March 14, 2016
by Patrick Jones
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Checking Accounts in the United States Proving Costly for Many

Most adult Americans have a checking account in order to perform day to day financial transactions, have money paid in, and from which they can also make payments. However, according to experts some of these accounts are proving very costly for Americans as a result of the annual maintenance fees that are being charged on them.

A survey was carried out by MoneyRates.com looking at the cost of annual maintenance fees and according to the figures these fees average close to $160. This is an amount that could fund the costs of a week’s grocery shop for a family of four people according to the Department of Agriculture. The annual cost is also nearly 18 percent higher than it was in 2011 based on the figures in the report.

Increases that are out of line

Experts have said that the increase in annual maintenance fees on some checking accounts is totally out of line with the lack of inflation as well as the lack of increases when it comes to wages. He said that the wage of the average American had not increased by nearly 18 percent in the past four years, so the increase in the annual maintenance fees on these accounts didn’t make sense. Continue Reading →

March 9, 2016
by Patrick Jones
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Payday lenders try to take action before crackdown in the United States

Over recent years, there has been a lot of bad press relating to payday loans in the United States and in various other countries around the world. These payday loans are short term loans that are offered to consumers, often without any credit checks being carried out. The rate of interest charged on some of these short term loans is crippling and people face paying a fortune back because of this even on a small loan that was taken over a short period of time.

These loans have caused a lot of concern because many people have not only have to pay back extortionate sums for borrowing a modest amount of money but they have also found themselves in an ever-worsening financial situation. Many of those who take out payday loans are already in a difficult financial situation but being hit with these eye-watering rates of interest has made a bad situation worse for them. Some find themselves having to roll the loan over again and again due to being unable to repay it, which means even higher charges. Others find themselves facing spiraling debt that becomes increasingly difficult to get out of.

Cracking down in the United States

Over the past few years, ongoing studies and investigations have been carried out into the payday loans industry in the United States. Over this period there has been a lot of controversy over payday loans, with some stating that the loans have to be scrapped because of the financial problems they cause to consumers and others stating that to scrap them would take away the only credit option available to some people, particularly those with bad credit. Continue Reading →

September 11, 2015
by Patrick Jones
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Are Bad Credit Loans Contributing to Our Massive Debt Loads?

Consumer debt has become the norm in today’s society. It seems everyone from all age groups and all backgrounds have some sort of debt. Millennials from middle-class households will have thousands of dollars in student loan debt. Middle-aged heads of households will have mortgage and line of credit debt. Retired seniors may suffer from credit card debt or payday loans.

Unfortunately, it is debt repayment that is the biggest burden to households, says a new report from Trades Union Congress (TUC) and Unison, two national trade federations, entitled “Britain in Red.”

According to the study released Monday, the number of households in the United Kingdom struggling with growing debt problems rose by one-quarter between 2012 and 2014. This prompted households to borrow since their wages weren’t significantly edging upwards. Continue Reading →

January 15, 2014
by Patrick Jones
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Loans 2 Go payday advertisements banned, deemed ‘socially irresponsible’

All sorts of companies marketing a product or service on television do an array of things to garner your attention. Whether it’s a gecko (Geico), bunny (Energizer) or dogs (Fido), advertising has indeed changed in the past decades.

In the United Kingdom, for instance, Wonga and Landmark Cash (United States), the largest payday lending services, use puppets to encourage viewers to grab a payday loan. It might be different, but regulators and public officials are trying to ban it from appealing to youth.

It was reported by the Daily Mail on Wednesday that Loans 2 Go, a payday loan company, had a commercial featuring Austrian dancing girls that was recently banned because it was deemed “socially irresponsible” and trivialized borrowing money to purchase a vehicle. Continue Reading →

April 27, 2013
by Patrick Jones
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Different types of green energy business loans

If you own a business, going green can enhance your corporate social responsibility and save a lot of money. After your appliances and equipment are energy efficient, you will have less variable and monthly costs. Going green is an investment that often requires financial assistance. Here are some of the loans that you can apply for if you want to go green.

