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Old 11-12-2008, 05:28 PM   #41
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"Should I call mine (congress person) when I buy a car, TV or house...?" ERD 50


You make my point for me. Congress has already passed laws on both these things. If a car salesman tries to sell an elderly person a huge R.V. that they don't need and can't afford, for instance, there is Elder Law to protect the buyer. The dealer can be made to take the R.V. back and refund the money.

There are also grace periods for returning vehicles and even real estate to stop high pressure abuse.

Not everyone is as smart as you. Some people need protection from crooked sales people. Especially the elderly and even some military and students.

These are needed laws already on the books. We already tried anything goes capitalism both in the 1890's and lately in the 2000's. It didn't work either time.

Surely, you have noticed.

boont
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Old 11-12-2008, 05:44 PM   #42
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Originally Posted by ERD50 View Post
So it sounds like there is a relatively free market in credit cards. That's good. Sounds like people just need to think a little, rather than expecting the govt to take choices away from them. I should be able to determine what is better for me than some guy/gal over there.

-ERD50
It seems to me there are two markets in credit cards. One is the various banks who issue them to consumers competing with one another. The other is the major CC companies "competing" for retailers. The second market is practically a duopoly. In fact, it's a rare retailer that's willing to go with only one of the two, many retailers feel that they have to have contracts with both to stay in business.

This gives the CC companies a lot of market power in this market. For example, in setting the difference between the amount the bank charges the customer and the amount the bank forwards to the retailer.

Now, what I don't know is whether retailers can provide discounts to cash customers. IIRC, at one time the contracts between the CC companies and the retailers prohibited discounts. I'm curious if anyone here knows the facts.
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Old 11-12-2008, 05:48 PM   #43
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Most people are plenty smart.

I didn't see anywhere in your post that indicated that usury laws were to be limited to certain members of society or based on age, IQ, or anything else. I was under the impression that usury laws apply to all. If we apply that to your RV case, it means RVs cannot be offered for sale period, because somebody who shouldn't buy one might. So nobody can.

The rest of your "anything goes capitalism" comments have been discussed in the SoapBox, and probably should stay there. Questioning the value of some regs is not the same as saying we should have none.

-ERD50
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Old 11-12-2008, 05:50 PM   #44
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The second market is practically a duopoly. .
Anywhere there is a duopoly, I think it is reasonable to look for ways to open up that market - even if the govt needs to get involved.

-ERD50
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Old 11-12-2008, 08:16 PM   #45
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Since we recently bought a new house I tried to get my credit limit raised on my rebate card because I was going to be spending a lot, with some of the purchases being pretty large. They rejected my request, with the rep telling me first that it was because I never carried a balance. I asked to speak to a manager, and then the story changed to being because my spending history didn't justify the new limit. They finally did it, but I had to agree to let them do a credit check first. It worked out in the long run, but I had to really press it.

DW has multiple CCs. She used to get all the store ones to get the 10% off first time use until I convinced her to quit. But they're still on the books. A couple of the companies have notified her they are shutting them down for lack of use, and a number of others have lowered limits and raised interest rates. It's not a problem for us since we only use one each and pay it off, but it's interesting to watch. Next time I check our credit reports I'm going to see if the decrease in the total credit limit has lowered her score.
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Old 11-12-2008, 08:27 PM   #46
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Since we recently bought a new house I tried to get my credit limit raised on my rebate card because I was going to be spending a lot, with some of the purchases being pretty large. They rejected my request, with the rep telling me first that it was because I never carried a balance. I asked to speak to a manager, and then the story changed to being because my spending history didn't justify the new limit. They finally did it, but I had to agree to let them do a credit check first. It worked out in the long run, but I had to really press it.

DW has multiple CCs. She used to get all the store ones to get the 10% off first time use until I convinced her to quit. But they're still on the books. A couple of the companies have notified her they are shutting them down for lack of use, and a number of others have lowered limits and raised interest rates. It's not a problem for us since we only use one each and pay it off, but it's interesting to watch. Next time I check our credit reports I'm going to see if the decrease in the total credit limit has lowered her score.
It should not be a big deal if she does not carry a balance.
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Old 11-12-2008, 11:18 PM   #47
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Well, they use the amount of credit available vs. your ongoing balance as part of the calculation. Her limit will drop, but the balance won't change. Our score is pretty high (790s) so I'm not worried, just curious. It will be interesting to see. I suspect those who carry balances and have their limits decreased will see significant drops in their scores. Part of the CC conspiracy.
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Old 11-12-2008, 11:48 PM   #48
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Sears sent me a letter advising they had reduced my cc limit
due to inactivity. They're right, I hardly ever use the card.
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Old 11-13-2008, 01:00 AM   #49
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We opened a new cc account (first time in about 15 years) for the purpose of the 0% rate for one year for refinishing floors in FIL's house. The bank is of course hoping we don't have the full balance (which we do) at the end of the year and then we'd have to pay the 24.99% interest rate retroactive to the date of purchase.

