Christmas Shopping Concepts to Keep You Merry!

Happy couple shopping for Christmas in the city

Know what you’re shopping for – make certain to find Gifts for people already on your Christmas list – not people for the “cool gifts” you find while you’re out shopping! Look for GREAT deals – not just OK ones. Patience matters and can really pay off! Ask for unadvertised specials (free shipping, 0% interest, […]



Whether you’re a college student, a businessman or woman, a soccer mom, yard guy or multi-millionaire, everyone likes to save money… but be careful!  A lot of people wait until the very last minute to pay their monthly bills. While this strategy has a small upside, it has a very big downside! Most installment (car, […]

Credit and Debt Management Tips from the Pros

Credit card swipe - Credit and Debt Management Tips from the Pros

Should you use a credit card or a debit card? How many credit cards should you have? What happens if you lose a debit card or a credit card? Who is most likely to have credit problems? How do I protect myself from debit card or credit card fraud? Listen as Stacy Notley, President of […]

A HARD INQUIRY vs A SOFT INQUIRY (What’s the difference?)


A “Hard Inquiry” (or hard pull) is when a lender checks your credit report to determine if you meet their criteria to approve you for a mortgage or car loan, a hardware store like (like Home Depot or Lowes), department stores (like Macys or Dillard’s), a credit card (like MasterCard, VISA, American Express, DISCOVER, etc.), […]

Everyone has a Hobby: Scammers like to “PHISH”

COMMON CENTS- Everyone has a Hobby- Scammers like to PHISH

Almost all of us have received unsolicited and, very often, unwanted phone calls at the most inconvenient times, especially the past 18 months during the COVID pandemic and various restrictions. These calls range from extended auto warranty offers, roofers promising your homeowners insurance will cover 100% of all repairs, people eliminate your credit card payments, […]

5 Ways Refinancing Your Home
(with GOOD CREDIT) Helps!

COMMON CENTS - 5 Ways Refinancing Your Home with GOOD CREDIT Helps

1. You can actually pay off your mortgage faster because having a lower rate means more money is applied to the principal. You pay less interest, paying off your home years earlier. 2. You can remodel, update or add to your home and its value with a new kitchen and appliances, swimming pool and spa, […]

How Does Your Life End Up on a Credit Report?

Credit reports are generated by credit bureaus, companies that research information on consumers.  Credit bureaus do not operate as a public service information repository. They are for-profit organizations who are in business to make money by selling the information collected from various sources to creditor organizations such as banks, finance companies, and department stores.  There […]

How a Credit Report is Like a Car

Nobody believes that their car, truck or SUV is going to continue to run smoothly without some care and attention.  You fill it with gas, get periodic oil changes, rotate the tires, check the fluid levels, and perform other routine maintenance and repair tasks. Your credit is no different.   Credit reports from Equifax, Experian, and […]

Let’s Talk About FICO Scores

A FICO Score is a numerical value assigned to a person that measures their creditworthiness.  The score is calculated on a number of factors and is used by banks, credit card companies, and other lenders to determine whether to lend money or not, how much to lend, and at what interest rate. FICO Scores generally […]

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