Accion Energy Efficiency Green LoansAccion is a nonprofit organization that is committed to assisting businesses when it comes to going green. The maximum amount of money that you can apply for depends on the state that you live in. For example, the maximum amount that you can apply for in New York is 35,000 USD whereas the maximum amount that you can apply for in Massachusetts is 50,000 USD. In order to be eligible for any type of green loan and use it as a resource, the equipment that you purchase has to be certified as energy efficient. You must also have a credit score that is 525 or higher. Continue Reading →

April 9, 2013
by Patrick Jones
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How a declining savings plan works

The opposite of an escalating savings plan is a declining savings plan. This is a sort of strategy that is used to plan around taking advantage of the interest rates that are paid out to a saver, so that they can gradually reduce the amount that needs to be contributed to their savings account every month. It frees up cash flows that the saver can then use to improve their standard of living right now, while their savings continue to build in accordance to their financial plan.

The best time to implement a declining savings plan is when you are in a financially sound position at the present, but will have an upcoming obligation to meet on a regular basis that will reduce your ability to save in the future. We therefore over contribute now, so that the interest payments we make later will make up for the reduced amounts. The trick is then to be able to figure out how much we can reduce our payments by over time to make up for the discrepancy. Continue Reading →

April 1, 2013
by Patrick Jones
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Using loan payment deferrals to finance a vacation for free

Paying for a vacation can be a seemingly impossible task for someone that’s managing a debt loan. Between the car payment, consolidation loan, bad credit personal loans and mortgage, there’s a seemingly never ending spree of payments that need to be made, far too many to allow for a vacation. That being said, especially for those savers not on a salary, taking advantage of the fine-print options available in a loan contract can sometimes be all it takes to make that vacation dream a reality, without breaking the bank.

To understand the benefits of financing a vacation through a loan deferral, we can start by looking at all the costs of taking a trip. Firstly, there is the direct cost of the trip itself. Assuming we want to spend a week in Europe, we would be spending somewhere around $2,000 alone just to get out there and pay for accommodations. Secondly, if we aren’t paid on a salary, we won’t be earning any money while we are on vacation. This means that we should tack the wage we would have otherwise earned at work on top of the total cost of the vacation. This means that the break could cost somewhere around $3,000 including opportunity cost. Continue Reading →

March 25, 2013
by Patrick Jones
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How an escalating savings plan works

An escalating savings plan is an excellent strategy to use when working towards a financial goal in the near-to-mid future. It is the process of slowing increasing an automated transfer to a savings account after each payment, so as to help the saver both psychologically adjust to the discipline of saving, and to also help the saver to make sure that they don’t stagnate on their way towards increasingly sophisticated goals in the future.

To put together an escalating savings plan, we can start by looking at the final amount of money that we need to save for, in order to meet our financial objective. We then start to make some manual adjustments to build an escalation plan that best suits our financial capacity. The simplest way to build up the escalation plan is to start with the even payments over the course of the entire savings term. Continue Reading →

March 18, 2013
by Patrick Jones
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Why you should hang on to leftover currency after a vacation

Planning for holidays can be as frustrating as it is exciting, in that we will spend as much of this time coming up with fantastic ideas for trips and project as we do cutting back on these plans because we realize that they are financially unobtainable. While it’s true that there will always be some trips and adventures that will remain outside of our budgets for the near term, there is always a way to work towards a financial objective by planning ahead, and managing our lifestyles to ensure effective saving. This can be accomplished by taking measures to blend our vacations together by hanging on to any leftover currencies that we have after a trip is done.

Not many people realize just how major a cost currency exchange expenses can be when planning a vacation. By the time we exchange funds one way for the destination, and then back again when we’ve returned, it can cost as much as 10% in commission to complete the transaction. This means that we are putting 10% of our entire travel budget at risk just to have access to the appropriate currency type, and then losing another 10% against any funds that we bring back. Continue Reading →

March 18, 2013
by Patrick Jones
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How to plan for future vacation spending

Holidays are an important part of maintaining a balanced lifestyle. They help us to decompress from our jobs, and creating meaningful bonds between the people that join us. Whether it be a global adventure, or a quiet stay-cation, proper budgeting in advance can help to prevent over-extension, and therefore ensure that the event is as stress-free as possible.

The first step to planning out a vacation is to come up with a plan of the essential things that we want to do on our time off. This can include places that we want to visit, things that we want to do or see, or specific souvenirs that we’d want to purchase. Once we have this essential list of musts, we can start to break down the costs of each activity. For example, what do we need to do in order to visit a beach in Spain? Continue Reading →