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Say goodbye to travelers checks--HandFF Radio guest

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WASHINGTON (8/29/08)--Traveling without cash just got easier, thanks to prepaid travel cards, and one of the guests on Sunday’s H&FF Radio show explains why traveler’s checks eventually will become extinct. Home & Family Finance airs Sundays at 3 p.m. EDT on the Radio America Network. The one-hour program devoted to consumer finance issues is brought to you by America's credit unions and their 90 million members, and is presented by CO-OP Network. The Credit Union National Association (CUNA) and Radio America are podcasting Home & Family Finance through iTunes, Podcast Alley, Odeo, and other popular podcast library sites, as well as on Radio America and CUNA’s websites. Sunday’s show, which you also can hear later via the Internet, features Paul Berry, Washington, D.C., journalist and broadcaster, discussing these topics with special guests:
* “Personal Finance Management Program for Military Personnel and Their Families,” with Gordon Genovese, U.S. Marine Corps (retired) and executive director, Association for Financial Counseling and Planning Education, Columbus, Ohio; * “Travel Cards: Bye-Bye Traveler Checks!” with Christopher Russell, executive vice president and regional divisional director outsourcing travelex Americas, Travelex, Atlanta, Ga.; * “Travel Fraud: Vacation Certificates and Vacation Clubs,” with Collot Guerard, attorney, Consumer Protection Division, Federal Trade Commission, Washington, D.C.; * “Passing on Wealth to Adult Children,” with Mark Kollar, CEO, Kollar Financial Strategies, Chicago; and * Host Paul Berry Answers Your Questions: fees and other "hidden" costs of auto ownership; online banking; direct paycheck deposit; and debit cards and older teens.
Home & Family Finance is a resource center for personal finance information at CUNA. The radio show is sponsored by CO-OP Network, the national credit union ATM network; Cabot Creamery Cooperative, maker of award-winning cheddar; Visa; and Western Corporate FCU and its member credit unions. For more information, read “Tough Times Series: Services, Sites Help Veterans Navigate Benefits Maze” in Home & Family Resource Center.

Advice for car shoppers in slumping economy

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SANTA MONICA, Calif. (8/27/08)--Responding to $4 per gallon gasoline prices, consumers are revved up about hybrids. But their craving to drive these eco- and gas-friendly vehicles may not be the best panacea for the problems at the pump (Edmunds.com Aug. 19). While most hybrids boast excellent fuel efficiency, the prices are higher than for other vehicles, which can create a lengthy period for your gas savings to “pay back” that initial price. In fact, when long-term ownership costs—such as financing, insurance, fuel, taxes, maintenance, and repairs—are considered, the popular Prius hybrid model ranked No. 34 in Edmunds’ True Cost to Own ranking system. When buying a vehicle, step back and consider the big picture. While a hybrid may be the best vehicle for some, don’t overlook a traditional compact car or even a used SUV. Consider these tips in the current car-buying market:
*Shop for fuel economy and low price. Check out fueleconomy.gov. Then visit kbb.com for current auto prices from Kelley Blue Book’s “New Car Blue Book Value.” Choose a few that get at least 30 mpg and cost less than sticker price. Ask local dealers to beat that quote, and you may end up with a lower price than the Blue Book Value. *Avoid used vehicles that are in higher demand. Expect to pay a premium for the popular models. A Ford Focus, for example, sells for less than 60% of the manufacturer’s price, while a higher demand compact Honda Civic goes for 70% to 90% of manufacturer’s price. Instead search for cars with high reliability ratings from J.D. Power & Associates at jdpower.com. *Search for reduced sticker prices on SUVs or crossovers. If you’re a low-mileage driver, this may be a good option. While these aren’t gas-sippers, you may be able to get as much as 15% off the manufacturer’s suggested retail price (MSRP) and also land great financing or rebates. Check with the credit union first to compare financing options.
If a hybrid is definitely what you’re after, be prepared for a waiting list and a hefty refundable deposit as down payment, especially for the two most popular brands—the Prius and the Civic Hybrid (CNNMoney.com Aug. 8). Be flexible about special options and features. Consider a lesser-known hybrid with slightly fewer miles per gallon, such as the Chevy Malibu or Nissan Altima, which may be a lot easier to get your hands on. For more information, read “Going Greener With Your Next Car,” and “Will a Hybrid Car Save You Money?” in Home & Family Resource Center.

