The public relations departments of the mortgage companies have been doing an impressive job of spinning the work their companies have been doing in their efforts to help people facing foreclosures save their homes. Anyone reading the press releases from the companies would believe that they could not do any better.
Yet the actual truth is far different from the picture they are painting. As of the end of September the mortgage companies participating in the Making Home Affordable Modification Program have only offered trial loan modifications on 15.7% of the estimated 3,100,305 loans that were eligible for modifications.
By any standard that performance is horrible. Yet the public relations departments of each mortgage company has taken the work being done by their individual companies and have spun it so that anyone unfamiliar with the program and not looking beneath surface are being led to believe that their companies are doing the best they can. The companies are going out of the way to help people facing foreclosure save their homes.
A trial loan modification period lasts three months. At the end of that period, a permanent loan modification is to be offered to everyone who has made their monthly loan payment on time during the trial loan modification period.
Sounds simple enough doesn’t it?
Well, the public relations departments of the mortgage companies started to warn that the number of permanent loan modifications to be offered may be much lower than expected. The mortgage companies went out of their way to reduce expectations at a conference of the Mortgage Bankers’ Association in San Diego in October of 2009.
What Did They Say?
The companies said that many of the 500,000 people who are currently in trial modification periods may not qualify for permanent loan modifications because they have not submitted the necessary paperwork. These people also have not been responding to calls from their mortgage companies asking them to submit the information.
The mortgage companies are worried about the potential negative reaction from both the public and the government if the number of permanent loan modifications is not as high as expected. They fear that if the number of permanent loan modifications is very low, congress and states may pass legislation mandating that they do more to help people facing foreclosure get loan modifications.
Let’s Look At the Other Side
Not only have the mortgage companies offered very few trial loan modifications they have also made the process very difficult for people facing foreclosure to get these modifications. Over and over again people have complained that mortgage companies have lost the paperwork. Some people have submitted their paperwork four or five times and their companies still have not processed their applications.
Many of those who have applied have had to wait months before they hear anything from their companies. Some have had to make the public aware of the way they were being treated and get public support before their companies approved them for temporary loan modifications.
The mortgage companies have made it so difficult for people to get trial loan modifications that it is hard to imagine that any who are in their three month trial period would be slow in returning any paperwork to convert their modifications from temporary to permanent ones. They would not want to lose out.
All Hell May Break Loose in November and December of 2009
The initial permanent modifications will be made in November and December of 2009. It will be interesting to see if the number of these loan modifications is lower than expected. If it is lower, we can expect that the mortgage companies will claim that it was not their fault. They did all they could. This occurred because the people did not return the necessary paperwork.
Likewise studies will be done. These may find that just as during the initial phases of the Making Home Affordable Modification Program the mortgage companies were responsible for the delays, the same may be true when it came to converting the temporary loan modifications to permanent ones.
The sad part is that the mortgage companies will be spinning their stories very quickly. It will be months before the true reasons come out. During that time what will be the cost to people facing foreclosure who want to save their homes?
The insane credit card debt industry exists only because some people allow it to become a nightmare in their life while others easily see the insanity of greed and have no problem taking money from it when it’s thrown at them. Once you understand the multiple personalities of a card you will know what to do.
The Diners Club card started it all with a system that allowed restaurants to accept the card in lieu of cash and the cardholder had to pay the entire amount at the end of each month which was almost like a debit card. When one of the diners didn’t have enough money to pay the account in full, the idea of paying interest on the account was born.
The roaring 20s was in full party around the clock mode and banks were flinging money at everybody until some savvy investors realized their money was becoming devalued making their stocks worthless. This led to the stock market crash followed shortly by banks closing as people tried to get their money into their own hands.
World War II put the nation back to work and ended the depression but those greedy bankers were ready to “party it up” again after the war. So to get the card idea back into circulation they dumped millions of cards on an unsuspecting nation. Use the search term “the Chicago debacle” to read about this unbelievable “throw money at the people” story and be sure to pay close attention to what Congress thought about the insanity.
