Government Assistance for People With Poor Credit

How to find government help for your credit issues
How to find government help for your credit issues (Image: Dynamic Graphics/Dynamic Graphics Group/Getty Images)

It is more difficult for us to live from a financial point-of-view if we have poor credit. As a result, the Federal and state governments have programs set up to assist those who have poor credit.

Government-insured mortgages

Through the Federal Housing Administration and the Veterans Administration, the Federal government has programs that are designed to assist those individuals with poor credit who are looking to buy a house. The FHA and VA insured loans typically provide for lower initial down payments than a conventional mortgage. Whereas a conventional mortgage would probably require a 20-percent down payment, these government-insured mortgages can be obtained with 3 to 5 percent down.

Credit counseling

Credit counseling services help people with poor credit get back on the right track financially. The services offered by credit counseling services can vary, but the Federal Trade Commission has guidelines in place to assist those with poor credit find the right credit counseling service without being the victim of a scam. The link to this Federal advice is found in the resources section below.

Self help

The best advice for those with bad credit is to learn to help yourself. This will involve setting up a budget that will allow you to pay your bills on time every month. This accounts for a higher percentage of your credit score (35 percent) than anything else. Another 30 percent of your credit score comes from the balances you carry on your credit cards and personal debts. Paying down these debts will improve your credit score and make applying for credit far easier in the future.

Legitimate Credit Repair Advice from FTC

Know exactly what the FTC thinks of credit repair, debt management and credit counseling companies. A look at the FTC information in the resources link will show you that at least a percentage of debt management, debt settlement and mortgage modification companies are more concerned with helping themselves than helping you. Make sure to read the FTC information to guard yourself against being a victim.

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