Ease the pain of medical debt

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WASHINGTON (8/25/08)--A whopping 79 million Americans are struggling to pay off hospital and doctor bills, with adults in more income groups than ever before affected by excessive health-care costs, according to a report released last week (Reuters Aug. 20). The 2007 Biennial Health Insurance Survey, released by the Commonwealth Fund, a New York-based foundation that tracks trends in health coverage and quality, revealed that 41% of working-age Americans--72 million people--have medical bill problems or are paying off medical debt, compared with 34% in 2005. Another seven million adults older than age 65 also struggle with medical debt. Surprisingly, more than half of those struggling to pay medical bills carry some form of insurance. If you are in this category and don’t make arrangements to pay the bill, it may be sent to collections, which could affect your credit rating. Take steps to ease the financial burden:
* Check for duplicate charges. According to Medical Billing Advocates of America, Salem, Va., the majority of hospital bills contain costly mistakes. For example, an operating room charge already includes the cost of routine services, equipment and supplies, but some facilities double-bill for the services (The Wall Street Journal Aug. 12). * Question a rejection. If your claim was denied, or the insurer informs you it’s only covering a portion of the cost, speak up. Sometimes it’s a simple fix, such as a wrong billing code. Follow the plan’s internal appeals process, or contact your state health department or attorney general’s office (U.S. News & World Report Aug. 21). Find contact information for resources in your state in the Consumer Resource Handbook at consumeraction.gov. * Pay now, save big. Some providers give hefty discounts if you can pay the discounted amount in full at the time the service is provided. Don’t use a credit card, though, or interest charges might eat up all the savings. * Negotiate with the health-care provider and hospital. Ask about repayment plans and discounts, because medical care is negotiable--particularly if you don’t have insurance or if you have a high-deductible plan. Ask for the rate that Medicare pays, which often is half the full price. You’re more likely to cut a deal if you’re facing bills for expensive treatment. Work with the hospital’s financial counselor if possible, and remember that hospitals typically don’t charge interest. * Negotiate with collections. If your bill is sent to a collection agency, stay calm. Contact the agency immediately and negotiate; it may settle for 25 cents to 50 cents on the dollar just to get your debt off its books. Don’t assume you must pay the entire amount. And know your rights; visit ftc.gov/bcp/edu/pubs/consumer/credit/cre18.shtm for more information. * Use government programs. Check if you qualify for Medicaid or whether your children qualify for your state’s Children’s Health Insurance Program. Some states cover children if the family has income up to 300% of the poverty level--that can be more than $63,000 for a family of four.
For more information, read “Medical Bills: Don’t Overpay” in Plan It: Retire Ready Toolkit.

IL.A. TimesI offers tips to manage cost of living on radio

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WASHINGTON (8/22/08)--L.A Times senior writer Kathy Kristof, one of the four guests on this Sunday’s H&FF Radio show, shares timely techniques for anyone struggling with today’s rising food and gas prices. Home & Family Finance airs Sundays at 3 p.m. EDT on the Radio America Network. The one-hour program devoted to consumer finance issues is brought to you by America's credit unions and their 90 million members, and is presented by CO-OP Network. The Credit Union National Association (CUNA) and Radio America are podcasting Home & Family Finance through iTunes, Podcast Alley, Odeo, and other popular podcast library sites, as well as on Radio America and CUNA’s websites. Sunday’s show, which you also can hear later via the Internet, features Paul Berry, Washington, D.C., journalist and broadcaster, discussing these topics with special guests:
* “Five Tips if You Are Falling Behind on Car Payments,” with Eric Hoffman, spokesman, Americans Well-informed on Automobile Retailing Economics (AWARE), Washington, D.C.; * “Intergenerational Wealth Planning: New Ways to Handle an Age-old Process,” with Eric Aanes, founder/president, Titus Wealth Management, San Mateo and Larkspur, Calif.; * “Financial Fitness: More Than a Good Credit Score,” with Brad Stroh, co-founder/CEO, Bills.com, San Mateo, Calif.; * “Ten Techniques to Manage Your Personal Cost of Living,” with Kathy Kristof, senior writer, Los Angeles Times; and * Your Questions Answered by Host Paul Berry: Summer travel and identity theft; filing for bankruptcy--other choices.
Home & Family Finance is a resource center for personal finance information at CUNA. The radio show is sponsored by CO-OP Network, the national credit union ATM network; Cabot Creamery Cooperative, maker of award-winning cheddar; Visa; and Western Corporate FCU and its member credit unions. For more information, read “Tough Times Series: Gouged by Groceries” in Home & Family Resource Center.

