card debt – 4 Walls And A View http://4wallsandaview.com/ Tue, 15 Mar 2022 00:02:07 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=5.9.3 https://4wallsandaview.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/06/icon-5.png card debt – 4 Walls And A View http://4wallsandaview.com/ 32 32 Bronco Partners Debt Consolidation Scam 2022 https://4wallsandaview.com/bronco-partners-debt-consolidation-scam-2022/ Tue, 15 Mar 2022 00:02:07 +0000 https://4wallsandaview.com/bronco-partners-debt-consolidation-scam-2022/ Ad Disclosure: We earn referral fees from advertisers. Learn more Is BroncoPartners a scam? We will let you be the judge. Bronco Partners entices you by sending you a direct mail with a “personalized invite code” and a low interest rate of 3% to 4% to consolidate your high interest credit card debt. You will […]]]>

Ad Disclosure: We earn referral fees from advertisers. Learn more

Is BroncoPartners a scam? We will let you be the judge.

Bronco Partners entices you by sending you a direct mail with a “personalized invite code” and a low interest rate of 3% to 4% to consolidate your high interest credit card debt. You will be directed to BroncoFunding.com or myBroncoPartners.com. More than likely, you will not qualify for one of their debt relief loans and they will try to switch you to a more expensive debt settlement product.

  • have you been “pre-approved” for a $70,000 loan?
  • Have you been told that your interest rate will drop from 19.90% to 3.15%?
  • Were you promised that your monthly payment would go from $1,320 to $323.40?
  • Have you been sold a monthly savings of $996.60?
  • Did you receive a letter in your mailbox from the Loan Acceptance Department?
  • Did your letter look like this?
Bronco Partners Debt Consolidation Scam 2022 1

It’s not new. Many unscrupulous debt marketing companies have used this as a business model for years. They lure you in with the low interest rate, shackle you for a week, then let you know you don’t qualify for a loan. They then offer you very expensive debt settlement options.

Bronco Partners BBB
Editorial credit: Kate Kultsevych

Is Broncos The partners Legit or a scam?

Crixeo.com rewarded Broncos The partners a 1-star rating (data collected and updated as of February 19, 2021). We hope the information below will help you make an informed decision on whether to do business with Knights Funding. We hope the information below will help you make an informed decision on whether to do business with Knights Funding.

  • Broncos The partners operates two websites, BroncosThe partners.com & myBroncos The partners.com.
  • Broncos The partners is part of a collection of almost 50 websites that we discovered. All are affiliated and listed below.
  • Our belief is that Broncos The partners operates so many different websites in order to escape the huge amount of complaints and negative articles on the internet.
  • We advise caution when working with Broncos The partners. Affiliate websites have several negative reviews and scam complaints.
  • Broncos The partners operates under the sovereign protection of the Mandan, Hidatsa and Arikara Nation (a/k/ MHA Nation), a Native American tribe.

Broncos The partners may be affiliated with the following websites:

  • Hawkeye Associates
  • Brice Capital
  • Capital of the Bruins
  • Loan Dale
  • Yellowhammer Associates
  • Big Apple Associates
  • Cornhusker Advisors
  • badger advisors
  • Rockville Advisors
  • Snowbird Partners
  • Gulf Street Advisors
  • Partners earlier
  • Old Dominion Associates
  • Harrison Funding
  • Johnson Funding
  • Taft Financial
  • Georgetown Funding
  • Memphis Associates
  • Tate Advisors
  • Patriot Funding
  • Malloy loan
  • Plymouth Associates
  • Silvertail Associates
  • Safe Path Advisors
  • Coral Funding
  • neon funding
  • Cobalt Advisors
  • Saxton Associates
  • Hornet Partners
  • Colony Associates
  • First State Associates
  • Polk Partners
  • Ladder Advisors
  • Corey Advisors
  • Pennon Partners
  • Jayhawk Advisors
  • Clay Advisors
  • Great Lakes Associates
  • Pin Advisors
  • Alamo Associates
  • punch partners
  • Partners of the Montagne Blanche
  • Steele Advisors
  • Grand Canyon Advisors
  • Loan of gliders
  • lucky marketing
  • Golden State Partners
  • Pin Advisors
  • Derby Advisors
  • Graylock Advisors
  • Tuck Associates
  • punch partners
  • Bowling Associates
  • Ballast Associates
  • Tweed Loan
  • loan competition
  • Graphite Financing
  • August Funding
  • Broadstar Financial
  • Salvation Funding
  • Stallion loan
  • Pebblestone Financial
  • Sussex funding
  • Lafayette financing
  • Funding for guardian angels
  • Bridgeline financing

Broncos The partners Reviews and ratings

Broncos The partners and its affiliate websites are not accredited by the BBB and have been the subject of numerous complaints and negative press under various names.

MEC Distribution LLC

At one point, Broncos The partners and its affiliate website operating as MEC Distribution, LLC. The Better Business Bureau issued its first alert on this company in February 2018:

In February 2018, BBB staff visited Fargo ND addresses provided by MEC Distribution and found that all locations were vacant and building management explained that although rent was paid by MEC Distribution, the spaces in office were not used. MEC Distribution LLC has provided BBB with a mailing address for complaint handling in Bloomfield Township Michigan. BBB’s mail to this address was returned as “undeliverable as addressed – undeliverable”. Currently, BBB does not have a physical location for this business.

BBB has confirmed with the North Dakota Department of Financial Institutions that Lafayette Funding is not licensed in North Dakota as a debt settlement company. Additionally, BBB contacted building management at the Lafayette Funding Claims address in Bismarck, North Dakota, and learned that Lafayette is not located at that address. BBB advises extreme caution when dealing with this entity.

In February 2018, BBB staff visited the Fargo ND addresses provided by MEC Distribution and found that all locations were vacant and building management explained that although rent was paid by MEC Distribution, the spaces of office were not used. MEC Distribution LLC has provided BBB with a mailing address for complaint handling in Bloomfield Township Michigan. BBB’s mail to this address was returned as “undeliverable as addressed – undeliverable”. Currently, BBB does not have a physical location for this business.

HaFinancing of the Knights BBB Reviews

You won’t find a BBB file on Financing of the Knights because the complaints haven’t started coming in yet. However, we have reviewed some complaints from its affiliate websites:

Cathy M. – 1 star review

They changed their name to Salvation Funding. After seeing this note, I understand why. I don’t know how they got my information, but they need to be stopped.

Terry W. – 1 star review

Beware of bait and switch shippers. The terms are “extremely different” from those advertised! It’s a waste of time.

My goal is to help others realize that it’s a waste of time! Pebblestone Financial’s advertisement is definitely misleading in my opinion. After my conversation with Fred, his response was, “we can definitely help you…I’ll call you tomorrow morning with the details…have a pen and paper ready to write down the numbers.” The sender includes in fine print… This review is not guaranteed if you do not meet the selected criteria.

