Time to buy less on time

If you will remember our Dear President encouraged us all to go out and shop as a way of getting over all the uncertainty & confusion after 911. He assured us it was safe to return to malls and by jiminy cricket, wouldn’t we all feel a lot better with a warm Starbucks Latte’ in our hands and a bag full of goodies safely tucked under our arm. He was right. We would, because for a vast majority of us, buying makes us feel better.

 Call it a sign of the times, but a good consuming public is a happy public, and since you can get credit easier than you can apply for a passport most of us have the ability to purchase as much as it takes to cheer us up.  Could be a reason we are so far in debt as well. In reality being in debt should not make us feel better but the act of buying and instant gratification does; two diametrically opposing feelings.  Sadly some can carry on the former and really could care less about the latter, thus the rise in debt consolidation companies, and debt clinics and a lot of personal bankruptcies.  

The fact that a majority of those debt consolidations clinics are nonprofits, owed and operated by the very companies we are using to charge our lives away is either a very ironic situation or just a downright cruel joke; you or I should not be laughing very hard at. Just so you know there are a lot of traps associated with the little plastic cards as of late and since no one is advertising some of the newer ones thought I should share.  If your late with one bill, you can trigger a clause that alerts all of the other credit cards, mortgagee companies and anything else you might have a credit balances with  that its okay to raise your interest rates. So the car that was a rock solid, 14% is now 26% and the late charges are higher if you should miss a payment cause it was either the car or pay for Billy’s broken arm! Can they do that? Yeah they can. You remember that thing you got from the credit card company in print the size of say this here that explained you’re screwed if you miss any payments, well that is what happened you got screwed! A recent beckoning of the credit card execs to capital hill also shed some light on some other very important things they have been doing as an industry. Such as you will be charged extra every time you go over your spending limit and when you do that your general interest rate will be raised up as well. So the more you use it, the more it is going to cost you; regardless if you never miss a payment. Cash advance fees are going up along with the balance transfer fees and just remember, what happens to one happens to all. If you are late with one payment all the cards consider their payments late and can raise their interest rate accordingly. For more on this debacle take a look see @ the following url. (http://www.fool.com/ccc/secrets/secrets.htm)


One thought on “Time to buy less on time

  1. From Buzz in Orlando..

    A. Banks are not your friend. They’re in a very competitive business with a lot of overhead; think of all the money tied up in nearly idle branch offices, executive pay, and etc. It ain’t a sweat shop; it’s your money “at work.” If they actually gave a crap about their tellers and customers who visit their banks, they’d have security cameras and other devices to protect their human element at least as well as their money.

    B. “You’ll have to come into the bank to straighten this out.” is a lie. The right answer is “No I don’t. You made the mistake. Fix it.” or, “My three grandkids all have chicken pox and I think I’m coming down with it, too. But if you insist, I’ll be right over.”

    C. Sometimes a call to the bank pointing out how many years you’ve been a customer, how many accounts you have at the bank, and so on, will get your bumped credit card rate lowered. If not, find another bank. Enjoy the toaster.

    D. When was the last time you gave a bundle of cash to your Congressman or sent him to Scotland for a round of golf? Right. Oh, John Q Public, you mean the Please Don’t Rip Me a New One Fair Banking Act you proposed didn’t get out of committee. Go figure.

    E. Banks, hospitals, insurance companies, the phone company, and so on ALL make mistakes. That’s why some states have a consumer protection agency. That’s why states have insurance commissioners and utility dudes. Put your gripe in writing and copy the state dudes or, better yet, just let the state dudes handle it and let the errant company figure their way out. Wisconsin now handles complaints online. Cool.

    F. Don’t forget about the Fair Credit Collections Act. Send the jerks a letter within 30 days that the bill is in dispute.

    G. Take a look at the Uniform Commercial Code. Most states have adopted it as part of their statutes. Payable upon receipt or ten days? Invoices mailed so late that ontime payment is impossible? Late charges being billed that are nowhere in any terms or on the invoice? I don’t think so.

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