A proactive approach can help consumers build a credit score when their payment history is thin.
About the author
Personal finance, habit formation
Miami University (Oxford, Ohio), Illinois State University
- Ten years of personal finance writing experience, with stories published on Vox, The Simple Dollar, The Penny Hoarder, Lifehacker and more
- Five years writing and editing The Billfold, a personal finance blog where people had honest conversations about money
- Author of Frugal and the Beast: And Other Financial Fairy Tales
Nicole Dieker has been a full-time freelance writer since 2012—and a personal finance enthusiast since 2004, when she graduated from college and, looking for financial guidance, found a battered copy of Your Money or Your Life at the public library.
In addition to writing for Bankrate, her work has appeared on CreditCards.com, Vox, Lifehacker, Popular Science, The Penny Hoarder, The Simple Dollar and NBC News. Dieker spent five years as writer and editor for The Billfold, a personal finance blog where people had honest conversations about money. Dieker also teaches writing, freelancing and publishing classes and works one-on-one with authors as a developmental editor and copyeditor.
Nicole Dieker’s debut novel, The Biographies of Ordinary People, is a Millennial-era Little Women that follows three sisters from childhood to adulthood. Dieker is also the author of Frugal and the Beast: And Other Financial Fairy Tales, in which she reworks classic fairy tales to highlight their hidden financial lessons.
"I never knew I needed Rumpelstiltskin to involve Bitcoin or a parable about instant pots, but I’m so much happier now that I’ve read both. These stories will both delight and get you thinking about money." — Lillian Karabaic, author of Get Your Money Together and host of Oh My Dollar!
- MFA in Theatre, Illinois State University, 2008
- BA in Music, Theatre Minor, Miami University, 2004
- Frugal and the Beast: And Other Financial Fairy Tales (The Billfold, 2018)
- Earn More Money as a Freelance Writer (The Write Life, 2016)
- Start Here: 40 Freelance Writers Share How They Find Clients, Stay Motivated & Earn Well
- Today (contributor, Make a Living Writing, 2015)
Nicole's Latest Articles
4 min read Sep 10, 2019
A few practical steps can help you avoid punitive late credit card payment fees.3 min read Jul 15, 2019
Getting the right credit card could be the best financial decision you make this year — even if you’re currently in credit card debt.5 min read Mar 08, 2019
You could be on the hook for the debt, so weigh the costs and risks of a company card.4 min read Sep 24, 2018
Should you get a credit card? The answer isn’t the same for everyone. Here’s what you need to know when making the decision.5 min read Apr 19, 2018
While purchasing a money order with a credit card is convenient, it may not be the best option.4 min read May 26, 2020
It’s usually better to put extra money towards your credit cards instead of your car loan, as cards usually charge more interest and have more volatile rates.4 min read Jan 23, 2020