Some congressmen wanted to outlaw cards altogether but as in all congressional thinking a compromise was reached. Give the people a choice of participating in the madness and being a slave to the banker or opt out of the card madness and be rewarded for doing so. The resulting law was called the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act.
Since that time people have run-up some very hefty card accounts but as usual greedy bankers and Wall Street insiders continued partying until their little bubble popped again. This time hoping to save another depression the government took money from the people and gave it to the banks. They called it a bailout but the bankers kept the party going full blast by handing out multimillion dollar bonuses to the scheming execs.
Here comes the job loss routine again with millions of people unable to pay the plastic demon so the panic switch is turned “on” again. Everyone forgot about the 50-year-old law allowing them to walk away from the plastic and be paid by collectors that tried to take money from them. Consolidation loans, credit counseling and debt settlement companies sprung up to “help” those that had forgotten about the Fair Collections Act.
When you stop paying the account, banks collect the insurance, write off your account for tax purposes, never lose a penny and then sell your account information to the collections people who will begin their phone and collection letter harassment. Use the search term “FTC debt video” to see this old law in cartoon form which explains your legal rights.
Record the collectors’ calls because they are quite valuable. When your rights are violated large amounts of money are awarded to you. Use the search term “man wins $1.5 million from collector” to see how beautifully this part of the legal system works. Just give the caller your name and nothing more. Then smile each time he calls you a name or threatens you.
If you wish to see more information about the insanity then please use the search term “the gig is up – money the Federal Reserve and you” to watch this fact filled historical video that walks you through the antics of the banking industry. This 90 min. seminar, presented at the University Of Colorado School Of Law, will change your life forever
After examining the credit card debt industry insanity you know it’s not very funny for those who don’t know the truth. There’s no reason to pay the account anymore because that angry Congress back in the mid-60s made it possible for anyone to walk away from the account and even be rewarded when collectors try to perpetuate the fraud. Would you believe jury awards have topped $8 million for a single collection case?
When someone asks you, “How long do credit inquiries stay on a credit report?” Be sure to tell them that while the fat cats won’t dump the potential damning inquiries for two years, with a little leg work(that’s code for money), and a lot of elbow grease (that’s code for, be prepared to make a lot of calls), you can get rid of inquiries yourself.
Step One: Request copies of your credit report from all three of majors. Each report will include an inquiry section. Now the inquiry section will include two types of credit inquiries, those that are promotional (you were selected as a part of a cattle call and mass mailed pre-approval applications) and those that aren’t promotional.
As pesky as those mass mailings can be, it’s the latter that you should be most concerned with. The Mercedes dealer you pestered incessantly the same week that you applied for store charges at Arben B, Bebe, and Nordstrom’s, can be a problem. If you haven’t applied to some places not listed as promotional inquiries, they’ve got to go too. The first step is finding out what’s in your inquiry section.
Step Two: Locate the addresses of the inquiring creditors; this’ll be important for Step Three. Experian is the only one of the three credit bureaus that lists addresses of inquirers. If something is on one of the other credit reports that doesn’t appear on the Experian report (reports won’t always have the same information), then call Equifax. It’s almost a Herculean task to get someone on the phone at Trans Union.
Step Three: Once you’ve figured out which inquirers are causing you problems, simply inform them in writing that you would like for them to remove the inquiry from your credit report. This will likely cause an uphill battle, but a few connotations to the effect of “I sue,” and challenging that you did not understand that you were authorizing an inquiry to be placed in your report (which is true) you can ultimately win the war.
So the next time someone asks you, how long do credit inquiries stay on a credit report, answer with, “Until they get tired of fighting.”
You have realized that you really need to take some kind of action and simply opt for debt elimination due to sky high debts. And at the moment, you are faced with the questions of which are the dependable methods that you must use to eliminate your debts in your credit card account.
There are two popular ways to doing it and these include gaining control of all your expenditures and second, consolidating all your debts. This way, you are able to control your debt and be assured that you will not have debts piling up right under your nose. Here are some recommendations for a better way of controlling your spending and consequently your debts.