Some states speed up seizure of abandoned property

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McLEAN, Va. (8/20/08)--Consumers aren’t the only ones struggling with tight budgets. Now some cash-strapped states are changing laws to speed up the process of seizing property you’ve abandoned--which makes it more important than ever to quickly claim what’s rightfully yours (USA Today Aug. 13). In 2006, states collected more than $5 billion in unclaimed property, up 33% from 2003, after adjusting for inflation. Faced with bigger budget deficits, Washington, Alabama, and Oregon recently passed laws allowing them to seize most abandoned property in three years--not five. Delaware, South Carolina, and Louisiana targeted stocks and dividends, seizing them in three years instead of five. And Kentucky now seizes abandoned travelers’ checks in 15 years, rather than seven. Examples of unclaimed property include bank accounts, uncashed payroll checks, uncashed travelers checks, insurance proceeds, safe deposit box contents, utility deposits, stocks, bonds, mutual funds, and dividends. In today’s mobile society, it’s not surprising that so much money is left behind. You may have left a job and forgotten to pick up your last paycheck. You may have moved and forgotten to leave a forwarding address. You may have neglected to collect a utility deposit refund after you ended service and started with another company. How can you keep property from going unclaimed in the first place?
* Get--and stay--organized. Keep good records of all bank and savings accounts, safe deposit contents, and life insurance policies. * Don’t keep it a total secret. Tell at least one family member or trusted adviser where your financial records are located. * Record all utility deposits. Even if your memory is good, it’s easy to forget how much you paid several years ago for rent, utility and telephone deposits. * Cash checks immediately. If you don’t, they may get buried under piles of paper and accidentally tossed out with the trash. * Make contact. Correspond with all financial institutions that hold your share draft, share savings, share certificate, and retirement accounts--at least once every three years. * Notify “the world” of a name change. If you change your name due to marriage, divorce, or other legal action, notify your credit union, broker, investment and insurance contacts, credit card issuers, accountant, attorney, employer, physician, 401(k) administrator, mortgage lender and others. * Leave your address behind. If you move, notify all concerned parties of your forwarding address.
To search for unclaimed property, visit MissingMoney.com. Searches are free and data are refreshed monthly. On the website, go to Site Features and click “Related Links.” Once there, you have access to a wealth of resources. For example, you can:
* Go on a “Treasury hunt” to see if you have savings bonds that no longer are earning interest; * Search for unclaimed tax refunds; * Get information on Veterans Affairs education benefits; and * Look for long-lost retirement accounts.
One final note: Even if your state has seized your abandoned property, you still can file with the state to reclaim it. For more information, read “Click ‘n’ Learn: Get It Together” in Plan It: Retire Ready Toolkit.

Shop smart to tackle high textbook prices

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NEW YORK (8/18/08)--As college students head back to campus, many are struggling to afford pricey textbooks, although there are bargains to be had if you know where to look. For financially strapped families, those bargains could mean the difference between a student staying in school and dropping out (SmartMoney.com Aug. 4). On average, students spend $900 a year on textbooks--almost 20% of in-state tuition and fees at a four-year public university, according to a February 2007 report from the U.S. Public Interest Research Group (PIRG). A single science book could cost $200 or more. To add to the high prices, publishers continually roll out new editions of textbooks--typically 12% more expensive than the previous edition--even though 71% of professors in the U.S. PIRG study said these editions are only “sometimes” or “rarely” justified. Some federal help may be on the way. Although not yet signed into law, Congress recently passed a modified version of the Higher Education Opportunity Act that includes a section addressing textbook prices and policies. Among other provisions, the act demands that publishers provide college faculty with accurate textbook pricing information as well as offer unbundled packages so students aren’t forced to purchase workbooks and other materials they don’t need. Even with the government’s help, high textbook prices still can involve a big chunk of change. Do this first: Obtain a list of required course textbook titles from your university bookstore (you can search its website) or ask your individual professors. Then, use these resources to shop smart and avoid overpaying:
* Go green, go electronic. Environmentalists, rejoice. Six of the largest textbook publishers recently began selling digital copies of textbooks on CourseSmart.com--at as much as 50% off the hardcover book price. If you can’t find the book you’re looking for, ask individual publishers or university bookstores if they offer electronic options. * Compare prices, buy online. This might be your best option. So many resources exist in the online textbook market, you are bound to uncover a bargain. To compare prices, try sites like Bestwebbuys.com, Bigwords.com, CheapestTextbooks.com, or Half.com. Use your search engine to uncover more websites and resources. * Download books—for free. And yes, downloadable books are legal. Sites like freeloadpress.com and gutenberg.org have books available, but you may have to search other resources as well because selections are limited. * Share with a friend. Even though this can cut the price in half, you may end up fighting for study rights with the book come exam time. This option may work best for solutions manuals or other necessary supplements. * Beware of bundles. Many students never glance at the CD-ROM or workbook bundled to the front of the textbook; yet they pay extra for the materials. If this sounds like you, search for the unbundled versions. * Consider older editions. Often, the latest edition of a text may not vary that much from the previous one--and it likely costs considerably less.
For more information, read “Timing Rules Student Loan Consolidation” in Home & Family Resource Center.

