Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Why I hate credit cards (BOA in particular)

In my last post, I told you a little bit about my frantic search to get all the cash to pay my parents back. I forgot to mention I even tried to open a new CC to get the last 4K. Finally Bank of America approved a cash advance for that amount (that CC was paid of with a limit of 6.6k).

Fast forward 8 days, I get a letter from BOA telling me that my cash advance could not be approved b/c my account had been closed. Further more they had gone ahead and reduced my limit on my ML to 100 greater than my limit. I was baffled. I had spoken to the customer service person and we had a conversation about why I needed the money. She said it was being processed and would be in my account within 3-5 days.

At this point, I didn't even want to call BOA to complain. Truth be told, if I had zero debt, they would be the first company I'd severe ties with. I have had bad experiences with their customer service and I really don't like them as a company. Plus, technically they can close whatever cards they like, i just didn't like the manner in which they did it. You have to keep in mind that i have NEVER in a 10 yr history been late on a payment or over drafted my card.

I am done trying to understand how credit companies work. You would think that a person who carries a balance, is never late and pays more than the minimum would be their ideal customer. That's a crapload of interest they make from said customer. If I were to pay my balance in full every month but got for example, airline miles, I don't think I would be considered a target consumer.

I just wish they would stop taking such a mathematical approach to how they run things. That's what got them in trouble in the first place. There definitely should be a person who looks things over with a more subjective analytical mind.

Anyway, the issue was solved because for a reason I don't understand (and I'm not going to question), I got an access cheque from a CC. I have promptly depoisited the required amount and I'm just waiting for it to clear.

Hopefully, there will be no more updates on this except me updating my sidebar.

****Random tip. I found out that you can just take you credit card to a bank and withdraw the money from a teller. If I'd just have done that instead of calling, I'd have the money I needed already.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Finally feeling the effect of the Recession

I know it's been almost a year that we've been hearing about the recession on the news. I've had my fair share of friends and people I sort of know get laid off or receive a salary cut. However, I must say that I haven't personally felt the effects of the recession... until now.

Since I've been in debt reduction mode, I don't really shop so prices don't affect me. Luckily for me, I was just hired so I wasn't laid off. My company froze salaries but since this was my first year working, I wasn't accustomed to salary increases at the end of every year so that didn't affect me. Some credit cards reduced my limits or closed my cards but since I have been trying to not increase my debt, that was just fine with me.

Today, the state of the economy came pretty close to screwing me over. Like I said in my last post, I am giving my folks back 10k (it's actually 9.6k since I had already made a $400). I had to pull money out of my credit cards that I had paid down.

First shocker came when I called USbank and was told that cash advances had been limited to 25% of my credit line. In the past, I could borrow up to the whole amount. 25% was not going to be enough to pay my folks back.

Okay, on to Bank of America. I hate them but I have a line of credit with a ridiculous limit. I call them up, only to be told that my account has been closed. I'm confused because I have a letter stating they were reducing the limit not closing the account. I am not really in the mood to argue so I hang up.

Solution happened when I called my Bank of America Credit card. I was able to get the advance from there but they are definitely more thorough about the process. For one thing I was asked a lot about my job and what I did. They also wanted to know what I wanted the money for.

I was definitely scared for a minute that I wouldn't be able to pay back my parents. I'm glad it worked out but I can see that now is definitely the time to beef up savings. If there's an emergency, you need to have something to rely on.

Monday, October 12, 2009

That 10k will just not go away

As you guys can probably figure out by now, when I don't post for a while, it's usually because I'm not being good.

In what some of my friends have called a very stupid decision, I have decided to give my parents back the 10k. I don't really want to go into too much detail because I'm not debating the issue but basically, they started wanting to know every detail of my financial life (don't get me wrong I can understand where they are coming from with that) and I was not willing to share. Basically, it boiled down to the fact that there were too many strings for me and I just felt too old for all that.

The bad news is that I'm going to have to take cash out of my credit card because I used part of that money to pay down the credit card. Luckily, I have a card that charges same as purchases for cash advances so it's not going to be at an astronomical. I haven't updated the sidebars yet, but it's definitely not going to look pretty.

I know all the arguments against my choice and I know saying I've already made up my mind about it is not going to stop people from telling me anyway, so just know I probably won't respond to comments of that nature.

I'm no longer in a race to pay down my debt. I just want it to go down.