It also further states: “This review is based on information in your credit file indicating that you meet certain criteria.” In my case, I’m not behind on payments, and neither will I be. I am current on all outstanding debts and my credit history demonstrates it. When Fred called the next morning… his terms were totally ridiculous and, in my opinion, “predatory loans”. When I asked Fred…are those the terms of Pebblestone’s offer, he said yes. I replied, I’m not interested in those terms and he hung up the phone immediately with no further conversation.

The reason I responded to Pebblestone Financial’s offer was to consolidate and simplify with one payment and take advantage of the low pre-approved average rate of 3.67%. While I currently pay between 10.9% and 12.9% to credit card companies…this offer was attractive. The sender stated in BIG BOLD PRINT: You have been pre-approved for a debt consolidation loan with a rate as low as 3.67%. The pre-approved loan amount was actually $11,500 more than my total debt consolidation.

In summary… it’s definitely a “Bait and Switch” scheme in my opinion. I checked BBB feedback before responding to this offer and have not seen any negative feedback. Now I see other very similar answers with the same “Bait and Switch” experience. Hope this helps others avoid wasting time finding out about these unethical practices of Pebblestone Financial.

The Rent-A-Tribe Program

In recent years, hiding behind the protection of a Native American tribe has been made popular by internet payday lenders. In July 2018 Charles Hallinan, “the payday loan godfather”, was sentenced to 14 years in prison for providing payday loans through the Mowachaht/Muchalaht First Nation in British Columbia. In January 2018, Scott Tucker was sentenced to more than 16 years in prison for running an illegal $3.5 billion payday loan business while operating under “sovereign immunity” from the Modoc tribe of the United States. Oklahoma and the Santee Sioux Tribe of Nebraska.

Why do we focus on Broncos The partnersThe negative reviews?

We urge you to do your own research and due diligence on Broncos The partnersespecially when it comes to your Personal finance. We urge you to be careful what you find on the Internet. Compare the good and the bad and make an informed decision. In our experience, where there is smoke…there is fire. But you make the call.

Knights Funding Review

Bronco Partner Review – Caution Notice

Bronco Partners attracts you by sending you a direct mail with a “personalized reservation code” and a low interest rate of 3% to 4% to consolidate your high interest credit card debt. You will be directed to KnightsFunding.com or myKnightsFunding.com. More than likely, you will not qualify for one of their debt relief loans and they will try to switch you to a more expensive debt settlement product.

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Looking for credit card relief? Don’t Believe These Debt Consolidation Myths | national company https://4wallsandaview.com/looking-for-credit-card-relief-dont-believe-these-debt-consolidation-myths-national-company/ Tue, 08 Mar 2022 16:39:48 +0000 https://4wallsandaview.com/looking-for-credit-card-relief-dont-believe-these-debt-consolidation-myths-national-company/ PHOENIX–(BUSINESS WIRE)–March 8, 2022– As Americans’ credit card debt levels rise, 29% are facing trouble with their liabilities, according to New York Life. This means that millions of people may need solutions such as debt consolidation, but may find information about the process confusing or misleading. “Debt consolidation offers a way to combine multiple debts […]]]>

PHOENIX–(BUSINESS WIRE)–March 8, 2022–

As Americans’ credit card debt levels rise, 29% are facing trouble with their liabilities, according to New York Life. This means that millions of people may need solutions such as debt consolidation, but may find information about the process confusing or misleading.

Debt consolidation offers a way to combine multiple debts into one payment to provide a streamlined way to repay. It’s often a great solution for people overwhelmed by multiple bills looking to regain control of their money,” said Michael Sullivan, personal financial consultant at Take Charge America, a non-profit housing and credit counseling agency. “But like other forms of debt relief, it can be difficult to separate truth from fiction.”

Sullivan busts five common debt consolidation myths:

  • You cannot pursue the consolidation yourself. False. Despite what you may hear elsewhere, debt consolidation is a process that you can initiate yourself. Consolidation can take many forms, including a debt management plan, balance transfer credit cards, and personal loans. Research the different solutions to determine which works best for you. A non-profit credit counseling session can also offer an unbiased assessment of your unique situation.
  • Consolidation eliminates your debt. False. Although consolidation is a great way to control your debt by combining multiple debts into one payment, you still have to pay off the balance. Consolidation is not forgiveness.
  • You must have good credit to pursue debt consolidation. Mostly false. When applying for a consolidation loan, good credit can help you get better terms and a lower interest rate. If you explore a debt management planyour credit score is not a factor in qualifying for the plan or obtaining lower interest rates.
  • You always save on interest. False. You can save on interest, depending on the terms of your consolidation loan. But even with a lower interest rate, you might end up paying more interest over the life of the loan if you extend the repayment period.
  • Consolidation traps you in a cycle of debt. False. Like other debt relief options, consolidation is a tool to help you regain control of your financial situation. It doesn’t solve the underlying problem, which is often overspending and mismanagement of money. If you don’t solve these problems yourself, you can easily get into debt.

To learn more about debt consolidation or other debt relief options, visit take over america.

About Take Charge America, Inc.

Founded in 1987, Take Charge America, Inc. is a non-profit agency providing financial education and counseling services, including credit counseling, debt management, student loan counseling, housing advice and bankruptcy advice. He has helped over 2 million consumers nationwide manage their personal finances and debts. To learn more, visit takechargeamerica.org or call (888) 822-9193.

Show source version on businesswire.com:https://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20220308006031/en/

CONTACT: Tim Gallen

Aker ink

(480) 335-6619

tim.gallen@akerink.com

KEYWORD: ARIZONA UNITED STATES NORTH AMERICA

KEYWORD INDUSTRY: FUNDING OF PROFESSIONAL SERVICES

SOURCE: Take Charge America, Inc.

Copyright BusinessWire 2022.

PUBLISHED: 08/03/2022 11:39 / DISK: 08/03/2022 11:39

http://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20220308006031/en

Copyright BusinessWire 2022.

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What is a Signature loan and how does it work? https://4wallsandaview.com/what-is-a-signature-loan-and-how-does-it-work/ Thu, 03 Mar 2022 21:48:17 +0000 https://4wallsandaview.com/what-is-a-signature-loan-and-how-does-it-work/ If you’re looking for a loan that doesn’t require collateral, a signature loan might be a good option. A signature loan can be used for almost any purpose. Plus, you can receive funds quickly – some lenders issue funds the same business day. However, like all financial products, these loans have drawbacks. Some lenders charge […]]]>

If you’re looking for a loan that doesn’t require collateral, a signature loan might be a good option. A signature loan can be used for almost any purpose. Plus, you can receive funds quickly – some lenders issue funds the same business day.

However, like all financial products, these loans have drawbacks. Some lenders charge fees and you may receive a high interest rate. Before applying for a signature loan, review the details of these loans to make sure it’s the right choice for you.

What is a signature loan?

A signature loan is an unsecured personal loan. Unlike a secured loan, this type of loan doesn’t require you to post collateral — something of value, like a bank account or a house — that a lender can seize if you don’t repay the loan. Instead, the loan is secured by your signature, which represents a legal promise to repay the loan funds.

Since the loan is unsecured, lenders generally charge a higher interest rate than secured loans, such as mortgages and car loans. The average interest rate for signature loans is often lower than the average credit card interest rate.

