I'm a newbie to the board although I've been lurking for a few weeks. Improving my credit has been a top priority of mine during the past year, but I've been trying to figure it out on my own. Only recently did I think to search the internet for a "support group" and boy am I glad I did. Just lurking for the past few weeks I've learned more than I did all year! I've got a million different questions but I'm going to start out with the most pressing first.
I'm self employed so cash flow is often a problem when my customers drag their feet paying their bills, and late last year I found myself getting behind on two different Citibank credit cards that I had. Not knowing any better (and truthfully being ashamed to call and talk to anybody) I let myself get over 90 days behind before I made the call. The lady that I spoke with was very polite and civil (which was a huge surprise to me!) and she set me up on a automatic deduction plan for 9 months to help me get current and pay down the balance. The terms to which I agreed were that my interest rate would be lowered to 8% and remain there after the 9 months was up as long as I continued to make my payments on time. Also, both accounts were to be closed once they were paid in full which I didn't really like, but I didn't feel like I had any room to bargain.
All of my automatic deductions were made on the agreed-upon dates and I always made sure that there was money in my account to cover them. I was pretty sure that my last deductions were to be made in November so I made sure there was money in my checking account to cover them, but I checked online a couple days after the deductions should have been ade and the money was still there. I gave it a few more days, checked again and no withdrawals. Then I checked online at Citibank and sure enough, no automatic payments had been made but both accounts showed current and no payments due until Dec. 4. I let it go a few more days just to be sure that their automatic withdrawals weren't lagging behind and then Imanually made the payments online (before Dec. 4). Still no late fees showing or anything out of the ordinary, so I just assumed that I'd been mistaken about November being the final month for automatic withdrawals.
All seemed well with the world until I checked my accounts yesterday and noticed that my nice rate of 8% was now 28.99%!!!!! I'm not sure how to proceed from here, but this just isn't right! Seems like no matter how hard you try to get ahead, these guys find a way to beat you back down.
What should I do? Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated!
Definetly do not keep waiting for them to contact you - you need to take the initiative here and contact them and find out why they've raised your interest rate. If you're making the payments as agreed then they really have no excuse to raise your interest rate.
Having said that, alot of CCC's are raising their interest rates in an effort to raise more money. Customer satisfaction isn't really a concern for some of these companies given the current financial environment, so be mindfull of that. You'll see plenty of posts here complaining of interest rate increases, accounts being closed for the most trivial reasons... you name it.
But finding out what their reasons are should be task #1... if you had an arrangement worked out with them it's important to know what exactly changed between then and now to prompt this change.
Welcome, and good luck.
If you had it set up for Citi to withdraw the money then they should explain why that wasn't done . If you had it set up through your bank; you have been screwed by your bank.......neither Citi nor your bank will likely care.
Either way, when dealing with your credit ........it is just that , "your credit". It will be good or bad because of your efforts. When those payments didn't show going through you should have been on the phone immediately. You knew they were suppose to be made, that extra time you waited in facing the payment issue may have just cost you twenty percent.
Whatever else you do get proactive and remember it is your credit you are the one who should make things happen.
Don't see yourself as a victim. You have done the right thing dealing with Citi and getting on the program. I hope it is mostly paid down because they probably won't give chance number two.
In the future don't WAIT AND SEE WHAT HAPPENS. You may not like it.
Good luck and keep pluggin, you can make , but get a little more proactive.