Author Archive: wheadmin

Suggestions on which version of Quicken to invest in?

My DH and I have settled on a budget utilizing the “envelope” system incorporated with the “Dave Ramsey” plan. He has started to invest in 401K and I will too by this summer. We are planning to invest in our first home, and maintain school loans, “snowball”, and possibly look at investing by the end of the year. We’ve always used to file our taxes, but this may be the first year we will be itemizing.

Any suggestions to which one is more for us? I had utilized last year, but had trouble keeping up with the monthly membership. I would rather invest in a “budget” type program that I could get the most of in one shot.

Quicken Basic ($29.99), Deluxe ($49.99), or Premiere ($69.00)?

I’m a single mom in NJ, here’s my story

I’m a single mom in NJ, here’s my story. My ex-husband has put me in a terrible spot. We were divorced 4 years ago. Last month, he filed for bankruptcy..for the2nd time. I pulled my credit report and found a couple of weird things. First, on 2 reports, my last address is the address that he is now living.

I never lived there. also, there are 2 judgments that were listed. 1 is a debt that during our divorce, he stated that he paid, the other is when he took one of our cars to work knowing that the car had no insurance and hit an electical pole, besides these 2 judgments, there are a lot of collections that were supposed to be taken care of by the charity care of our local hospital.

On paper, it looks like I am 14,000 in debt. I only make 23,000 a year and do not want to file bankruptcy. can anyone help me??? i need help quickly because i need to get a mortgage for my home that i have been living in for 9 years, and even though I only owe 60,000, if i dont’ get the mortgage, i may loose it. Thanks

Sometimes bankruptcy is the best choice

Suze O is not the only financial advisor who will tell someone that sometimes bankruptcy is the best choice.

Harvard Professor Elizabeth Warren puts it this way:

If you can’t pay in a timely manner, then consider filing bankruptcuy.

I wouldn’t trust any financial advisor who eliminates bankruptcy as a solution.

It makes sense if you are drowning in CC debt with loan shark interest to get out from this crushing debt. The CC co’s piled that loan shark interest on because they saw a person as a high risk to default. What they are saying is:

Pay us FAST, or we will keep you in debtors prison with this loan shark interest and we will pile on more fees, like over the limit fees, NOT because you are spening, but because the high interest is making you go over the limit. Some will even lower your available credit so they can make sure you get the over the limit fee tacked on.

I think you’ve misunderstood what he said

He says that those problems can definitely lead to bankruptcy being the only option – not that they do not apply to you.

As for the bankruptcy, I’m 7 years out of mine and have rebuilt my credit. I own my own house, my own vehicle, and know how to stay out of debt and live within my means. Many problems contributed to my bankruptcy, including personal, but I wouldn’t say that I, or anyone, “deserves” a fresh start. I agree that I deserved to learn how to manage my life and money better.

It took me many years to recover emotionally from the bankruptcy because I personally felt horrible about not repaying what I owed people – I borrowed in good faith and I ended up screwing people out of their money. Regardless of the circumstances for borrowing, it was still disturbing for me to dump all my debt, since debt is something that someone somewhere had extended to me in good faith.

I think bankruptcy is a necessity in some situations, it was in mine, but it is VERY important to learn from it and not head down the same road again.

Ok, I understand exactly what everyone is speaking of. Yes, I may have misused the word “deserve”. Its a matter of symantics. But, I also want to say, that the last thing that was on my mind at the time was paying bills. The only thing that was on my mind and the mind of my doctors and family was recovery. So no I never had a problem managing my funds before this time and I don’t have a problem managing them now. But, it will be close to impossible for me to catch up. I’ve always owned my own car outright and still do.

Like I said, catching up will be the problem. Those 3yrs without income threw everything out of whack. Staying afloat is most important.

Well we filed last year and put our over taxed crappy trailer house on our bankruptcy, we havent been able to finance a car or even get a credit card without it being secured even if I wanted another one. We are current on all our bills, rent, utilities, financed a car at a tote-the-note car lot since my other car was on the bankruptcy. I put 10%down on the newer-used car I had to get. We couldnt do anything more now than we did before but we were able to sleep at night knowing that they werent going to be knocking on my door about a hospital bill I could no longer pay. We were advised by our lawyers to put the house and car on it since we were over financed for them and couldnt sell them since bk was a once in a lifetime deal. Our lawyers also said that we didnt even have a drop in the bucket compared to what others filed over.

So I don’t think that everyone can start over the next day after filing but everyone that I have talked with had the same reaction to us, it’s not the end of the world but it isn’t a one time get out of jail to start it over the next day.

