Archive for August, 2015

Various myths exist surrounding one’s credit report. The Chapman Las Vegas dealership however, hopes to shed some light on some misinformation. When it comes to your credit report there are many important factors to consider, such as how often to check your report, what your score means and more.

What You May Have Heard

When it comes to credit scores, there will always be biases and incomplete information. However it is important to know these myths in order to utilize your credit wisely.

Myth 1: Once debts are eliminated, your credit report is sweaky clean

Unfortunately, this is not true. Although it is true that your credit score has increased after debt payoffs, your credit report does not improve immediately. According to Bankrate, your credit report is not simply a snapshot, it is a collection of activities made through your credit history.

Only by making consistent, on-time payments and keeping your overall debt low, will you improve your credit score overtime.

Myth 2: Credit scores are determined by your education level

This is simply not true. Perhaps educational level was only a factor of poor credit when an uneducated individaul obtained a bad score, but neither qualities are related to each other. The only thing related to your credit report is your debt and payment history over time.

Myth 3: Divorce plays no role in your credit report.

While the act of divorcing your spouse does not itself relate to credit reports, it can have indirect effects. Let’s assume a couple may have a credit card they both share, and according to Experian, an information services company, closing this account, or removing yourself from it, will affect your score.

Get the Real Facts

There are realities about credit reports that you should be aware of too. Below are several facts about credit scores you should keep in mind.

Fact 1: There is more than one credit score.

This may seem odd to some people, but it’s the truth. FICO is not the only scoring company (and it is that, a brand, not a government agency, which is another common myth). In fact, as Ken Lin, founder and CEO of Credit Karma, noted in a feature piece in Inc. Magazine, there are more than 50 scoring brands in the U.S.

Fact 2: A solid score doesn’t guarantee you anything.

Just because you have a high credit score on your report doesn’t mean you are in the clear. Lenders have their own methods for assessing risk per individual case. Even if your credit report seems flawless to you, lenders might have other important considerations.

Fact 3: Using credit is necessary.

It may seem like a Catch-22, but you must use your credit card and pay down debt to build your score. If you think you can have a perfect credit report by simply paying cash, then you have no recent history of credit, and this will not improve your score. Consistent reporting boosts scores.

Useful Tips

Having a solid credit report is beneficial for your financial future. Equally, having a good credit history makes it easier to be accepted for loans, no matter what kind of funding you are securing. The following is a list of tips that will help build your credit.

Pay your complete monthly balance:

You should only be using your credit for items you can afford. It all comes down to being realistic in your approach. Plan a budget and stick to it.
“When it comes to credit, use it, don’t abuse it.”

Know where you stand:

Don’t just assume you have good credit. Get your free credit report and find out exactly what’s in it.

Don’t accrue a large balance:

You may think that having a large balance is fine as long as you pay the minimum. The important factor to consider when carrying around a hefty balance is what lenders will assume, as noted by Credit Karma. If you carry large balances, you send the wrong signals to creditors.

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Blocks Incoming and Outgoing Texts

The dangers of texting and driving are well documented. It ranks only behind drunk driving as the cause of major accidents, injuries and death. Since people won’t take it upon themselves to put down the phone while behind the wheel, one man has spent the last five years coming up with a technological answer to stopping this dangerous activity. A former NASA engineer, Scott Tibbits, was motivated by a tragedy to develop a system to stop texting. One day Tibbits arrived for a meeting only to find out the person he was meeting with was killed earlier as the result of a teenager texting while driving.

American Family Insurance Invests $1 Million

The tragedy sparked Tibbits to begin working on the system. Acccording to an article in the “New York Times,” he first utilized data from the car itself in combination with a person’s phone data. Once the data is analyzed by Tibbit’s servers, it shuts down the texting function for the person it determines is the driver. American Family was enthusiastic about the technology, especially since you didn’t have to download an app. Once you start driving, the texting function shuts down. Kibbits met with Sprint and received access to their system to test his equipment.

Although System Worked, Sprint Backed Out

As costs of developing the technology continued to grow and Sprint became unconvinced they would ever get their money back, they pulled out of the project. The system works, but Kibbits is now having trouble finding a major carrier to get involved in the program. Sprint was also concerned that if the system didn’t work only one time, they would be liable for losses. Tibbits has not given up, but is finding that securing funding and a working partner is difficult.

Don’t Text and Drive

The dealerships at Chapman Las Vegas remind you that texting and driving is extremely dangerous. If you cannot overcome the urge to look at your phone, throw it in the trunk before taking off. The texts will still be there when you arrive at your destination and you can then respond safely. More than 1.3 million crashes a year involve the use of cell phones. In the 5 seconds it takes to look at your phone you will drive the equivalent length of a football field without looking at the road. Despite these statistics, young drivers are confident they can handle texting and driving. In a recent survey, 77 percent said they can safely text while driving.

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Autonomous Driving is Great, Unless a Hacker is Driving

With the push to equip all vehicles with communication systems that can actually talk to one another to solve urban gridlock, it increases the probability that hackers might actually take control of your car one day. Research indicates that at least 80 percent of all new vehicles by the year 2025 will have some kind of external communication that could be a problem without proper cybersecurity. It is still very early in the process, but reports of hackers accessing vehicle information have already occurred. The service departments at your Chapman Las Vegas dealerships will have the latest information on potential cyberthreats as computer connections become more prevalent in the future.

