Did Your Loan Go Bad?

Did Your Loan Go Bad?

Have you ever loaned a friend or family member some cash, only never to see it again?  Oh, and one more thing – the relationship took a major dive soon after you handed over the dough 🙁

At the time of the loan, the air was full of  sincerity and goodwill. There may have even been tears of appreciation.  Your heart melted directly into your wallet to loosen up and extricate a few large bills.  All this, while  a distant vision of your C-notes flaming up in smoke haunted you.

The promise of repayment seemed legit, but days, weeks and then months went by with no word of repayment.  In fact, the relationship changed.  There became less of a connection, no eye contact, avoidance, embarrassment, and even resentment.

There’s always an alternative….

Don’t Do It

  • If your own financial situation is dicey and you don’t have the money to spare, don’t do it.  There’s basic wisdom out there that says, ‘If you can’t take care of yourself first, you can’t take care of anyone else.’  Do you recall the airplane emergency rules?  ‘Put on your own oxygen mask first, then help your children with theirs.’  
  • If your intuition already knows that the relationship will deteriorate with this loan, don’t do it.
  • If the loan recipient is a capable, yet entitled couch potato who blows money, don’t do it.
  • If the person requesting money is guilting you into it…with the “you don’t love me” thing when you really can’t afford it, NOT COOL.  Don’t do it. Get creative with an alternative type of support to show some love.  Then send them to a Dave Ramsey class for a whoopin’. 😉

Debt Collection Methods

So what if you are in the process of getting stiffed?  A kind, yet clear, request for repayment can work very well.  It’s all about your tone.

Try the following verbal approaches to get back your cash:

  • “Did you know that money can actually strengthen a relationship if it’s handled well between two people?  Your repayment of $2000 will seal the trust, accountablity, dependability and love that we have.”  
  • “Are you okay with your landlord now?  Do you think you can pay me back that $800 like you said you would?”
  • “Hey, how’s your new job going?  Can you pay me back the $100 before you get your new iPhone 6S?”
  • “Let’s make sure we don’t wreck our friendship over a loan like the financial experts say always happens.  Can  you please pay me now per our contract?”
  • “I love you.  Do you love me?  Pay me back.”
  • Add this to any of the above love relationship scenarios if you’re feeling extra spunky.  “And if you give me a little somethin’ somethin’ on top of that  for my patience, well, I just may have an extra special treat for you.” 😉

There is always the direct and no-nonsense method used by the featured blog pooch who states his demand succinctly.   “Give. Me. The. Money. Now.”

You could even  fancy that up with a little Tom Cruise theatrics from his famous Oprah appearance and his hit “Jerry Maguire.”  You would jump up and down on a couch and scream at the top of your lungs, “Show. Me. The. Moooooney!!”  You should at least get immediate partial payment with this method.  If you videotape it and get it on YouTube, you may very well get immediate full payment.

Let’s get serious again, peeps.   There are rules spelled out by the Federal Trade Commission specifying that debt collectors may not use abusive, unfair or deceptive practices.  Although the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act is intended to be specifically for professional debt collectors, the Dogz recommend that you follow those guidelines for good measure.

Summary

Loaning money to  a friend or family member can strain and even jeopardize your relationship.  It can also be a positive experience if you manage your own expectations while communicating clearly to the recipient their responsibilities that come with receiving the loan….. meaning EXACTLY WHEN they need to pay back THE FULL AMOUNT.

If you can afford to loan money and you aren’t contributing to some dysfunction such as co-dependency, there is another approach to maintain your peace of mind.  Don’t expect a repayment.  If they do pay you back…fantastic.  If they don’t…..meh, or in other words, screw it.

Do what’s right for yourself and the situation at hand.   Get creative and find an opportunity to help strengthen the relationship and your loved one with the ability to better handle  life’s challenges.

Peace and Love~~

The Dogz

 

 

Should You Refinance Now?

Should You Refinance Now?

If you are on the fence about whether or not to refinance your home, just know that interest rates may not be this low for that much longer.

Janet Yellen, powerbabe genius of the Fed, has been threatening to raise interest rates for some time now since the QE bond purchase program has phased out and the economy has showed signs of recovery.

This week’s stock market ‘flash crash’ had peeps wondering if the fed would hold off on the interest rate hike, but the latest news is that a September boosterini is still on the table.

Refinance Decision Factors

  • How long do you plan to stay in the home? You want to break even on closing costs before you move.
  • How much will you save on your monthly payment? A $200 monthly savings is a good target.
  • Will you break even on your closing costs before you move? Take your total closing costs and divide by monthly savings to get the number of months it will take to break even.
    • Example:  Closing costs = $4000.  Monthly savings = $200.  To break even on refinance for this example, it will take 20 months. 
  • Do you need to switch from a risky adjustable mortgage to a safe 30 year fixed loan? Do it now unless you are ok with your monthly payment going up when the interest rates rise.
  • Do you care if the total cost you pay for the home loan increases?  This may happen if the new loan has a longer term than what you have now.
  • Run the numbersUse a Refinance Calculator to see if it’s worth it to refinance.