We do things differently now than we did before. We pay in cash for everything (well our visa/debit card on our checking also). We havent gotten over the ideal that the cute little bobble or thingy we saw at the store we need, no way. We have totally changed the way we think about doing it over again. We don’t want to be there. Now my husband has a better job with better insurance and I still stay at home with the kids as before.

You have to take the good with the bad I guess.

What is wrong with Bankruptcy

Hello, New to this great blog. I’ve been trying to decide whether or not to file bankruptcy for the past 2yrs and in this time my credit did not improve. I am a single mom, was a victim of a crime, put on disability for 3yrs and just now getting back into the work force. I even heard Suze Orman say, sometimes bankruptcy is the best for some to become solvent again. My FICO score is less than anyone could imagine and actually it would be higher if I filed bankruptcy.

I deserve a fresh start and yes, I was paying on my debt before the unfortunate circumstances in my life. I’ve also consulted with people who have filed bankruptcy and they said, it was the best thing for them. I figure for the past 3yrs I have paid everything with cash. I have no desire to obtain any credit cards in the future.

Only considering a home in about 2yrs. I’ve spoken to lenders who have obtained financing for people fresh out of bankruptcy. They said, creditors will finance someone fresh out of bankruptcy quicker as opposed to someone who has horrible credit. Because they know you cannot file bankruptcy again.

So I’m truly trying to find reasoning as to what is wrong with it. I think somewhere or some how our society has placed a sense of shame on those who sincerely require relief from their debt, especially under special circumstances.

You can get a mortgage with a bankruptcy HOWEVER you need to have 20% minimum as a down payment and your interest rate will be much higher.

Like I said, I’m only about paying cash for everything necessary. Actually the lender is a relative of mine and no the people he has dealt with did not have 20% down, but I remember he said, they negotiated with the seller and I think many of them were first time home buyers and received addt’l asistance. So that’s not necessary true. I am so much more comfortable in my life and more at piece with out the credit delimmas.

Sometimes bankruptcy is the only option, usually when the debts are stressing out the family and causing marital problems, or health related problems from the stress.

I doubt you “deserve” a fresh start. What you do deserve is a chance to manage your money and keep it under control, you also deserve the opportunity to repay debts caused by circumstances beyond your control.

You might want to carefully rebuild your credit history with one card at a low limit ($1000) you pay off each and every month. This will help your credit history recover from any past problems and improve your FICO score. With poor credit it is almost impossible to get a mortgage or a loan, even though there still are services offering installment loans for customers even with bad credit. Still you do not want your credit to be low, don’t you?

Whatever you do, be careful and you will be able to make the most of the opportunity declaring bankruptcy presents you with.

Wow, interesting how you don’t think all those things as an option to bankruptcy didn’t apply to me. Let me see, family stress, divorce and definitely health related. Where do I fit in that those things did not pertain to me?

But, aside from that..I’m doing what I need to do for me and my two kids. No one can put themselves in someone else’s shoes. I was only giving my opinion about different situations.

37 and 45 are not over the hill

37 and 45 are not over the hill. Even though you have filed bankruptcy, life is not over and you can rebuild your credit! Pay your essentials on time. Start a savings account and don’t get into debt again.

Over time your credit will improve. Even though BK stays on your report ten years creditors are not going back that long. They are going to look at what has been going on during the last few 2 or 3 years.

My own situation is much much worst, i have about 10 credit cards almost US$15,000, most of this cards when i pay only minimum amount due on all my cards so i have to bear the interest rate of 3.5%per month or an APR of 42%. Our country does not protect debtors like me. I could not even meet now my minimum amount due, i had to resort to cash advance from my credit card to avoid late payment dues and maintain my credit standing. I am so much affected, i am already in a prison without bars. very depressing.

Can you renogiate for zero interest rate and roll over your old debt? Use it as leverage against the companies you now have a credit card with?

I thought your original post referred to debts owed

Account ownerships in financial institutions are different. You’re right; it is difficult to obtain the funds in a bank account without certain documentation.

Usually a bank will want to see the death certificate; they usually will take a photocopy for their records but must see the original. They also need to see the will showing that you are the representative of the estate.

Often there isn’t a will, which means you go to your local courthouse and ask to be named the executor of the estate. That document from the courthouse along with the death certificate will usually allow you to close out accounts or transfer the funds to an estate account depending on the size of the estate.

One way a person can protect themselves and still help family to avoid probate is to name a beneficiary on the account. By naming a beneficiary, you can bypass a Will entirely. All funds in that account belong to the beneficiary at death. That person shows up at the bank with their ID and the death certificate.