Also, loan funds can be used for almost any purpose, such as medical emergencies, debt consolidation, and major life events.

How does a signature loan work?

When you apply for a signature loan, a lender considers factors such as your credit history, income, and credit score to determine if you qualify for a loan. These factors also help a lender determine your interest rate and loan amount.

If you are approved for a signature loan, a lender will give you a cash lump sum. You then repay the loan amount, plus interest, over a set repayment period that typically ranges from 24 to 60 months or more.

What are the best uses for a signature loan?

The best use of a signature loan depends on your unique financial situation. Here are some scenarios where using one might make sense.

Debt Consolidation

If you have high-interest debt, such as credit card debt, using a signature loan to consolidate debt might be a good financial decision. Debt consolidation involves paying off your existing debts with a new loan. If you qualify for a signature loan with an interest rate lower than the average rate of your current debt, you can save a ton of money on interest.

Emergencies

Signature loans also work well for covering unexpected expenses, such as medical emergencies, auto repairs, and home repairs. If you don’t have emergency funds or the expense is too large to cover, you may be able to receive funds quickly.

Major life events

If you need to pay for an expensive event, like a wedding, moving to another state, or a birthday party, a signature loan could help. Remember to only borrow what you can afford to repay.

Where can you get a signature loan?

You can get a signature loan from several financial institutions, including banks, credit unions, and online lenders.

Banks

Traditional banks offer signature loans. If you already have a relationship with a bank, contact their customer service to see if they offer signed personal loans. You may qualify for an interest rate reduction for being an existing customer. Alternatively, you contact a bank by phone to see if they offer unsecured personal loans.

credit unions

Some credit unions offer signature loans, and the interest rate is often lower than those offered by banks. For example, the average rate for a three-year unsecured personal loan at a credit union was 8.95 percent on June 25, 2021, according to the National Credit Union Administration. In contrast, the three-year average rate on a personal loan at a bank was 10.09%.

To take out a personal loan from a credit union, you must be a member or apply for membership.

Online lenders

Several online lenders offer unsecured personal loans. To find them, you can visit an online marketplace or search for individual lenders. One of the benefits of applying with an online lender is that most allow you to prequalify to check your estimated rates and terms, without hurting your credit score.

Advantages and disadvantages of signature loans

Before taking out a signature loan, be sure to weigh the pros and cons.

Benefits

  • Quick funding. Do you need cash fast? Some lenders may issue your loan funds the same business day or a few business days after loan approval.
  • No collateral needed. Since all signature loans are unsecured loans, you don’t have to worry about a lender repossessing your car or foreclosing your home (unless a court grants judgment to the lender) .
  • Lower interest rates than credit cards. The average personal loan interest rate is generally lower than the average credit card interest rate. For example, since March 3, 2022, the average personal loan rate is 10.28%.

The inconvenients

  • Some lenders charge fees, such as application fees, late fees, and prepayment penalties. These fees can significantly increase your borrowing costs.
  • Potentially high interest rates. If you have bad credit, a lender may charge you a high interest rate. Some lenders have advertised maximum interest rates above 30%.
  • Late payments can hurt your credit score. If your payment is more than 30 days late, it can cause significant damage to your credit score, making it harder to qualify for future loans.

How to get a signature loan

If you think getting a signature loan is right for you, follow these steps to get one:

  1. Review your credit report. Inaccurate and incomplete information can lower your credit score. Before applying for a loan, review your credit reports to make sure they are accurate. You can view your Experian, Transunion and Equifax credit reports for free each week until April 20, 2022, by visiting com. If you find a credit report error, dispute it with every credit agency that lists it.
  2. Prequalify with multiple lenders. Compare your loan options by prequalify with as many lenders as possible. After you submit your application, a lender will perform a soft credit check to review your credit, which has no impact on your credit score. If you prequalify, you will receive an estimate of rates and terms.
  3. Submit a formal loan application. Once you have chosen a lender, complete a loan application. You will likely be asked to provide personal and financial information, such as your name, employer, social security number (SSN), income, and bank statements.
  4. Sign the loan agreement and receive the funds. If your application is approved, a lender will send you a loan agreement to sign. Read the conditions carefully and sign if you accept them. Then the lender must deposit the funds into your bank account within a few business days.
  5. Repay your loan. Be sure to repay your signature loan as promised. If you make late payments, you could pay late fees and it could hurt your credit, preventing you from taking out future loans. Sign up for autopay or use a spreadsheet to stay on top of your due date.
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When is it okay to use your emergency fund to pay off debt? https://4wallsandaview.com/when-is-it-okay-to-use-your-emergency-fund-to-pay-off-debt/ Fri, 25 Feb 2022 19:41:15 +0000 https://4wallsandaview.com/when-is-it-okay-to-use-your-emergency-fund-to-pay-off-debt/ Select’s editorial team works independently to review financial products and write articles that we think our readers will find useful. We earn commission from affiliate partners on many offers, but not all offers on Select are from affiliate partners. For many people, getting out of debt as quickly as possible is a top priority, especially […]]]>

Select’s editorial team works independently to review financial products and write articles that we think our readers will find useful. We earn commission from affiliate partners on many offers, but not all offers on Select are from affiliate partners.

For many people, getting out of debt as quickly as possible is a top priority, especially if you’ve been carrying debt for several years and are crushed by high interest charges. So if you are so close To get rid of your balance once and for all, you might be wondering if it’s a good idea to use savings from an emergency fund to pay off your debt for good.

Why paying off a debt can seem so urgent

Another advantage when it comes to paying off debt quickly is being able to redirect your money to other goals. Northwestern Mutual 2020 Planning and Progress Study found that 58% of respondents with debt believe that their balance is preventing them from reaching major financial milestones. Of these respondents, 36% have delayed making major purchases, 29% said they have delayed saving for retirement, 18% have delayed buying a home, 8% have delayed having children and 7% delayed marriage.

So being able to finally reach certain financial goals can be a big factor when it comes to aggressively paying off your debt. If you’re spending $500 a month on credit card or loan payments, you can redirect that $500 toward retirement savings, a wedding, or buying a house once you’re debt-free. .

Should you use your emergency fund to pay off your debts?

The short answer is this: it depends on how much debt you have and how much money you have in your emergency fund.

Keep in mind that your an emergency fund exists to cover unforeseen expenses that would otherwise slow you down financially and put you further into debt. So if you had to use a significant portion of your emergency fund to pay off debt, you could significantly reduce your ability to cover a large, unexpected expense. This is why you need to consider the amount of your debts and the size of your emergency fund.

For example, if you have $10,000 in your emergency fund and a credit card balance of $5,000, paying off the debt would wipe out half of your emergency fund — and that could put you in a predicament. more vulnerable financial position if you don’t have one. other savings. But if you have an emergency fund of $10,000 left and a credit card balance of $500, you may be more likely to use some of your savings while feeling confident in your ability to manage. a significant unforeseen expense.

