Weekly Tips

Weekly Tips

Know Your APRs

Most credit cards have more than one APR. However, credit issuers tend to focus their advertisements on just one—attractive introductory APRs that usually last for 6-12 months after a new card is issued. But while promotional interest rate periods for no interest credit cards can certainly be enticing, it's really important to understand what will happen to your APR once the promotional period ends.

on Sun, 2011-01-16 16:00

Take Charge of Your Gift Cards

Do you have a sock drawer full of unused gift cards from the holidays? If so, you're definitely not alone.

Some experts believe that consumers leave over $5 billion on gift cards each year. That's a lot of unused dough! However, thanks to a new Seattle-based startup, TangoCard.com, you'll no longer have an excuse to let another penny go unspent.

on Sun, 2011-01-09 16:00

Put Your Social Security Tax Cut to Work

If you pay social security taxes, your withholding rate just dropped from 6.2% to 4.2% beginning January 1st. This tax cut, dubbed the 2011 Payroll Tax Holiday, was actually passed by Congress late last year as a replacement to the expiring "Making Work Pay" tax credit.

on Sun, 2011-01-02 16:00

Set Your Financial Goals for 2011!

The excitement of Christmas has come and gone, but there's still one week left in 2010. In fact, this is the perfect time to not only reflect upon the previous year, but to also look ahead and set some personal financial goals for 2011.

Do you still have lingering credit card debt? Are your credit scores down in the dumps? Do you have a child that will be heading off to college in just a few years, or are just you not saving enough for retirement?

on Mon, 2010-12-27 16:00

Don't Fall for the In-Store Credit Card Spiel

A recent survey by myFICO, creator of the almighty FICO credit score, reports that 1 in 10 shoppers will sign up for an in-store credit card when offered a discount at the cash register.

on Mon, 2010-12-20 16:00

Check Your Credit Card's Return Protection Policy

Americans love to return things. It's part of our shopping culture. Try buying something in Asia and then returning it a few weeks later because you decided the color just wasn't right. They'll look at you like you're crazy!

Return policies become especially important to us around the holidays. If you bought an expensive dress for your wife on Black Friday, you wanted to make sure she would have plenty of time to return it when she opens it on Christmas morning and nearly gags at its pure ugliness, right?

on Sun, 2010-12-12 16:00

Make a List and Check it Twice

If you're interested in staying within your holiday shopping budget this year, take some advice from the big guy in the red suit—make a list. And after it's made, check it twice before you hit the malls to brave the masses. A carefully prepared list is sure to save you both time and money this holiday season.

on Mon, 2010-12-06 16:00

How to Choose and Use a Balance Transfer Credit Card

Advertisements promoting zero-percent balance transfer offers can look quite appealing when high-interest credit card debt is keeping you up at night. What could be better than transferring your debt to a credit card that won't charge any interest for a year or more? Apart from stumbling upon a hoard of cash that could be used to pay your balance off in full, not much.

on Wed, 2010-12-01 16:00

Check Your Credit Card Rewards Bonuses Before Holiday Shopping

The holiday shopping season is in full swing, which means retailers and credit card companies are working overtime to win your business. So what do the retailers have up their sleeves this year?

Nothing really new—just sales, sales, and more sales! Obviously they work, or else we wouldn't have shoppers fighting over flat screen TVs at 4 a.m. in the aisles of Walmart.

on Mon, 2010-11-29 16:00

Consumer Financial Protection Bureau: Will it Help?

The recent economic crisis highlighted serious problems within financial sectors of nations across the globe. In the US, these problems have hit home particularly hard, leaving American families with lost wages, mounting debt, and higher unemployment.

And while some responsibility for what's happened certainly lies with those who borrowed money they couldn't afford to pay back in the first place, many argue that this crisis was essentially all made possible by lenders willing to take enormous risks on who they chose to lend to.

on Wed, 2010-11-17 16:00