Buying electronics to improve your credit score? Probably not too wise

Do you need a computer, but have bad credit or no credit at all? Would you like a free TV, an mp3 player and a printer with your order? Who wouldn’t? Unfortunately, even though ads offering all of this AND the promise of improving your credit score are all over late night television, you’re unlikely to be as thrilled as the people on the commercials were with your results.

You’ve probably noticed that the only requirement to participate in this deal is that you have a checking account. The reason for this is that the company will be automatically deducting your payments from your checking account on a WEEKLY basis. From what I’ve read, these payments are generally between thirty and forty dollars per week. That means you could be paying up to $175 dollars a month. If you don’t have the money in your account when they attempt to deduct it, you could be hit with overdraft fees and potentially other charges from both the bank and the company.

These companies promise to report on your credit. They advertise this as a benefit, but it may actually hurt your credit if your account has insufficient funds for a payment even one time. Even if the reporting were all positive, it just isn’t worth it. You’re paying a serious premium for the computer, even if they throw in all the other “free” electronics. If you need a computer, I suggest using one at the library and socking away the $175 a month you’d pay these turkeys. In two months, you’ll be able to pay cash for a machine that is at least as good and probably better. Granted, you won’t get the TV or the mp3 player, but if you read up on these companies’ reputations, you’ll see there is a decent chance you wouldn’t get that stuff even if you signed up for it.

If you’re interested in improving your credit, there are better steps you can take than dramatically overpaying for electronics. We offer free consultations and we’ll go over your credit report with you and help you devise strategies to improve your credit score going forward. Please note, we are not alchemists and cannot magically scrub all the bad information off your report. Anyone who tells you they can are running a scam.