NCUA official on HandFF Radio Money is safe at CUs

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WASHINGTON (8/15/08)--The message is clear and simple: Credit unions remain healthy, vibrant, and well-capitalized. And that means your credit union accounts are insured, safe and secure, according to National Credit Union Administration (NCUA) Vice Chair Rodney Hood, speaking on Sunday’s H&FF Radio show. Home & Family Finance airs Sundays at 3 p.m. EDT on the Radio America Network. The one-hour program devoted to consumer finance issues is brought to you by America's credit unions and their 90 million members, and is presented by CO-OP Network. The Credit Union National Association (CUNA) and Radio America are podcasting Home & Family Finance through iTunes, Podcast Alley, Odeo, and other popular podcast library sites, as well as on Radio America and CUNA’s Web sites. Sunday’s show, which you also can hear later via the Internet, features Paul Berry, Washington, D.C., journalist and broadcaster, discussing these topics with special guests:
* “ATM Use by Older Children and Young Adults,” with Kari Wilfong, chief financial officer and executive vice president, CO-OP Financial Services, Ontario, Calif.; * “The Long Baby Boom: An Optimistic Vision for a Graying Generation,” with Jeff Goldsmith, president, Health Futures Inc. and associate professor of public health sciences, University of Virginia, Charlottesville, Va.; * “Divorce and Money,” with Jason Alderman, director of issues management, Visa USA, San Francisco, Calif.; and * “Is Your Money Safe at Your Credit Union?” with Hood, NCUA, Alexandria, Va.
Home & Family Finance is a resource center for personal finance information at CUNA. The radio show is sponsored by CO-OP Network, the national credit union ATM network; Cabot Creamery Cooperative, maker of award-winning cheddar; Visa; and Western Corporate FCU and its member credit unions. For more information, read, “Credit Union ... Bank ... What's the Difference?” in Home & Family Resource Center.

Know risks of paying at the pump

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McLEAN, Va. (8/13/08)--The next time you fill up, think twice about using the “pay at the pump” option. Police have uncovered a skimming device on some gas station pumps, installed by thieves so they can steal your credit and debit card data (USA TODAY Aug. 5). This hard-to-detect electronic device has been discovered at gas stations in five states--California, Delaware, Nevada, Pennsylvania, and Washington--with $1 million to $3.5 million stolen from unsuspecting customers. Several crooks have bypassed the skimming device and intercepted data by hacking into a wireless connection used by the station. Some stations wirelessly transmit credit card data from the pump to their central computers. All a thief has to do is wait nearby, hack in, and download the data to a laptop (creditcards.com Mar. 17). Although skimming devices have been used at ATMs, they just recently have been discovered on the inside or outside of gas station pumps. Police are asking gas station owners and attendants to put seals on the pumps and check them daily, but no real precautionary measures have yet been put in place. To protect your card data at the pump and elsewhere, take protective measures:
* Pay inside. If you’re using debit or credit at gas stations, consider paying inside and signing all receipts. Or, for added peace of mind, use cash. Some stations offer discounts for patrons who use paper money rather than plastic. * Monitor your accounts. Check financial statements online or as soon as they arrive, and report any problems. Also, order a credit report once a year from each of the three credit-reporting agencies--Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion. Visit annualcreditreport.com. * Safeguard your numbers. Memorize your personal identification number (PIN), don’t carry your Social Security card with you, and don’t write either of those numbers on any of your cards or in your address book. * Choose credit option. When using your debit card, the cashier may ask, “Credit or debit?” Typically, credit transactions that require a signature offer better protection against fraud than those conducted using a PIN number. Also, choosing “debit” often is treated as an ATM transaction, which could subtract from any free monthly “allowance” of debit transactions to which you may be entitled. Take this into account with all purchases, not just gas. * Get help. If you suspect fraudulent activity, tell the station attendant and contact local law enforcement immediately.
For more information, listen to “When to Use Debit vs. Credit Cards” in Home & Family Resource Center.

