English Spanish


As we read in the last blog, building credit as an immigrant in the U.S. can be a lengthy process that requires patience. Many are unprepared for this once they arrive. This is why it’s vital to understand that just a few hours of “vocabulary homework”- conducted in advance – will empower you to become better equipped to make day to day financial decisions in your new locale.


  •         A debit card is a payment card that deducts money immediately and directly from a consumer’s banking account. This is opposed to a credit card, in which you borrow money from the card company for the item.
  •         An Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (ITIN) is a tax processing number. It is issued by the Internal Revenue Service to individuals who are required to have a U.S. taxpayer identification number but who do not have a social security number.
  •         A Social Security number (SSN) is assigned to U.S. citizens and other residents to track income, determine benefits, obtain credit, open bank accounts, make major purchases, etc.
  •         An auto loan is secured where the vehicle itself is used as a collateral. The auto loan will have a loan amount, a fixed loan term and a fixed APR.
  •         The annual percentage rate (APR) refers to the yearly interest generated by a sum that’s charged to borrowers or paid to investors. APRs vary based on the type of charge and loan.
  •         Mortgage refers to a loan used to purchase or maintain a home, land, or other types of real estate.
  •         An overdraft occurs when there isn’t enough money in an account to cover a transaction or withdrawal, but the bank “loans” the overdrawn money to the client, typically with a fee.
  •         Delinquent means a person is past due on their financial obligation(s), such as a loan or credit card. Consistently delinquent borrowers end up in “default”.


  •         A remittance is a payment of money sent by someone working abroad to his or her family back home.
  •         A foreign transaction fee (FTF) is a surcharge credit card holders pay for transactions processed outside of the U.S.


  •         Identity (ID) theft happens when someone steals your personal information and masquerades as you, when applying for credit, filing taxes, or getting medical services.

·         Phishing is a cyber-crime that targets people by email, telephone, or text while posing as a legitimate institution to induce individuals to reveal personal information, such as passwords and credit card numbers.