“If you reimburse these types of [debts] makes you vulnerable to a financial crisis that could potentially hurt your credit, file for personal bankruptcy, or be temporarily or permanently impoverished, so the financial reward of saving interest on debt reduction may not be worth the risk,” says JR Robinson, a personal finance expert at Belief.

And if you decide you could use some of the money in your emergency savings to pay off your debt, don’t forget to take steps to replenish your emergency fund.

Methods to pay off debt faster

There are many strategies you can use to get out of debt a little faster and make the process a little more manageable. If you have several debts with variable interest rates, you can try the debt snowball method to help you make additional payments on debt with the lowest balance first (while only making minimum payments on your other debts). This allows you to pay off a balance much faster, which will also motivate you to keep working on your other balances.

On the other hand, the debt avalanche method targets the debt with the highest interest rate first (while making the minimum payments on your other debts). This helps you save the most on interest charges.

You might also consider using a personal loan to consolidate multiple debts, especially if making payments on multiple balances seems a bit overwhelming. With debt consolidation, you will request a specific amount sufficient to cover the total of all your debts and the lender will send a specific amount to each of your creditors to pay off those debts. Thereafter, you will only be responsible for repaying the personal loan in the form of fixed, equal monthly payments plus interest. Most personal lenders — like LightStream and SoFi — allow you to apply for a debt consolidation loan.

LightStream Personal Loans

  • Annual Percentage Rate (APR)

    2.49% to 19.99%* when you sign up for autopay

  • Purpose of the loan

    Debt consolidation, renovation, car financing, medical expenses, marriage and more

  • Loan amounts

  • terms

  • Credit needed

  • Assembly costs

  • Prepayment penalty

  • Late charge

SoFi Personal Loans

  • Annual Percentage Rate (APR)

    5.74% to 21.28% when you sign up for autopay

  • Purpose of the loan

    Debt consolidation/refinance, home improvement, relocation assistance or medical expenses

  • Loan amounts

  • terms

  • Credit needed

  • Assembly costs

  • Prepayment penalty

  • Late charge

Another effective option can sometimes be to use a 0% APR balance transfer card if high interest rates make it difficult to pay off your credit card debt. Suppose you apply for a credit card like the Citi Simplicity® Card or the U.S. Bank Visa® Platinum Card: you will be able to transfer the balance of an existing credit card to a new card and pay off as much as you can with an introductory offer at 0% interest.

Citi Simplicity® Card

  • Awards

  • welcome bonus

  • Annual subscription

  • Introduction AVR

    0% for 21 months on balance transfers; 0% for 12 months on purchases

  • Regular APR

    14.74% to 24.74% variable

  • Balance Transfer Fee

    5% of each balance transfer; $5 minimum

  • Foreign transaction fees

  • Credit needed

U.S. Bank Visa® Platinum Card

On the secure site of US Bank

  • Awards

  • welcome bonus

  • Annual subscription

  • Introduction AVR

    0% for the first 20 billing cycles on balance transfers and purchases*

  • Regular APR

    14.49% – 24.49% (variable)*

  • Balance Transfer Fee

    Either 3% of the amount of each transfer or $5 minimum, whichever is greater

  • Foreign transaction fees

  • Credit needed

Finally, creating a budget can help you pay off debt faster while benefiting your overall financial health.

“By tracking your money and changing your spending habits, you can free up money to pay off debt faster,” says Robinson. “Look for ways to spend less money and also make more money. Where can you save money? Can you cook more and order less? How about a side gig or selling some items you own?”

Check out Select’s in-depth coverage at personal finance, technology and tools, The well-being and more, and follow us on Facebook, instagram and Twitter to stay up to date.

Editorial note: Any opinions, analyses, criticisms or recommendations expressed in this article are those of Select’s editorial staff only and have not been reviewed, endorsed or otherwise endorsed by any third party.

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5 Ways to Improve Your Credit Score in 2022 https://4wallsandaview.com/5-ways-to-improve-your-credit-score-in-2022/ Wed, 23 Feb 2022 16:18:45 +0000 https://4wallsandaview.com/5-ways-to-improve-your-credit-score-in-2022/ Building your credit history can be as simple as checking your credit report for errors and improving your on-time payment history. (iStock) Having good credit can help you get favorable terms on a number of products, from mortgages to credit cards. On the other hand, having a bad credit rating can make it harder to […]]]>

Building your credit history can be as simple as checking your credit report for errors and improving your on-time payment history. (iStock)

Having good credit can help you get favorable terms on a number of products, from mortgages to credit cards. On the other hand, having a bad credit rating can make it harder to get loans and new lines of credit.

If you’ve set a goal to boost your credit score in 2022, here are five strategies to consider:

  1. Review your free credit reports
  2. Improve your on-time payment history
  3. Pay off credit card debt
  4. Keep old accounts open
  5. Open a secure credit card

Learn more about each credit repair strategy in the sections below and visit Credible to sign up for free credit monitoring services. You can also purchase a number of financial products, such as credit card consolidation loans and secured credit cards, for free without affecting your credit score.

WHY IS GOOD CREDIT IMPORTANT?

1. Review your free credit reports

The first step to increasing your credit score is to identify areas where you can make improvements. An effective way to do this is to review your credit reports with the three major credit bureaus: Equifax, Experian and TransUnion.

Check your credit reports for errors, such as missing accounts or clerical errors that result in erroneous missed payments. Then dispute any errors by contacting the credit bureau, which is responsible for correcting inaccurate information through the Fair Credit Reporting Act.

You can request free weekly credit reports until April 20, 2022 at www.AnnualCreditReport.com. After that, you can pull your credit reports once a year for free. You can also sign up for free credit monitoring services on Credible, so you can identify errors or fraud as quickly as possible.

HOW YOUR CREDIT RATING IS EFFECTED BY HARD AND SOFT APPLICATIONS

2. Improve your on-time payment history

Your payment history has the biggest impact on your credit rating, accounting for 35% of your score using the FICO scoring model. Derogatory marks, including missed payments, can last up to seven years on your credit report, although they have less of a negative impact over time.

Signing up for automatic payments to pay your bills and utilities is an easy way to improve your on-time payment history and boost your credit score. It may also be useful to download a free budgeting app to track your expenses and bills across all your bank accounts.

HOW MUCH CREDIT DO YOU NEED FOR A MORTGAGE?

3. Pay off credit card debt

Another factor with a strong impact on your credit score is your the credit utilization ratio, which is the amount of debt you owe relative to your available credit. For example, if you owe $500 on a credit card with a credit limit of $4,500, your utilization rate on that account is approximately 11%.

Borrowers who regularly have high balances on their credit cards may have a high credit utilization rate, which can lower your credit score and cost you money over time due to interest rates. students.

Let’s say you have $3,000 in credit card debt on an account that has a $5,000 line of credit and an interest rate of 17%. If you only make the minimum payments, your credit utilization is 60%, which is about twice what credit reporting agencies recommend. Plus, you’ll likely pay hundreds of dollars in interest charges while you pay off your debts.

One way to reduce your credit usage and save money on interest is to consolidate credit card debt at a lower interest rate with a personal loan. As a bonus, personal loans can diversify your credit mix, which can further boost your credit score. You can compare personal loans for debt consolidation on Credible with a soft inquiry, which will not impact your credit score.

