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    • CDTV Launch! March 30, 2011
        Credit Dusters has just launched our interactive television show. The network is called CDTV and it will start out with a daily show about all things credit. You can go there now…tv.creditdusters.com.
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    • New VW and Other Purchases I Didn’t Make June 4, 2008
      It seems strange considering my profession.  I recently pulled a copy of my credit report through the credit watch service  I am a member of.  I needed to purchase a car so I wanted to see where my scores stood and shop for the best interest rate.  To my surprise I had purchased a brand new […]
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    • Loan Modification – The Best Chance for Success April 30, 2008
      This week we are discussing a painful, but important situation that a lot of American consumers are facing. It is so scary to think that you might lose your home, but we want you to know that there is hope. We want to be a resource to those folks because we have been there and […]
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    • Beauty in Simplicity Chapter IV – The Final Verse April 25, 2008
      My family lives in a small, rural town in Southern Indiana. We are surrounded by a soy bean field with hundreds of sprawling acres across the street and a large lake that adjoins our property in the back. Sounds nice, right? Why am I so discontented?What is it that continues to drive me toward always […]
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    • Beauty in Simplicity Chapter III – The Endless Road April 24, 2008
      I began writing about the subject as a result of my daughter and I going on a field trip to our county 4-H last week. All the modern day farmers talking about raising chickens, cows, rabbits, and living off the land made me yearn for a life like that. This is my journey…The truth is […]
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    • Beauty in Simplicity Chapter II – What’s in the Box? April 23, 2008
      In his book, Halftime, author and successful businessman Bob Buford comments on the purpose of money in the following manner: Mike Kiami is a strategic planning consultant. He is brilliant. He is intuitive. He is demanding. He slices through all the pretense and posturing, and hones in on the core. He does not believe in […]
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    • Beauty In Simplicity – Chapter 1 April 22, 2008
      “Stop this train, I want to get off!” – Vanilla Ice Yesterday I touched on the fact that I am soul searching for the simple life. My wife and I used to think the Amish had the answer. I now know, as I mentioned, that I do not have to buy a farm and work […]
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    • A Rabbit Meat Shortage, The American Consumer, and Something About The Simple Life April 21, 2008
      I went on a field trip with my 3rd grade daughter this past week to our county 4-H. I learned a lot about farm animals. It was quite amazing because I saw the farmer of today and even with all the modern technology, (like a $280K combine that has a stereo, GPS system, and two seats) it […]
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    • How To Not Blow Your Tax Refund April 2, 2008
      In my previous post I wrote about the importance of filing even when you owe. Today I am going to give some helpful tips on preparing for your refund. Whether you are getting $500.00 or $5000.00 it is human nature to spend your money two or three times before it even hits the bank. I would encourage […]
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    • How To Proactively Protect Your Identity March 26, 2008
      Freecreditdusters.com has a great article on ID Theft – Check it out
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New VW and Other Purchases I Didn’t Make

It seems strange considering my profession.  I recently pulled a copy of my credit report through the credit watch service  I am a member of.  I needed to purchase a car so I wanted to see where my scores stood and shop for the best interest rate.  To my surprise I had purchased a brand new VW (at close to $25,000)!  It turned out this new purchase had affected my scores somewhat and I would have to wait to get it off my credit before I could qualify for the interest rate I wanted.  The strangest thing of all is that I have never owned a VW and I also noticed that there was a strange address listed on my credit report from a nearby town. 

Coincidence?  I thought so until I went to my neighborhood Kroger to pick up a prescription.  When the pharmacy rep rang up my order, she confirmed my address as the nearby town I mentioned above.  Turns out the prescription was not even mine, but a totally different prescription from this ghost VW gal.  My best guess is that this mystery person has the same name as me, social security number very close to mine, and just happens to live less than 15 miles from my home. 

This sounds bizarre but you would be suprised how often these types of scenarios play out.  More commonly these mistakes are made due to family error or even family identity theft.  Are you a Sr. or a Jr.?  Better check your credit.  If you are a Sr. and have a Jr. floating around out there, it is likely you may have some things mixed up on your credit.  Have you been through a divorce?  Even more likely that the ex’s junk is showing up on your report  and affecting you long after their gone.  If you have ever filed bankruptcy, you better believe there is junk hanging around on your credit that shouldn’t be there.

Don’t be caught by surprise like I was.  I had to wait an extra 60 days to purchase my car while I was waiting for mystery girl’s junk to be removed from my credit (after I disputed the information to the credit bureaus).  Now I keep watch on my credit every 30 days through my credit watch service and have instant notification of changes or new inquiries.

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Zombie Debt: Coming now to a Credit Report near you!

Zombie   Did you ever see Night of the Living Dead when you were a kid? I am not talking about the new one – I am talking about the original. The 1968 George A. Romero’s cult classic. It is black and white with ketchup laden cannibals. It has no plot and it lacks rhyme or reason , yet it terrifies me to this day.

Speaking of cannibals and having no rhyme or reason – we are going to discuss collection agencies (The carcass feeders) and their business practices (the lack of reason).  Look, I understand that if I do not pay a bill then it should go to collections, but at what point am I still tracked down for the demons of my past.

However, collecting on old debts is a rapidly expanding industry. This year a whopping $110 billion of such debt is expected to be sold to collection agencies, up from virtually nothing 10 years ago. Aggressive companies can buy charged-off credit card accounts from the original lenders for pennies on the dollar or less. Then, they use credit-scoring and other new technologies to identify which debtors are most likely to pay.

The players in this “junk debt” market range from fly-by-night outfits to well-established companies funded by Wall Street investors.  Many credit card companies have started selling delinquent accounts to collectors to boost quarterly earnings, according to a report by Kaulkin Ginsberg, a Rockville, Md.-based adviser on debt collection.

On face value, companies can make a profit if they can get debtors to repay even a tiny fraction. Along the way, some collectors realized they also could squeeze money from people who didn’t even owe it. Some consumers pay because their finances are so disorganized they don’t realize the debt isn’t theirs. Others are coerced into paying by illegal threats of lawsuits or ruined credit.

The consumer does have some protection: Six years after a debt goes into default, the collector no longer can sue to collect. And after seven years, the debt can’t be shown on a consumer’s credit report.

COLLECTION IS LEGAL

However, efforts to collect old debt are legal, as long as the collector doesn’t threaten to sue or report the debt to a credit agency.  

KEEP YOUR FRIENDS CLOSE AND YOUR ENEMIES EVEN CLOSER

The best thing you can do is to keep an eye on your credit by joining a credit watch service.  We recommend using True Credit they are a great service that provides a complete credit report with all three bureaus and scores for $14.95.