Keeping Your Bottom Line In Mind

Keeping Your Bottom Line In Mind

Give Yourself A Little Credit: The Bad-Credit Preparation Checklist For An Auto Loan

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Whether you are a first-time car buyer or are seeking your tenth automobile, an auto loan is within reach of everyone. If you have bad credit, however, you do need to put a bit more work into preparing for auto loans. While bad credit doesn’t prevent you from getting the vehicle of your dreams, it does take more effort. Follow the below tips to be prepared for an auto loan no matter how bad your credit may now be. Save for a Down Payment Not all car lots will require that you have a down payment. However, if you have bad credit, you will almost certainly be asked to provide a down payment, which will vary depending on the loan company, the cost of the car, your credit history, and your unique financial situation. It doesn’t hurt to check with an auto loan company to see what their individual preferences are. Generally, the more savings you can acquire for your down payment, the better. Assess Your Finances Realistically The biggest mistake a car buyer can make is overestimating how large of a car payment they can handle. Imagine the worst case scenarios in your personal finances, and try to have a cushion in case you lose a job or face unexpected financial emergencies. That way, you will be able to afford the car payment without stressing even in difficult times. Monitor Your Credit Report Get a free copy of your credit report. You are entitled to a free copy of your credit report at least once per year from the three major credit bureaus: Experian, Transunion, and Equifax. Also, if you are turned down for a credit card or loan, you can get a free credit report from the credit bureau the company used to make that decision. Once you receive the credit report, look on it to see which negative information is bringing down your credit score. If possible, try to contact each company to work out a payment plan to turn the negative mark on your credit score into a positive one. If you do this for six months or more, you may be able to turn your credit report around before securing your auto loan. Finally, keep in mind that the best way to ensure that you qualify for an auto loan is to save money before you visit a car dealership. By having a larger down payment, you will likely be able to get a car loan under the terms you want, and you can soon be behind the wheel of your new...

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3 Things That You Should Do Immediately After Getting Out On Bond For A Drug Charge

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If you were charged with a drug offense and arrested, you may have had to post bond in order to get out. Just because you have posted bail doesn’t mean that it’s all over, however—you still have a court date to go to. To ensure that your court case goes smoothly when you do have to appear in front of a judge, make sure that you do these three things immediately after getting out on bond. 1. Hire an Attorney Even relatively minor drug offenses can be taken quite seriously in court, so you are going to need legal representation. Do not take a risk and represent yourself in court. Instead, start looking for an attorney as soon as possible after you get out of jail. Hiring a lawyer now will give him or her more time to work on your case, which can make a big difference in how well things go for you when you go in front of a judge or jury. 2. Stop Using After a stint in jail, the first thing that you might be looking forward to is returning to your old habits. However, it is imperative to avoid drugs or excessive quantities of alcohol while you are pending trial. The last thing that you want is to get arrested again while you’re out on bond. In fact, you may find that you are better off staying away from the people and places that might have encouraged your use in the first place. 3. Get Help Do you have a drug problem? If so, now is the time to seek help. Not only can doing so help you turn your life around, but the judge is sure to appreciate that you are making an effort to change as well. If you are a first-time offender or if you have only been charged with a minor drug-related crime, going to rehab or otherwise seeking treatment might make a difference in the outcome of your case. This varies based on your jurisdiction, the crime that you have been charged with, your criminal record and a few other factors, so you should talk to a lawyer before assuming that rehab will help your case. Regardless, now is a good time to seek help if you have a substance abuse problem. Taking the right steps after getting out on bond is important, so remember these three things if you have recently been bonded out for a drug-related...

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Teens And Finances – Start The Lessons Now

