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Old 03-20-2002, 03:26 PM
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Question Avoiding late fees

Has anyone ever asked a credit card company to change their payment due date? I have been trying to pay off some serious credit card debt. I only get paid twice a month and I have trouble making some of my payments on time because the due date falls at a very awkward time of the month for me. late charges are making it impossible to pay off this debt. Will the credit card company penalize me if they agree to change my due date? Will this have an adverse affect on my credit?
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Old 03-20-2002, 03:55 PM
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Kimmyo, I have found that with CC companies, if you are trying to pay them, they will lasso the moon for you. Recently, I called our CC company and asked them if they could lower our minimum payment so that we could pay down some smaller debt faster. They agreed and called back a week later and offered to lower our interest rate for one year to 6% in exchange for us not using the card. Not only did we agree, but were ecstatic. Then, they told us if we would make 3 of the new payments ($116 instead of $275 - we pay $150 because we just hoped they would lower it to $225), they would suspend any late fees and finance charges for the remaining 9 months. I asked and found out that it does not affect our credit in any way as far as the credit bureaus are concerned. The only downfall SOME people would consider is we can't use the card, but for us, it's a blessing.

We did the math and figured out that by this agreement, we are saving over $2,000 this year and paying down at least $1,200 more than with the previous agreement.

I hope they work with you and with the CC battle they are waging, you can probably get them to do anything. Changing the due date should not matter to them.

Good luck.
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Old 04-19-2002, 07:42 AM
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Wow Jenlee, that is amazing. I think I will call and see if I can get a few dates changed. It is hard when everything falls in about 8 days.

Thanks for the info.

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Old 04-22-2002, 07:16 AM
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DH was helping his DM with her budget and he helped her make all kinds of changes with her credit cards. Good luck working with them! If one won't work with you, try transferring your balance to one who will.
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Old 05-17-2002, 08:15 AM
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Re: Changing date of CC payments

Kimmyo, I am like you and like all of my bills to fall around the first of the month. What I do, is when I get paid, I make out all of my checks for the month, put them into envelopes and in the corner where the stamp goes - mark the date they should be paid by. That way I know that I have allowed X amount of dollars for each credit card and I have X amount of dollars left. Like my electric bill is due late in the month, so I make out a check for about $100.00 and put it into an envelope. If it is a little over, then the next month I write the check for a little less, if it's short the next month gets a little more. This system works for me. I have not had any luck getting my creditors to all agree to payments around the first week of the month. I also like to do automatic payments from my checking, but you really have to be careful there to keep enough in so there's no problem. Saves a stamp and a check, but sometimes hard to budget for.
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Old 05-17-2002, 10:02 AM
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late fees

Our Gas company here asks that we read our
meter on the first of the month and mail
payment by the 10th. That's the best arrangement
I've seen so far. Gas bill is about $70/month in
the winter, less over the summer months of course.
My power bill was $300 last month.

We pay all of our utility (power, gas) bills first when we
get our paycheque once a month, as well as our car gas
account bill. I pay by telephone banking mostly
so I can do it at midnight if I need to!

I am concerned for our economy in Canada and the US
with the taxation rates reaching 60-65% of our income.
Avoiding late fees is just one of the problems we have
to face.

I've been using budget map for 2 months. I had a reality
check when I started using it. Scared myself.
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Old 05-17-2002, 11:25 AM
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Budgeting Bills

