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Preview: Consumerism Commentary: A Personal Finance Blog Since 2003

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Consumerism Commentary offers daily articles focusing on personal finance and living.

Last Build Date: Wed, 21 Mar 2018 19:47:37 +0000


Comment on Would You Buy a Car From Wal-Mart? by Rico

Wed, 21 Mar 2018 19:47:37 +0000

Soooo does Wal-Mart handle the trade in?

Comment on When Your Friends Become Social Sellers and Multi-Level Marketers by Sahron

Tue, 20 Mar 2018 01:36:13 +0000

Met an Amway guy once. It was like talking to someone from a cult. Scary.

Comment on When Your Friends Become Social Sellers and Multi-Level Marketers by Anon

Tue, 20 Mar 2018 01:34:26 +0000

It's the predatory and deceptive style of MLM's that turn people off. They blatently tell their followers to lie. I know that for a fact. My ex was part of one and they basically told him to lie to people about how well he was doing.

Comment on When Your Friends Become Social Sellers and Multi-Level Marketers by Anon

Tue, 20 Mar 2018 01:32:48 +0000

I attended a similar party only it was a different MLM. I attended because I wanted to "support" my friend but really couldn't afford to spend much. I ended up buying over $90 worth of soap and lotions. Of course, my friend told me all the amazing ingredients that went into these products and sure, they smelled great. But I would never spend that amount of money on such things, normally. I have good skin just using basic, grocery-store soaps and lotions that cost a fraction of that price. You're right, it's the guilt and loyalty that these MLM's are counting on. Well, I haven't been back to another party and don't plan to!

Comment on 401(k) Contribution Limits for 2018 by

Mon, 19 Mar 2018 14:34:34 +0000

Does the maximum contribution also include employer contribution. So if the maximum is $18,500 is this a combination of both my contribution and my employer.

Comment on Do You Have to Repay the Homebuyer Tax Credit? by Melissa Dove

Sun, 18 Mar 2018 15:30:55 +0000

Well, it is better to just stay in your home for 3 years and then you can sell, for me, I have to pay back for 15 years, 3500 already paid, now 4000 to go. It is Not Fair At All.

Comment on Bank of America Class Action Lawsuits – Did You Receive a Check? by Paul ishman

Sun, 18 Mar 2018 13:57:35 +0000

BOA encouraged me to take a first and second mortgage out on a property i wanted to purchase. Doo i was unable to make payments. I had a real estate company list the property and we received a short sale offer. The real estate agent and I were unable to Get the bank respond even though I talked to BOA numerous times. The sold the note to another bank and I tried working with them but no response either. 2017 i was foreclosed on by third lender and the sold the property at auction. This went on for 7 years. Is there any suits against BOA?

Comment on How to Automate Your Savings by Steve

Mon, 12 Mar 2018 20:35:22 +0000

These are all great ways to automate savings. I always recommend setting up direct transfers. Also, automating your retirement savings is one of the best things you can do. You set it and forget it, but that money just keeps growing.

Comment on Free Identity Theft Monitoring for AAA Members by Mildred Estrin.

Sun, 11 Mar 2018 19:32:57 +0000

same here! Having trouble with signing up for protection.

Comment on Coin Collecting Is Dead by Richard

Sat, 10 Mar 2018 05:32:00 +0000

When I first starting collecting someone once told me...if its not fun then why are u doing it

Comment on Coin Collecting Is Dead by Richard

Sat, 10 Mar 2018 05:27:57 +0000

IMO u r so right I am not a MIL i Am Gen X and have been collecting only for 5 years I love old circulated coins for the same reason u do...they have a life they were passed from hand to hand I collect for the fun not the profit,,there is a difference between collectors and investors

Comment on How to File an Amended Income Tax Return (Form 1040X) by Cody

Sat, 10 Mar 2018 01:36:43 +0000

If I already filled my taxes but the1098-T (college for my son) came later and liberty tax told me I could amend my taxes with no problem for no fee and I would get$1,000 back and now that I have tried to amend it, now they tell me i will only get back $847 and I have to pay $125 to get it...What do I do?

Comment on 10 Tips For Buying a Rental Property by Lori

Thu, 08 Mar 2018 03:36:06 +0000

Awesome info, thank you for sharing

Comment on Free Identity Theft Monitoring for AAA Members by Angelo Carlini

Wed, 07 Mar 2018 06:34:39 +0000

Thanks for this freebee; I live in Arizona so, I guess I don't get it.

