6 Traps to Avoid When Getting a Car Loan

6-Traps-to-Avoid-When-Getting-a-Car-Loan

In the last quarter of 2013, the average American car buyer borrowed over $27,000. The average car payment climbed to over $450.   These numbers aren’t surprising. From 0% interest offers, easy dealer financing and long-term loans, it’s hard to stick to your guns against a persuasive car salesman. But if you’re ready for a new (or new-to-you car), you can avoid the most common car loan traps just by knowing about them.   Here are six common car-buying traps you need to avoid next time you shop for a car.   1. Buying a car based on the monthly payment   We’ve conditioned ourselves to define affordability based on whether we can make the monthly payment. You might be able to afford $500 per month in car payments. But should you really pay that much … [Read more...]

Mortgage Tips: 9 Ways to Lower Your Monthly Payment

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We often hear information on how homeowners can use tactics like refinancing to lower their mortgage payments. But what about homebuyers? What tactics can you use to ensure you start out with the lowest possible mortgage payment?     Luckily, there’s quite a bit you can do as a homebuyer to keep your mortgage payments low. Here are just 9 ideas to get you started:     1. Boost your credit score     Your credit score is a big determining factor in your mortgage’s APR. And even a tiny difference in APR has a big impact on monthly payments (as well as interest paid over the life of your loan).     According to this FICO chart, average interest rates on a 30-year fixed mortgage range from 4.004% to 5.593% right now, … [Read more...]

12 Ways to Keep Student Loans to a Minimum

Education savings

In 2012, the Institute for College Access and Success reported that two-thirds of the 2011 graduating class had student loan debt - and the average amount was $26,600.   As pointed out by FICO experts, student loan debt is a growing problem for two major reasons: consumers are carrying more student loan debt than ever before, and more federally-backed student loans are being offered to consumers with questionably low FICO Scores.   Plus, with the unemployment rate for the under twenty-five crowd hovering at twice the national average, $26,000 in student loans can become a huge burden post-graduation.   It is possible, however, to graduate college with a bright future and very little – or even no – student loan debt. It just takes more work and planning … [Read more...]

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