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It’s never too soon to teach your teens about finances. Teaching your teens to be money savvy when they are young can help them grow to be mature, responsible young adults that are wise about how they make their financial decisions. So what do you need to teach your teens and how do you do it? Below, you will find some information that will help you teach your teen. Online Banking Helping your teen open their own savings account online is a great first step. Some financial institutions offer special savings accounts for teenagers that provides them with better incentives, like higher interest rates, than traditional savings accounts. Having the account online will allow you and your teen to monitor the money going in, going out and the interest that is being paid on the sum of money in the account. This savings account can help your teen acquire a line of credit when the time comes to buy a car or head off to college. Checking Accounts Checking accounts are difficult to maintain even for many adults. Maintaining a positive balance and not bouncing the account requires careful monitoring and calculations. Having an online checking account can help reduce the chances of bouncing the account. The online account gives you and your teen the ability to monitor transactions as they happen and track checks that are out waiting to be processed. This makes it much easier to know if there is enough funds in the account to cover the outstanding checks to prevent the overdraft fees. Set a Budget Help your teen calculate how much they have coming in each month and how much they have going out. Work with your teen to create a budget that will help them stay within the bounds of their income limits and to set some aside for a savings account. Learning to save now will help continue the process of saving when they are out on their own and preparing to invest in a home for their future family. Credit Awareness Credit cards are fairly easy to get these days. Make sure that your teen understands how credit cards work and how the offers that the credit card companies send out work. Yes, establishing credit for the future is very important, but make sure that your teen understands the consequences of opening lines of credit and making purchases with those credit cards. Take some time to look into the different online checking and savings account options. Then, work with your teen to come up with a good plan to begin developing financial security and responsibility for the future. For an online banking account, contact a financial institution such as TruePartner Credit...

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The Top Five Home Loan Rates In Five Of The Best States

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All of the states in the U.S. frequently undergo a data and statistics collection which allows the government and special interest groups to rank the states by living conditions and quality of life. The top five states for this year are as follows: New Hampshire, Minnesota, Vermont, Wyoming and Virginia. When you also look at the home loan rates in these states, taking up residency there looks better and better.  New Hampshire In New Hampshire, most of the rates offered for first-time buyers are below 4% right now. If you have really good credit, they are hovering at or just above 3%. When these low interest rates are combined with New Hampshire’s top ranking of “the best state in which to live,” it really makes an enticing argument to buy your first home there. Minnesota Minnesota comes in a close second, with home loan rates coming in around 4%, most of which hover between 4 and 4.3 percent. Its “ten thousand lakes” and innumerable outdoor activities are enticing to the outdoors enthusiast or the city person who has had enough of the city and wants a slower, quieter lifestyle. The Mall of America in the twin cities is also a big draw for people who are considering St. Paul or Minneapolis for their new homes. Vermont Vermont has even lower rates than Minnesota and its neighboring state of New Hampshire. Real estate here is prime; you are close to the mountains, and most of Vermont is rural and peaceful. The rates hover around 2.875% to 3.25% for a fifteen-year fixed and a thirty-year fixed mortgage rate to start (with good credit). Wyoming If you feel the need to stretch out as far as your limbs will allow, or you want to buy a ranch, then Wyoming is exactly where you want to be in terms of housing and lifestyle. Interest rates vary wildly here, from around 3.5% to close to 4.2%, possibly more if you buy property in Wyoming’s major cities. If you want a lot of property and you want it for less, you should have excellent credit, find land you like that is miles from the nearest major city, and look for the lenders that offer less than 3%. There are some in Wyoming, but you do have to track the low interest rates down. Virginia Similar to the top four states in which to live, Virginia’s home interest rates hover around 3-4%, most of which are closer to 3%. Virginia offers the first-time home buyer a vast array of land choices. You can live on the ocean and the coast, you can live in the wilderness, or you can live in the mountains. Wherever you choose to live in this state, visiting another area just to experience it is but a short drive away. There is plenty of history, historical sites and historical towns to visit too. For more information, contact Premium Mortgage Corp or a similar...

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Understanding the Common Fees Associated with Your Payday Loan