HOW TO CHECK YOUR CREDIT SCORE FOR FREE WITH NO PENALTIES

4. Keep old accounts open

Credit bureaus like to see a well-established credit history, which includes the average age of credit accounts in your name. If you have old credit accounts that you may not be using, it may be useful to keep them open to demonstrate a sufficient length of credit history.

Likewise, it may be wise to avoid opening new credit card accounts while you’re building your credit score. New accounts will shorten your average credit age, and they will also have a temporary (and minimal) negative impact due to thorough investigation when you apply for the account.

You might also consider becoming an authorized user on a trusted friend or relative’s credit card account. If they have a consistent and on-time payment history on an old account, it can help you build your own credit report without much effort on your part.

HOW STUDENT LOANS CAN HELP YOU DEVELOP GOOD CREDIT

5. Open a secure credit card

If you don’t have an established credit history, it can be difficult to qualify for a traditional unsecured credit card. But without new lines of credit, it can be difficult to build your credit.

Some credit card issuers offer secured credit cards, also known as charge-to-credit cards. These accounts allow you to borrow money from a line of credit that you secure with a cash lump sum. With a secured credit card, you may need to pay $1,000 upfront – then you can use the credit card up to a certain limit.

Secured credit cards can help you establish a timely payment history and diversify your credit mix. This can help you boost your credit score quickly while avoiding interest charges. You can visit Credible to compare a variety of credit cards, including secured cards.

BUY NOW, PAY LATER LOANS WILL BE FORMALLY INCLUDED IN EQUIFAX CREDIT REPORTS

Do you have a financial question, but you don’t know who to contact? Email the Credible Money Expert at moneyexpert@credible.com and your question might be answered by Credible in our Money Expert column.

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Factors to Consider Before Applying for a Consolidation Loan https://4wallsandaview.com/factors-to-consider-before-applying-for-a-consolidation-loan/ Mon, 21 Feb 2022 15:32:18 +0000 https://4wallsandaview.com/factors-to-consider-before-applying-for-a-consolidation-loan/ Posted on Monday, February 21, 2022 at 10:32 a.m. Join AFP’s more than 100,000 followers on Facebook Buy an AFP subscription Subscribe to AFP podcasts on Apple podcast, Spotify and pandora News, press releases, letters to the editor: augustafreepress2@gmail.com Advertising inquiries: freepress@ntelos.net (© fizkes-stock.adobe.com) More people than you think are in debt. It’s a part […]]]>
business financing
(© fizkes-stock.adobe.com)

More people than you think are in debt. It’s a part of everyday life to juggle bills and many households juggle more builds than they can handle, struggling to pay for them all. Consolidation loans can help put consumers on the right path to paying off their debts and living a life more within their means. However, there are factors to consider before applying for consolidation loans. Here are a few :

Can you simplify your invoices?

You might have a lot of bills coming in every month. As you lay them out in front of you, it can feel overwhelming – with good reason. But there may be things you can do to make your life and the bills you have to pay each month easier. Once you’ve done a few things, like placing large bills on autopay and budgeting for credit card minimums, you’ll be able to more easily see whether or not consolidation loans are good for your situation.

Would that lower your interest rates?

If you have decent credit, you’ll probably be able to get a personal loan that gives you a lower interest rate than you currently have on your credit cards and other types of debt. Spending less on interest can help you apply more on interest, reducing debt faster. But not everyone has good credit, and if yours is bad, the interest rates on a loan might actually be higher or even higher than what you currently have. You will want lower interest rates to make consolidation loans worth your time.

Can you avoid damaging your credit?

Whether you have good or bad credit, you don’t want to damage it. Having consolidation loans can help boost your credit score, but if you miss those payments, it’s even worse than missing a credit card payment in terms of what it will do to your credit. Before getting a loan of this nature, you must feel that you can make these payments – guaranteed – so that you do not end up in a worse situation than what you already have in front of you.

Are you able to make financial changes?

You have credit card debt for a reason. You are going to have to make changes in order to make a consolidation loan worth your time and effort. Learn more on how to make a budget and stick to it. If you are certain you will be able to make changes to the way you spend, getting the loan can help you right away and in the long run. If you continue to spend as you do, the loan will not help you as much as you would like.

Which lender is right?

There are a lot of lenders in the market today and while some are trustworthy and honest, some will try to get you to sign something which will make things worse for you overall. Research the history, reliability, and trustworthiness of the lender before approaching them. You don’t want to borrow money from someone you don’t trust. Look for surprise fees, check loan origination or closing fees, and understand everything you can about the lender before moving forward with options.

If you want to regain your financial freedom and pay off your debts, loan consolidation could be the right path for you. But there are many factors to consider before applying for consolidation loans. You’re going to want to be sure this is the right path for you before you take it. Your goal is to improve your debt situation, not to fall into something that could lead you further astray. Consolidation loans can certainly help your situation, if they are right for you.

History of Johnny Depp Jr.

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]]> Everything you need to do before interest rates go up https://4wallsandaview.com/everything-you-need-to-do-before-interest-rates-go-up/ Tue, 15 Feb 2022 14:30:00 +0000 https://4wallsandaview.com/everything-you-need-to-do-before-interest-rates-go-up/ Photo: Cheryl Savane (Shutterstock) With inflation leading 7% and consumer confidence at 10– low year, it is a foregone conclusion that the Federal Reserve will increase the federal funds rate in the near future. This could be at their meeting in Marchor it could happen even sooner to a emergency meeting, but it’s coming. The […]]]>

Image for article titled Everything You Should Do Before Interest Rates Rise

Photo: Cheryl Savane (Shutterstock)

With inflation leading 7% and consumer confidence at 10– low year, it is a foregone conclusion that the Federal Reserve will increase the federal funds rate in the near future. This could be at their meeting in Marchor it could happen even sooner to a emergency meeting, but it’s coming. The first hike will likely be followed by a series of hikes that could take the policy rate from its current level of 0.08% to 1.6% or more by the end of 2023. This would mean that the banks’ prime interest rate (the best rate at which they will lend money) would likely end up around 4.6%.

The rate change will most directly affect credit card interest rates, home equity lines of credit and other types of variable interest debt, as these rates are based on the banks’ prime rate, which changes much in tandem with the Fed rate. Other types of loans (mortgages, car loans, etc.) have different influencing factors that affect their interest rates, but the ripple effect of a rate hike would likely increase the cost of all borrowing.

Here are some things for consumers to consider in order to prepare for higher interest rates in the near future.

Do not worry: Rising interest rates are not (necessarily) a bad thing. “From an investment perspective, interest rates rise when the economy is generally doing well,” Daniel Milan, managing partner of Cornerstone Financial Services, told CNBC. “People are spending…if you look at it from a different angle, it means positive things are happening.”

Call your credit card company and ask for a lower rate: According to a CreditCards.com survey, 84% of the time, people were able to lower their credit card interest rate simply by calling their issuer and asking. is now a good time to make that call.

