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What You Need to Know About the ATM, Debit, and Gift Cards You Own - 07/29/10 12:03 PM
You've probably heard a lot about new rules relating to the financial cards you carry in your wallet. But, if you're like most people, you aren't exactly sure what changed, what it means to you, or what you need to do. To help you gain a clearer understanding of the new rules, the article below focuses on what's changed for ATM, debit, and gift cards. Overdraft Charges for ATMs and Debit Cards The Federal Reserve has issued new rules about the overdraft fees that banks can charge on your ATM or debit card usage. If you haven't already received a notice (1 comments)
Top 10 Credit Don’ts During the Loan Process - 07/28/10 12:09 PM
Many are taking advantage of interest rates at historic lows, either by re-structuring debt with a refinance or purchasing a new home. However, the recent economic crisis has created even tougher guidelines and credit requirements and there are some things that consumers must be aware of when applying for a loan.Leading nationwide credit expert and President of Credit Resource Corporation, Linda Ferrari, developed the top 10 credit don'ts during the loan process, to help you get your arms around those things that can unknowingly wreak havoc on your loan transaction.1. Don't do anything that will cause a red flag to be (3 comments)
10 Things We Overpay For: - 07/27/10 01:09 PM
Does the avalanche of news about layoffs, business losses and a declining stock market have you looking for ways to cut your spending so you can beef up your savings? We're here to help, with suggestions for less-expensive alternatives to ten everyday purchases (for more ideas, go to www.BillShrink.com, which tracks cell-phone plans and credit cards). Afternoon snacks. Do you munch protein bars as a healthier alternative to a chocolate pick-me-up? You could easily be paying more than $2 per bar and consuming just as much sugar as you would with your favorite candy bar. Stock up on fruit for a (10 comments)
Home Buyers Face Decisions that Affect Their Long-Term Financial Picture - 07/26/10 11:46 AM
Taking the step into home ownership is one of the most important financial decisions a person will make in their lifetime. There are many factors to consider when embarking on this venture. Literally hundreds of loan programs are available, and it is important to find the one that best fits your personal long-term goals. First and foremost, you must have a mortgage consultant in your corner that is willing to take the time to know what your long-term goals are. Communication is the key factor here. Curious prospective home buyers sometimes turn to Internet-based services just to see what current interest (0 comments)
Credit has become a major concern for all consumers today. Linda Ferrari, National Credit Score Expert and President of Credit Resource Corporation, put together this great video to show how to set a realistic credit score goal, how long it might take to reach a score goal, what a good score is considered to be and why having one can save thousands of dollars
I'm sure it's no surprise to you that today's economy has produced a hostile credit environment, and credit has become a major concern for all consumers. This is why I am even more committed to helping you (1 comments)
Great News for Buyers with a Short Sale! - 07/22/10 12:53 PM
There's great news from Fannie Mae for home buyers who have experienced a short sale or deed in lieu of foreclosure. To help the housing market's continued stability, Fannie Mae is changing the "waiting period" (i.e. the amount of time that must elapse after the preforeclosure or short sale event) before home buyers can qualify for a loan. Several factors will impact these changes, including the required down payment or loan to value (LTV) for the transaction and whether extenuating circumstances contributed to the individual's financial hardship (e.g. a job loss). The following chart highlights the new rules: (1)The maximum LTV (3 comments)
Qualified Military Buyers - 07/20/10 01:19 PM
Qualified military buyers can also utilize this tax credit along with other available benefits from the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), making this dollar-for-dollar tax credit extremely financially attractive with today's lower home prices and lower interest rates. That's because the VA allows qualified military borrowers to purchase certain homes in certain areas with no money down and no private mortgage insurance. To be a qualified first-time home buyer and receive a tax credit of up to $8,000, the buyer and his or her spouse cannot have owned a home in the last three years. Unlike the Home Buyer Tax Credit (1 comments)
The First Two Steps in Buying a Home - 07/19/10 12:12 PM
Statistics suggest that the Internet is the first destination and source of information for potential home buyers. In fact, nearly 80% of potential buyers reportedly begin their home buying process online. And why not? The Internet has a wealth of information and resources that can aid in the beginnings of the home buyer's search and make them feel more comfortable and confident about the process. However, when a potential buyer is ready to move forward and really begin to focus on his or her home buying goals, there are two very important steps to consider first in order to initiate a (0 comments)
The Lowdown on Social Lending - 07/15/10 01:33 PM
You've probably heard of social networking sites like MySpace and Facebook, but have you heard of social lending sites? Over the past few years, several websites have sprung up that combine features of the omnipresent social networking sites, and commerce sites like eBay®. These sites allow individuals to become either a borrower from or a lender to the online community. The website collects basic financial information from would-be borrowers, as well as the intended purpose for the money. The site then posts a short profile of the borrower, so that other members of the community can choose whether or not to (2 comments)