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A payday loan can save you a lot of stress if you come up short one month or have a minor financial emergency. These loans aren’t meant for long-term borrowing or major financial pitfalls but for short-term use to cover small financial hiccups. Opt for an online payday loan when your paycheck is short due to illness or when an unexpected activity fee for your child pops up. Before signing, though, make sure you are aware of all the potential fees so you can pay back the loan without any surprises. Annual Percentage Rate (APR) The APR is the interest you will pay on top of the original loan amount. This should be made available to you via an easy-to-read fee schedule. APR rates vary widely between lenders, and there may be state-imposed caps on the amount of interest a lender can charge. Since payday loans are meant to be short-term loans, this interest is often presented as a one-time fee for the period of the loan. When shopping for loans, request the actual APR for the lender instead of looking only at the “interest fee” for a 14-day loan. A lender with a lower APR will cost less if you must keep the loan longer than the initial period. For example, a lender that offers a longer loan term may advertise a higher one-time fee than one with a shorter loan term, but the actual interest rate might be be lower for the first one. This will save you money if you need a longer loan term. Origination Fees In some cases, a lender may charge an origination fee. Much like the APR, this will be available on the fee schedule. Generally this fee is low, and it is there to cover the filing of the initial paperwork and setting up the loan. Once again, origination fees vary between lenders and they may be regulated by state laws. Some lenders advertise that they don’t have origination fees, but make sure they don’t have a higher APR rate instead. Compare the origination fees and APRs of a few lenders to find one that offers the lowest of both. Third-Party Fees Occasionally, there are third-party fees you must be aware of. For example, most online payday loans require direct payment from your bank account, but some will allow you to use a debit card for payments for a small fee. If you cannot make your payment on time, you may be able to set up a payment arrangement—once again for a fee. Finally, there may be additional fees and penalties added if your payment doesn’t clear at your bank. These nonsufficient-funds fees can be charged by both the lender and your bank account holder. To gain further information about payday loans and whether they are right for you, contact a representative from a service like EZ...

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The Benefits Of A Payday Advance

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Few things in life are as frustrating as being caught without money a day or two before payday. Even though you’ll have all the money you need very shortly, you need it right now, and there isn’t a lot you can do about it. One option that you do have is a payday advance. To help you make a more educated financial decision, here is an overview of what a payday advance is and why you might want to get one: What is a payday advance? In essence, a payday advance is a very short term loan. Ideally, you will want to pay back the advance within a couple of days. If you fail to do so, then the interest can rapidly accumulate and you can end up owing a lot more than you originally borrowed. However, this does not mean that payday advances are a bad idea. If used responsibly, a payday advance can be a very valuable financial tool for many families and individuals. Why get a payday advance? If you need money on short notice, then you don’t really have that many options. Traditional loans at the bank are generally overkill for your needs. On top of that, banks might deny you a loan based on your credit. Even if you do get approved for a loan at the bank, the process can take a lot more time than you have to spare. A payday advance can be acquired in a matter of minutes, depending on where you look. Various businesses offer payday advances online, but if you are more comfortable getting the money in person, you can probably find a brick and mortar office in your area that offers cash advances. One of the biggest benefits of cash advances is that they often bypass the credit checks of traditional loans. In many cases, your credit won’t even be checked when applying for a cash advance. If your credit is checked, then the odds of you being denied are very low. That being said, you should be careful. Even though the application process may be very quick, you still want to read all the terms and conditions. If you misread some part of the contract, then you could end up paying back a lot more than you expected, or you may miss the payback date completely. As long as you pay back the cash advance as quickly as possible, you will only end up spending a small amount of money. Get in touch with a service such as USA Cash Services to learn...

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The Pros And Cons Of FHA Loans

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When you are shopping around for a new home, the dilemma of choosing the right type of financing for your mortgage comes to mind. The two primary options are between a traditional mortgage and a Federal Housing Administration (FHA) loan. FHA loans are a type of home financing that s insured by the FHA, which is a government agency. It offers some excellent advantages, but also some drawbacks to be aware of. Pro: There are smaller down payments A major benefit to choosing an FHA loan over another type of lender is that you get the opportunity at a smaller down payment. If you were to get a traditional loan, you might be required to pay around 15-20 percent of the home purchase, which could be a lot of money. However, FHA loans have been down to be as low as 3.5 percent of the purchase price. It makes it possible to by a new home even without a lot of money in the bank. Con: Only certain lenders are acceptable. FHA loans are not available by all lenders, so you have to be a little more open-minded with who you choose. For some people, this can be a burden because you have to look through the list of FHA-approved lenders. While there are many lenders on this list, it might not be available by your neighborhood bank or credit union. However, this can be an advantage if you aren’t too picky about the lender, but care more about your approval rate and getting the loan quickly. Pro: FHA loans are available for lower credit scores Another huge bonus to FHA loans is that it is easier to get approved, even if you don’t have the best credit rating. While every lender is slightly different, most lenders will look for credit scores above 600, often above 650 or higher. This is considered a good credit score, though lenders might even look for scores higher than that, depending on what is seen on their credit report. However, the FHA allows you to have a score in the 500s if you can show that you are financially secure enough to afford the loan payments. Con: More Paperwork is involved With FHA loans, it is a slightly more complicated process than a traditional mortgage. Not only do you have the basic mortgage and home buying paperwork, but you also have additional paperwork for the government-funded loan. You might want to get legal assistance with filling out this paperwork so you can be sure it is all being done correctly. This is also a drawback due to the extra time needed for approval. For more information on home loans, talk a professional like those at Dynamic Mortgage Concepts...