Take Control Of The Urge To Spend
The main thing that you need to do to get that very much needed self-control working for you when it comes to swiping your piece of plastic. Try to control the tendency to swipe your card or to crunch its details onto an online shopping order form and curb your expenditures. You need to realize that the basic reason you are pulling yourself into the pit of deep debt is due to your uncontrollable desire to spend when you cannot really afford to.
That is why if you are really bent on doing away with financial debt, then start controlling your expenses right this very minute. Otherwise, they will just keep piling up, and before you know it, you are already snowed under, buried to well over your neck in debt that you could have avoided.
Take Control Of Your Expenditures
Although it is understandable that shops and stores’ offers and promotions can sometimes be really hard to resist, you still have to exert more effort to steer clear from sales and tempting offers. Always consider if you truly need something and it is not just a case of wanting something, before deciding to get it on credit. Bear in mind that your main goal at the moment is to eliminate your debts and at the same time control your spending so that you do not accumulate more debts.
Leave Your Credit Cards At Home
And another thing, you can just simply leave your credit cards at home when going to the mall or shops and stores. That way, you will be guaranteed that no matter how tempted you get with the sales and promotions offered, you have no way to succumb to temptation that would pile up more debts into it. As simple and basic as this seems, using common sense has been proven a very effective technique in avoiding spending using your credit card.
Prepare A Monthly Budget
Make it a point that you are always ready with a monthly budget. Doing so, you will know until how much you can safely spend or at least know how long your cash will sustain you. But it is not only crafting the budget that will help you erase the red figures from your accounts. What is even more important is that you stick to that budget. Otherwise, it is just like making a plan and never implementing it. Truly, you will see that it is a very useful technique in gaining control over your debts.
Go for Debt Consolidation
Debt consolidation or what is more popularly known as the act of getting away from credit card companies offering very high APR credit cards to those that give away low APR credit cards. However, there are certain steps that you will need to follow in undertaking this method such as the following:
Research And Analysis
Do your own research about the various credit card companies’ offers, after which analyze the one that best matches your needs and lifestyle. Also, consider the initial and standard APRs as well as the period. Finally, compare the benefits like rebates and rewards system before jumping into one credit card Company. Really, debt elimination in credit cards is not an easy thing to manage; however, you will definitely achieve this goal if you control credit card debt religiously.
Online banking has been supported by many banks and so the burden of visiting banks for small transactions has now been reduced. For those who are new to this form of banking, and the types of banks, here are a few basics to help them out with.
There are three types of banking solutions –
1. Commercial banks:
Commercial banks are those that are quite commonly found and they provide online banking solutions as well. The other services include managing accounts, savings accounts and providing loans for various purposes. The state or the federal body usually regulates them some banks like the Lloyd are regulated by the Financial Services Authority the body that regulates financial institutions in UK.
2. Credit Unions:
This is something like a community banking where people in the same field are grouped together. They can be those pursuing same kind of profession or those working for the same company or something in common. Profits are equally shared by all members of the group and it is possible to open an account only if you belong to the particular group. Credit unions may also be based on geographic locations. People living far from the place cannot open the account. The account limits may vary between $5 and $50. The loans can be availed at lower rates than the commercial bank. But we should be see how far online banking has reached in this sector.
3. Savings and Loan Association:
These banks operate mainly to provide loans home loans and other loans using money from the accounts of their customers. These banks are best suited for savings account as their interest rates are better than many commercial banks. Online banking has nowadays started reaching this sector also.
In case you’re skeptical about the online form of banking, there’s nothing to worry about. Most of the corporate giants are dealing with electronic funds transfer, so it is completely safe to adopt the same. However, you must be careful enough not to give your credential like passwords, net-banking PIN, telephonic banking PIN, or any other password to others.
Low interest online loans may seem difficult to find at times, especially if you have a restrictive budget that you have to work the loan payment into.
If you take a little bit of time to search for the loan that’s right for you, however, you might just find that low interest online loans are available that will meet or exceed any offers that you might receive from physical lenders.
In order to help you get the most out of your online lending experience and to find the low interest online loans that best fit the money that you have available in your budget, try to keep some of the following advice in mind.
