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REVIEW of Money 02
Saving on Credit

In many respects, today's society functions on the live-now pay-later principle. Very few can get by without borrowing money, especially when purchasing high-price items like homes and cars. These unavoidable obligations can weigh heavily on the budget. Add the pressure of day-to-day expenses and many find they are unable to cope. It doesn't take a mathematical genius to figure out that spending more than the regular income is the road to ruin and something needs doing to fix the problem.

When applying for any loan, be canny with respect to finding the best deal because they aren't all the same. Shop around: check out interest rates, establishment and other fees; ask for a detailed re-payment plan and penalties incurred for late payment; then factor these figures into the budget to see if they are affordable. Also, make sure to read and fully understand the terms and conditions before signing on the dotted line. Unless there is a cooling-off period, the applicant will be stuck with whatever has been agreed to for the duration.

Be particularly wary of bonus schemes, especially the ones offering no payments and no interest for a set period. Insist on knowing what happens at the end of this time - wait until then to find out and it could come as a shock. Here are a few more things to think about:

* Resist taking out a loan for more than is really needed - the temptation is there to spend the extra.
* If you have a number of different loans, consider checking the banks with a view to consolidating them into a single account.
* Always negotiate face to face, and insist that questions asked are answered to your satisfaction.
* Whatever you buy on credit, try to make it last longer than the time it takes to pay it off.
* Never use one form of credit to pay off the debt on another.

To read the complete article or download the PDF of Money 02 click here

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