Consolidating Student Loan Debt

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You see advertisements all over the place where you can get really low student loan consolidation rates. Just be careful and do your research!!

My student loans have been consolidated together. At the time, the interest rate wasn’t that low, but what it did was lump the debt together and I only had to make one loan payment a month. I really enjoyed that feature. My husband’s loans are also consolidated.

Now, why did we consolidate our loans together to have just one huge loan?? There are a few big reasons why we haven’t done that. Please note that this might not hold true for all consolidation vendors, but it did for the company our loans are through. The minute we put those two loans together, they cannot ever be separated. Now, I hope to be married for life, but things can happen. It’s not too hard to divide the checking account balance. It would be very difficult to try to split up student loan payments. So that is one reason. Another big reason is that both of our names would be tied to the large consolidated amount. If something happened to one of us, the other would be responsible for the full amount. As I understand it right now, if something happened to me tomorrow, my loan would be forgiven and my husband would not have to pay it back. That would not be the case if we combined our loans together.

Don’t take my word for everything here, because this has just been my experience. Things could be different for a company that you are consolidating your student loan debt through. Just be cautious and read the fine print.

Technorati Tags: debt, student+loan+consolidation, student+loan, consolidate+debt

Calling Your Credit Card Companies

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You may have heard that something to try with your credit cards is to call and see if they will lower your rate. This tactic can work even better if you can threaten to move your balance to another credit card.

I have tried that with credit card #1, the big kahoona. They did lower my interest rate from 9.99% to 7.99%. I was pretty happy with myself and pretty proud that I was able to negotiate a lower interest rate.

Not even two months later, I get a change in terms of agreement from my card. They were raising my rate to 10.99%!! I started to wonder if that was my punishment for negotiating a lower credit card rate. Since then, it has grown and grown to it’s present rate of 16.9%. Have I been late with a payment – no. Have I done anything different – no. They just decided they needed more money from me.

I want to call again so badly, but I am not a fibber. They will see right through me when I say I can transfer my balance (it’s almost $24,000 remember) to another credit card. I have a feeling they will just laugh at me. Times like these I wish I was more agressive. Or at least I’d get a very nice card offer in the mail :)

Technorati Tags: credit, credit+card, negotiating+credit+card+rates, lower+interest+rate

Less Late Fees = More Money to Pay Debt

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I don’t know about everyone else, but I do not like late fees. I don’t mean to return something late, but it seems as though with everything going on my life, making sure a video is returned is the last thing on my mind. Or making sure that credit card is paid on time…. Or making sure your bills are paid by the due date…

The list goes on and on.

Late fees are all over, and I actually keep track of the late fees I pay within my Quicken file. I want to see how they add up and then take a good look at them. I started doing that a few years ago, and I have been doing so much better with avoiding late fees.

Technorati Tags: late+fees, avoiding+late+fees, credit+card+late+fees

Smarter Auto Loan Debt

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When you are thinking about buying your next vehicle, think twice before purchasing a brand new car. The minute you drive that car off the lot the value of the car declines by thousands of dollars. Unless you are putting down a good amount of money for a down payment – your car loan will quickly surpass your car’s value.

To prevent this, try to find a nice gently used vehicle. The price is often more affordable and you will not suffer the huge loss in value that you encounter with a new vehicle. In a nutshell, you will get more car for your buck, financially speaking.

Unfortunately, mechanically speaking, that is a whole different story. Any car you purchase is worth trying to negotiate a warrenty.

Technorati Tags: auto+loan, car+loan, down+payment, car+value

Freeze My Credit Card Please

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I read a while ago a little trick to help curb impulse buying with your credit card. You get a freezer-safe container, fill it with water, place your credit card in it and then stick it in the freezer. The time it will take to melt so you can use your credit card will give you enough time to really think about if you need the thing you want to buy.

Technorati Tags: credit, credit+card, impulse+buying

A Gift From My Credit Card Company

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I am part of an “appreciation” program with my credit card. I get so many points for every dollar that I spend with my credit card.

The other day, I got an envelope in the mail and it said “Gift For You.” I was thinking – hmmm….maybe they lowered my interest rate or increased my balance again.

I never would have imagined what was in that envelope!

It was a sheet of detachable magnets. On the magnets were words such as “joy”, appreciation, happy, simple things … you get the idea. I hate to be so cynical, but I really wish they would use the money I pay for finance charges to a better use than some magnets.

Fine…I admit it, I did play with them for a few minutes but that was it – LOL.

Technorati Tags: credit+card, credit, appreciation+program, credit+card+gift

Now Who Is Going To Make the Money?

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I thought this was cute, and I had to share.

I am a work-at-home-mom (WAHM). My job does entail working normal business hours, so my husband is responsible for the child care when I am working.

My son comes in my office and tells me “Momma no work no more. Me make the money!”

The way he said it almost convinced me. When I am older, I would welcome him making the money for me :)

Technorati Tags: work+at+home, wahm