How to Establish Your Credit Score

Another failure of our “education system” is the absence of courses on financial literacy. When we enter into the world of work, we quickly adopt the “month-end” mentality as we are unable to pay for anything until we receive until our salary at the end of the month. When we are desirous of purchasing a vehicle and we approach the financial institutions for financing we are told that we have no credit history and our application for the loan is denied. It took me three months to successfully acquire my first loan. My loan applications were rejected by two lending institutions because I had no borrowing history. This was a huge risk for the lending institution as there was no credit history to show that I would repay the principal and interest pursuant to the payment schedule. Prior to my loan applications, I was of the view I would be unable to sleep at night if I was owing someone money. Although I was reluctant, I decided to take the advice of my financial planner and take my first loan in order to establish my credit score. Please permit me to offer some guidance on establishing your credit score.

How to Establish Your Credit Score:

  1. Take a small credit building loan. The trick to taking your first loan, is to take a loan when you do not need it. Some financial institutions in Trinidad and Tobago offer loan sales around the Christmas period. At this time, some of the rigid requirements are waived. Banners are placed outside the financial institutions advising of these loan sales , it is difficult to miss it. I approached one lending institution before the loan sale and I was asked to provide collateral for the loan. Collateral acts a security in the event that the borrower fails to repay the loan. The loan officer at this first lending institution requested that I secure the full sum of the loan in addition to monthly installments for two months. Please note that the lending institution will ask you about the purpose of the loan and will require documentation as proof such as an invoice. I returned to this lending institution with the funds as requested then I was asked to provide a recent pay slip, I became irritated and did not return. I hope that you see how difficult it would have been for me to acquire the loan if I was in desperate need of it. I visited a second financial institution and I was asked to provide 50% of the principal sum as collateral. I tried to take this through one of my companies but I was advised that I had to produce at least three years of audited financial statements or three years of management accounts. I did not return to this financial institution because I did not wish to incur additional fees from my accountants. The third time was indeed the charm. The third financial institution agreed to give me the loan. By this time the loan sale started for the Christmas period and the customer service was superb. I also requested that the loan be used to invest in some shares at the financial institution thereby doing away with the need for me to provide collateral.
  2. Get a co signor on your loan- Instead of taking the loan by yourself, you can ask a parent or relative to also sign the loan with you as a guarantor. In the event that you are unable to continue repaying the loan, your co signor undertakes to repay the full sum of the loan. Some of my friends have acquired their first vehicles by having a parent co sign on the loan. The difficulty is that your co signor must have a good credit score . Where I come from, not many adults have even taken a loan in their lifetime. Some have taken goods on a hire purchase arrangement and they have been unable to repay the outstanding balance resulting in repossession (after the Christmas season). This negatively affects your credit score.
  3. Get a Secured Credit Card-This credit card is secured with at least $3000 TTD. In the event that you fail to pay your monthly installment, the financial institution has the $3000 as collateral. Of course, failure to repay your loan negatively affects your credit score. With respect to credit cards, one of my clients told me that he urged both his children to get a credit card after they graduated from university. Unfortunately not many of us as young professionals receive this advice from our parents. In some cases our parents manage their credit cards poorly or some parents simply do not have one. When I tried applying for a credit card (not a secured one ) I was asked to secure the credit card because I had no credit history. I decided to take the loan instead of the credit card, as the credit card was a loan that keeps on giving.

As you can see, establishing your credit score requires research and an assessment of your financial position. I urge you to consider establishing your credit score and ensure that you  repay your monthly installments on time.



A.Sydney is an attorney at law by profession in Trinidad and Tobago. She specializes in AML/CFT/FIU  Compliance, Taxation and provides Corporate Secretarial Services. Kindly explore the website for her portfolio of companies: .





Life in a Cell…

I lament the complete lack of regard for the proverbial “moment” by my generation and I. We spend the vast majority of our day scrolling through pointless news feeds and reading irrelevant updates. These things do not in anyway enrich the value of our lives or assist in our personal development. I am oftentimes prompted to update the software on my phone and it makes me wonder if I am upgrading myself often. Perish the thought that I was doing the same thing last year around this time. That will be contrary to my progressive nature.

Life in a cell…phone is an unpaid , full time job. There are numerous requests awaiting my acceptance. Just thinking of all the advertisements that pop up in my feed raises my blood pressure. Various updates about other interactions that are of absolutely no value to me. There are new stories waiting to be seen. New displays of egos waiting to be inflated. Recycled lack of good self-esteem selfies resurfacing. Unattractive faces with toned bodies waiting for a “like” or “comment”. If I oblige, the notifications will be cleared, if I accept the requests and appease you…I receive absolutely no monetary reward for doing this.

Life in a cell…phone takes away from enjoying the moment. When last have you had a face to face conversation, while leaving your prison warden (cell…phone) in your pockets? Have you noticed that your “friend” got a new haircut? Have you engaged in a  conversation with your friends without mentioning a viral video? I know many couples who would not have a relationship if they had no Wifi connection or electricity. We honestly believe that  exchanging free text  messages on the available instant messaging applications constitutes communication. We think that we can know someone after sending and receiving a few free messages. At least, I hope that I am worth more than a free text message.

