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  1. +1 Also, do you do check your CC online? If so, you could probably just use the online secure message center and send a question to Chase about it. That way, your DH doesn't even have to get involved. As far as they know, your DH sent them the online message. Hope that helps. SuperG Now why didn't I just think of that?? It is so much easier when I can bypass him altogether.
  2. I never would have thought of that! I don't have any other accounts with Chase, but I can totally see that happening to someone.
  3. PIF ON or BEFORE THE DUE DATE $0.00 INTEREST CHARGED (assuming you also PIF last month) The minimum interest charged comes into play when you don't PIF Say you owed $184.12 and only could pay $183.00...(you couldn't even borrow $1.12 from your neighbor or somebody at work) The $1.12 of remaining balance may incur $0.01 or $0.02 interest when you do the math (DEPENDING ON YOUR APR) ...BUT YOUR GOING TO HAVE TO PAY $1.50 INSTEAD The bill was due on 4/27 and I paid it on 4/23 in full. My account now shows a finance charge for $1.50 and a zero balance for purchases. I guess I'll start bugging DH to call them. Must be an error. Was last months bill also PIF on or before the due date??? Yes. I PIF every month. I looked at the details last night and each of my statements for the last several months was paid.
  4. PIF ON or BEFORE THE DUE DATE $0.00 INTEREST CHARGED (assuming you also PIF last month) The minimum interest charged comes into play when you don't PIF Say you owed $184.12 and only could pay $183.00...(you couldn't even borrow $1.12 from your neighbor or somebody at work) The $1.12 of remaining balance may incur $0.01 or $0.02 interest when you do the math (DEPENDING ON YOUR APR) ...BUT YOUR GOING TO HAVE TO PAY $1.50 INSTEAD The bill was due on 4/27 and I paid it on 4/23 in full. My account now shows a finance charge for $1.50 and a zero balance for purchases. I guess I'll start bugging DH to call them. Must be an error.
  5. I just received my husband's Chase notice. We pay in full every month and now it is showing a "minimum interest charge" of $1.50. It will take an act of congress to get him to call chase and ask questions, so I am turning to the wise credit boards to get some insight before I start the campaign to get him to make the call. I read the terms of service, but it is so vaguely worded. Is this fee charged now every time we pay in full? Will calling Chase help or should we just find a new card that does not include a minimum interest charge?
  6. tds

    Delinquent tax bill

    First thing this morning I contacted my mortgage company, and the lady there is notifying the escrow administration manager of the problem. I mentioned the penalties and that they should probably be waived by the tax collector because the tax bill was sent to the wrong person. But you're right that it should really be the responsibility of the escrow department. It's hard to see how they can sit on an escrow with past due taxes and not take any action at all. Or maybe they have a backlog of tax errors, and would have got around to it soon even if I didn't know about it. My mortgage company does mention, somewhere in the fine print, that I should send the first tax bill to them. But I somehow overlooked that. And since it wasn't addressed to me, I never became aware of it till yesterday. There was never any mention of any possibility that the tax bill might be sent to the previous owner. Here in Texas, the law does not allow for waiver of penalties if the bill was sent to the owner on record prior to the delinquency date. It is the new owner's responsibility to be sure taxes are paid on time even if the property is not in his or her name. Different states will have different laws, so you may want to call the local tax office and discuss the problem with them so they can advise you of how the law applies to your specific situation. Let them know that your mortgage company is aware of the situation as of today and is working on getting the taxes paid. If the mortgage company made the error and should have known about and paid the taxes, ask that they pay all of the penalties out of corporate funds and not out of your escrow.
