Good Financial Cents…Get It?

Hello! Welcome back to the blog. It’s been a while, hasn’t it? Well, I’ve been off on my own financial and life adventures, and I hope you have, too! Now, where were we? Yes, collective groaning about finances and talking about improving credit scores…and continuing on with some info about the current state of Balance Transfers. Well, ready to dive in? Okay!

APR financing stands for annual percentage rate of charge, and although that sounds like a very odd concept to many, it’s one that is really important to understand. I’m sure many of you get emails and snail mail that advertise 0%APR financing for 12 months, 15 months, and so on and so forth…well…that’s great! What that means is that when you sign up with said credit card company you will pay 0% interest on your total balance each month for that many months. No fees!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Wahoo!!!!! It’s fabulous…and it feels that way, but don’t get caught not paying attention to where you are in the cycle. It’s easy to forget when your introductory period is going to be over…and then watch out…the interest is going to accumulate. You will need to make sure that you are keeping a low balance or no balance when the time is up, because you will certainly notice a big difference in the fees that you owe at the end of the month…and they add up fast. So…I’m here to tell you that with a  little bit of self-discipline (not spending money you don’t actually already have…I’m right there with you on that one, trust me) and knowledge of how the system works…you can create better financial health. Here are several of the top offers on the market for the moment…happy researching!

Although there are currently a range of options when it comes to how long each companies introductory offer, creditkarma.com states that the top 3 credit offers OVERALL (including rate of cash back and other benefits), are as follows:

  1. Chase Freedom Unlimited (heck yes 15mos. 0% APR and unlimited 1.5% cash back on all purchases+$150 bonus after you spend $500 on purchases during the first 3 months of your offer). Yay! Oh, I forgot to tell you…some cards even offer sign-up bonuses. Yep, you get money (if you’re approved and you follow the rules, of course).
  2. Capital One Quicksilver Cash Rewards Credit Card                                                               This is a great offer, and I can say that from personal experience. This is actually one of the cards that I currently have. I have been very impressed with Capital Ones’ customer service and their quality. I love the fact that I can choose a variety of ways that I want to cash out my rewards…even by buying gift cards! I can also rack up my cash rewards without them EVER expiring! The technical deets are: 0%APR for 15 months, unlimited 1.5% cash back, and no annual fee either…YEESSSSS!!!!!!!!!!!
  3. Wells Fargo Platinum Card                                                                                                           This one offers something unique on top of the introductory 0% APR for 18 months offer (wow)! You are eligible for a maximum amount of $600 protection…on your phone…when you follow all of their requirements (always…ALWAYS…follow the requirements, otherwise you will be denied the offers and lose out on money you could have benefited from). That’s worth looking into! They also offer zero liability protection for charges that are reported within a certain amount of time…also seriously worth looking into…Even I might have to look into this…There are a myriad of other benefits as well…                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       Well…wow that was informational for me as well! As you can see, offers are constantly changing, so keep an eye out for the next best thing, and the next best tip…I know I will be! Keep tuned here for more information, always, and tips to think about on your journey. As always, this information has worked for me, but it doesn’t mean it will work for you and your finances. Although I have found successes, each financial story is different and it really is best to speak to a professional adviser when it comes to the big money choices in life. Please leave comments and questions below, and I will answer asap!  Until we chat again, ciao, and enjoy your next big adventures!

 

Let’s Talk About Financial Interest…

Oh, I know, sounds boring right? I used to think so, too…and then I started paying more of my own bills. YEP, it’s NOT SO BORING NOW, right? True. For those of you who are new to my blog, my last post was about how to start the process of improving your credit score. As a disclaimer: I am not a financial adviser, and these are simply my musings about what has worked for my own situation. Each individual financial setup is different, so for your own changes I recommend that you meet with a banker or someone in that field. I would simply like to share my knowledge with you. Along the way I hope to present this to you in a personable and slightly more fun way than your traditional financial sources. We’ll see if I’m successful! Feel free to comment below and ask any questions you might have.

