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  1. Athena, please DO say something! I was one of the dumb folks out there that went and bought a 2003 Dodge Stratus with 60,000 miles, for $11,000 in March 2006, just after we got our bankruptcy discharge papers. Ugh. NEVER again will we buy a vehicle on a loan. We will be paying for vehicles, with cash only. Lesson learned.
  2. Here is the system I use: ( (Accounts) ) ( 70% Of Income -> Checking -> Citizens Commerce National Bank ) 80% Expenses { Cash - Drawn from "Expenses" checking account } $100/week Food $100/week Fuel $100/month Supplies $100/month Staples 5% Spending-Fun - entertainment, cheap fun 15% Spending-Ticket - items the family can use, and for a long time 20% Of Income -> Savings -> GTKY Federal Credit Union ) 20% Emergency-Income - in case of lost job, medical leave, someone in family gets sick 10% Emergency-Expenses - repairs, pet sickness, speeding tickets (whistles) 50% Home 20% Auto 10% Of Income -> Investments -> GTKY Federal Credit Union ) IRA - me IRA - wife Coverdell - son I gave this system a lot of thought. In the end, it comes down to your financial priorities. We struggle greatly to pay our bills, but it is the ONLY way we will be able to save for the things we want, and prevent the kinds of mishaps that plagued us in the past. The only accounts that have not been yet created the IRA's and the savings accounts. Actually the savings accounts do exist, but they are short-term type savings accounts. Hope this helps someone else!
  3. Don't forget the fact that 401K accounts are OFTEN hit with hidden fees. Generally speaking, employers won't mention these hidden fees (passed on to you by employers) unless pressed to do so.
  4. This is a wonderful tool! Please consider widening the first column. One of my credit cards has a long name, along with a long list of fees and charges. Hint: Continental Finance
  5. My eyes just permanently crossed and rolled backwards after attempting to read that.
  6. I'm not in position (translation: sucky FICO scores) to even think about a LOC or CC with Penfed. However, let me say this: They are GREEDY! I just received my Penfed packet the other day, for membership. I can clearly remember designating $5 toward opening my checking account with them (along with $25 for the membership), yet their packet asks me to send them a check just to activate my account. On top of that boo boo, I'm looking at their "Service Fees" and can not believe how ridiculously high those fees are. $2.50 for a non-Penfed ATM withdrawal? Puh-leez. Many banks easily beat that charge at competing banks' ATM's. There's even a $4.50 monthly PenCheck Net charge for "bill pay" if your average balance is less than $5,000. No thanks. I can get free bill pay with PNC Bank. I thought that credit unions were supposed to be the good guys, looking out for their members. I thought their fees were lower than banks? I also remember seeing around here that many think Penfed is super. I'm starting to wonder if those opinions' are based on those lofty CLI's they got from Penfed.
  7. At what score range should I (only have Crown Jewelers, First Premier, Capital One, Continental Finance and Orchard) safely be able to go on an "app spree"? Right now my scores are in the high 500's to very low 600's.
  8. Peeps, I think that CraigsList post was bull-poopy.
  9. Is there any way for an "outsider" (to the military and anything to do with it) to join the NAVY FCU?
  10. I am not big fan of Capital One...but I think the real question here is: Should they trust you ?????????????? Very legitimate answer. With all the money they were making off "late" and "over the limit" fees, I think they don't have a lot of room to complain. Given that we have gotten the balance almost $200 below the CL, they ought to give us our charging privileges back. Heck, they're making off that money off "interest", too. I'll answer your question as best as I can: YES!
  11. Yes, this is going to be tough. Just now realized (okay, forgot) that Privacy Matters is really TrueCredit. They managed to charge my debit card about four times for one purchase. And, every single one of those "CSR's" is non-native English speaking. Crap.
  12. Edit: Okay, thanks for the replies. Going with PM, then :-) Do you recommend MyFico for tracking/viewing/editing credit reports?
  13. Some of you know about my problems with TrueCredit, and I hope I didn't leave out any other credit tracking services out there. Having said that, I'm trying to decide between going with MyFICO and Privacy Matters, and would like some opinions on the two. My wife and I don't have a lot of money to spend on tracking our credit scores and report information, but right now cleaning up our reports is the most important thing. I could care less about a FICO score, since the things we want to accomplish (including getting a mortgage) don't so much depend on FICO scores (history is more important).
  14. My wife and I only have Crap1 and some "starter" cards: Her # Crap1 (joint) Me # Crap1 (joint) # First Premier Bank $250 CL [FUEL] # Continental Finance $300 CL [GROCERY] We are almost 2 years removed from BK, and are just now starting to get things under control financially. Our FICO scores suck (mid 500's I think). My goal as the "family bean counter" is to get us each 5 credit cards (fuel, grocery, supply, staple, spending money) and set the spending limit at <=30% of the credit limit on each card. I'm not sure of the interest rates on each card, I'll find out and write that in the boxes on the chart I'm using to track all the cards. I don't think we're too far off here from gaining some big-time ground on our credit scores. Seems half the battle is education.

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