Prelude to my “How To’s.” From my first book, “Wake Up! And Smell Your Business.” I wrote this book in 2008 during the downfall of the Housing Market. I have a great deal to share, but first, My Story:  

I received a phone call from a well-known mortgage company, (what’s new??). The gentleman and I say that lightly, propounded me with all kinds of offers. He was determined to persuade to re-finance my mortgage.

It was a joke, because the mortgage rate I have now is 4.875%, and then he said that their company would give me a 4.2% because my FICO score was over 800. I then asked him, a little sarcastically what the settlement costs would be and he answered, ” $4,400.00″! I told him that I could put the monies toward the principal balance and actually control how long I would have to pay on my mortgage.

He was relentless. I had many calls from different associates, trying to urge me to take this package. I laughed, mainly because I knew more than they did about how to do it yourself without paying settlement costs. That’s another tip I will be tackling.They still call, I just do not answer. I expect that they will be at my door, like a Jehovah’s Witness. Ha!

During our first conversation, he said that I should blog my stories and tips, so here I am!

After much coffee with God, through the Holy Spirit, my first tip will be how to “Elevate your Fico Score AFter Bankruptcy.” However, this is my story, and it is a prelude to the tip.

My Story

I had an office supply store in Cape May back in 1993. Cape May, if you haven’t had the opportunity to see it, is a midsize town at the tip of New Jersey. In fact, we were never considered part of New Jersey. Who knew?

I loved it there, however, Tony , my husband and I lived in a fixer-upper that never was fixed. It was only a 1,000 square foot house sitting on the corner across from a beach and brackish water.

This is the house. Distance to the beach was about one city block.

MY SHACK'S VIEW

MY SHACK

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I started the business with something I knew quite readily, bookkeeping supplies. I only had 3K to start and found a place to rent; in a strip mall right next to the post office. How great was that? The name of the store was “C.A.P.E. Bayside Discount Office Supply Store.” Whew! What was I thinking?

Okay, so I put in what I had bought from vendors and plastic containers to hold things like loose pens and pencils, etc.  

I was right on, my customers liked the idea of being able to determine if they needed one or two items from the bins. So here I am putting up the metal shelving I acquired from “Jamesway”, a Wal-Mart type store that went out of business. They were sitting outside free for anyone to take. So, Tony & I took what was left, cleaned them up and put them in the store.

When I stepped back, I was in shock! I only used less than 1/4 of the store. It looked totally empty, so I could not open.

I did crafts and brought them in to sell. Which gave me the idea that maybe others out there would want to put their wares in the store. So, I put an ad in the local rag, “The Trading Post.”

I let the crafters know I had an excellent location with space in my store. Consequently, soon my store was filled with; home made dolls, little stuffed animals, especially teddy bears, key chains, etc. They had to be approved, of course. People came from all over. A  gentleman came in and he clearly was a Native American with key chains and dream catchers.

Now it started to look like a real store. I still have two of the teddy bears I used at my wedding that was made by one of my ladies. I employed three part-time women. 

my dolls (2)

The store filled up quickly. It looked like a real business. Nevertheless, I had no signage. The Trading Post called me and asked if their customers could drop off their ads at my location. As an added bonus they would pay me a commission on all ads coming from my store. How could I say no???

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my store1 (2)

my store2 (2)

I am in the Villas. One day I  was pulling up to my store and I had a shock! Look at the signage! These guys had a professional come and do my signs. I was so happy, however it only lasted three-years. Staples came in and put me out of business. I tried to hang on, but to no avail.

I went bankrupt! In 1996 I was heart-broken and so was my loyal customers. Subsequently, my FICO score was in the pitts. So how does your FICO score go from 575 to 800. This is where my  God-given talent of handling money and being innovative came into fruition.

I will give you all kinds of tips, starting with raising your credit score, no matter how bad it is. I will explain at length. So there is no room for mistakes if you do not deviate from my instructions.

FICO scores are too important to mess around with. They determine your credit, but also whether you get that job or your raise.

Please pay attention to my tips. I have quite a few.

I know I am taking a break from my usual biblical blogs, but I felt it important to let you share my brain. I believe since God helped me with my first book, which deals with all things money related tips. Can you ask questions and leave comments as I go? Yes, yes, yes!

Nevertheless, I had to give you my story, so I can teach you how I raised my FICO score. God bless.

 

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