Determine What You Can Afford
In order to fit one of the low interest online loans that you’ll be looking at into your budget, you need to first determine exactly how much you can afford to pay each month for a loan payment.
Look for any way that you can reduce some of your other expenses if you find that funds will be tight with a loan, including consolidating older debts into the loan by using some of the money that you borrow to pay them off in full. While this may increase the amount that you borrow, you’ll find that it doesn’t greatly increase the monthly payment while giving you quite a bit more money to work with in your budget.
Choose Collateral Carefully
Almost all low interest online loans are secured loans, meaning that you’ll have to use some item of value as collateral to guarantee that the loan will be repaid on time and as agreed. Many online lenders require that certain types of collateral such as home equity be used because of their higher value and the relative ease with which it can be worked with electronically.
If the lenders that you’re considering do allow other types of collateral to be used, you might want to take a little time to decide which collateral would be best for your loan. In order to keep interest rates low, you’ll need something that has a higher value than the amount you’re wanting to borrow.
Collect Interest Rate Quotes
Even though there are a number of low interest online loans available from different lenders, the exact amount of interest that you pay is likely going to vary from one lender to the next.
In order to get the best deal that you can, you need to take the time to contact different lenders and request quotes for loans based upon the amount that you want to borrow and the collateral that you’re using as security for the loan. These quotes will likely include possible interest rates, estimated monthly payments, and the terms by which the loan would have to be repaid.
Compare Loan Offers
Once you’ve collected quotes for a variety of low interest online loans you should look at the different rates and terms so as to determine which loan would best fit into your monthly budget.
It’s important that you keep in mind that the actual loan terms may vary slightly from the quotes that you receive, however; the final interest rates will also factor in your credit history and other items that different lenders may consider relevant to your loan. Remember, though, that if you’re using a high-value collateral such as home equity then this can help to even out potential problems and keep interest rates low.
When the direct sales agent comes to offer you the credit card, without any transaction fee you are always happy to put that card in your wallet. But it may also happen that at the end of the year after the card has completed one year and when you receive the bill for annual fees on the credit card you may rue the decision of having the credit card. It had been observed by the credit card industry that most of the credit cards underwent mortality within a year of being issued, as the users were not ready to pay the annual fee of the credit card.
The way out was No annual fee credit card. The advent of no annual fee credit card has taken care of the rate of surrender that the card users were experiencing. As there is no annual fee to be paid, the cancellation rate on the cards has come down to a great extent. In technical terms no annual fee credit cards are those cards where the card issuing banks do not make any charge for providing servicing on the card on an annual basis.
No annual fee credit cards have also come into vogue after the advent of the era of information technology. No annual fee credit cards can be applied on line and there is always a chance of instant approval if one has a good credit rating. The another advantage of no annual fee credit card also lies in the fact that you may also not be charged any transfer fee if any amount that is outstanding is transferred to this card. One of the most redeeming features of no annual fee card is that they could also be one of the best frequent flier cards, the best credit cards that provide maximum cash back, the best gas credit cards, as also the hotel credit cards.
Does it then mean that any body can have the no annual fee credit card? Not at all. The no annual fee credit cards are made available only to those who have a good credit history i.e. those customers who pay their bills on time, and therefore it is a reward for good credit history. No annual fee credit cards are also given to the students as it is considered their baptism into the world of credit cards.
As the no annual fee credit cards can be applied for online, it is always advisable to first check your credit report. After getting the credit score, it should be matched against the type of credit cards that are on offer online. If you have not found your credit history, and have put in application for no annual fee credit card online, there is always a chance that the card may be denied. So, you are advised to get details of your credit history. When you are applying for the no annual fee credit cards, also check in if there is some kind of a catch involved in the form of higher set up fee, steep cash advance fee etc., the idea being to be sure that the annual fee would be charged on some other pretext.
Credit card companies aren’t necessarily your best friends. They are in the business of making money. They want your money.
