For most of my life, I could afford to use my credit for shopping, cars, and trips. I had finally reached the point where I was saving up for a downpayment on a new house. Unfortunately, there was economic downturn and as a result, I lost my job. I had an emergency fund, but after that was gone, I dipped into my house fund and eventually burned through my savings. Soon after, I found myself buried in debt that I couldn't pay off. Then the phone calls started and I was constantly getting bombarded from debt collectors from unpaid credit card bills and I lost the ability to borrow or any line of credit from a bank. I was on the verge of losing everything I had worked so hard to get.

So, when confiding in some of my buddies about my financial situation, I was surprised to learn about Lexington Law. One of my friends promised they'd be able to help me take control of my financial issues, and get my life back in order, but I was pretty skeptical. He told me their team of lawyers uses legal strategies to challenge creditors about items on your report which helps improve your credit score. With nowhere else to turn, I decided to check them out.

I learned that they are a leading credit repair law firm that systematically uses the law to help eliminate negative entries on credit reports, and they have a method to help drive up credit scores. This all sounded great, but I was still a bit skeptical about how they could help me take control of my finances. After learning that Lexington Law removes an average of 10 items off your credit report in the first 4 months , and has a credit-coaching program teaching clients how to improve and maintain a higher credit score, I decided to give them a try.

Getting started was simple. I gave them a call and the representative answered my questions with patience and knowledge. She made me feel confident about improving my credit score, and explained that Lexington Law would send challenge letters requiring creditors to respond or refute. If they're unable to make a case, the items will be removed from my credit report.

After the first three months, seven items were removed from my credit score. During this time, communicating with my representative was easy with access to my personal online dashboard. The dashboard allowed me to see my credit score from all three bureaus along with the positive and negative items impacting my credit. The best part was that I could even challenge items on my report directly from the dashboard. Each time I made a challenge, my representative would get an alert, and she and her team would begin working on them right away. Watching the items get removed from my credit report made me feel like I was taking control of my finance.

For many people, their credit score does not accurately describe what kind of person they are. Despite being a conservative spender, I have faced many years of financial distress. I'm glad I decided to learn more about Lexington Law and was able to turn around my score. Working with them for even a short period of time, they helped me get rid of the big blemishes on my credit report. My goal this year is to make the next big purchase in my life (buying a house), and Lexington Law has made that possible for me.

Update: Lexington Law is offering our readers free credit repair consultation, which includes a complete review of your FREE credit report summary and score. You can follow this link, or call 1-833-825-3700 to take advantage of this no-obligation offer.

Call anytime between 7am and 11:59pm EST to get your free credit report and score!

Call 1-833-825-3700

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Airbnb is a great option while traveling, but you should protect yourself from damage charges from unscrupulous hosts.

Airbnb offers an affordable option for people looking to be more comfortable as they travel.

However, there are downsides to staying in a host's home rather than a hotel. Whereas hotels are designed for constant streams of visitors and often have furniture built to last, at an Airbnb, you may be staying on old or cheap furniture that a host is using in order to maximize their profits.

And while most reputable hotels will have regular room inspections from staff to check for any wear and tear, Airbnb damage disputes are oftentimes he said, she said situations. If you are in an Airbnb and something breaks, there are a few steps you should take in order to ensure that you are not on the hook for damages out of your control.

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Long gone are the days when the majority of Americans dreamed about owning a home with a white picket fence.

The traditional American Dream may be on its deathbed, but that doesn't mean a core component of the vision can't survive. It simply takes a diverse perspective. People can still believe they can attain their own vision of success in society with hard work, knowledge, and risk-taking. Investing in today's American Dream may literally mean investing money in our modern economy, starting with our infrastructure.

Real estate investing in particular is a lucrative method that can boost income and secure a better financial future for many. There's always risk involved, but the payoffs can far outweigh the uncertainty. Selecting solid financial investments is about confidence and competence. If you're looking for some advice on this kind of investment, here are a few savvy tips for new real estate investors.

Stick To a Specific Strategy or Niche

Real estate is a challenging sphere of the business world, one that requires several key skills: groundwork knowledge, networking, perseverance, and organization. True knowledge of the real estate market will come with time and experience, but it's a smart idea to select one area of the market and stick to it. This is the best way to attain in-depth familiarity with your specific niche.

First, choose a geographical area close by and then a niche strategy within it, such as house flips, rental rehabs, or residential or commercial properties. By doing so, you can become aware of current inner working conditions in the market and you'll have a better idea of how these trends may change in the future.

Be Vigilant About Viable Financing Options

While it takes money to make money, you don't have to use all your own money. A common misconception about real estate investing is that you must be wealthy to start off. This isn't straight fact, however. A majority of people can test the waters of real estate investing without a lot of initial cash in their pocket.

Aside from traditional financing options from banks and institutions, private lending options can be worthy solutions. Hard money lenders are popular, reasonable choices, and they tend to have fewer qualification requirements upfront. However, be sure to strategically choose a hard money lender to find the best possible fit.

Master the Art of Finding Good Deals

There may be hundreds of thousands of available properties for sale on the current market, but the bulk of them will never amount to the final money-making result you desire. Another great tip for new real estate investors is to use good math to estimate profit. Taking risks is part of the process, but you have the ability to analyze properties and use networking sources to find the greatest deal. You can't win every deal, but you can steadily work towards a thriving financial future.