The Dogz recently refinanced the doghouse from a risky, yet beneficial adjustable rate loan to a safe 30 year fixed.   In addition, their monthly payment decreased by $200 per month.  Hooray! Major Bonus – they got to work with great peeps like James P and Russ at the mortgage company who kept things rolling smoothly.

If you do the math and refinancing turns out to be a smart move for your financial situation…  Go For It!  Woof!

 

What Does Your Home Insurance Cover?

What Does Your Home Insurance Cover?

What does your home insurance cover?  Many people don’t pay attention to the details of their home insurance policy they are paying for…  nor the policy exclusions .  Unfortunately, details tend to come out when there is a claim on the homeowner’s insurance.  And it’s not always pretty.

Be proactive and ask your insurance agent about all risks identified in your area and if additional insurance is available.  Some insurance agents will not offer this information, so it’s good to ask the question directly.  When uninsured victims lost their homes in the Nashville flood of 2010 , many insurance agents were sued for not informing clients that flood insurance was available.  The Dogz know peeps who lost everything and were told that flood insurance was not available even when they asked.  It was ugly.

Exclusions

To be thorough, ask your agent about what situations are NOT covered.  The information should be in your documents, but it’s good to walk through each line item with your agent and ask any questions to make sure you understand.

The following situations are typically excluded from homeowner’s policies and some may have additional insurance policies available.

Landslide ~ Windstorm ~Flood ~ Earthquake ~ Bad Workmanship & Repair ~ Hurricane ~ Sinkholes ~ War ~ Nuclear Trouble ~ Government Mandates ~ Maintenance Neglect

Examples of Neglect

Know what types of issues could be considered your fault.  You may very well not be reimbursed if your insurance company believes there was neglect involved on your part.

Ask about these situations..

  • What if your pipes freeze?
  • What if you hire a handyman or contractor that is not licensed and something goes wrong?
  • What if you left the home vacant for a period of time and damage was caused by vandalism or some other type of issue?
  • What if you accidentally released contaminants into the house that destroy something?  Picture Walt on Breaking Bad…
  • What other specific examples of neglect can the insurance company provide?

Give your insurance company a call and get the scoop on your specific coverage, exlcusions and areas of risk.  It could very well be worth your time 🙂

The Word NO and Your Finances

The Word NO and Your Finances

Say No

Is the word No difficult for you to say?  Even when you know it’s the only logical answer?

Here’s the scene.   The pressure is on by family or friends to spend money on non-necessities or luxuries.  You don’t really have the money right now as your emergency savings fund has been depleted and you are not able to contribute to your retirement plan.

The pressure combined with guilt leads to a massive spending cave in.  You get yourself into debt.  Now you find yourself feeling like a wuss for the lack of the ability to say the word no.

The word no can change many aspects of your life for the better. This includes relationships, your financial world, your health and so on.  The word no establishes boundaries to protect you from being taken advantage of and from doing possible harm to some aspect of yourself or your financial situation.

Mastering the word no adds to your own personal strength, power, self-esteem and confidence.  

By the way, HOW you say it is important as well.  Loving yet firm is a solid delivery approach.

Dave Ramsey has shared his opinions on the word no in the video below.

If the presentation is a bit harsh for you, here’s a suggestion.

  1. Find your sense of humor.   ALWAYS!
  2. Visualize yourself feeling financially free because you DID have the courage to say no.
  3. Change the vision and substitute Dave with someone you love like Jon Stewart or Taylor Swift who don’t take any crap in their own way.  So now, do you notice that all of a sudden the concept is a bit more appealing?  😉

Tips for Saying No

Step into your personal power armor.  Flex your muscles.  What if you now make choices using wisdom and strength that all lead to a feeling of independence, freedom and confidence that you and your family will be taken care of and even thrive?  I’m going to bravely toss out there that it may very well be a preferable and more satisfying feeling than the “I deserve” thing 😉

Humility and strength are a wonderful combination and a huge powerhouse for your life not to mention an amazing inspiration to others.

It’s simply about saying no until you and your family’s needs and financial security are obtained first.  At that point, it will feel MUCH better for the times ahead where  it really does make sense to say YES.

Now it’s time to go.. and master the word no 🙂

Road Trip on a Budget – Ticaboo, Utah

Road Trip on a Budget – Ticaboo, Utah

We had no idea where our next Road Trip on a Budget would be.  It was time to scope out Groupon Getaways.  The element of surprise is my favorite aspect of shopping for travel deals.  You can find yourself traveling somewhere you never would have considered without a smokin’ hot deal dangling in your face. (more…)

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