March 31, 2009

Dateline's Financial Investigation

In case you missed it, Dateline NBC did a great mini-series on the financial mess... but I just can't believe the entitlement and stupidity of some people who took out bad loans.

In one case the lady took out a loan that would require her to pay $2100 a month, even though she only MADE $1600 a month. She said 'well, the bank thought I could afford it.' Yes, and so you took the loan and signed the papers... what?? My credit cards say that I can charge 20 grand, but that doesn't mean that I DO!! Clearly, they do not have my best interest at heart, they don't care if I am 20 grand in debt.

The next special focused on that very issue, credit card debt, it was amazing what debt collectors were saying to try and get people to pay. More than that, what people believed the debt collectors could do. The debt collectors who said they were sending the cops were totally lying (there is NO debtors prison in America and there hasn't ever been).

It was a good series. But the entitlement of Americans has to end, we have to realize what we can afford and what we can't and stay within our budgets! Then our community will be more stable. (not that I am an economist)

Posted by 10lees at March 31, 2009 09:49 PM

Ya - in the olden days - the '70's and some of the '80's and BEFORE that the banks and credit card co's ACTUALLY cared as to whether you could REPAY a loan. W/CC debt - they usually don't come and repossess that curling iron you bot - in fact it is UNSECURED debt at it's worst. In the 70's when I was single and got my 1st cc - I decided that I would have a $500 limit and NO MORE as my thinking was - IF I lost my job - I could still pay it off w/out getting into trouble. I may have started that cc with a limit of $200. Just don't remember. Your Dad and I got a loan for the Slater Dr. house - in the days of 20% interest rates - Nope - don't remember the interest rate on that loan, but they wanted our payment to be 25% of our GROSS ... it wasn't so they fudged it alittle. I think it was 27%. Maybe the lady in the story was doing one of those name it claim it - IF God gave it to me He'll provide the moola??? DUMBIES! :)
Love you, Mom
p.s. that cc I had in Alaska I NEVER let get over $2k - once a year they would send me a letter raising it ... I just would contact them and tell them to LEAVE it where it was. :)

Posted by: bevy at April 1, 2009 10:13 AM

My dad, without realizing it, kept me from ever going into credit card debt. My parents started me with a credit card when I got out of high school, and the bill went to them, and we talked about the charges, etc. I paid it (unless they specified that they would pay for something), but I was building a credit history. So, I had a card, but it wasn't really mine to do with what I would.

During my first year on my own, my dad advised me to never go into credit card debt. And then he said something that's kept me on the straight and narrow ever since: "If you ever do get into credit card debt, you tell me, and we'll go through all your purchases, and we'll make a budget for you to follow so you can pay it off."

I never, ever want my dad to go through every purchase I make and argue with me about whether or not it was needed. (I tease him about it now because of course he didn't mean it as a threat.) Thus, I have remained free of credit card debt even though they continue to raise my limits and offer me new cards.

I saw part of that Dateline, and it was freaky. Those debt collectors are scary.

Posted by: Lo at April 5, 2009 01:43 PM

Did you see the debt collector who said that his favorite thing to do was to look up the company the person works for and then call the boss about the unpaid debt?

Posted by: Lo at April 5, 2009 01:44 PM

I did!!! Can you imagine someone calling your boss! I would be soooo pissed, they shouldn't have any right to do that. Luckily most of my bosses (past and present) would be cool about it. Scott and I couldn't believe the people who thought they were going to be arrested - hello, no debtor's prison in America! But I can understand their stress...

Posted by: 10lees at April 6, 2009 01:53 PM

Dave Ramsey says that Debt Collectors are the scum of the earth - in fact they're lower than pond scum - they're the thing that feeds off pond scum. They do things illegal all the time.

Posted by: bevy at April 9, 2009 09:36 PM
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