We’re Hemmorhaging Money and We Just Can’t Stop!

At least it seems that way…

We’re having a bad month.

We’ve had the following unexpected expenses this month:

  • $300 car repair (and another $300-$500 is looming)
  • $50 nebulizer (Son decided to break his while on vacation)
  • $200 speeding ticket (Husband’s – and not on our trip. On the way to work this morning…)
  • $100 dental bill (and a $500 root canal bill is looming, and probably a few hundred more for miscellaneous cavities soon…)
  • $700 vacation (I’m not going to complain about that – it’s great for a 10 day vacation!)

These are in addition to our regular expenses, and monies I’ve set aside for Son’s birthday party later this month and Husband’s birthday dinner on Saturday.

Some months are just like this. That’s why it’s good that I keep a healthy savings account. These unexpected expenses are a fact of life, and no matter how much we plan and manage and save there are times when we just have to pay. A lot.

The good news is that our Economic Stimulus check will cover all of the month’s unexpected expenses. It was going to go directly to savings, but that’s life. I’m also saving $200 per month now that Son isn’t in school, so that will make up for some of the coming extra expenses.

I had hoped to buy a new screen/storm door, but that’s going to have to wait. Let’s just hope my root canal decides to wait, too.

And today is Husband’s birthday. Guess what I got him?

Yup. A radar detector.

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A Disturbing Trend In Credit Card Rate Determination

The Federal Trade Commission currently has a lawsuit filed against credit card issuer CompuCredit (CCRT). It’s not about them raising rates because you forgot to make a payment, or because you went over your credit limit.

ComputCredit has been using lifestyle, in part, to determine rates. If you shop at certain types of establishments – a massage parlor, retreading a tire, or visiting a marriage counselor – they raise your rates.

But that’s not even why the FTC filed suit. They filed the suit because CompuCredit didn’t tell you about it ahead of time.

Of course that part is disturbing, but to me the more disturbing part is that my behavior – not just my payment history – can affect the rate I pay for credit. I can conceivably be charged a higher rate based on criteria I don’t even know exists, so there’s nothing I can do to improve it.

I guess I’m making some “credit-friendly” choices, since my score is in the top 1% in the nation. At least it is now. But if this type of behavior-leads-to-risk analysis gets more specific, more in-depth, I could conceivably see my score and my rates plummet despite my excellent payment history.

A disturbing trend indeed.

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