Last time I left off while writing about throwing money down the toilet, right? Interest. Interest is how banks make money on top of the money they’ve loaned you. They wouldn’t be able to do it without interest. They need to fund their establishment, too, and interest is one of the ways that they do that. Interest can come in all sizes. And it is worth it to understand how interest will effect you in five, ten, or however many years in the future.

When you apply for a credit card you will see that banks are going to entice you into applying for their products. Side note: be careful how many credit cards you apply for. Applying for too many credit cards negatively effects your credit score. The bank will promote their company by advertising APR’s. APR’s (annual percentage rates) can start as low as 0.00% when a credit company is trying to gain your business. This is great! It means that for however long that offer is valid you will not be charged interest on the balance of your account! AWESOME! But…be careful. There’s a catch. After that introductory period ends you will be responsible for the interest that starts to accrue on the balance that you have borrowed. That money does not go toward the original amount that you borrowed. It goes directly to the bank for having gained your business. Soooo…you are paying the bank for having given you a loan and then paying that loan back in full afterwards. Interest rates can tack on quite a large amount to the bill you already owe. Several years ago, I took a good, long look at my credit statements…and I was SHOCKED to find out that I was paying the bank $40 per month that went into their pockets and less was going toward actually paying down my loan balance. As you can see, interest can become quite a hefty bill…but there is a way to avoid it!

The first thing to realize is that the bank can not charge you interest if there is nothing to charge interest to. This is possible if you make sure to pay your balance in full every single month. It sounds very simple, but it can take self discipline to stick to this. If, like me, you’ve not always had the best financial habits, there are ways to improve your situation….

Now enters the next option for those of us already down the rabbit hole…APR transfers! For now I will leave you to digest the information about credit that I’ve written about, but very shortly I will communicate about APR transfers and what good they can do for those of us already down the rabbit hole of paying off our credit burden.

So…I hope that today you have learned something helpful and not the hard way, like I have. I’m sure it was quite a comical scene when I figured out (in public) just how credit card interest really works. Ciao for now and here’s to awesome financial habits!

Good Financial Cents…Get It?

Hello! Welcome back to the blog. It’s been a while, hasn’t it? Well, I’ve been off on my own financial and life adventures, and I hope you have, too! Now, where were we? Yes, collective groaning about finances and talking about improving credit scores…and continuing on with some info about the current state of Balance Transfers. Well, ready to dive in? Okay!

APR financing stands for annual percentage rate of charge, and although that sounds like a very odd concept to many, it’s one that is really important to understand. I’m sure many of you get emails and snail mail that advertise 0%APR financing for 12 months, 15 months, and so on and so forth…well…that’s great! What that means is that when you sign up with said credit card company you will pay 0% interest on your total balance each month for that many months. No fees!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Wahoo!!!!! It’s fabulous…and it feels that way, but don’t get caught not paying attention to where you are in the cycle. It’s easy to forget when your introductory period is going to be over…and then watch out…the interest is going to accumulate. You will need to make sure that you are keeping a low balance or no balance when the time is up, because you will certainly notice a big difference in the fees that you owe at the end of the month…and they add up fast. So…I’m here to tell you that with a  little bit of self-discipline (not spending money you don’t actually already have…I’m right there with you on that one, trust me) and knowledge of how the system works…you can create better financial health. Here are several of the top offers on the market for the moment…happy researching!

Although there are currently a range of options when it comes to how long each companies introductory offer, creditkarma.com states that the top 3 credit offers OVERALL (including rate of cash back and other benefits), are as follows:

