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  1. I screwed up that last sentence, but I think you know what I mean. Adding an installment loan to your credit mix can improve your FICO. When I paid off my mortgage (that was my only installment loan) my FICO went down, but was still well above 800. My FICO then creeped up a bit several months after I started a car lease. I don't think this active installment loan stuff makes someone a better credit risk, but FICO adds some points for this.
  2. If you're starting from scratch, I would say once having these accounts for a year opens the door to a lot of better cards. A car lease usually shows as an installment loan, which is different than a credit card. It can help a FICO, as having that in addition to credit cards as a different type of credit to your mix.
  3. Just to add, it's been three months since I opened the card, and it still doesn't report to any of the three big credit bureaus. I just checked.
  4. I'm not impressed either. I don't know why Steve Wozniak and other mega-rich folks are complaining. It's not like they need, or their spouses need, a certain Apple credit card limit or they'll end up living on the streets. Goldman Sachs isn't going to do a manual review on every credit card application. My Apple card limit is $8,500. I don't care. If they only gave me $500, I still wouldn't care. I have enough credit. Wozniak has enough too.
  5. Los Angeles (San Fernando Valley) resident here. Hollywood Blvd. gets more sketchy as you go east past Highland to Vine and beyond. The Hollywood and Highland corner and west of it is fairly safe and touristy, but watch out for pickpockets as its crowded. Still, you need to be careful. Going south down Highland from Hollywood Blvd. you will probably see tents on the sidewalks. I've never had poop dumped on me in L.A. but have smelled it. My big poop memory was on Market Street in San Francisco. I was taking the streetcar/tram just west of Union Square. A mentally ill woman boards with poop on her clothes, and probably more poop in her pants. She was standing/sitting probably a good eight rows in front of me, but the smell drifted the entire length of the streetcar. The smell was bad, real bad, and I mean really bad. I got off at the next stop, along with a bunch of other passengers. I threw-up in the street because it was so bad, but recovered. No PTSD as far as I know. Other passengers stayed on the tram. Why, and why the tram operator didn't kick her off, I don't know. If I stayed on for even one more stop, and could have perished.
  6. I moved down one spot today. The dinosaurs will be roaming the earth again before we can apply. But really, I think they'll open things up when they want. One day they'll probably let everyone apply. I'm in no rush. These accounts aren't anything special.
  7. Many people writing they retired are not. Blogging, YouTubing, being a landlord, and all sorts of side-hustling instead of a regular job, is still work. Being retired is living off pensions and investments. Unless you have some sort of enormous wealth, retiring at 35 or 40 has many risks that I won't repeat here. If one is going to do a bunch of side-business stuff and claim they're "retired," just keep your regular job and forget this fantasy.
  8. I moved my paper savings bonds (EE and I) into my TreasuryDirect account a long time ago, plus make an occasional savings bond purchase. Nothing oddball about it. The Treasury stopped issuing paper savings bonds a long time ago, so it's this way or don't bother buying savings bonds.
  9. I'm a sucker for this stuff. Betterment sent me a link for their new checking account. I clicked on it, logged into my investment account, and the debit card/checking account was immediately credited. I'm unsure if any Chex/EWS was done, as I check that once a year. Next time will be in February.
  10. I'm sure Robinhood will speed things up. If not, the dinosaurs will have returned before we get their cash management account. They got into trouble with the SIPC at the end of last year, when they assumed they'll insure their interest earning checking type of account, so they had to scrap the debit card and go back to the drawing board. Other brokers, like Schwab, Fidelity, Merrill Edge, E*Trade, TD Ameritrade, SoFi and Interactive Brokers offer debit cards with low minimum balances. I'm unsure which ones check Chex, but they all verify identity. Vanguard, TradeStation and also Firstrade offer debit cards but I'm not listening them above because I believe these all have higher balance requirements to obtain one. I think Vanguard requires assets of $500,000 in their accounts to get a debit card. That's a huge amount to tie up, if you have that.
  11. I will take the contrary view. Since you applied and got approved for Discover, you really can't erase what you did. Your $12K credit line is larger than my $10K. I've never directly asked for a credit line increase. My FICO is about 835 or so. Just keep the card. Some here think it's made from bird turd. It might be, but it's still a credit card. Use it for small purchases to keep it active and immediately pay it off. A new credit line eventually becomes not new. Eventually it helps your credit score, assuming you don't get behind in payments.
  12. I have Robinhood and their app says I'm number 214,625 in line for the cash management account, and I moved up 8 spots today. At this rate, I'll be signing up in 588 years. 😕
  13. We've heard this tune before, this time written by a company with close ties to the investment industry. For many decades there have been investment products, mainly mutual funds, that have low fees and high fees. Point me to a study that shows high fee mutual funds, sold by stockbrokers for their high commissions, that consistently provide higher returns than similar low fee funds.
  14. With Sears, it's been "the long goodbye." My Citibank/Sears MasterCard they converted from a Sears credit card a long time ago. I remember Sears running their own credit department. My Sears card was assigned to their "Credit Central" in Canoga Park/West Hills, which was a small building behind a Sears store at the Fallbrook Mall. Your assigned Credit Central was determined by a four digit number on your credit card. There was the Sears catalog. Their headquarters were at the Sears Tower in Chicago, which was once the world's tallest building (now the Willis Tower). They once owned Dean Witter, Allstate Insurance, Sears Savings Bank (Allstate Savings), Coldwell Banker, were part of Prodigy Online and the Discover Card. They were a conglomerate. I remember a financial services section in the Northridge store that included a branch of their savings bank. All of this is no more, and probably what sliver of Sears that is left will soon be no more.

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