All a Cyberattack Needs is a Motivated Hacker

As thousands of large and small businesses have found out, the only two things a hacker needs to launch a cyberattack is opportunity and motivation. The theft of customer’s credit information is an ongoing problem that keeps escalating in the retail world. As computer techs develop new cybersecurity methods, it just motivates hackers to overcome those methods for the thrill of the hunt. Imagine the charge these people will get out of actually taking over and controlling a moving vehicle. Cybersecurity summits, like the one happening in San Francisco in October, are geared toward discussing the problem and taking a proactive approach to solve the challenges of the upcoming years.

Auto-ISAC Working to Identify Threats and Solutions

The Automotive Information Sharing and Analysis Center brings together the best minds in the industry to identify possible architecture weak points and plug those holes. Booz Allen Hamilton, a strong player in the technology industry, is organizing the effort to tap the brains of leading industry scientists and engineers to ensure privacy is protected. The company is working with automakers to ensure they look at all avenues of protection, including hardware and software, to meet the cyber challenges of the next decade. The Society of Automotive Engineers is involved in a collaborative effort to help recognize future challenges and draft procedures and standards that will help ensure the safety of people driving computer-driven cars.

Local Dealerships Important in Overall Strategy

Local dealerships, like the ones in the Chapman Las Vegas organization, will be an important player further down the road. All technicians will need to be trained in how to identify computer breaches and keep security systems intact. Just like an oil change or transmission tune-up today, computer security will be another service offered from your dealership.

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Features Make it Easier to Drive Longer

If you get stuck behind a car full of seniors driving down the Las Vegas Strip, this may not be good news, but automakers are determined to keep their loyal senior citizen customers driving as long as possible. With new safety features and developments that make the act of driving not as taxing on people with physical impairments. Arthritis, loss of vision, slower reaction times and loss of motor function are all ailments that sometime come with age and impair a person’s ability to drive. See all the new developments in new cars at any of the Chapman Las Vegas dealerships.

Push Button is a Good Place to Start

The simple act of holding and turning a key can be excruciating to someone with arthritis or other joint problems. The development of the push button start requires less strength and fewer motor skills. Remote start units that rely on a key fob, remote trunk lids and hands free lift gates are also attractive options to seniors or anyone with physical disabilities.

Heat Feels Good, Even in the Desert

No matter how hot it gets in Las Vegas, a heated steering wheel and heated seats can provide relief to anyone suffering from creaking joints, stiffness or arthritis. Some of the more expensive luxury cars even offer massaging seats to help relieve back and butt pain while driving.

Heads Up Display Keeps Focus on Road

Trying to focus between their speedometer and the road ahead can be a real challenge for some senior citizens. Some new cars offer a heads up display, that projects pertinent vehicle information on the windshield just above the dashboard. In lieu of that, a large digital speedometer with backlighting can be easier to focus on and result in a safer ride for the senior and everyone around them.

Audible Navigation System Provides Confidence

A failing memory, bad eyesight and just a general lack of confidence are all factors that contribute to a lack of safety when a senior is driving. Navigation systems that provide audible directions can be a good addition to help a senior driver get where he or she is going. You have to consider in the technology factor and whether your senior will be able to actually work the system. There are some with voice commands that can be easier to understand. Take a trip to one of the Chapman Las Vegas dealerships and express your concerns over your senior citizen. They will be able to help you navigate all the technology and find a car that helps your family member or friend stay safe.

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Kids Don’t Necessarily Follow Safety Rules

Whether you have a student who is first driving to school or you’re someone with decades of experience, it’s important to note the added dangers lurking around every corner when kids go back to school. Walking to or from school is a time of excitement and horseplay where children don’t necessarily focus on the pedestrian safety tips their parents have drummed into them. It’s especially important to follow all speed restrictions and drive defensively, keeping a wary eye out for the child who might inadvertently dart into traffic to avoid being “it” in a game of tag. The people in the dealerships at Chapman Las Vegas encourage you to slow down and anticipate the worst when driving through a school zone or around a school bus.

Big Yellow Bus Perfect Storm for Accidents

Imagine you’re a middle-aged bus driver and suddenly a commotion breaks out in the rear. You’ve already had a couple of near accidents that day, a parent yelled at you for being late and now you’ve got a donnybrook going on 15 rows toward the rear. In a perfect world, you would calmly pull over, put on your flashing lights and deal with the problem as an adult. But, if you’re human, you might just react hastily and accidentally swerve into a lane filled with traffic. Moral of this story is to of course obey all laws when the lights are flashing, but also to give school busses a wide berth and have a little compassion for the job the driver is trying to accomplish.

15 Means 15, Not 20

Many school zones across the country post signs that tell you the lowered speed limit in a school zone, which is usually 15 miles per hour. Those signs are out there all day, even when there is not a kid in sight. As any officer will happily tell you, that does not relieve you of your responsibility to obey the speed limit. Where police might give you an extra 5 or 10 mph out on the open highway, that goes out the window in a school zone. The intent is to force you to automatically slow down to make things safer when kids are around.

Make Sure Your Carpool Buckles Up

It’s your turn to drive the carpool this week and you can’t wait for five screaming and giggling teenagers to take over your car and your radio. It may be bedlam, but don’t pull out until you are sure everyone has buckled their seat belts. Most car crashes happen within 20 miles of home. The legal implications if one of those kids gets hurt while not wearing a seat belt will not be fun to deal with. If your car is running on fumes or doesn’t have the latest safety equipment, consider a trip to a Chapman Las Vegas dealership where they’ll show you how a new vehicle with tons of safety options can fit into your monthly budget.