe that managing their credit means reducing the number of cards. However, the number of cards alone plays a nominal role when it comes to credit scores. A person’s credit score is directly linked to the difference between the amount of cards a consumer possesses and the balance on those cards.
Freecreditscore.com reminder: Before heading to the stores, assess your available balance on all credit cards.
• Make your list
A list is essential to better prepare you to manage your credit spending, especially when purchasing large-ticket items. According to the survey, electronics will be the biggest purchase for 18- to 44-year-olds, followed by toys and clothes. However, when paying for the purchase, 53 percent of 18- to 24-year-olds and 52 percent of 25- to 34-year-olds plan to use their credit cards, contrary to majority of 45- to 65-year-olds, who plan to use cash.
Freecreditscore.com reminder: People should monitor their credit score regularly, as it will illustrate the effect of paying down debt on credit scores.
Additional survey findings:
• More men (45 percent) than women (43 percent) know their credit score
• Roughly 80 percent of men and women have budgeted to spend up to $2,000 this season
• Nearly nine out of 10 people (89 percent) do not plan to open store-specific cards that offer an additional discount with holiday purchase
• The data suggests that 18- to 24-year-olds plan to use credit cards for holiday purchases more than any other age group
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Experian Consumer Direct
1 949 567 7739
Freecreditscore.com, together with freecreditreport.com®, is part of a family of online consumer credit reporting sites belonging to ConsumerInfo.com, Inc., an Experian company. ConsumerInfo was founded in 1995 to give consumers quick, easy and inexpensive access to their credit profile. It is now the leading provider of online consumer credit reports, credit scores, credit monitoring and other credit-related information. ConsumerInfo provides credit monitoring to its more than 3.1 million members and has delivered more than 20 million credit reports on the Web. As part of the Experian family, it continues to grow its membership base and develop innovative products to help consumers better understand their credit.
Experian® is the leading global information services company, providing data and analytical tools to clients in more than 90 countries. The company helps businesses to manage credit risk, prevent fraud, target marketing offers and automate decision making. Experian also helps individuals to check their credit report and credit score and protect against identity theft.
Experian plc is listed on the London Stock Exchange (EXPN) and is a constituent of the FTSE 100 index. Total revenue for the year ended March 31, 2010, was $3.9 billion. Experian employs approximately 15,000 people in 40 countries and has its corporate headquarters in Dublin, Ireland, with operational headquarters in Nottingham, UK; Costa Mesa, California; and São Paulo, Brazil.
For more information, visit http://www.experianplc.com.
Experian and the Experian marks used herein are service marks or registered trademarks of Experian Information Solutions, Inc. Other product and company names mentioned herein are the property of their respective owners.
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