You don't need to; if it's wrong, it's no big deal
Just let creditors know if you apply for new credit
Contact the credit bureaus directly
File a small claims lawsuit against the company
8. You purchase a $20,000 car with 10 percent down and take out a loan with a 10 percent interest rate for 60 months. About how much will your monthly payments be?
9. Under IRS guidelines, what is the maximum you can contribute to your 401(k) in 2011?
Up to 20 percent of your salary
Up to $1,000 a month
Up to $16,500
As much as you want
10. If a person 62 or older obtains a reverse mortgage, he or she is still responsible to pay property taxes and insurance.
11. How long can negative information stay on your credit report?
Negative information is not included on your report
12. A 15-year mortgage typically requires higher monthly payments than a 30-year mortgage, but you will pay less interest over the life of the loan.
13. If a thief takes your credit card and uses it, how much could you be responsible to pay?
Nothing, if you report the card stolen before any charges are made
Up to $50 if charges are made before you report the loss
All charges made before you report the card stolen
Both A and B
14. If you take out a $150,000 mortgage for 30 years at 5 percent, your payment will be about $805 per month. If you pay $100 extra each month, how many years/months faster will you pay off your mortgage?
2 years, 6 months
6 years, 5 months
8 years, 2 months
15. How much should you have in an emergency savings account?
3 months of living expenses
6 months of living expenses
An emergency savings account? Isn't that what credit cards are for?
Who should you call if you find yourself facing financial crisis?
A good therapist
A certified credit counselor with a nonprofit organization
Of course, the answer to the Bonus Question is C— The key to reclaiming your financial independence is recognizing the need for help and getting it. At CredAbility, certified counselors will help you evaluate your financial situation and find the solution that best suits you. To speak with a certified counselor about your options for a debt free life, contact CredAbility at 1-800-251-2227 or online at www.CredAbility.org.
(C) – Your net worth is the total value of your assets (including the market value of your home) minus your liabilities (including what you owe on your mortgage).
(B) – Home prices have come down significantly, and it may be the right time to buy, but be realistic when it comes to figuring out how much you can spend. Be sure that your payment, including principal, interest, taxes and insurance do not exceed 25 percent of your gross income or 35 percent of your take-home pay.
(C) – While it may be tempting to take the mattress approach, an emergency fund can help you be prepared for the unexpected, and paying off credit card debt will provide long term financial benefit.
(D) – Making just the minimum payment, it will take 472 months, or 39 years and 4 months before paying off the balance. And during that time, you will pay $13,396 in interest, essentially paying 3 times for everything you bought.
(D) –Dining out is the first expense to go. It is very important to stay current on your rent or mortgage payment as well as any insurance premiums for your mortgage, automobile, health and life.
(A) – Saving just $100 a month from age 25-60 will result in a balance of $190,254 (You will have contributed just $42,000). Saving $250 from age 40-60 will cost you $60,000 and will result in a balance of $133,918.
(C) – Contact each of the reporting bureaus (TransUnion, Experian and Equifax) and file a dispute regarding any errors you find. They will work with you to remove any incorrect information.
(B) – Put 20 percent down, and you will reduce your payments to $340 per month. Finance for 48 months instead of 60 and your payments will be about $74 more per month, but you will save just over $1,000 in interest charges over the life of the loan.
(C) – Under IRS guidelines, you can save up to $16,500 in your 401k if you are under 50 years old; $22,000 if you are over 50.
(C) – Typically, accurate negative information will stay on your report for 7 years. A bankruptcy can stay on your report for 7 or 10 years.
(D) – Report your card lost or stolen immediately. In the event that your credit card is stolen in the US, federal law limits your liability to $50 regardless of the amount charged on the card by the unauthorized user; however, some card issuers guarantee zero liability if the unauthorized usage is reported immediately.
(C) – In addition to paying off your loan more than 6 years early, you will save more than $34,000 in interest over the life of the loan.
(C) – Even if you have to start small, set a goal to set aside 6 months of living expenses in an account. This can make facing a financial crisis much less stressful and give you time to figure out the next steps to take. The fastest way to get there is to use things like your tax refund, raises or overtime to get a jump start on your emergency fund.
About CredAbility CredAbility is one of the leading nonprofit credit counseling and education agencies in the United States, serving clients in all 50 states plus the District of Columbia, Guam, Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands, in both English and Spanish. In addition, we provide in-person counseling through our branch network of 28 offices located across the southeast.
Founded in 1964, CredAbility is a family of Consumer Credit Counseling Service agencies that includes CCCS of Greater Atlanta, CCCS of Central Florida and the Florida Gulf Coast, CCCS of Palm Beach County and the Treasure Coast, CCCS of East Tennessee, CCCS of Jackson (Mississippi) and CCCS of Upstate South Carolina.
The nonprofit agency is accredited by the Council on Accreditation and is a member of the Better Business Bureau and the National Foundation for Credit Counseling (NFCC). Governed by a community-based board of directors, CredAbility is funded by creditors, clients, individual donors and grants from foundations, businesses and government agencies. Service is provided 24/7 by phone at 800.251.2227 and online at www.CredAbility.org