“If you cut the rate, it will be a little more than a quarter of a percentage point that the Fed will raise rates, so you will come out on top,” Matt Schulz, chief credit analyst at LendingTree, told CBS.

Refinance your home loan: Although mortgage interest rates are not directly linked to the prime rate, this does not mean that they do not increase, too much. According to Freddie Mac’s Data, 30-year mortgage rates rose from 2.73% a year ago to 3.69% last week. This is still a historically low rate, but many economists expect it to go further In the coming months. A Zillow survey indicated that approximately 78% of American households haven’t refinanced their home in the last year. If you’re eligible for a re-fi, you should consider turning it on now.

Make a big purchase: If you are planning to make a major purchase on credit, it may be a good idea to pull the trigger now and lock in lower interest rates, provided that it is corrected. Prices are likely to continue to rise a bit anyway, so even spending the money makes sense. Borrow money for a yacht, a car or that second home you had your eye on could end up being more expensive if you buy it in a few months than if you buy it now, Mr. Moneybags.

Consolidate your debt: If you’re like me and think more about how best to manage your credit card debt than whether it’s a good time to buy a boat, you should consider whether a debt consolidation loan is right for you, and try to lock it in before rates go up. You might also consider deferring your debt to a credit card with balance transfer before these rates increase, also.

Refinance student loans: This is a particularly good time for people with student loans. Federal student loan payments and interest suspended until May 1, and more federal relief might arrive (probably not, but you never know). If you paid for your education with private loans, student loan refinance rates have been at or near recent all-time lows. Consider taking advantage of these discounted rates while they are available.

Consult a financial advisor about your portfolio: Most financial experts usually advise consumers with 401(k)s or IRAs to invest in long-term growth and leave their funds alone, but now is the time to review the details of your portfolio and discuss any concerns, questions or potential changes with a professional financial advisor.

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32% of Americans are hiding a financial secret from their partner, according to a survey https://4wallsandaview.com/32-of-americans-are-hiding-a-financial-secret-from-their-partner-according-to-a-survey/ Thu, 10 Feb 2022 19:19:24 +0000 https://4wallsandaview.com/32-of-americans-are-hiding-a-financial-secret-from-their-partner-according-to-a-survey/ A new TD Bank survey claims nearly a third of couples experience financial infidelity, such as hiding a major purchase or having secret debts. (iStock) Just in time for Valentine’s Day, TD Bank revealed how couples in serious relationships spend – and hide – their money in its seventh annual report Love and Money Survey. […]]]>

A new TD Bank survey claims nearly a third of couples experience financial infidelity, such as hiding a major purchase or having secret debts. (iStock)

Just in time for Valentine’s Day, TD Bank revealed how couples in serious relationships spend – and hide – their money in its seventh annual report Love and Money Survey.

Nearly a third of Americans (32%) are hiding a financial secret from their romantic partner, an 11% increase from last year. The most common financial secrets are a big purchase (40%), large credit card debt (18%) and a hidden bank account (13%).

Most common financial secrets hidden from a partner

It should be noted that half (50%) of partners in an unhappy relationship experience financial infidelity, compared to a third (32%) of those in a happy relationship, according to the survey. TD Bank spokeswoman Alissa Van Volkom said “when debt, financial secrets or unemployment enter a relationship, both partners need to stand firm on what matters to them.”

“The pandemic has shown that you can’t put a price on a lot of things – financial health, stability and happiness included,” Van Volkom added.

Keep reading to learn more about managing money with your partner, including how to be more transparent with your financial behavior. You can visit Credible to compare rates on a variety of financial products, so you and your partner can achieve your financial goals together.

PAYING OFF $10,000 OF CREDIT CARD DEBT WITH A PERSONAL LOAN COULD SAVE YOU THOUSANDS

How couples can become more transparent about money management

Keeping secrets in a relationship can sow guilt and embarrassment – ​​and financial infidelity is no exception. Being more honest with your spouse about your shared finances can help build trust with clear financial goals.

“Couples should regularly discuss three things: how they’re managing their budget, unexpected or upcoming expenses, and rising debt,” Van Volkom says.

Read more in the sections below for tips on how to have open conversations with your partner about financial transparency.

Discuss your budget

Although creating a shared budget might not seem like the most romantic date idea, it can help you and your partner see how you manage your income and expenses. Tracking your spending can help you identify areas where you might be overspending and find opportunities to increase your savings.

An easy way to streamline your budget is to download a finance app that automates the process. Budgeting apps can be linked to your bank accounts to give you a clear picture of your financial situation. More than half (57%) of Americans have financial apps on their smartphones, according to the TD Bank survey.

HOW TO CLEAR YOUR CREDIT CARD STATEMENTS QUICKLY

Plan for unexpected expenses

Among Americans who hide a financial secret from their partner, the most common is that they hide a large purchase (40%). For couples with shared finances, making a major purchase without your partner knowing about it can make budgeting and tracking expenses difficult.

One way to plan for unexpected expenses is to create an emergency fund that covers about three to six months of expenses. You can start your emergency fund by setting up a direct deposit of your paycheck into a high-yield savings account. You can compare savings account rates on Credible for free without affecting your credit score.

ARE BABY BOOMERS RESPONSIBLE FOR THE HOUSING SHORTAGE?

Make a plan to pay off your debts

Nearly a fifth (18%) of survey respondents with financial indiscretion are hiding secret credit card debt. This is problematic because revolving credit card debt that is carried over for a month comes with high interest rates, making it difficult to pay it off.

When discussing a debt management plan with your partner, consider the following strategies for paying off credit card balances:

  • Snowball method or debt avalanche. The debt snowball method is to pay off the credit cards with the lowest balances first, while the debt avalanche strategy is to pay off the debt with the lowest interest rates first. the highest.
  • Credit card balance transfers. Applicants with very good to excellent credit may qualify for a 0% APR introductory period, effectively allowing you to pay off credit card debt without interest. You can compare balance transfer card offers from several credit card companies at once on Credible.
  • Debt consolidation loans. It is a type of unsecured personal loan used to pay off high-interest debt in fixed monthly installments at a lower rate. Interest rates on two-year personal loans are currently at historic lows, according to the Federal Reserve.

You can visit Credible to learn more about debt management and compare personal loan interest rates. This way, you and your partner can make an informed decision on how to pay off credit card debt.

MILLENNIALS AND GENERATION ZERS PLAN TO REDUCE STUDENT LOAN PAYMENTS WITH REFINANCING

You have a financial question, but you don’t know who to contact? Email the Credible Money Expert at moneyexpert@credible.com and your question might be answered by Credible in our Money Expert column.

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Should you take out a bill consolidation loan? https://4wallsandaview.com/should-you-take-out-a-bill-consolidation-loan/ Fri, 04 Feb 2022 19:31:14 +0000 https://4wallsandaview.com/should-you-take-out-a-bill-consolidation-loan/ Our goal at Credible Operations, Inc., NMLS Number 1681276, hereafter referred to as “Credible”, is to give you the tools and confidence you need to improve your finances. Although we promote the products of our partner lenders who pay us for our services, all opinions are our own. Taking out a bill consolidation loan can […]]]>

Our goal at Credible Operations, Inc., NMLS Number 1681276, hereafter referred to as “Credible”, is to give you the tools and confidence you need to improve your finances. Although we promote the products of our partner lenders who pay us for our services, all opinions are our own.