The upside of beneficiaries: You have total control over your funds; sometimes these are called Revocable Trusts on the signature cards which means you can go in anytime and change the name of the beneficiary.

The downside is if you become incapacitated, no one has access to your funds. You can appoint someone to have Power of Attorney, POA for short, for you, but more and more financial institutions will not accept general POA’s.

If you think a POA might be a good alternative along with naming beneficiaries talk it over with the family members that you are concerned with early on. A POA cannot be granted if the person is mentally unsound. Power of Attorney’s also become null and void at death.

Credit Unions operate a little differently sometimes, but still similar enough to get by.

If your bank doesn’t meet your needs, take your business and your hard earned $$$$ elsewhere. Afterall, they do make money off of us in fees. They also make money by using our money, yet pay us such paltry interest.

Also, there is another way. My grandma listed her 3 children on her bank accounts but as payable on death. Her kids couldn’t touch the money until after her death. Once the bank had a copy of the death certificate they combined her accounts with my dad and his brother getting a third each. The other third, for my aunt, was split between her four kids since she’d died a few months earlier. My grandma kept all of her money safe and secure while she was alive. Near the end she did put my dad and mom on her checking account so they could pay her expenses for the nursing home. Don’t know if this helps.

So then what do you think of me? I am a finance manager at a car dealership. 🙂 My job goes against everything this group is about, but I do what I have to do to pay my bills. I SEE people who have been rock bottom, come in and sign their life away on a new high interest loan to “re-establish their credit”. I think it is crazy, I’d never do it, but I guess if nothing else, it reminds me DAILY of what I am trying to get out of.

Need to raise credit score

I am a student and have recently completed a debt management program where I paid off all my credit cards which are now closed. I have $4000 in student loans that are deferred until I graduate in December 2007. My current credit score is 573. I am trying to figure out how to raise my credit score without aquiring new debt. I was told that if I put myself as a co-signer on my parents credit card that will help raise my credit score. Is that a good idea and if not what are my options. thank you for your help.

Start a savings account, pay your essentials on time, and don’t piggyback on your parents accounts. In time your credit score will be good.

Also, you can just ask your parents to put you on as an authorized user without actually giving you the card. You don’t need to use the card and it will help your score. When my son is in high school, we’ll add his name as a user so he has the good credit but won’t have to open accounts to achieve this.

This might be a bit off topic but now going through all my mother’s accounts, etc since she passed away, I’d strongly recommend everyone putting their children on their accounts AND making a list of what accounts you have open. I’m getting these damn bills to my mom and I couldn’t tell you if they are legit or not.

Any bills like credit cards and you’re not on the account, write to them enclosing a copy of the death certificate and tell them she has died.

I disagree with have people put their children on their accounts. I worked in management at a large bank as well as a large credit union for 25 years and was involved in many, many cases of adult children running up large bills on their parents accounts.

If your mother has passed away, and there are not funds in the estate to cover her debts, contact the creditor by phone first. Find out where you need to send a copy of her death certificate. They will probably want to have an original copy. You can also contact each of the credit reporting companies and there is a special code on the credit files so companies will know that she has passed.

If an adult child is on the accounts then they are also responsible for that debt. Often times seniors can run up large amounts of debt also and you would not want to be saddled with that responsibility in addition to mourning your loss.

  • First, since you worked in management at a large bank, you are of the EVIL EMPIRE in my opinion. I’ve banked for 29 years with Wells Fargo and they won’t refinance my house or do a thing for me!!
  • Secondly, I’m not talking about credit card accounts. I’m talking about savings and checking accounts. I had to wait several months to get those funds to pay the exorbitant funeral costs.
  • Finally, I’m not going to send anyone an original death certificate who doesn’t ask for one. My mom had very little and if the credit card companies want to waste their time suing a dead person that’s their problem – not mine

Another way to shore up cash

Started in 14 with 30 k in cc debt. Went thru Dave Ramseys financial peace university. I’m the lady whose 47 yr old dh has had 2 strokes and open heart surgery and is completely disabled since april 14.. I really could relate to the lady posting about the $ fights- that’s all we did before dh’s strokes. Now its very different. Just sent 7 k to MBNA to charge off- settle a cc for 11k. I see the end of the tunnel and all it is is peace. We live on his disability check and the couple nights a week I work part time. Dh cant really be left alone.

A couple points I really want to make. We will have the last 6 k paid off in next couple mos with tax refund.