Ratchet up your rainy day fund

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ATLANTA (8/11/08)--High gas and food prices are yet another reason to beef up your emergency fund. Without one, you are financially vulnerable if you’re handed a pink slip, major repair bill, or medical crisis (CNNMoney.com Aug. 7). More than one-third of Americans--roughly 76 million adults--don’t have any non-retirement savings at all, according to the National Foundation for Credit Counseling’s 2008 Financial Literacy Survey results, released in April. And of those who do have a cash fund, 57% don’t have enough in it. Having sufficient cash on hand translates to having a special form of insurance policy against financial calamity. Take steps to protect yourself and gain peace of mind:
* Track spending. Ideally, write down every expense for three months, or one month at a minimum. This gives you a fairly good estimate of average monthly expenditures for housing, utilities, gasoline, groceries, and dining out. For periodic fixed expenses such as insurance, vehicle registration, or property taxes (if not included in your mortgage payment), calculate the monthly cost and include that in your calculations. * Identify spending leaks. After tracking where your money goes, identify expenditures you could cut out--or cut back--to boost emergency savings. Some examples may include daily lattes, online shopping, or dining out. Freeing up found money can boost your savings in the short run. * Calculate desired reserve. The general rule of thumb--three to six months of living expenses--may not be right for you. Consider how stable your income is, whether you have another salary in the household to fall back on, whether you must rely heavily on bonuses or commissions, and the age of your vehicle and major appliances. If you hear rumblings of a merger or downsizing, cut back sooner rather than later to cushion a possible blow to your income. * Keep it safe--and liquid. Remember that beating inflation isn’t the main objective here, so don’t expect a high yield on liquid savings. Your goal is to have ready access to cash so you don’t have to lean on credit to get through a financial hardship. Professionals at the credit union can help you choose an account that’s right for you. * Bite the bullet to beef it up. To build a reserve quickly, cut back--or temporarily halt--your retirement savings just down to the level of getting your employer’s full 401(k) match. (Remember that this will temporarily raise your income taxes.) Stop making extra payments on low-interest loans for a while, and redirect spending leaks to your emergency fund. * Resist temptation to raid it. Use the funds only for unbudgeted necessary expenses, and keep feeding the fund regularly.
For more information, listen to “Struggling Americans Use Plastic to Stay Afloat” in Home & Family Resource Center.

Congressman Bachus of Alabama is guest on HandFF Radio

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WASHINGTON (8/8/08)--This Sunday’s H&FF Radio show includes a conversation with U.S. House of Representatives ranking member Spencer Bachus (R-Ala.), who talks about the focus of the Financial Services Committee, Capitol Hill sentiment surrounding the current banking crisis, and what’s on the minds of his constituents.
U.S. Rep. Spencer Bachus (R-Ala.), left, is interviewed for this Sunday's H&FF Radio Show by Washington, D.C., journalist Paul Berry about the Financial Services Committee, Capitol Hill sentiment on the banking crisis, and what his constituents say. (Photo provided by CUNA)
Home & Family Finance airs Sundays at 3 p.m. EDT on the Radio America Network. The one-hour program devoted to consumer finance issues is brought to you by America's credit unions and their 90 million members, and is presented by CO-OP Network. The Credit Union National Association (CUNA) and Radio America are podcasting Home & Family Finance through iTunes, Podcast Alley, Odeo, and other popular podcast library sites, as well as on Radio America and CUNA’s websites. Sunday’s show, which you also can hear later via the Internet, features Paul Berry, Washington, D.C., journalist and broadcaster, discussing these topics with special guests:
* “Safer and Smarter! Money Orders at Your Post Office Get a Makeover,” with Tangie Samuels, acting manager of value added and special services, U.S. Postal Service, Washington, D.C.; * “Flood Insurance,” with Loretta Worters, vice president of communications, Insurance Information Institute, New York; * “Please Send Money: A Financial Survival Guide for Young Adults on Their Own,” with Dara Duguay, director, Office of Financial Education, Citigroup, Washington, D.C.; and * “A Conversation With House Committee on Financial Services Ranking Member Bachus,” with Bachus (R-Ala).
Home & Family Finance is a resource center for personal finance information at CUNA. The radio show is sponsored by CO-OP Network, the national credit union ATM network; Cabot Creamery Cooperative, maker of award-winning cheddar; Visa; and Western Corporate FCU and its member credit unions. For more information, read “If It Looks Too Good to Be True ... Recognizing and Preventing Mail Fraud” in Home & Family Resource Center.