Five Tax Breaks Every Homeowner Should Know - 07/14/10 12:02 PM
Benjamin Franklin once said, "In this world nothing can be said to be certain, except death and taxes." More than 200 years later, this certainly holds true. And while being a homeowner won't add years to your life, the modern tax code has a number of benefits certain to make your tax bill lower. The following are a few ways your CPA or Tax Preparer can help you save: Take an interest in your mortgage interest - Statistics show that only about half of homeowners claim this valuable deduction. Make sure you're one of them. On average, qualified American homeowners save (0 comments)
Boost your savings account.....with out even trying! - 07/13/10 02:01 PM
Annual income aside, there's not a person among us who wouldn't welcome the idea of having more money in their savings account. This is the money we use on everything from yearly vacations to family presents. Come holiday time, wouldn't it be nice to have an extra thousand or so dollars at your disposal? Here are a few ideas that can help to make that possible. The best part is you'll hardly feel it!Bring Your Lunch to Work - The average person spends $6 when they buy their lunch yet only $2 when they pack it themselves. That's a potential savings (0 comments)
Credit Card Fine-Print Pitfalls - 07/12/10 01:23 PM
Credit card companies are great at marketing their latest features, but before you sign on the dotted line, read the fine-print carefully and look for some of the following fine-print pitfalls: Cash Advances - The convenience of getting cash is very expensive when it comes to some
credit cards. Many credit cards not only charge an upfront fee of up to 4% of the advance, they also carry higher interest rates than other charges on the same card, and have no grace period whatsoever. But here's the sneaky part: many credit card companies will require that balances for regular purchases (2 comments)
The economic realities of the past few years have taught people some valuable lessons. One of which is: It's not what you make, it's what you keep, that counts. If you discovered that someone was stealing from you, how quickly would you act to stop them from doing it again? Would you act today, in a week, a month, or not at all? The odds are you would act sooner rather than later. So here's a question for you to consider. Is your current loan stealing money from you? Recent estimates in the news have indicated anywhere from 30-50% of (1 comments)
9 Rules to Follow when applying for a home loan - 07/08/10 11:41 AM
Lenders get very cautious when your life circumstances change during the period between applying for a mortgage and closing on it. Here are some rules that you should follow during those critical weeks: Rule 1: Do not change employers, become self-employed or quit your job Rule 2: Do not take on a long-term debt such as buying a car, boat, RV or furniture Rule 3: Do not overly use your credit cards or let your accounts fall behind Rule 4: Do not spend any of your cash reserves (you will need enough set aside to cover closing costs) Rule 5: (0 comments)
Protecting Your Credit During Divorce - 07/07/10 12:01 PM
When a marriage ends in divorce, the lives of those involved are changed forever. During this time of upheaval, one thing that shouldn't have to change is the credit status you've worked so hard to achieve. Unfortunately, for many, the experience is the exact opposite. Unfulfilled promises to pay bills, the maxing out of credit cards, and a total breakdown in communication frequently lead to the annihilation of at least one spouse's credit. Depending upon how finances are structured, it can sometimes have a negative impact on both parties. The good news is it doesn't have to be this way. By (0 comments)
Credit Reports: When One May Not Be Enough - 07/06/10 11:33 AM
Credit Reports: When One May Not Be Enough Fannie Mae has instructed lenders that they should adopt a new policy that could involve a second review of an applicant's credit report just prior to closing. When reviewing defaulted loan files, they have determined that the credit profile of a borrower may have changed from the time of the initial review of the credit report and at the time of closing. The potential impact to a borrower who has utilized credit to make significant purchases after the initial credit report could include a delay in closing, increase of closing costs and/or interest (2 comments)
The Saving Game - 07/02/10 01:16 PM
Creating and maintaining a savings account requires patience and discipline. For those of us struggling with this important mindset, here are four strategies that might make it a bit easier. Employ Your Employer - If you're lucky enough to have an employer retirement plan, take advantage and sign up for automatic deposits. Even if it's just $50 to $100 a pop, the savings can add up quickly, especially if your employer matches part or all of your qualified contributions. Think of it as another tax and, after awhile, you won't even miss it on your check. Re-Direct Your Deposits - Have (2 comments)
Tax Credit Extention ends. - 07/01/10 12:15 PM
First-time homebuyers will have until Sept. 30 to close on their purchases and land an $8,000 tax credit under a bill passed by the Senate late Wednesday. President Obama is expected to sign the bill, which was overwhelmingly approved by the House on Tuesday. The deadline had been June 30. The bill doesn't help anyone currently shopping for a home. Buyers must have signed a contract by April 30 to qualify for the tax break. At issue is when the deal must be finalized. Qualified existing homeowners also have until Sept. 30 to close on new homes and receive a tax (0 comments)
Disclaimer: ActiveRain Corp. does not necessarily endorse the real estate agents, loan officers and brokers listed on this site. These real estate profiles, blogs and blog entries are provided here as a courtesy to our visitors to help them make an informed decision when buying or selling a house. ActiveRain Corp. takes no responsibility for the content in these profiles, that are written by the members of this community.