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News Now

CU System
CUNA expert to IPC WorldI Avoid HDTV 0 financing
SAN FRANCISCO (12/13/07)--Consumers thinking about buying a high-definition television (HDTV) under a 0% financing or a retail store credit card deal during the holidays should think again, according to Jim Hanson, vice president of the Credit Union National Association’s Center for Personal Finance. Hanson was interviewed by PC World for an article published Dec. 11 about HDTV buying tips. The article stated that many retail stores offer deals on HDTVs over the holidays. Hanson suggested that most people should avoid store gimmicks--such as 0% financing or a certain percentage off when opening a retail store credit card. Store credit cards have low limits and high fees, Hanson said. Consumers interested in buying high-priced items should look into low-interest credit cards from a credit union. “It boils down to simple elementary advice that never changes,” Hanson told PC World. “Cash is always best. If you need a special promotion to buy an HDTV, you can’t afford it.” Lynnette Khalfani-Cox, author of Zero Debt for College Grads, echoed Hanson’s thoughts. People who qualify for 0% financing often think they can afford to buy expensive items, but credit card companies do not look out for consumers’ best interests, she told the magazine. Also, some consumers are required to pay interest if they can’t pay off an HDTV during a promotional period, she said.
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