Investing and Markets | Financial news

How getting your credit score can help you achieve your financial goals


THE start of the financial year is a great time to set new money goals.

Whether you are planning to buy a house, renovating, getting a credit card or saving for a new car it is likely you will need to call on a lender to help realise these ideas.

To ensure you achieve them it makes sense to find out how banks and other financial institutions rate you first.

All of them rely on credit agencies to find out as much as they can about a potential lenders borrowing and payment history.

Mortgage Finance Specialist Lisa Montgomery says, until recent years, consumers had limited access to their credit score and often only found out after applying for a mortgage or another product.

Its important to be credit aware and thats what getting a credit score can do for you, Montgomery says.

It can help you negotiate a better deal ... and if you come across something negative (in your credit history) it gives you a chance to correct it. You have a chance to query, resolve and repair it.

Credit scores are comprised of information generated by a whole range of financial products including phone and data bills, electricity bills as well as credit card accounts and loans.

Lucy Lugton decided to get her credit score as she wants to buy a property in the next year or two.

I am going through the processes of what I need to do to be able to afford to get a mortgage and a credit score looks at your trustworthiness, Lugton says.

She is glad she found out how potential lenders might view her application as her score was not as high as she had expected.

I am good at managing my credit cards but I think it (the lower than expected result) was a hangover from when I was younger, she says.

She says it was goo to know that up front so she can manage her finances and work out how much she can borrow.

Izzy Silva, spokesman for getcreditscore.com.au, says sometimes the negative points impacting your credit score may be incorrect and knowing what your number is enables you to have your record corrected before it has a chance to affect a future loan.

The company is giving away free credit scores to anyone who applies online at this site.

Obama administration staff reveal their top moments from behind the scenes




BELIEVE it or not, President-elect Donald Trump is due for inauguration on January 20.

As President Barack Obama prepares for his Farewell Address on January 10, core members of his team have shared their most memorable moments from his eight years in office.

In a term that has covered everything from the financial crisis to the Newtown massacre and Boston Bombings, there has been no shortage of poignant moments.

Here are some of the best as chosen by his staff.

THE PHOTOGRAPHS

Ever-present chief White House photographer Pete Souza has released a series of his favourite pictures from inside the White House to mark the end of the Presidency.

Check out some of the best below.

THE CHARACTER OF OUR COUNTRY

Former speechwriter Jon Favreau who served from 2005 to 2013 said one of his most memorable moments was rushing back from a friends wedding to edit Mr Obamas speech on health care to a joint session of Congress in 2009.

He had begun the speech based around a letter from Ted Kennedy which mentioned the character of our country. After departing for the wedding, he returned to a page of scribbled edits and scrambled to work them into the final text.

Mr Favreau said it reminded him building a country is hard, unending and always worthwhile. Watch Mr Obama deliver the remarks below:

WE THE PEOPLE

Another critical moment, according to speechwriting director Cody Keenan, came amid the Black Lives Matter Movement in March 2015 at the anniversary of Selma to Montgomery marches a key moment in African-American civil rights history.

The single most powerful word in our democracy, the President said that day, is the word We. We the People. We Shall Overcome. Yes We Can. It is owned by no one. It belongs to everyone. Oh, what a glorious task we are given, to continually try to improve this great nation of ours.

The iconic image of the President and his family marching with civil rights leaders across the bridge where protesters had been met with violence years earlier became a defining image of his years in office.

Its one of several moving moments on race relations throughout his leadership, including in July 2013 when he spoke about the death of Trayvon Martin.

When Trayvon Martin was first shot I said Trayvon Martin could have been my son. Another way of saying that is that Trayvon Martin could have been me 35 years ago ... he said.

BETWEEN TWO FERNS

Deputy chief digital officer Kori Schulman has also revealed his top 10 digital moments from the past eight years including appearing on Between Two Ferns with Zach Galifianakis, delivering a YouTube State of the Union, using a Snapchat filter for the first time and wishing Vice President Joe Biden happy birthday on Twitter.

For a full look at the The Obama Presidency in review, visit The White House page on Medium.