CONSUMER BUZZ | Senior Survival

Senior Survival By Raine Bee I was amazed the other day when I heard about yet another misleading practice designed to take advantage of senior citizens.  We’ve heard about payday lending, where you typically go to a check casher or other alternative financial service provider for a short-term loan. The payday lender agrees to loan you the money and you agree to pay it back by your next paycheck, plus interest and fees.  By the time your next paycheck rolls around, you’re unable to pay back the loan due to the exorbitant interest and fees added on.  So, the cycle […]

CONSUMER BUZZ | When the Well Runs Dry

When the Well Runs Dry Summer is winding down.  As long as it took to come, it’s over so fast.  The dog days of summer will soon turn into the doldrums of fall/winter.  Back to school time = less disposable income and more expenses for school supplies, clothes, tuition, etc.  Virtually every one I talk to lately is feeling the pinch.  We’ve tightened our belts to the point where we’re about to pop!  We’ve cut back on the luxury items and are getting by on meeting the minimum needs.  Still, it does not seem like we’re doing enough.  What more […]

CONSUMER BUZZ | Pounding the Pavement

Pounding the Pavement I recently read an article about the “high” unemployment rate among minorities.  The article specified that the unemployment rate does not equate to the number of folks currently out of work, or unemployed, as you would think.  Instead, the term refers to the number of folks actively seeking employment.  So, according to the article, if you are unemployed and not actively “pounding the payment,” you are not counted in statistical unemployment figures. I did more research on this actively seeking concept and confirmed what the article indicated is in fact true.  {We all know that you can’t […]

CONSUMER BUZZ | You’ve Been Accepted Now What

Twelve years of primary education have come and gone. Your young adult is about to leave the nest to head off to college. If this is your first child to head off to school, you may be at a loss as to where to start. A year ago I was nearly clueless as to how to get the process started after those acceptance letters started rolling in. While we are thrilled for our children, we are secretly unsure as to what we need to do next as parents. Below is a listing of simple tips which I hope will guide parents through the “now what” period from acceptance letter to first day on campus.

CONSUMER BUZZ | Location, location, location

Location, location, location… I recently attended a seminar where I heard it mentioned that zip code is a better predictor of longevity than genetic make-up.  In other words, where you live plays a critical role in a person’s health, education, and life expectancy more so than DNA.  Kids rarely go out and play anymore.  Gone are the days of roller skating in the street, trying to beat your friends in foot races, or being outside for hours on a cold Christmas day after discovering your new bike under the tree.  Couple that with neighborhoods where there is an abundance of […]

CONSUMER BUZZ | Tenant’s Tenacity

Tenant’s Tenacity First, the U.S. housing bubble burst in 2006 when median home prices began to decline.  Next, the U.S. slipped into a national recession as unemployment soared, investments plummeted, and overall economic activity decreased considerably.  Over time, (or suddenly, depending on whom you ask) many homeowners found that they owed far more for their home than the home was worth.  These “underwater” property owners found themselves struggling to make the mortgage payments on the home due to adjusting interest rates, balloon payments, and other undesirable consequences resulting from the credit crisis.  Stress, frustration, and desolation have resulted in many […]