Taking out a bill consolidation loan can make it easier to manage your bills and potentially lower your monthly expenses. Learn more. (Shutterstock)

If you’re having trouble coping with multiple debts, bill consolidation could be a solution. Bill consolidation is the process of combining multiple bills (like medical bills and credit card bills) into one debt by taking out a new loan.

A personal loan to consolidate your bills could help you get a lower interest rate if you’re burdened with high-interest debt. But before applying for this type of loan, you should consider all the pros and cons.

What is an Invoice Consolidation Loan?

A bill consolidation loan, also known as a debt consolidation loan, is a personal loan that you use to pay off your existing debt. If you are approved for one, a lender will give you a lump sum that you can then use to pay your bills. Or, the lender can use the funds to pay your creditors directly. Then you will start making payments on the new loan with one monthly payment.

Some benefits of taking out a debt consolidation loan include reducing the number of bills you have to keep track of and potentially reducing your interest rate and monthly payment amount. But some lenders may charge an origination fee for processing the loan, which is usually deducted from your loan amount. Before accepting the loan, make sure you fully understand all fees.

When does a bill consolidation loan make sense?

Signing up for bill consolidation could be a good financial decision in the following scenarios:

You want a lower monthly payment

If you’re having trouble keeping up with your monthly payments, loan consolidation can reduce the amount you pay each month. This could be the case if you get a lower interest rate or replace an existing debt with a loan with a longer repayment period. Remember that choosing a longer repayment period will likely mean you’ll pay more interest over time.

You want a single payment

Coping with multiple bill payments can be a challenge. And if you miss a payment, it could lower your credit score and lead to late fees. A bill consolidation loan combines your monthly payments into one. As a result, you may be less likely to make late payments, which could save you money and help avoid damaging your credit.

You want a lower interest rate

If your credit score and finances have improved since you took on debt, you may qualify for a lower interest rate with a bill consolidation loan. This could help you save money on interest and get out of debt much faster, especially if you’re consolidating high-interest credit card debt.

How to consolidate your debts with a bill consolidation loan

If taking out a bill consolidation loan is right for you, here’s what you should do to consolidate your debt:

  1. Make a list of your debts. Create a list of all the debts you want to consolidate. Add the total to find out exactly how much you need to borrow.
  2. Compare lenders. Research and compare different lenders. This will help you find the lowest rates and the best option for your situation.
  3. Get prequalified. Prequalify with as many lenders as possible to get an idea of ​​the rates and terms you could receive if approved.
  4. Choose the best loan for you. Once you’ve compared several loan options, choose the best lender for your situation.
  5. Submit a loan application. After choosing a lender, submit an official loan application. The lender will look at your credit score, income, debt-to-income ratio (DTI), and other key factors to determine if you qualify.
  6. Receive your loan funds. If you are approved for a loan, your loan funds are usually deposited into your account after you sign your loan agreement. This usually takes one to seven business days, depending on the lender.
  7. Pay off your debts. Use the loan funds to pay off the debts you want to consolidate, if your lender doesn’t pay your debts directly.
  8. Make payments on your bill consolidation loan. Repay your loan as agreed – remember to make payments on time to avoid possible late fees. Sign up for automatic payment, if possible, or use a bill management app to find out when your payment is due.

What to consider when choosing a lender

When shopping for a personal loan, it’s important to compare lenders and rates. This helps you find the best deal available. Here are some things to consider when doing comparison shopping:

  • Annual percentage rate – The APR of your loan takes into account your interest rate plus any fees. This is an important number because it helps you understand the true cost of the loan.
  • Costs – Origination fees, late fees, and prepayment penalties are all common types of personal loan fees. If possible, choose a lender that has no origination fees so that any funds you receive are used to consolidate your debts.
  • It’s time to finance — Consider how long you will need the loan funds. Some lenders can issue your funds the next business day, but others can take much longer. If you need your money quickly, choose a lender known for its speed of financing.
  • Minimum credit score — Different lenders have different minimum credit score requirements. While some lenders will approve borrowers with fair credit, other lenders will require you to have good to excellent credit.
  • Advantages of the lender — Many lenders offer additional perks, such as free credit monitoring and tailored monthly payments. These may be a factor in your decision.

Bill Consolidation Loan FAQs

What types of debt can I consolidate?

You can use your loan funds to consolidate several types of debt, such as credit card bills, utility bills, payday loans, and more. But before taking out a debt consolidation loan, check with the lender if they have any usage restrictions for borrowers. Some lenders may prohibit you from using personal loan funds to repay a student loan.

Should I consolidate all my debts?

You are allowed to choose which debts you want to incorporate into a debt consolidation loan. Consolidating all your debts may not be possible depending on the loan amount you receive. Also, consolidating certain debts may not make sense if it results in a higher interest rate.

Does debt consolidation hurt my credit rating?

When you apply for a debt consolidation loan, a lender does a thorough credit check to review your credit history. As a result, your credit score could temporarily drop by up to five points, according to FICO. But if you pay off your loan on time, it will add a positive payment history to your credit reports, which could increase your score over time.

Bill Consolidation Loan Alternatives

When it comes to simplifying your bills and potentially lowering your interest rate, a The debt consolidation loan is not your only option. Here are some alternatives to consider.

Balance transfer credit card

Looking to consolidate your credit card debt? A balance transfer credit card lets you transfer a balance from one credit card to another, and many offer an introductory interest rate of 0% or low for a certain period of time.

By taking advantage of one of these offers, you could save a lot of money on interest. The downside is that once the promotional period expires, you’ll have to pay the standard credit card interest rate on any remaining balance. Additionally, you may have to pay a balance transfer fee, which typically ranges from 3% to 5% of the transfer amount.

Student Loan Refinance

If you have student loans and want to consolidate them, student loan refinancing is probably a better option than a bill consolidation loan. When you refinance your student loans, you take out a private student loan to pay off your existing federal or private student loans.

If you have good credit and a decent income, you may qualify for a lower interest rate. The downside is that if you refinance your federal student loans, you will lose access to federal benefits, such as income-based and forbearance repayment plans.

The debt avalanche method

If you don’t want to consolidate or refinance your debt, you can use a debt repayment strategy to effectively eliminate your debt.

With the debt avalanche method, you first pay off your debt at the highest interest rate. You are putting any extra money you have on this debt while making the minimum payments on your other debts. Once that debt is paid off, you move on to the debt with the next highest interest rate.

One advantage of this method is that it helps you save the most interest. But it might take you a long time to pay off your debt with the highest interest rate if it is a large amount.

The Debt Snowball Method

The debt snowball method is another popular method you can use. With this repayment strategy, you pay off your debt with the smallest balance first. This means investing any extra money in this debt while making the minimum monthly payments on your other debts. Once that debt is eliminated, you move on to paying off the debt with the next smaller balance.