  1. Chase Freedom Unlimited (heck yes 15mos. 0% APR and unlimited 1.5% cash back on all purchases+$150 bonus after you spend $500 on purchases during the first 3 months of your offer). Yay! Oh, I forgot to tell you…some cards even offer sign-up bonuses. Yep, you get money (if you’re approved and you follow the rules, of course).
  2. Capital One Quicksilver Cash Rewards Credit Card                                                               This is a great offer, and I can say that from personal experience. This is actually one of the cards that I currently have. I have been very impressed with Capital Ones’ customer service and their quality. I love the fact that I can choose a variety of ways that I want to cash out my rewards…even by buying gift cards! I can also rack up my cash rewards without them EVER expiring! The technical deets are: 0%APR for 15 months, unlimited 1.5% cash back, and no annual fee either…YEESSSSS!!!!!!!!!!!
  3. Wells Fargo Platinum Card                                                                                                           This one offers something unique on top of the introductory 0% APR for 18 months offer (wow)! You are eligible for a maximum amount of $600 protection…on your phone…when you follow all of their requirements (always…ALWAYS…follow the requirements, otherwise you will be denied the offers and lose out on money you could have benefited from). That’s worth looking into! They also offer zero liability protection for charges that are reported within a certain amount of time…also seriously worth looking into…Even I might have to look into this…There are a myriad of other benefits as well…                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       Well…wow that was informational for me as well! As you can see, offers are constantly changing, so keep an eye out for the next best thing, and the next best tip…I know I will be! Keep tuned here for more information, always, and tips to think about on your journey. As always, this information has worked for me, but it doesn’t mean it will work for you and your finances. Although I have found successes, each financial story is different and it really is best to speak to a professional adviser when it comes to the big money choices in life. Please leave comments and questions below, and I will answer asap!  Until we chat again, ciao, and enjoy your next big adventures!

 

Let’s Talk About Financial Interest…

Oh, I know, sounds boring right? I used to think so, too…and then I started paying more of my own bills. YEP, it’s NOT SO BORING NOW, right? True. For those of you who are new to my blog, my last post was about how to start the process of improving your credit score. As a disclaimer: I am not a financial adviser, and these are simply my musings about what has worked for my own situation. Each individual financial setup is different, so for your own changes I recommend that you meet with a banker or someone in that field. I would simply like to share my knowledge with you. Along the way I hope to present this to you in a personable and slightly more fun way than your traditional financial sources. We’ll see if I’m successful! Feel free to comment below and ask any questions you might have.

Last time I left off while writing about throwing money down the toilet, right? Interest. Interest is how banks make money on top of the money they’ve loaned you. They wouldn’t be able to do it without interest. They need to fund their establishment, too, and interest is one of the ways that they do that. Interest can come in all sizes. And it is worth it to understand how interest will effect you in five, ten, or however many years in the future.

When you apply for a credit card you will see that banks are going to entice you into applying for their products. Side note: be careful how many credit cards you apply for. Applying for too many credit cards negatively effects your credit score. The bank will promote their company by advertising APR’s. APR’s (annual percentage rates) can start as low as 0.00% when a credit company is trying to gain your business. This is great! It means that for however long that offer is valid you will not be charged interest on the balance of your account! AWESOME! But…be careful. There’s a catch. After that introductory period ends you will be responsible for the interest that starts to accrue on the balance that you have borrowed. That money does not go toward the original amount that you borrowed. It goes directly to the bank for having gained your business. Soooo…you are paying the bank for having given you a loan and then paying that loan back in full afterwards. Interest rates can tack on quite a large amount to the bill you already owe. Several years ago, I took a good, long look at my credit statements…and I was SHOCKED to find out that I was paying the bank $40 per month that went into their pockets and less was going toward actually paying down my loan balance. As you can see, interest can become quite a hefty bill…but there is a way to avoid it!

The first thing to realize is that the bank can not charge you interest if there is nothing to charge interest to. This is possible if you make sure to pay your balance in full every single month. It sounds very simple, but it can take self discipline to stick to this. If, like me, you’ve not always had the best financial habits, there are ways to improve your situation….

Now enters the next option for those of us already down the rabbit hole…APR transfers! For now I will leave you to digest the information about credit that I’ve written about, but very shortly I will communicate about APR transfers and what good they can do for those of us already down the rabbit hole of paying off our credit burden.

So…I hope that today you have learned something helpful and not the hard way, like I have. I’m sure it was quite a comical scene when I figured out (in public) just how credit card interest really works. Ciao for now and here’s to awesome financial habits!