The points:

  1. Ramsey said that when you start doing smart things with your $ good things start happening. And its true- out of nowhere pay raises- inheritances- you name it- they really start happening.
  2. I joined “the million dollar club” on Bryan C. Fleming’s blogspot. Its simple: Under your dresser scarf you start 3 piles of $. Every am you lift it and in ea pile you place 1.00. One pile to save one to invest and one to give away. I cant begin to tell u how cool this all is. The other day I counted approx 120 in ea of first 2 piles. And its nice to be able to bless somebody with a few singles from pile
  3. The dresser scarf is getting really lumpy. And its a lot of fun- watching the $ grow instead of being sucked out like a vacuum and ALWAYS broke!
  4. An added bonus- when you start becoming free you start feeling intelligent. The mental pistol whippings stop and life becomes sweet. All blessings to you!

Good for you! It is nice to hear someone is getting ahead of the game. How relieved you must be to feel better. You are correct that you can think better when you know there is a light at the end of the tunnel, because when you are stressed, a person makes bad judgements to try and get ahead that they would not normally do.

I am in my 50’s have a good job, Just went through a divorce, my dad was just diagnosed with stage 4 cancer and lives 2000 miles away and I can’t afford to go see him, my daughter just had a precious little girl and I am trying to help her financially and I am losing my home and car to repo. I have no one to turn to for help, because I will not tell family, because my dad is so ill and I don’t want to be a burden.

My x- is still living at the house, because he asked to stay till after Christmas and he lost his job and didn’t tell me and didn’t pay the bills he was suppose to be paying and I can not kick him out, because he does not have any where to go. So now I have to support him toooooo.

Talking about no light at the end of the tunnel. When I found out he lost his job and I had no other ends to make bills I did something really awful.

Everyone has always depended on me for help and I can’t help them any more. I can’t even help myself, because of the mistake I made taking out the loans.

So, when I read about someone else that is getting ahead, my heart goes out to you, because “I understand”.

Savings you money

This is probably off the subject of costco or sams savings you money but I know that one year I was living in another state and had gotten a costco membership and had it for several months without really purchasing anything I called and explained this to them since a friend told me that she had spoken with them to about the problem but they refunded my entire membership fees.

When I went to do this she explained they will always refund the fees for customer satisfaction. maybe you can find out if they still do this.

I know sams club has once in a while mail flyers that you can get a one day pass and just pay 10% above for items purchased than. I dont have a costco in the state im in now so dont know if they have the same thing.

I had a small SUV that I had to sell

Hi! I need some advice. I had a small SUV that I had to sell when I had my 3rd child as it was too small. We got behind on the payments because we were paying extra on it every month, and a lady at the company told me that all the extra we had paid equaled up to a payment so we could skip a pymt for a month, which we did. Then we found out that wasn’t true but by that time there was no way we could catch it up. We had somebody that was going to buy the car but then a guy showed up at our house from the company trying to get money.

He said that we were not allowed to sell the car, we had to give it back to them, and that if I gave it back they would sell it and I would not owe anything more. I wasn’t working at the time because I was pregnant. He also said if I didn’t have it there in the morning for them to pick up he would have the sheriff at my house with a warrant. So I got the car back and then they didn’t come get it.

It took 3 phone calls over 2 weeks before they finally came and got it. They they sold it for less than I owed and so now they say I owe over 3,000.00 and they are taking me to court this month. GMAC who I got the car from, says that they have written it off to bad debt and they sold the account to the lawyer who is on the papers, however the lawyer says that that is not so, they are representing GMAC. The cout papers say GMAC vs. me.

If GMAC did sell it to them, is it legal for the lawyer to put the lawsuit in their name and how do I find out who is telling the truth? I only work 1 day a week so I can not afford a lawyer to help me. And I cannot prove any of what that man told me in court, it is their word against mine. Thanks

I Had the same with Chrysler, I had a 23,000 van and they repoed it and sold it 2 years later for 16,000 then 3 years later they contaced me saying i owe them 22,000 because of interest court and other fees. You need to set up a payment (no interest)with them. Barganing is your best option or loan to pay that debt off. Me personally, I couldn’t see paying 22,000 for something I don’t have, so I’m filing Bankruptcy.

What state are you in? Here in Michigan there is an agency called Legal Help, which provides free legal help. There might be a waiting list and it’s not easy to get in touch. Try calling a toll free number for attorney/lawyer referral. Most lawyers will give a free fifteen or twenty minute meeting and they might be able to give you advice. Others will charge a modest fee of $20 or $50. I once had one do the needed work pro bono (free!). Also check out the local court building. In the city here the district court has an office where they give legal advice on how to fill out forms, where to get forms, and other questions. I forget what the place is called but they were really helpful for me.