Few things are more detrimental to your finances than payday loans. As a tool to effectively get paid before an individual receives a paycheck, a payday loan can lead to serious debt.
These loans require repayment of the principal and a fee measured as a fixed dollar amount per $100 borrowed. Military personnel are no less susceptible to these loans than civilian consumers, as a 2010 Financial Industry Regulatory Authority report found that 32 percent of enlisted and junior NCO respondents used non-bank borrowing and 11 percent of them had used a payday loan. Of civilian respondents, 9 percent had used a payday loan.
Now a recent Consumer Financial Protection Bureau white paper examined consumer behavior within the payday loan industry. Take a look at how dangerous this loan option can be for military consumers.
You might be surprised to know that errors in a credit report can and do happen. In fact, a recent study suggested that as many as 1 in 4 people found a discrepancy in their own file, and it isn’t just spelling errors that might be causing damage. Certain kinds of omitted information can be harmful as well, triggering a drop in your credit score and a limited access to future credit.
How can you determine if your credit report is hurting from missing information? What should you do about it?
Nobody lives a mistake-free life. Imagine how boring that would be. A life with no mistakes, no lessons learned and no maturation sounds unfulfilling.
At the same time, humans try to avoid disastrous mistakes. Learning to handle your money will undoubtedly cause mistakes. Just ask Cyprus.
Last week the island country’s two major banks sought a $13 million bailout. It’s really not much compared to the $650 million Eurozone leaders have handed out in the last three years. But alas, Cyprus did not receive the funds. There’s more to the story that can teach all consumers four important things.
Passive income sounds like a sweet deal. You set something up, then you sit back and let the money roll in. You can be an author and collect royalties. You can invest and make money off of interest. You can set up an ad campaign on your blog and earn income every time someone clicks on one of the ads. You can be a landlord and rent out property, and this is one of the more popular passive income options.
These are only a few ways in which you can generate passive income, but they all have one thing in common. Do you see it? They all require some form of initial investment. The author has to write the book. The investor has to have money to invest. The blogger has to build a high trafficked, well-maintained blog. Finally, the landlord has to have property to rent out. This means you have to buy property (and probably fix it up). If you want to pursue this popular form of passive income, you should take the time to learn what is involved.
When it comes to paying your children, you’ll consider allowances. But thanks to Justin Bieber and other celebrities, prepaid and credit cards are grabbing the attention of children nationwide.
Bieber, Hello Kitty and even Elvis Presley have cards with their likeness on them. That means you’ll have to figure out if there’s a suitable plastic option for your child, whether they’re 15 or 7 years old. Children see their favorite star endorsing a card and not the costs of using it. You’re the parent, so you must do the legwork.
“When will I get my refund?”
“How much will I get?”
These are the two most common questions people ask when tax season comes around, both of which depend on Form W-2, Wage and Tax Statement. Before you file this year’s tax return, you should have received a W-2 from each of your employers. Per IRS guidelines, companies had until January 31 to mail out the forms, but sometimes they are late, or misplaced, or sometimes they just get lost altogether. If you are caught in the predicament of a missing W-2, follow these three steps to recovery.
Your credit report won’t defend itself.
When a nationwide consumer reporting agency — Equifax, TransUnion or Experian — makes a mistake on your credit report, it’s up to you to get it fixed. Those companies don’t make exceptions for military consumers, as nice as that would be. As a consumer, you need to be vigilant in checking your credit and disputing errors. See More
A military personal finance roundup about Valentine’s Day seems too easy. It also seems unoriginal. Most people feel strongly about this “holiday,” either relishing in chocolates, flowers and teddy bears or despising it as a ploy by Hallmark.
So instead, this roundup focuses on important findings from Federal Trade Commission studies. Admittedly it’s a bit redundant but each personal finance blog approaches the big news a little differently. Besides, reading all these fine blog posts makes it easier to digest the news than reading the whole study. Read on.
Divorce is an all too common occurrence in our society, and it’s no secret that divorce has the potential to put your finances in the toilet. Most people who divorce cannot say with complete honesty that they planned for it, but given the statistical probability, you may want to consider planning for the possibility.
How much does your ex know about you?
If you’ve built up several thousand dollars in your checking account, it’s high time you consider other options, such as the money market deposit account. Checking accounts typically earn no interest, and those that do average just 0.05% APY. That isn’t much of a yield, but it’s the price you pay for liquidity, the ease of withdrawing whenever you’d like.
You might consider giving up that liquidity for higher interest with a savings account or CD (certificate of deposit), but these types of accounts offer little flexibility in the ability to make withdrawals or payments with the funds. Instead, a money market account can provide a sort of middle ground between checking and savings.