Comment on 2018 IRS Standard Deductions and Exemptions by Emily

Mon, 05 Mar 2018 02:01:30 +0000

There's always a catch... We are Married Filing Jointly. We itemize because mortgage interest and high medical expenses. Our itemized deductions are around $36,000 for 2017. We also get 2 personal exemptions totaling $8100. That's $44,100 for 2017. Based on the table above, this year (2018) we have approximately $36,000 itemized deductions and no personal exemptions. That's 36,000 for 2018. It looks like the burden this year will fall on tax payers who are itemizing. In our case, it is $1190 extra in taxes (effective tax bracket 14.7%). Let's not forget that 2015 and 2016 medical expenses exceeding 10 percent of AGI were deductible for tax payers under 65, instead 7.5 percent in previous years.

Comment on 2018 IRS Standard Deductions and Exemptions by Johnowhite

Sat, 03 Mar 2018 14:42:03 +0000

This is a common question. The simple answer is, no. Nor is it income to the recipients.

Comment on How to Order Your Free Chex System Report by daniel j peterson

Thu, 01 Mar 2018 21:28:24 +0000

tried to open a savings account at cit online bank 3 times and turned down 3 times.this dosen't make any sence.

Comment on Reality Series Seeking People Who Need Financial Help by nikker

Wed, 28 Feb 2018 23:47:03 +0000

Hi, I have a coworker that is paraplegic and has an electronic wheelchair. He has been paralyzed since he was 21 years of age and is now in his sixties. He has been working in a business office at a college for over 30 years. He has never not worked despite the fact that he has to have a caregiver to get him ready everyday, that he pays out of pocket. He does not want to be dependent on government money to take care of him, so he continues to work. Because he is working and holding a job, he can not get any assistance from any government agencies when he needs something. Recently, he had a bout of bladder cancer and has trouble with bladder infections, and his doctor told him that it was caused from not ever standing. He obviously isn't able to stand on his own, so the doctor prescribed him a standing wheelchair. The insurance will not cover the standing wheel chair because their philosophy is that standing is a convenience. He cannot afford to buy the wheelchair and he can not get assistance to buy one either. He is between a rock and a hard place, and me and all of his coworkers would really like to see him be able to continue his independence by working and earning a wage. If he continues things the way he is, without a standing wheel chair the doctor says it will definitely shorten his life expectancy. Is this a financial situation that you would be interested in? If not, do you know any other reality program that may want to take this on? Thank you.

Comment on 2018 IRS Standard Deductions and Exemptions by Rob Berger

Sun, 25 Feb 2018 19:19:00 +0000

It is a tax credit.

Comment on 2018 IRS Standard Deductions and Exemptions by willie

Sun, 25 Feb 2018 14:48:45 +0000

"taxpayers can deduct $2,000 per qualifying child".....I thought this was a credit, not a deduction.

Comment on 2018 IRS Standard Deductions and Exemptions by John Zoe

Sun, 25 Feb 2018 05:21:38 +0000

These deductions should NOT be allowed. All this does is encourage individuals to go into debt. One wonders why people in this nation believe 'debt is good'? Savings is good. Make the sacrifice to save and then pay in 'cash' for the things that you need. All it takes is DISCIPLINE.

Comment on How to Order Your Free Chex System Report by martin cleckley

Sat, 24 Feb 2018 19:49:39 +0000

why can't I open a bank account

Comment on 5 Reasons to Avoid Cash Back Rebate Cards by Anonymous

Mon, 19 Feb 2018 23:04:55 +0000

I usually spend it right away, if the rebates less than $20, on a gift card from cashstar. I got at least 8 different cards from 2017 Macy's black Friday and once I got it, I cashed them by buying gift cards such as dunkin donuts cards which has no expiration date on the app, gap, and other restaurants. I never try it with groceries though. The key is to spend it right away since it has an expiration date and if you spend it little by little, you will forget the leftover balance there.

Comment on Investigation: Russ Whitney Should Resign as CEO and Chairman by Don

Mon, 19 Feb 2018 22:39:30 +0000

SHOCKING, but I only read two sentences written by Russ Whitney, and have since earned TEN BILLION DOLLARS (actually ten billion dollars and 43 cents, to be specific). Mind you, I accomplished all this in just the last 5 minutes, starting with a negative net worth of (minus) two dollars. In fact, my credit was so bad even Nigerian scammers avoided me! Just think, easy street is just one toll-free call and a few big credit card payments away! Good luck! Gotta run, my personal jet is about to take off!