If you manage your credit cards wisely, they turn out to be very useful financial tools. However, the terms and conditions imposed by most credit card companies are designed to increase the debt you owe to the company. The more you owe, the more you pay.
Credit card convenience checks are a prime example of the tactics that credit cards use to entice you to increase your debt. Thousands of credit card checks are mailed out every year. They look just like a normal check that you would use with your checking account. However, you are charged interest rates on these checks. Some will offer a 0% or a low-interest teaser rate for a specific time period. Some will have a higher rate than your purchase APR. Most carry a 3% to 5% fee for the amount of the check. The fee will usually carry your normal APR and not the promotional teaser rate.
Airline miles and other rewards, such as cash back and gift cards are attractive for many consumers. Most cards will offer a bonus of 10,000 or 25,000 miles or double or triple the usual cashback rewards just for applying for the card. However, rewards cards usually carry a higher interest rate and higher annual fees than non-reward cards.
Credit card companies like to reward their good customers with increased credit limits. If you have a consistent record of paying your credit card and you carry a balance, your credit limit could be increased by your card company without you even requesting it. This may seem like a reward for being a responsible consumer, but it is also an encouragement to spend more money. This increases your balance to be paid back and increases the amount of interest you will pay back.
Balance transfers seem like a wonderful way to lower your interest rate for a while, allowing you to pay your debt back faster. Credit card companies don’t just offer you a zero percent APR to be nice, they want to make money. You will probably be charged a balance transfer fee, and if you aren’t able to pay the balance in full by the end fo the intro period, you will pay a higher interest rate on the balance. The companies are hoping that you will also use the cards to make purchases. The payments you make will go towards your lowest rate balance first. While you are paying off that balance transfer, the purchases you have made are building up your interest charges.
How nice it is to be offered a new card. You want to save 10% on your purchase; after all, you need to save money. So you apply for an instant credit store card, thinking that you saved money. But if you don’t pay the entire balance off each month, you will pay back more in interest than you saved on that initial purchase. Store cards will usually carry a much higher interest rate than a credit card, so the purchase is even more costly. If you must use credit, use a credit card, not a store card.
The growing problem of identity theft has spawned a new industry aimed at keeping your credit information safe by “locking” your credit file. These companies typically charge a monthly fee for their services. One such company advertises that they will pay you 1 million dollars if your identity is stolen while you are an active user of their services. When you get behind all the advertising hype, the vital question is whether or not the monthly expenditure is worth it.
Making a request of the credit bureaus to lock your report does not mean your files will remain locked indefinitely. In theory a credit report lock or security freeze lasts indefinitely. In actuality, the lengths of security freezes vary from one state to another. In addition, credit bureaus require the consumer to “renew” the locks after a given period of time. Since there is no limit to number of renewals, one’s reports can be under a security arrangement for life… but only if the requests are renewed.
One myth surrounding this arrangement is that locking your credit report means the content is “frozen” at the moment in time when the security lock is put in place. This is totally untrue. The lock means access to your information by new sources is severely restricted, but new information still continues to be added. So if you increase your use of current accounts or make payments late, this information will still affect your credit scores.
Even during lock-up, your credit information is still available to those companies with whom you already have open accounts. Likewise the data remains available to employees of the credit bureaus, governmental officials, insurance companies and potential employers who have your permission. So, are there benefits in paying the fees required to place a security freeze on your credit report?
Locking your credit report prevents new accounts from being opened in your name without your knowledge and consent. In order to establish new credit, you must temporarily unlock your credit file through a specific procedure. In that way, the lock provides protection. With constant growth of credit identity theft, lock-up may be something you need. If you are likely to establish a number of new credit accounts in rapid succession, however, the cost and inconvenience of a security freeze may work to your disadvantage.
One cautionary note is in order. Putting a credit report lock-up in place is often oversold by companies profiting from implementing this service on your behalf. While locking your credit does have value, it answers a very small portion of the identity theft dilemma. There are other aspects of identity theft in addition to direct credit-related crime. One of the other dimensions of the problem is theft of benefits, an area called Medical Identity Theft. The impact of this kind of theft can be life-threatening as well as financially devastating.