The biggest credit news this week is all about mortgages, as house hunting season heats up and rates are on the rise.
If you’ve been waiting to buy a home, now may be the time to act. Not only are mortgage rates hitting the highest level they’ve been in 2 years, but home prices are projected to rise several percent over the next 12 months.
According to Freddie Mac, the average 30-year fixed-rate mortgage hit 4.51% this week, rising 0.22% from last week. The good news is that the rising rates are based on better-than-expected jobs reports and general economic data that are showing a revived economy.
If you’re planning on buying a home soon, be sure to check your credit report first and monitor your score for any changes. Good credit is vital to getting approved for a home loan.
In other credit news, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau is cracking down on bad debt collectors, announcing this week that the agency will begin tracking consumer complaints about debt collectors.
The bureau also gave consumers several templates they can use to file complaints with debt collectors and ensure that any behaviors they think are abusive are fully documented.
The Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA) was updated at the beginning of the month, and that’s good credit news for parents trying to protect their kids’ identities.
Under COPPA, personal information now includes children’s:
- Voice recordings
- IP addresses
- GPS location data in mobile phone
This means that parental permission is required for social network-sharing, advertising data-mining and third-party plug-ins like Facebook “likes” and Google “pluses.”
A big step forward for protecting children’s identities on the Internet.