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How to Improve Your Credit Score – Personal Finance Basics

The health of your credit score is incredibly important to your finances for a number of reasons. To begin with good credit scores are exactly what banks are looking for when deciding whether or not they will lend you money. More often than not insurance brokers or landlords often look into your credit when determining whether or not to choose you as a potential client or possible tenant. This article will describe to you a number of ways of improving your credit score and will assist with your personal finance basics.1. Pay Your Bills On TimeThe reason why this is first on my list is because this is likely the most important rule to follow when trying to boost your credit score. If you visit a bank and want to apply for a home mortgage the first thing the bank will search for is if you regularly make bill payments when they are due. These bills include everything from your cable, home or cell phone, credit card or any other types of bills. Your credit score will directly reflect if you pay for, miss or are late on your bills. If they discover that you always miss or are late for payments, there is a good chance they will not approve you for the loan.Helpful advice so you will make every bill payment:-Create a new checking account and allocate enough cash at the beginning of each month for your bills so you always have enough.-Create automated email reminders a few days prior to when your bills are due.-Create automatic payments through your online banking.-Keep a written calendar of when each bill is due. Update and check it regularly.-Purchase everything possible with cash. Not having a credit card means one less bill to forget.2. Never Let Bills Go To CollectionsThis may seem very simple but these collection agency’s exist because thousands of people allow their unpaid bills to go this far. You can’t forget about your bills. Your bills won’t just disappear. If just one of your unpaid bills go to collections you will have to pay surcharges, major interest and your credit rating will be tarnished.3. Keep Credit Card Balances LowThe most simple of personal finance basics is if you must use a credit card, keep the balance at zero or as low as possible. The less of your available credit you use the better. The number that most reflects your credit score the most recent balance on your statement. Even if you pay your bill in full every month you should never exceed more than 30% of your available credit. The less you use the better.4. Use Old Your Credit CardsThis may seem a bit odd but try not to switch from one credit card company to the next. If you jump around and continually open and close credit cards your credit score can be adversely affected. If you can use the credit card you got when you were 20 and stay with it. If you primarily use a different credit card, attempt to keep your old cards active and use it every once in a while. Make certain you pay it off in full each time.5. Check Your Scores Once A YearCredit scores can change fast. One day everything may be going well and tomorrow your credit score might be awful. Looking into your score each year is a personal finance basic tip we all should follow. This will allow you to correct any mistakes that the banks or you might have made. Keep in mind, if you check your credit rating more than once a year or on a regular basis it will affect your scores negatively. Checking once a year is your best option. Be sure to dispute any errors like unpaid bills or late payments when you are certain that they were paid on time or there might be other issues that you could find.High credit scores create the chance for lower interest rates on mortgages, car loans, personal loans and credit cards. The most simple of personal finance basics you should follow is to maintain the health of your credit score so you will be able to take advantage all sorts of different financial opportunities. The sooner you rectify any issues you might have with your credit, the sooner you will get everything back in order. By following these tips you will be completely on your way to improving the health of your credit score.

Close-Up Photography Tips – Exploit Your Macro Lenses For Stunning Close Up Shots

“What is a macro lens and what can it do to better aid photography?” If you happen to be new to photography, this is a question you would most likely ask a more experienced photographer.Well, macro lenses are designed and tailored to aid close-up photography attempts. What a macro lens does is that it projects the image of your subject onto your camera’s sensor that appears to be of the same size, otherwise larger than the actual size of the subject itself.Close-Up Photography Tips #1 – The Focal Lengths For Macro Shots Of Flowers And PlantsI favor using 100mm lenses to photograph flowers. I realized that a focal length that is slightly longer can mean that there is no need for me to get right on top of the subject to take stunning shots. This gives me a little more breathing space.Despite that, slightly longer focal lengths allow me to get closer to flowers or plants that may otherwise be situated quite a distance away with a 50mm or 60mm lens.My effective focal length is longer because I use a 100mm full-frame lens on a DX-format sensor. Hence, the effective focal length turns out to be more like 150mm.Close-Up Photography Tips #2 – The Optimum Aperture For Macro PhotographyWhen I conduct close-up photography, I normally close the lens down to the smallest aperture it is capable of, which is currently f/22 for my lens, so that the subjects’ details are shown. However, the aperture I would use will vary depending on the close-up photography effect I want.Often times, it is best to have the background blurred so that emphasis is placed solely onto the flower you are photographing. What you should do is to make use of your camera’s depth-of-field preview to check and see if your aperture setting gives you your desired close-up photography effect.When I happen to not stop the lens all the way down, the two most common apertures I use are f/8 and f/11. However, when I happen to be outdoors photographing close-up shots of flowers and plants under windy conditions, I will then open up the lens so that the shutter speed is kept short. This will help avoid getting blurred shots.Close-Up Photography Tips #3 – Manual Focus (MF) Vs. Autofocus (AF) Macro LensesThroughout my years in the photography arena, I have always used manual focus to photograph close-up shots, even when I had an autofocus macro lens.The reason as to why I prefer using manual focus is because I want to decide where to place the focus on my subject, and not allow the camera to choose where the focus goes.Another reason is because I would rather shoot in manual focus is because the depth-of-field in close-up photography is very little. To ensure that the focus point is right where you want it to be, use the ‘in focus’ indicator in the viewfinder.