Bargain shop your way back to school

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CHICAGO (8/6/08)--Cash-strapped consumers are tightening their belts as they head into the back-to-school shopping season, with 90% of households planning to change their shopping strategies by searching for more sale items, purchasing only what’s needed, and using more coupons (MarketWatch.com July 24). This year could be one of the most challenging seasons for back-to-school shoppers and retailers. To add to the blow, America’s Research Group, Charleston, S.C., reports that this summer has seen the worst employment rates for high-school and college students in more than 30 years. With budgets tight, moms, dads, and kids are seeking the best deals for those back-to-school threads. Consider these strategies to save time and stretch your budget:
* Check out thrift stores. As the economy continues to struggle, more consumers are looking to resale shops--and discovering incredible deals. You may have to do some searching through disorganized stores, but go with an open mind and be on the lookout for brand-name clothing at a great price; * Take advantage of state sales-tax holidays.This annual event--in which participating states eliminate sales taxes--is intended to help curb back-to-school costs while also increasing local retailers’ sales. Visit taxadmin.org/fta/rate/sales_holiday.html to see if your state participates. If you missed it this year, plan ahead for next year. * Ask the boss about employee discounts. Some employers arrange back-to-school employee discounts at local retailers; * Plan your trip. Maximize time and save money on gas by making a list and doing all shopping in a single trip--or consider carpooling; and * Use the Internet. Search for on-line coupons, rebates, and major deals which often appear earlier than the in-store sale and offer more variety. Also, to save trips--which translates into saved time and money--visit NearbyNow.com. This website lets you search a merchandise database of more than 200 shopping malls across the country for an item before you get in the car and make the trip to the mall.
For more information, read “Stop Denying, Start Saving to Cope With Infrequent Expenses,” in Home & Family Resource Center.

Down economy changes lure of leasing

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McLEAN, Va. (8/4/08)--The sluggish economy is making automakers cut back on leasing options, causing many companies to suspend their programs. Dealers who still want to offer leases may have to line up their own financing (USATODAY.com July 30). It’s not only automakers changing their ways. Some consumers who began leasing large SUVs and other vehicles before gas prices got out of control actually are trying to get out of their leases on websites such as swapalease.com. That’s not to say you can’t--or shouldn’t--lease anymore, but if you’re thinking about going that route, brush up on leasing knowledge before closing the deal:
* Be sure leasing suits you. If you want to drive a new car every three years, drive only 12,000 miles to 15,000 miles a year, or use your car only for business, you might be a good leasing candidate. If you want to own your car and drive it as long and far as you please, this might not be such a great choice; * Know the number of miles you’re allowed to drive during the lease term. Extra miles typically will cost between 10 cents and a quarter per mile (CNNMoney.com July 30); * Be clear on what’s considered “normal” wear and tear on the vehicle and what’s “excess”--you’ll pay extra for excess wear and tear; * Before going to the dealership, find out what your credit union can offer in terms of financing. A professional there also can help you weigh your options; * Look at all costs involved. In addition to your monthly payment there could be up-front costs and closing costs. Know what you’ll pay if you decide to end the agreement early as well. Ask your insurance provider if you’re required to increase your insurance coverage; and * Negotiate the price just as you would if you were buying. Don’t let on that you’re leasing until you have the car price you want.
To determine if buying or leasing is a better move, use the “Should I Purchase or Lease?” calculator in Home & Family Finance Resource Center.