Life in a cell…phone distracts from the red flags.The things that we accept at the start of our relationships, will be the things that we regret and admit close to the demise of our relationships. The red flags are always there, but we are distracted by our maximum security cell…phones to notice. On the outside looking in, your peers may point out flaws in your partner, but you do not have the time to investigate because you are indisposed in serving your sentencing in your cell…phone.

Life in a cell…phone blocks us from achieving personal excellence. Imagine how you can become more valuable at your organization by taking some new courses. There are different seminars and workshops at your disposal. Knowledge is power, and this power that is being conferred is free. In this Information Age, what do we really know? Our minds remain chained to the distractions that are being fed to us by our oppressors. And we consume these distractions with glee and wonder why we can’t improve our standards of living. The good news is , that you may receive a pardon or be due for parole if you  remember to live in the moment and not in your cell…phone.



A.Sydney is an attorney at law by profession in Trinidad and Tobago. She specializes in AML/CFT/FIU  Compliance, Taxation and provides Corporate Secretarial Services. Kindly explore the website for her portfolio of companies: .


Fail Gracefully

I am the stone that the masons refused. I have learned that struggle is a friend. My dreams have sustained me during the famine. I have learned to not need anything, I continue to live beneath my means. I have not reached the pinnacles that I plan to reach. I continue to work without ceasing, ignoring those who claim to be my opponents. As far as I am concerned, as long as I am in the game, there is no competition. Do not be misled , I have failed multiple times. I have invested in start-up ideas that appeared to be lucrative but the market forces were unfavorable and I lost my investments.

Falling is easy. It is effortless. Les Brown instructs that  we ought to fall on our backs, when we fall. According to him, if we  can look up, we  can get up. Failure is a faithful friend. Take note of your failure and cherish the lessons learnt. It is heartbreaking when you invest your time, money, effort and energy in a project and it fails. Life is the opposite of the education system, you are examined and then you learn the lessons.

Learn your lessons well. If you do not learn these lessons, I can assure you that you will fail again. Take it easy on yourself and look up. Rock bottom was the starting point for many success stories. Do not fear failure, embrace it, smile and in the words of the immortal Peter Tosh,”pick yourself up, dust yourself off and start all over”. Fail Gracefully.

Introducing the Sydney Group

Dear Fellow Human,

I solve problems for a living. I am curious about the workings of everything around me. I have penetrated multiple markets and I am hungry to pierce the seal of many more. By profession, I am an attorney at law.  Permit me to introduce some of the member companies of the Sydney Group:

  1. A.Sydney Solutions Company Limited-This company offers corporate secretarial services such as company and business registration.
  2. Iris Workshops and Consultancy Services Limited-This company offers online workshops on Estate Planning, Contract Law, Hunan Relations , and Emotional Intelligence.
  3. Eryn Zydney Educational Solutions- This business offers tutoring services, proofreading services and consultancy services in respect of goal setting, time management, career guidance and multiple assessments.
  4. Sydan Maintenance Services Company Limited- This company offers Painting Services, Pressure Washing Services and Lawn Care Services.
  5. Leii’s Online Marketing Services-This business provides online exposure to companies on social media.

Different topics will be explored in this forum ranging from education, to start-up ideas to financial literacy. Please indulge me and bear with me on the journey of the A.Sydney Group .


The content in the subsequent posts are provided for informational purposes only and not for the purpose of providing legal advice. You should contact your attorney at law to obtain advice with respect to any particular issue or problem.


A.Sydney is an attorney at law by profession in Trinidad and Tobago. She specializes in AML/CFT/FIU  Compliance, Taxation and provides Corporate Secretarial Services.




Dream On: Keep your dream alive and resist the urge to succumb to reality

In his refreshing poem titled,  In Your Hands Martin Carter said “I do not sleep to dream, but dream to change the world”. Life is a dreadful abyss without dreams. Day dreaming is nourishing for the soul while dreams at night rejuvenates the human spirit. Deadlines are important to realize your dreams. Short term goals are essential in bringing your dreams to pass. I am a dreamer. The circumstances beyond my control are temporary inconveniences that must be endured on my path to achieve personal excellence.

Frank Sinatra in his infinite wisdom warned us to dream, dream, dream is his song Dream. He cautioned that things were never as quite as they seemed. Your present situation does not in anyway define your ultimate destination. I live to dream. We are the generation of dreamers. We have challenged the status quo and oftentimes it was the result of a dream.

Aerosmith told us to “dream until your dreams come true” in their classic song called  Dream on . Do not be misguided, you must be diligent to make you dreams come true. You will face disappointments and failures on your journey. Let your dream be your operating guide, ignore the opposition . I am yet to see  statues of critics. Put away your feelings in your pockets, descend the stairs of your ivory towers and work relentlessly.

Good night, wishing you sweet dreams, and DREAM ON!



A.Sydney is an attorney at law by profession in Trinidad and Tobago. She specializes in AML/CFT/FIU  Compliance, Taxation and provides Corporate Secretarial Services. Kindly explore the website for her portfolio of companies: .