They're going to lose on that bet. The money is currently earning interest for us and if they want to give us a free loan so be it. I suppose there are enough suckers out there to make the bet worthwhile or they wouldn't do it.
Just get it in writing when you pay...they'll claim they never got the payment. And if you then cancel the card, get written proof of that too...or a year after that you'll get an annual fee charged. Happened to me, fortunately I had documented everything and they couldn't touch me.
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Old 11-13-2008, 01:01 AM   #50
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It should not be a big deal if she does not carry a balance.
Actually the number of times your credit is checked is one part of your FICO....so it will lower your score somewhat.
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Old 11-13-2008, 01:06 AM   #51
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If a car salesman tries to sell an elderly person a huge R.V. that they don't need and can't afford, for instance, there is Elder Law to protect the buyer. The dealer can be made to take the R.V. back and refund the money.

boont
These laws must not work. I'd say 25% of this country buys things they can't afford. What do you call an 84 month car loan? I call that you should buy a less expensive car you bonehead. What do you think has got us in the predicament we're in now? It's because too many people bought too much stuff that they cannot afford. And the laws you quote didn't stop it.
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Old 04-09-2009, 10:59 AM   #52
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BofA just decreased our limit from $50,000 to $25,000. We've never used more than a few thousand.
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Old 04-09-2009, 11:40 AM   #53
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It's going around. We were decreased from 54,500 to 27,500 between the March and April statements. Just noticed it on the statement. Don't recall getting any correspondence telling me this would happen.

So an additional item on the monthly reconciliation checklist will be to note the credit limit.
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Old 04-09-2009, 11:40 AM   #54
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We keep our credit limits very low, in the $2-3K range. I just recently increased my credit limit to $9K on one card to accomodate an air/cruise booking. Ooohhh I'm gonna love that cashback check . As soon as we pay the rest of the balance (shore excursions) in late summer, I will again decrease it.
Call me paranoid, but I am uncomfortable with high credit limits. It's not that I don't trust the credit card companies in a case of ID theft or anything like that...
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Old 04-09-2009, 12:36 PM   #55
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Literal credit contractions, scary, considering you all are probably great credit risks. Should be a great money maker for the banks in catching people unaware, over-limit fee, and pay up half of their balances now. One of my unused cards was cancelled; they gave me the courtesy of notifying me two months later.
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Old 04-09-2009, 12:49 PM   #56
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My BofA card just went from $11,000 to $12,000.

MAybe they're just cutting it down to a level where you can't stick 5 years of college on a credit card and then default?
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Old 04-09-2009, 01:59 PM   #57
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Mixed bag in the mail this AM:

1. Bof A increased my Visa credit line from 36K to 38K+
2. ATT Universal Mastercard canceled my 15 year old account for inactivity.
3. Capital One apparently enjoyed the rock I sent them; they sent me another prepaid shipping label offer.
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Old 04-09-2009, 02:11 PM   #58
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Bank of A$$holes America just notified me of an interest rate increase from 6.9% to 14.15%. I was wondering if this is because we paid off all our debt except for a small balance on this credit card. Dave Ramsey says getting out of debt can lower one's FICO score and trigger rate increases. Oh well, we're not getting back into debt just to raise our FICO!

In retaliation, we shall no longer carry a balance but will pay off in full early each month, becoming what people in the CC biz call "freeloaders"
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Old 04-09-2009, 02:18 PM   #59
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Dave Ramsey says getting out of debt can lower one's FICO score and trigger rate increases. Oh well, we're not getting back into debt just to raise our FICO!
Getting out of debt doesn't decrease your FICO, it's closing accounts. So the only time paying off debt is going to hurt you is if you don't regain credit from a place by paying the debt. Things like car loans and store payment plans where your line of credit is only as big as the amount you owe them and it shrinks and disappears as you pay it off.

BofA doesn't have to justify raising your rates due to FICO, it's just an idicator they sometimes use. They could jump your rate to 24% tomorrow, but it only matters if you carry a balance.
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Old 04-09-2009, 02:58 PM   #60
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Since I am a credit card deadbeat, as many of you are, I have not received any notices of credit limit reduction or rate increase. Perhaps the CC companies have decided that we deadbeats who pay off monthly are actually a pretty good base to keep around. I did notice that Discover will soon (6/1/09) change their CashBack rules to make it more difficult to get larger kickbacks (i.e. WalMart, Sams, Costco etc will only receive .25%) on some transactions.
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