CREDIT SCORE HEADACHES
No matter the reason, overdue payment on an outstanding bill or loan can damage your credit score. Even one day late, which the industry counts as 30 days, and your score could plummet more than 100 points, warns CreditCards.com, a marketplace for cards and a resource for consumers. The impact is even larger if you have a record of frequent late payments and/or lengthy periods before an overdue payment is made. The cost to you: It's harder and more expensive to get loans or new lines of credit. Beware these five small debts that can hurt your credit standing, and pay attention to eight tips that can help keep a score in the green zone.