Dear Cluterrbug: I have been hoping someone would tell me if they are happy with the budget map system. I see it advertised all the time, and have thought about investing in it. How much time does it take to set up and to maintain? Do you think it is worth the investment?
My your utility bills are very high. Here in S.W. Louisiana, our bills are high in the summer, but usually mine average less than $150.00 for the hottest months. My house is all electric, so I don't think that's too bad. That figure includes water, waste water, and trash pickup and disposal, and recycling. In the winter, when it is cold (60's are cold for us), the electric heat is pricey, but still under $150.00 per month. I have a three bedroom house - about 2000 square feet.
I had no idea that your taxes were so high either. Real estate taxes here are almost nil. Very, very low (about $250.00 per YEAR). We do pay 8% on everything else, but your rate is certainly high.
I love Canada and admire you Canadians so much. You seem to stay friendly with everyone and have cordial relations with all countries. I especially liked New Foundland and Nova Scotia. My maternal side ancestors came from Halifax, and were boat builders. Today it is in the 80's. Hope it is pleasant for you too.
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Old 05-17-2002, 05:17 PM
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What is the exchange rate between US and Canadian money now? Is your $300 more or less than our currancy?
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Old 05-18-2002, 12:05 PM
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In reply to the lady asking about the budget map system.
Yes it is definitely one of the best eye opening systems
I've found. It's got a checkbook and a savingaccount record
in one book. There are columns for the various categories.
All my columns don't balance yet, but the system is helping
me get my expenditures in line. The other day I bought $100 worth
of clothing, decided to put it on my Visa. Slapped myself
when I got home, because I had no money in my clothing category,
so..you know it....it has to come from some other budget category...ummm - vacation spending... So you see our dilemma
when we don't follow a plan. It takes discipline to stick to
a budget. Budget Map will help you if you believe what it tells
you and if you can keep yourself in line. ATTENTION!

To set it up took me about an hour and a half. I pretty well
knew my habits by this time as I've been keeping semi-decent
records for about 14 years (meaning that I sat down each month
and tried to figure out how the heck we would pay all these things off...) Budget Map site shows you what the check book pages look
like.
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Old 05-18-2002, 12:24 PM
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Taxes in Canada


Our property taxes here in this rural area
for our home are $1100/year (canadian).
I budget $600/month Canadianfor food for a famly of six. It's
often not enough. Milk costs 5.00 for 4 litres here. Cheaper
in bigger cities south of us of course.
The american dollar I believe is worth more than the canadian
dollar at this time (in buying power that is).

With regard to the exchange rate, one has to realize
that this exchange rate is severely punishing to
Canadians but extremely advantageous to travellers
coming from the USA. It's probably killing exports to Canada
though.
Currently, the rate fluctuates . 1.58 to 1.62.
This means I pay 1.58 canadian cents for something
you charge 1.00 for.
Recently the Canadian dollar was something like 64 cents
american. That means you only pay 64 cents US to buy
something Canadian.

So when I look on the internet and say wow - that costs
$20 US, with 5.75 shipping - in effect it will cost me:
$20 x 1.58 = $31.60 cdn, plus Cdn GST of 7% 2.21, plus
$5.00 duty (if it's under $20 bucks or something); plus shipping
to Canada which is usually not 5.75 but $10.00 US x 1.58
which = $15.80 cdn for shipping.
Total then for this $20 US item is: $54.61 canadian. If you
have provincial sales tax, add that too.

With regard to the power prices here:
Our winters are cold requiring our heat to be on from September
till May. Spring is absolutely gorgeous here for May and June as there are very few bugs and mosquitos. Our bugs are mostly pesty biting flies, wasps, bees, hornets, mosquitoes, no-seeums, moths, spiders, spruce beetles. Summers however can be very delightful, with temperatures at 20 degrees C - 30 degrees C for most of the summer. It doesn't get dark and at 11:00 o-clock at night at the peak
of summer, the sky is still blue. We don't have
air conditioning - just fans and windows. We sweat it out
if it gets hotter. You can survive here in this without air conditioning, but you can't survive without bug spray or screened porches. As we spend so much to heat all winter, why would be want to be cool all summer? ha ha

Yes we are hardy souls that's for sure. Nothing beats the peace
of Canada and way of life. We are certainly a laid back group of
people. However, we often talk about moving to the U.S. because
of the taxation and cost of living. But this is home after all.
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