  7. Sometimes more. My tax base is about 3.5%; my sister's last house was abt 4%. I don't know about this ... my school district was 1.65 last year; not sure what it will be for 07. The reduction to $1.33 (or $1.37 w/enrichment taxes) was on the M&O portion of the rate. The rest of the $1.65 is probably the debt rate. The new law requires a breakdown of the two portions of the rate somewhere on your bill, so you should be able to check to see which rate the M&O was at for 2006 and compare it to the previous year. If the debt rate stays the same in 2007, you will see about a $0.30 decrease in the tax rate. Here is a link to the legislative report: http://www.house.state.tx.us/featured/scho...;taxes79-13.pdf
  8. School finance legislation passed last year reduced the 2006 school tax rates in Texas from $1.50 per $100 to $1.33 per $100. Schools had the option to vote in a 4 cent enrichment tax, making the rates in some districts $1.37. The legislation calls for another reduction in 2007 down to $1.00 per $100. I am not sure if the 4 cent enrichment tax is still on the table for 2007. The legislature is now back in session, so they may make changes to the 2007 plan. These changes only affect schools and not other jurisdictions.
  9. It worked for me. I paid off over $25,000 of credit card debt in two years. I did not snowball the car payment (it is at a low interest rate and the payment is small, so I took on a mortgage instead). I do make the equivalent of 1 extra car payment a year and plan to do the same with the mortgage. I had an extra job to help me out and speed up the process. Now I pay in full if I do charge something. I occasionally take advantage of 0% interest offers on major purchases. However, I only do this if I can pay in full in 1/2 the amount of time being offered (i.e. I can pay in 6 months and the offer is for 12 months 0% interest). The hardest thing about the process was the very beginning. It was slow and I had to really learn how to be patient. I made sure that I was saving money during the process for things like vacations. DH and I cut out all non-essentials, so putting money aside for a few rewards along the way (a trip to see a friend get married and a visit to the grandparent's) really helped keep us motivated and showed us that we could save and pay in cash if we put our minds to it. The last 6 months was the best part. I was paying off entire accounts every month or every other other month. It was a great feeling. I used the snowball spreadsheet posted in this forum. What I liked about it is that I could plug in different scenarios as things changed with our finances. It was also a way to see my progress, especially in the beginning when I did not feel like I was getting any where.
  10. In Texas, the date of appraisal is January 1. If your house was 85% complete on January 1, 2007, the value will be based on the portion of the property that was complete on that date. You will owe tax on both the land and improvements, just not for the full value of the improvements. When you get your appraisal notice in April, be sure it has both land and improvements on it. If it just has land, call to get it corrected so they can add the 85% that was improved. Here is why. Let's say they only value the land and they send the tax bill out in October to your mortgage company. Later in the year, they figure out that your improvement is missing even though it was 85% complete. You (or your mortgage company) will get a surprise tax bill for that 85% and it will be due on January 31, 2008 as long as the bill was mailed to you by January 10! The appraisal district has 5 years to add property to the tax roll so that 85% may show up when you least expected and it will usually be due in 21 days (depending on the date the bill is mailed). This scenario is one reason why some people end up with huge escrow shortages that cause increases in their monthly payments. If you want to be sure the correct amount is being escrowed, take the total tax rate and multiply it by the value of the land plus 85% of the improvement. The tax assessor in your county should be able to provide the total tax rate for the jurisdictions your property is in. This will give you a pretty good estimate of what to expect the first year. In January of 2008, be sure to apply for your homestead exemption so it will be reflected on the 2008 appraisal notice. In 2008, the value of your property will be based on 100% completion. If you have other Texas property tax questions, let me know.
