Do you hide money?
MSNBC has an article today that discusses people who hide money and the problems that it can cause those who squirrel away the money. Many older people who hide money, may succumb to Alzheimer’s or die and relatives many not know about the hidden money. Also other people who live in the person’s home may not know about the hidden money and dispose of some of the hiding places such as tins, books or pieces of furniture.
Recently there was an Israeli woman who bought her mother a new mattress and tossed the old one. Inside was her mother’s life savings – $1,000,000.
Most of the money that is stashed in and around homes is for emergency purposes. Sometimes people forget where they have hidden money. Unlike when we were kids and would count our money daily, in order to save for that big purchase, some folks just put cash away and then forget it.
Who hasn’t found money in an old bag or jacket pocket just left there or money just in a drawer?
Hiding money in your home and forgetting about it isn’t a good thing. But if you choose to save money at home, buy a safe with a lock or a box with a lock and hide it. Tell someone you trust where you money is – just in case. My grandmother had money hiding places in her home when we sold it, that I knew about, but my mother didn’t. My father was recently shredding some old papers and found several hundred dollars in cash in a paper bag that he said he didn’t remember that he had. The only reason he was going through the box was because my parents were sorting out some things from the garage for donation.
The small amount of interest that you can earn isn’t worth it to take to the bank for certain amounts. Many people have small amounts of cash that they save or even in the case of one episode of a woman on “How Clean Is Your House,” the lady just empties cash out of her pockets onto the floor or whatever surface when she came home. The cleaners found hundreds of dollars that they lady didn’t know she had.
Big banks are rejecting California’s IOUs.
Even in January, it was reported that California might have to issue IOUs. Last week the state started issuing IOUs and major banks have made a promise not to cash them after today. There is a $26 billion budget deficit. The only other alternative is to go to a credit union. There are about 60 in the state that will accept them for deposit.
Most major banks reiterated that customers could not deposit the IOUs after today. Others, such as City National Corp., said they would continue accepting the registered warrants but could stop taking them at any time.
The last time the state sent out IOUs, during a 1992 impasse between then-Gov. Pete Wilson and legislators, banks also eventually rejected the registered warrants.
The 3.75% interest isn’t enough of an incentive for the banks to accept the IOUs but the credit unions are hedging their bets to gain a greater foothold in the market since there are larger financial institutions that are not accepting the cash vouchers. Some people have tried to sell them on the internet at a discount because they have no other place to turn.
Another way California is looking to garner income is by taxing marijuana.
It’s still an issue especially when people are hurting. There may be smaller crimes taking place through according to statistics crime really hasn’t risen that much. That is because the statistics have been skewed. IF10% of the population was a victim of theft a decade ago, but the population rose along with crime proportionally and 10 years later there is still a 10% rate in robbery or theft, the number are being used to show that there hasn’t been a dramatic rise in crime.
Let’s say you take precautions at home and shred bills, don’t give out your credit card number or any information over the phone for anything that is unsolicited and shop at secure sites. You still may be a victim of identity theft. When you are shopping, someone may be taking a picture of your credit card. The Department of Justice calls this “shoulder surfing.”
Many people do not realize how easily criminals can obtain our personal data without having to break into our homes. In public places, for example, criminals may engage in “shoulder surfing” – watching you from a nearby location as you punch in your telephone calling card number or credit card number – or listen in on your conversation if you give your credit-card number over the telephone to a hotel or rental car company.
Many times, I have overheard people giving their credit card number out in public on the phone. Granted, I don’t want to do anything with this information but a thief definitely would. A thief may also take a picture of your credit card as you hand it over to the cashier taking a picture of all the information they need to do some damage to your credit.
Let’s say you still receive paper statements from your bank or even from an investment account. If it doesn’t arrive on time, be concerned someone else may have intercepted it and can gain access to your accounts.
Scammers may even call your house or send you a realistic looking bill stating that you owe money. If you know that you have had no closed accounts or bills due, call your credit card company or check to see what this is about. When inquiring about fraudulent charge, do not give your social security number to anyone. Ask what the previous address is for the person and the person’s age. There are times when bill collectors are doing skip tracing to hunt down debtors that they find the wrong person.
One recommendation that the Federal Trade Commission makes is staggering the free credit reports that you can receive (one per year, per company) to see what the credit reports are showing. You can request your free report online, by phone or by mail. AnnualCreditReport.com, call 1-877-322-8228, or fill out the Annual Credit Report Request form and mail it to Annual Credit Report Request Service, P.O. Box 105281, Atlanta, GA 30348-5281. No matter how you request your report, you have the option to request all three reports at once or to order one report at a time. By requesting the reports separately, you can monitor your credit more frequently throughout the year.
Unfortunately, twice I have had free credit monitoring offered to me because of breeches in security. One was because of an employer and the other because an online company’s site was hacked. The services were nice, but I probably wouldn’t want to pay $20 or more each month to have credit monitoring. In both cases they were just offering the service so they wouldn’t be liable because of theft.
Unemployed or underemployed and can’t make payments on your loans? You are not alone.
The American Banking Association recently released a report indicating that a lot of Americans are not paying their bills.
…delinquencies on consumer debt rose to a record 3.23% in the first quarter of 2009, up slightly from the previous quarter.
This number does not include credit card debt.
Similarly, the balances on those late credit card accounts rose to 6.6% of all outstanding bank card debt, marking another record high.
The reports shouldn’t be surprising. If you have no money or are making less than you did, paying bills becomes difficult if not impossible.
Don’t dodge bill collectors or anyone you owe. Be forthright and explain your situation or try to make some small payment if you can.
Prioritize your bills. Pay the essentials such as mortgage or rent, transportation to get to work and utilities.
You aren’t the only one. Ask for a restructuring of your mortgage, if you can. If it is true hardship you can ask to reduce the interest rate on your loan with no additional fees. Some income requirements may be imposed but remember companies also want their money too. Late payments and delinquencies also can mar your credit report but making some effort will be better than doing nothing.