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Personal loans

In debt and afraid: dealing with debt collectors

It’s a scary place to be — in debt and afraid. A new Consumer Financial Protection Bureau report found that more than one in four consumers felt threatened when contacted by debt collectors. The first-ever national survey of consumer experiences with debt collectors found consumers often faced calls that came …

Ho, ho, hold up before you spend this season

It’s easy to get caught up in the excitement of holiday shopping, but it’s not always as easy to foot the bill. The National Retail Federation says consumers plan to spend an average of $935.58 during the holiday shopping season – the second highest level on record. Whether that is …

What happens to your debts after you die?

When you die, you don’t just leave behind your family and your legacy. You also leave behind your debts. But what happens to those debts once you’re gone? In general, your assets and debts become part of an estate. It’s the estate’s responsibility to pay them. If there’s any money …

If payday loans go away, what replaces them?

NEW YORK (AP) — The lenders who advance poor people money on their paychecks charge exorbitant interest rates that often snare the most vulnerable customers in a cycle of debt, the industry’s critics have long said. Yet even consumer advocates who loathe the industry admit it fulfills a need: Providing …

More older Americans are being buried by housing debt

WASHINGTON (AP) — Al and Saundra Karp have found an unconventional way to raise money and help save their Miami-area home from foreclosure: They’re lining up gigs for their family jazz band. They enjoy performing. But it isn’t exactly how Al, an 86-year-old Korean War vet, or Saundra, 76, had …

‘Canceled’: When it makes sense to close a credit card

New credit card offers can be tempting, especially when they tout a lower interest rate or more attractive rewards than what’s in your wallet. But before you sign up for yet another card, consider whether you’d be better off financially closing out any of the cards you already have. Establishing …