Delray Beach, FL (PRWEB) November 29, 2010
This week after millions of consumers finish gobbling up their Thanksgiving dinners, they will head out to beat the crowds for Black Friday shopping deals. In anticipation of this, NationalCreditReport.com, a leader in credit report, credit score and credit monitoring services, reminds consumers to plan ahead and make smart in-store and online decisions to prevent credit report damage.
“Many consumers believe that the best days of the year to get hot deals are on Black Friday and Cyber Monday,” said Samuel S. Ambrose, Vice President of Marketing and Operations of NationalCreditReport.com. “In all the excitement they aren’t thinking about credit report damage or preventing identity theft, both things that should be on their minds as well.”
Black Friday Shopping Tips That Will Help Protect (Or Improve) One’s Credit Score:
- Think before opening a retail credit card - Stores often offer an additional 10% - 20% savings when the consumer applies in-store. This significant savings on a one-time purchase can cause long term credit report damage because it requires a hard inquiry into the consumer’s credit file. Too many inquires can cause a credit score to drop. However, for consumers with little or no credit, applying for a retail store credit cards is one way that they can building their credit files because they’re often easier to obtain.
- Consider using cash - Even the credit score of a person that pays their minimum payments on time every month can be affected by increased spending during the holidays. Maxing out a credit card affects a credit utilization ratio: how much credit the consumer has available vs. how much is used. Too high of a ratio can cause one’s credit score to decrease.
- Take the opportunity to use different cards - For consumers who rarely use their credit cards, the holidays are a perfect time to use them. Cards that sit dormant for several months could be put into inactive status. Active credit cards help improve a credit score.
- Shop with preventing identity theft in mind - Black Friday store shoppers will likely encounter more fellow shoppers than on any other day of the season. Shoppers should secure all valuables, make sure no other shoppers can see their credit card numbers when making a purchase and block the view of anyone that might be watching them enter their PIN number when making a purchase on a debit card.
- Don’t forget Cyber Monday - Another popular day for hot deals, Cyber Monday is all about online shopping, offering additional opportunities to utilize credit cards and beat the in-store crowds. Making purchases from sites that are secure will further aid in preventing identity theft.
Ambrose also advises that necessary holiday spending provides consumers with an opportunity to boost their credit score by paying their cards off in full every month. Timely payments are reported by creditors to the 3 major credit bureaus and will help them by possibly raising their credit score.
Since 2004, NationalCreditReport.com has specialized in providing credit information and credit monitoring services to consumers to help them understand their credit report and score. NationalCreditReport.com encourages consumers to check their credit report from the 3 major credit bureaus on a regular basis.