Comment on APR vs. APY: How One Letter Makes a Big Difference by JoeHx

Thu, 15 Feb 2018 18:53:12 +0000

If I'm understanding this right, that means APY is typically going to be higher than APR, assuming there's more than one compounding period a year? And if it only compounds once a year, APY would equal APR?

Comment on Verify Funds on That Check Before You Cash It by morton wolfson

Tue, 13 Feb 2018 20:57:41 +0000

Bank of America won't verify funds over the phone or in person at the Bank.

Comment on Bank of America Class Action Lawsuits – Did You Receive a Check? by Regina

Sat, 10 Feb 2018 21:41:33 +0000

Got a whole 2.00 check should be sueing over home loan. I owed them 112000 could not get any money from equity in home I sold house to company they made 70000 off it

Comment on Ten Tips For Cutting Car Insurance Expenses by Amanda Drew

Wed, 07 Feb 2018 21:39:23 +0000

My husband and I want to get a car for ourselves now that we've gotten a little more money and can afford it. I think it's cool that you point out that some insurance companies will give you a discount if you take a defensive driving course. We'll have to see about that and ask around as we look for auto insurance.

Comment on The New Emergency Fund: Seven Components of an Emergency Plan by Mary

Sun, 04 Feb 2018 14:43:42 +0000

I like your idea about a layered emergency fund. At this time, I am working on saving 2 months of expenses in cash in a HY savings account, 2 months in a brokerage account with a 40/60 AA between stocks and bonds (I know it is a higher risk than some people would be comfortable with in an EF), and 2 months in I bonds at Treasury Direct.

Comment on How to Close an E*TRADE Investing Account by Mary

Thu, 01 Feb 2018 16:12:31 +0000

Did they charge you a fee to close out the brokerage account?

Comment on Problems With TIAA-Cref by Smach

Thu, 01 Feb 2018 13:08:38 +0000

From these conversations,we can assume our troubles are just beginning. Poor CS, no call backs, and promises made and not kept. Is there a legal firm who is currently accepting clients into a class action? Is it time to contact representatives in Washington and ask for assistance? From the length of time of the complaints on this blog, we now think that any conversations that we had with TIAA staff was intentionally non-productive and intended to prevent us from withdrawing funds from any of our accounts. RMW' s which we instructed to be executed in January were not done. Another reason to worry?

Comment on When Your Friends Become Social Sellers and Multi-Level Marketers by Anonymous

Thu, 25 Jan 2018 07:11:50 +0000

I currently have a friend who has been sucked into the Mary Kay BS. I really thought that she had more street sense than this. Just by listening to her talk about the commission structure and the amount of stuff that she has to BUY, I can tell that she is in for a world of hurt. She is currently working on becoming a director, and the amount of product that a consultant has to purchase from the company (not necessarily sell) is nothing short of drool worthy. They are encouraged to warehouse the stock... which nobody even wants. She keeps sending me catalogs and hitting me up online. I have noticed that none of her friends and family even dare to like or comment on her MK posts anymore... I think we are all sick of it.

Comment on When Your Friends Become Social Sellers and Multi-Level Marketers by Erica

Thu, 25 Jan 2018 04:59:46 +0000

You know I don't have a problem with anyone wanting to make an extra dollar because I have yet to meet anyone who would turn down the chance to get ahead. The problem is with social media people will befriend you in an attempt to possibly sell to you and who are also hoping that you will give them free advertising on your social media. If you want people to stop bothering you tell them that you are not interested and do not give them any free advertising by sharing their posts or anything of the sort. If they want to advertise then they're gonna have to pay for it. No free meals.Period

Comment on 7 of the Best Places to Open an IRA in 2018 by Justin Price

Mon, 22 Jan 2018 19:52:28 +0000

Please update your article. Scottrade has been acquired by TD Ameritrade and you can no longer open an account with Scottrade.

Comment on 7 of the Best Places to Open an IRA in 2018 by Mike

Mon, 22 Jan 2018 19:05:06 +0000

What's wrong with (The old Sharebuilder/ING Direct)?

