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DebtSmart® Email Newsletter
April 5, 2006

Tools for financial success! A Free Email Newsletter from DebtSmart Online and Press One Publishing.

Letter from the Publisher
by Scott Bilker


I had a great day of rewards from my credit cards last week! It reminds me why it's so important to be DebtSmart and use credit cards to your advantage.

We're replacing the kitchen cabinets— no choice; they're falling apart. Actually, one feel off onto me once, but that's another story. Anyway, I was trying to decide which reward card to use for this huge purchase. The costs for this project are climbing to near $16,000 including the cabinets, countertop, sink, faucet, and replacing the refrigerator that just failed.

Home Depot was offering no payments and no interest. My Regal card is about 1% in certificates for the movies. My new Wawa card is 2% back on all purchases. While analyzing all of my options, I went outside to get my mail. Lo and behold, there it was--the shining star of rewards.

It was an offer from Citibank which would give me 10% off home improvement purchases until 5/31/06—as my friend, Ed Woodward, once said, "timing is everything." He's so right! I called Citibank to make sure the deal would give me unlimited rebates. Once confirmed, I charged the cabinets and installation.

It was another enjoyable mail day when my statement came last week (one of them, I had to use two accounts) and there it was, the first credit for $1,000! Then I opened the next envelope and got my certificate for a  free Shorti submarine sandwich for signing up for the Wawa card. Lastly, I opened my Regal bill to find $40 worth of certificates for the movies.

There are rewards for everyone; find the ones that work for you.


Car Debt or Credit Debt First?
by Scott Bilker


First off great site, very informative!

I've already organized my debt with the highest interest debt to be paid off first. Only thing is, my car loan is up toward the top and it's getting close to the time when I would need to roll over the payments of paid off debt to the next highest interest rate debt, my car loan.

Does it make sense to start increasing my payments on this loan? Isn't what I will pay on the loan fixed? If this is the case, shouldn't I start paying on the next highest interest debt (another credit card) instead? Thanks for any help!


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"I saved $1,334 per hour. It was so easy!"

"I spent about 2 hours reading this book (Talk Your Way Out of Credit Card Debt), getting comfortable with the strategies. Then, after my first phone call, which saved me $210 per year, I was off and running! I was able to reduce my interest rate by as much as 9%. I called all six of my Mastercard/Visa companies and was able to save $1,983 per year from the finance charges plus having a $59.00 annual fee removed and a late fee removed ($29.00). The $/hour saved ranged from $141/hour to $2,464/hour and averaged $1,334/hour. It was so easy!!"

Fred Robinson, Teacher, Milford, NH

Read about special offer for all three of Scott Bilker's best-selling books

Household Math™: Susan is loanly
by Scott Bilker

Susan just left her boyfriend Jim because he didn't want to get married. Susan originally planned to buy an investment property with Jim, but that plan is over. She decides to go ahead and get the house herself. She gets approved for a 30-year 7% APR loan, with payments (principal and interest) of exactly $800.00. Susan decides, after making the first monthly payment of $800.00, that starting the next month, and until the loan is complete, she is going to add one crisp dollar bill to the monthly payment. So her next payment will be $801, then $802, and so on. How long will it take her to repay the loan?

Answer this problem

It's Your Money: Saving
by Tom Layson

The national savings rate continues to be a bit of an embarrassment.

Right now, it's hovering right around zero--sometimes going negative, sometimes slightly positive depending on when you happen to catch the numbers.

A.G. Edwards did a survey recently that focused on savings, and they've developed a score that gives people credit for saving for their appreciating homes and increasing stock values--needless to say, I find that portion of the company's effort to be garbage.

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DebtSmart® Help Center
by Scott Bilker


Helping you with your debt is very important to me personally! If you've been reading my articles, you know that I always encourage self-help as a first step. However, being buried in debt can be very overwhelming, which is why you may want to explore other options.

One of those options is professional, ongoing help with credit counselors. I've started to check out certain companies personally so I can recommend the ones that are worth considering!

If you would like to speak with a representative from a...

Read more at the DebtSmart Help Center

Federal Reserve Board Kids Web Page
by Federal Reserve

The Federal Reserve Board on launched a new kids web page designed to educate middle school students about the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System. The new web page is designed in a user-friendly, question-and-answer format to ensure easy navigation and the ability to learn basic information about the Fed.

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Will The Number of Delinquent Credit Card Accounts Increase?
by Mike Killian

The American Bankers Association (ABA) recently posted statistics concerning delinquent credit card payments. The data indicates a continued high delinquency rate, which in turn leads to lower credit scores since past payment history accounts for about 35% of one's credit score. The more recent a tardiness, the more credit score points are sacrificed. A consumer could be 30, 60, 90 or more days late on an account and the impact on his or her score becomes progressively more pronounced. Logically, a history of late payments on several accounts will cause even more damage than just a single account. The good news is that by paying your bills consistently on time, you can greatly improve your overall score.

Finish Reading Article


" I don't want to see a game of checkers; I want to see a game of chess."
--Master Art Beins

Quotes from all previous newsletters


Cool Quote
Credit and Debt Statistics Database
Letter from the publisher
Car Debt or Credit Debt First?
"I saved $1,334 per hour. It was so easy!"
Household Math™: Susan is loanly
It's Your Money: Saving
More credit, more options
DebtSmart® Help Center
Federal Reserve Board Kids Web Page
Stop Debt Collectors Cold!
Will The Number of Delinquent Credit Card Accounts Increase?
DebtSmart® Resources
Subscribe/Disclaimer Information
Free DebtSmart® Column for in print publication, ezine, or web site
Hire Scott Bilker to speak
Publisher: Scott Bilker
Editor: Larissa S. Bilker
Assistant Editor: Denise Troy

ISSN 1538-6740


Medical Billing Errors

30 percent of medical bills contain coding errors.
Credit and Debt Statistics Database
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The author(s), Press One Publishing, and DebtSmart.com shall have neither liability nor responsibility to any person or entity with respect to any loss or damage caused, or alleged to be caused, directly or indirectly by the information contained in this email newsletter and/or at the DebtSmart.com web site. The information, methods and techniques described may not work for you and no recommendation is made to follow the same course of action. Every effort has been made to verify the accuracy of all content contained herein. However, there may be mistakes; typographical, mathematical, or in content. This email newsletter and the DebtSmart.com web site have been created for your entertainment only. You must always seek the proper professional advice before taking any financial or legal action. You have been warned.

Copyright ©2006 Press One Publishing. All rights reserved. Please do not reprint, or host on your web site, without explicit permission. However, if you found this newsletter helpful, we grant you permission, and strongly encourage you, to e-mail it to a business associate or a friend. Thank you.


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