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Real Estate: Buying A Home On Water

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Although buying a houseboat or floating home as your primary residence is similar in ways to buying a house on land, there are differences in financing, appraisals, and the additional costs involved. Financing the Purchase A houseboat is a self-propelled vehicle on water, whereas a floating home is permanently moored and unable to move on its own. Since a houseboat can move on water, you can finance the purchase with a recreational vehicle loan. Although houseboats generally are financed over a shorter repayment period than homes on land, marine lenders often offer houseboat financing with 20-year loan terms. A floating-home loan is similar to a standard home mortgage loan, although not all lenders offer mortgage loans for floating homes. Generally, when you take out a loan for a houseboat or floating home, you need to make a down payment of 20 to 35 percent of the home’s purchase price. Interest rates vary, but lenders usually charge a higher rate for homes on water than homes on land. The interest on a floating-home mortgage typically costs 1 to 2 percentage points more; loans for houseboats cost about 3 percentage points more. The same as for a home on land, you can get pre-approved for a houseboat loan. Getting a Home On Water Appraised When it comes to appraisals, lenders and insurance companies request a thorough inspection of the hull and interior of a houseboat to determine its value. As the buyer, you pay for the marine survey. The cost varies depending on the size of the houseboat. Lenders usually use their own surveyors and divers to conduct the inspection. The appraisal for a floating home requires that the foundation below the water be inspected in addition to a traditional house inspection. Paying Added Costs Although you won’t pay property taxes on a houseboat, you will pay sales tax when you buy the home. Additional costs of ownership include insurance and dock or slip rental fees and an annual relicensing fee, which may be tax deductible. The cost of the fee is determined by the size and value of the houseboat. If you buy a floating home, you may have to pay a cost similar to a homeowners association fee. You also pay personal property taxes to the county on the assessed value of the structure. Claiming Tax Deductions Like a home on land, if you use the houseboat as collateral to secure the loan and live in it as your main home or a second home, you can deduct the interest you pay on the loan on your federal income tax return. You can also deduct the sales tax you paid when you purchased the home (which technically is a vessel) up to the state or local general sales tax rate. A floating home may qualify for the home mortgage interest deduction as well.  If you are considering buying a house on water, consider these things and contact a home loan company, such as MCS Bank, to discuss different financing options that will work best for your...

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Lifetime Annuity Vs. A Lump Sum Payout

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When you retire and can begin receiving your pension, you have a choice between a lump sum payment or a lifetime annuity. In the first instance, you get all of your money at one time, and in the second instance, you get a fixed check for the rest of your life. While the dependability of a steady income might sound like a good option, there are instances where taking the lump sum payout might be the better option.  Do You Have Children? If you have children, then you may want to consider taking the lump sum payout. The reason for this is that when you choose a lifetime annuity, your spouse can end up with only 50% of your pension when you die. On the other hand, if you take a lump sum payout and are smart with your investments, you should have plenty of money left over when you die to give to survivors as an inheritance.  Are You a Good Investor? If you take a lump sum payout, having a huge sum of cash at your disposal may lead to the temptation to buy whatever you want. If you are not wise with how much money you spend, you may end up with no money in a short period of time. On the other hand, if you take your money and invest it carefully, you can grow your money. Remember, however, that as you age, diseases like Alzheimer’s and dementia become more of a risk, and if you fall prey to them, they can seriously injure your ability to invest.  Do You Need the Money Right Away? If you retire from a job, you may still work at another job if you choose to. In this case, you may be able to support yourself without the need for a pension check. In this case, you should consider taking the lump sum payout and investing your money so that it can continue to grow while you are able to provide for yourself.  What Will Happen with Inflation? Most pension plans do not factor in the increase in the cost of living due to inflation. Thus, while your pension check might be enough to get by right now, it may leave you living in pinched circumstances in just a few years.  These are just a few of the factors that you should consider when you receive your pension. Suffice it to say that you must weigh your circumstances carefully and make a choice that fits the realities of your...

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