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Acquiring credit as you approach retirement, or when you become a senior citizen, is not easy. Women seniors will have the most difficult time getting approved for credit. Understanding how age impacts your ability to get credit is very important. Being denied credit solely on your age is illegal. However, age can impact the type of credit you apply for and income levels.

Why will seniors have a hard time obtaining credit?
The older generations come from a different time, a time when credit cards were scarcely used, resulting in cash being paid for most purchases. Also, loans were not as widely used as they are today. Back then, it was common practice for people to borrow money from family members and friends. This results in a lack of lengthy, positive credit histories for older Americans, making it hard to obtain credit.

Seniors also tend to have to deal with impacting life changes that will adversely affect their ability to obtain credit. For example, retirement can result in a substantial decline in income. Or, the death of a spouse will result in entering into a lower income group. It is not uncommon for creditors to want to close joint accounts when a spouse dies and have the living spouse reapply using their credit history only. These types of changes have a major bearing on a Seniors' chances for obtaining credit.

Learn more about how life changes affect your credit.

How does ones age affect their credit rating?
The Equal Credit Opportunity Act protects individuals from being denied credit because of their age. Also, people over the age of 62 can not be denied credit merely because they are not eligible for insurance on the credit. Although age is protected for obtaining credit, their are other instance when age can influence that ability for seniors to obtain credit.

  -- How close you are to retirement.
  -- How much money you make.
  -- What kind of loan are you applying for? Someone who is 80 is going to have a hard time getting approved for any type of loan.

Seniors should get a copy of their credit report regularly!
Senior citizens should always know what is on their credit. Therefore it is a good idea to get a copy of your credit report at least once/year. It is most important to get a copy of their credit when a life event occurs, i.e. retirement, death of spouse etc.. Inaccuracies, out-of-date and/or incorrect info should be looked for. Learn more about how to remove erroneous information from your credit report.

Not every account is going to be listed on your credit report. If their is a missing account that you think should be present, request the credit bureau to include the account. Also, right a letter to the creditor requesting for the account to be reported.

Another important thing to look for on your credit report as well as your spouses is the reporting of present and past joint accounts on both of your credit files. If they are not reported for both of you, contact the creditor and the credit bureaus and request that the information be updated and included.

Get a free copy of your credit report!
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Additional articles related to credit reports:
Do you understand how your credit score is determined?
-- Seniors should learn how to protect themselves from identity theft.
-- It is important to familiarize yourself with common practices for protecting your SSN.
-- Seniors tend to have limited monies available for spending. Therefore, it is a good idea to learn more about budgeting.
-- How your credit report and score are impacted by life's events.
-- Seniors and Credit



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