One of the main advantages of the snowball method is that you will eliminate your small debts more quickly. When you see this progress, it can motivate you to keep reducing your debt. But the downside is that you might pay more interest with this strategy because your high-interest debts might not be the first ones you focus on.

Home equity loan or home equity line of credit

If you’re a homeowner, you may be able to tap into the equity in your home by taking out a home equity loan or a home equity line of credit (HELOC).

Since these loans are secured by your home, they may come with lower interest rates than you would get with an unsecured personal loan. But you risk foreclosure on your home if you fail to repay the loan.

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6 Financial Habits We’ve Normalized (and Why It’s Time to Stop) https://4wallsandaview.com/6-financial-habits-weve-normalized-and-why-its-time-to-stop/ Sat, 29 Jan 2022 07:03:45 +0000 https://4wallsandaview.com/6-financial-habits-weve-normalized-and-why-its-time-to-stop/ We all pick up bad habits. If we keep these bad habits long enough, they normalize. It is normal to drink too much, eat too much, spend too much. Over time, many of us have normalized some bad financial habits. These habits somehow invade us. Before we know it, they are part of our lives. […]]]>

We all pick up bad habits. If we keep these bad habits long enough, they normalize. It is normal to drink too much, eat too much, spend too much.

Over time, many of us have normalized some bad financial habits. These habits somehow invade us. Before we know it, they are part of our lives.

And they cost us money. So much money. Month after month after month, our bad financial habits are costing us money.

Here are six habits many of us have normalized, and here’s what we could all do instead.

1. Having credit card debt

Americans owe about $1 trillion on their credit cards. And credit card debt is the most expensive type of debt, with your credit card company only getting richer ripping you off with high interest rates.

But a website called Fiona could help you pay that bill tomorrow.

Here’s how it works: Fiona can match you with a low-interest loan that you can use to pay off every credit card balance you have. Earnings? You only have one bill to pay each month, and since the interest rate is much lower, you can get out of debt much faster. Also, no credit card payments this month.

If your credit score is at least 620, Fiona can help you borrow up to $250,000 (no collateral required) with fixed rates starting at 2.49% and terms from 6 to 144 months.

Fiona won’t make you wait in line or call a bank. And if you’re worried you won’t qualify, you can check online for free. It only takes two minutes and could save you thousands of dollars. Really worth it.

All that credit card debt — and the anxiety that comes with it — could be gone by tomorrow.

2. Spending more than we earn

It’s too easy to overspend. There are too many temptations, especially with so many purchases available at the click of a button. It takes a lot of discipline not to overspend.

We have another way to help you stop overspending: Stop overpaying for things.

Wouldn’t it be nice if you got an alert when you’re shopping online at Target and you’re about to overpay? This free service does just that.

Just add it to your browser for free, and before you pay it will check other websites including Walmart, eBay and others to see if your item is available for less. Additionally, you can get discount codes, set up price drop alerts, and even view the item’s price history.

Let’s say you’re shopping for a new TV and assume you’ve found the best price. Here’s when you’ll get a pop-up letting you know if that exact TV is available elsewhere for less. If there are discount codes available, they will also be automatically applied to your order.

Over the past year, this has saved people $160 million.

You can get started with just a few clicks to see if you’re paying too much online.

3. “Investing is too scary.”

Ooooohhh, investing, so scary. Golly, that sounds so intimidating.

It doesn’t have to be that way. You don’t even need a lot of money to get started – and you can even get free shares (worth up to $200!) if you know where to look.

Whether you have $5, $100, or $800 to spare, you can start investing with Robinhood.

Yes, you’ve probably heard of Robinhood. Investment beginners and pros alike love it because it doesn’t charge commission fees and you can buy and sell stocks for free – with no limits. Plus, it’s super easy to use.

What is best? When you download the app and fund your account (it takes no more than a few minutes), Robinhood deposits a share of free stock into your account. It’s random, though, so the stock could be worth between $2.50 and $200 – a nice boost to help you build your investments.

4. Just guess our budget

Don’t want to budget? Try budget for people who hate budgets.

The 50/30/20 method is one of the easiest ways to control your spending. No 100-line spreadsheets or major lifestyle changes required.

Here’s how it works: Take your total after-tax income each month and divide it in half. This is your base budget (50%). Take the rest and divide it into personal expenses (30%) and financial goals (20%).

Let’s break it down: it’s 50% for things like utilities, groceries, medicine, minimum debt payment, and other essential expenses. Then there’s 30% for fun: Thai takeout, your Netflix subscription, dressing up a skeleton on your lawn for Halloween.

This leaves 20% for your financial goals, such as additional debt reduction payments (anything above the minimum monthly payment) as well as retirement savings and investments.

5. Never change our car insurance

Here’s the problem: Your current car insurance company is probably overcharging you. But don’t waste your time shopping around for different insurance companies looking for a better deal.

Use a website called EverQuote to see all of your options at once.

EverQuote is the largest online marketplace for insurance in the United States, so you’ll get the best options from over 175 different carriers delivered directly to you.

Take a few minutes to answer a few questions about yourself and your driving record. With this information, EverQuote will be able to give you the best car insurance recommendations. In minutes, you could save up to $610 per year.

6. Assuming we can’t afford to own part of a business

Take a look at the Forbes list of the richest people and you’ll notice that almost all billionaires have one thing in common: they own another business.

But if you’re working for a living and don’t have millions of dollars lying around, that might seem totally out of reach.

But with an app called Stash, that’s not necessary. This lets you be part of something that’s normally reserved for the richest of the rich – on Stash, you can buy coins from other companies for as little as $1.

It’s true – you can invest in coins from well-known companies, such as Amazon, Google, Apple and many more for as little as $1. The best part? If these companies benefit, so will you. Some companies even send you a check quarterly for your share of profits, called dividends.1

It takes two minutes to register, and it’s completely secure. With Stash, all of your investments are protected by the Securities Investor Protection Corporation (SIPC) – that’s the industry buzzword for “Your money is safe.”2

Plus, when you use the link above, Stash gives you a $5 sign-up bonus once you’ve deposited $5 into your account.*

1Not all stocks pay dividends and there is no guarantee that dividends will be paid each year.

2Please note, SIPC coverage does not insure against potential loss of market value.

For securities priced above $1,000, buying fractional shares starts at $0.05.

* Offer is subject to promotion Terms and conditions. In order to participate in this promotion and receive the bonus, you must successfully open an individual brokerage account in good standing, link a funding account to your Invest account AND deposit $5.00 into your Invest account.

Paid non-customer endorsement. See reviews on the Apple App Store and Google Play. See important disclosures.

Investment advisory services offered by Stash Investments LLC, an SEC-registered investment adviser. This material has been distributed for informational and educational purposes only and is not intended to be used as investment, legal, accounting or tax advice. Investing involves risk.

Mike Brassfield (mike@thepennyhoarder.comlisten)) is a lead writer for The Penny Hoarder. When it comes to bad habits, he’s an expert, really a grand master in a way.

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