Comment on 2018 IRS Standard Deductions and Exemptions by Sherry Brist

Sun, 21 Jan 2018 15:54:40 +0000

New to this using Turbo software so I'm fresh to this but there best results for me was Standard Deduction. Now is that what's going to be giving to me or is that I owe them money and I won't be receiving a refund can anybody help me please

Comment on 7 of the Best Places to Open an IRA in 2018 by Joe Bechely

Sun, 21 Jan 2018 14:46:23 +0000

Rob, it should be mentioned Scottrade has been bought by TD Ameritrade and that they will continue to have brick and mortar sites and what the possible changes might be.

Comment on Overdrawn!: A Documentary About Bank Fees, Screening Tonight by Paul Arnold

Sun, 21 Jan 2018 12:48:40 +0000

No transactions should be posted to your account after the banks close their doors to the public daily. Why should they put your account in overdraft status at 10.30pm at night. Knowing perfectly well that it can be posted the next day. They expect people to run down to the bank and put sufficient funds to prevent a outrageous $35.00 overdraft fee!

Comment on Do You Have to Repay the Homebuyer Tax Credit? by CHARLES HIGGINBOTHAM

Sat, 20 Jan 2018 17:09:39 +0000

i agree 100% then the next year u give it away for free abolish it now so we can breath a little easier.

Comment on How to Close Your Bank of America Savings or Checking Account by kraken

Fri, 19 Jan 2018 22:31:39 +0000

Bank of america online business support

Comment on The New Emergency Fund: Seven Components of an Emergency Plan by anonymous

Sun, 14 Jan 2018 19:30:36 +0000

I don't think that the pantry stocking idea is better than putting that money into increased savings reserves. My thinking is that most people are not great about grocery management, and increased grocery storage will lead to increased food being thrown away as it goes past date. However, if a person can be methodical about always using the oldest groceries first to avoid waste, then it can lead to improved finances to the extent that an increased pantry allows purchase of larger packages, which typically are less per pound.

Comment on The Pros and Cons of Universal Life Insurance by Jon

Tue, 09 Jan 2018 18:52:13 +0000

I agree it is important to go out and enjoy life, but what are you going to do if you develop a health condition which makes you uninsurable once your term life policy has expired and or the market crashes like in 2008 and your qualified retirement value has gone down the drain?

Comment on MoviePass Review: Is it Really Unlimited Movies for One Price? by Maryalene

Mon, 08 Jan 2018 17:31:23 +0000

Thanks for the thorough review. If you have multiple people subscribed to the app, can you buy all your tickets at once or do you need to purchase each ticket individually?

Comment on MoviePass Review: Is it Really Unlimited Movies for One Price? by Brian Barlow

Sun, 07 Jan 2018 02:13:34 +0000

I think it should be pointed out that this may not be a great solution for those not technology savvy (like my grandparents). They go to movies once a week so I bought them a year gift subscription from Costco. While the app is very user friendly and simple to use, my grandparents find it difficult and get easily frustrated they can't just walk up to the counter and pay with the credit card.

Comment on How to Close an E*TRADE Investing Account by L

Thu, 04 Jan 2018 13:44:15 +0000

The instructions given with the suggestion offered by anonymous on 9/11/17 still holds true today. I can’t say thank you enough for this help!

Comment on Ally Invest Review by Brandon

Wed, 27 Dec 2017 14:12:29 +0000

So between TD Ameritrade and Ally who do you think has the upper hand. To me it seems like Ally Trading is just really good at trading. Whereas other platforms offer more in customer service, research, etc. So do you suggest using a service like Fidelity in addition to Ally since Fidelity has one of the best research and education platforms available? Thanks

Comment on The Best Gas Credit Cards of 2018 by Terryjc

Tue, 26 Dec 2017 03:57:58 +0000

I use Valero that pays 4c gallon from 45 to 75 gallons purchased per month and 8c gallon if you exceed 75 up to 110 gallons a month. On top of this my local Valero station also charges cash price if using a Valero Card

Comment on Problems With TIAA-Cref by Edwina

Sun, 24 Dec 2017 04:44:14 +0000

I have found that if you write a letter to the IRS explaining why you did not take an RMD, they actually do take into consideration those kinds of difficulties. Especially if you have a doctor's letter to verify that your husband was dying at that time.

Comment on 3 Quicken Alternatives Now that Quicken Online is Dead by Rob Berger

Sat, 16 Dec 2017 12:28:38 +0000

Quickbooks Online is what I use.

Comment on 2018 Federal Income Tax Brackets by Anon2017

Sat, 16 Dec 2017 00:03:10 +0000

These rates and brackets will be made obsolete with the new tax reform act.