  11. I just paid off my credit card debt at the end of last year and it felt really good. DH and I wanted a house near work and in order to afford that we knew that our monthly expenses needed to drastically change. Credit card debt was a big chunk of those expenses. Now we only have one car payment and two small student loans. If we use a credit card, we are sure to pay it in full. Here is what I did to pay everything off. Hopefully this will help you. The first thing I did was make sure we had enough in savings to handle emergencies. I had enough put away to cover our auto and health insurance deductibles in case we needed to pay out of pocket. I also started saving a little each month to cover any routine car maintenance or major repairs. This money was great to have set aside because when an expense did come up, we did not have to use our credit cards (all of the cards went in a drawer). We don't have children, animals, or a house, so we did not need much in savings to feel secure. Next, I made a budget and stuck to it. I had a second job and put all of the money I earned toward our credit cards. Along the way, we did save for a few major purchases, but we did this by putting aside $25 or $50 at a time. I also put money aside in savings for a few small vacations (family events like weddings, etc. that we would need to attend). For us, being able to spend money every once in awhile was helpful because we did not feel as if we were so deprived. It also taught us to be patient and set goals. In 2 years we paid of $25,000 in debt. We are in the process of getting our home loan right now. Before we started paying off debt, both of our credit scores were in the mid 600s to lower 700s. I had nothing bad on my reports. My husband had one derogatory item that I was able to get removed from two of his reports and it remains on one despite all of the attempts. Thanks to our much lower utilization, our broker pulled scores of 793, 791, and 808 (mine) and 793, 800, and 728 (his). It feels really good to see our paycheck and realize that the money is not all going to the credit card companies now!
  12. We are very lucky because we work at the same office. We work slightly different shifts but I just come early and he stays late. I can't believe how many people tell us we should have another car. Uhhhh, let's see.....two people driving two different cars in the same horrible traffic to get to the same place - no thank you! It is a hassle when we need to get the car serviced, but other than that it works out just fine.
  13. Good for you! Maybe you will even see some gas savings. DH and I decided to be a 1 car family. Everyone thinks we are crazy. However, we paid off considerable credit card debt in 2 years and are about to buy a house. With only one car payment, two small student loan payments, and careful budgeting, we will be able to get the house we really want.
  14. I've been playing the grocery game for 2 years and in that time I have paid off all of my debt! Not all of the money to pay the debt came from my savings at the store. However, my attention to the budget and what I was spending along with a mindset of saving money allowed me to put extra $$ toward debt and even start adding to my savings account for emergencies at the same time. I could not do all of the work it takes to make coupons work without the grocery game.
  15. I just thought I would let everyone know that I just scheduled my final payment of an outstanding credit card balance. The payment will be delivered on December 4. In February, 2005, my credit card debt was over $20,000. I had good credit scores because I was always able to scrape up the minimum payments on time (I have 2 jobs), but my utilization was also high so there was room for improvement. I used one of the snowball spreadsheets from this forum and sat down with my husband before we were married. Since we were combining living expenses, my "portion" of the rent and other bills would be much lower than it was living on my own. I asked him if I could concentrate on paying off our debt (almost all of it was mine) and he agreed. My husband makes less money than I do and did not own a car when we got married. We decided to stick to owning only one vehicle. We still put money into our emergency fund and we also saved for a few large purchases so we did not feel totally deprived during this process. We even went on a few small vacations (paying in full, of course). At the same time, we cut out a lot of extras. For example, my husband likes to buy movies on a regular basis and he cut out these purchases altogether. I also starting using the grocery game and was able to cut our grocery budget in half. At the end of December, we will have cards that we can PIF monthly, $1,200 in an emergency fund that is set aside for any insurance deductibles that would need to be paid in the event of an accident or medical problem, and $2,000 in savings. By March, we will have $5,000 in savings. We have gained a great deal of patience because we will plan our purchases and set aside money in advance instead of paying with a credit card. We also know about how to take advantage of a 0% interest deal and make sure we don't ever get caught paying that interest. I know there are times when people will come to CB and post negative things because they mistakenly think that there are people here who are trying to get out of paying their debt. Those comments are completely off-base. I have learned so much here about my credit, my credit reports, and how to do the right thing with money. Even though I did not need to remove anything from my reports, I learned how it can be done and how to make sure everything is accurate. But the thing that helped me the most was having a place where I could read about people doing the same thing we were trying to do. I could come here to remind myself that we were working toward a goal and that goal was important, even if my friends thought we were stupid for not being able to go do the things they were doing or buy the things they were buying. If you are trying to pay off debt and you have not looked at the snowball spreadsheets, I encourage you to check them out.

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