Cars and Transportation http://www.wisebread.com/taxonomy/term/4812/all en-US Best Money Tips: The Car Edition http://www.wisebread.com/best-money-tips-the-car-edition <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/best-money-tips-the-car-edition" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://www.wisebread.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/car-shopping-478789579-small.jpg" alt="car shopping" title="car shopping" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Welcome to Wise Bread's <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/topic/best-money-tips">Best Money Tips</a> Roundup! Today we found some of the best articles from around the web on keeping your car expenses from draining your bank account.</p> <h2>Top 5 Articles</h2> <p><a href="http://www.moneyunder30.com/car-buying-tricks">Car Buying Guide: Tricks to Save Thousands</a> &mdash; Negotiating via phone or email and financing wisely can help you save thousands when buying a car. [Money Under 30]</p> <p><a href="http://www.savvysugar.com/Questions-Ask-Used-Car-Seller-31000145">8 Questions to Ask When Buying a Used Car</a> &mdash; When buying a used car, ask the seller for maintenance records. [PopSugar Smart Living]</p> <p><a href="http://sustainablepersonalfinance.com/16-driving-tips-to-improve-gas-mileage/">16 Driving Tips to Improve Gas Mileage</a> &mdash; You can reduce your gas mileage by using cruise control and checking your gas cap. [Sustainable Personal Finance]</p> <p><a href="http://www.budgetblonde.com/2013/07/26/buying-and-leasing-cars/">The Difference Between Buying and Leasing Cars</a> &mdash; If you move around a lot for work or pleasure, leasing a car may be a better option for you than buying one. [Budget Blonde]</p> <p><a href="http://www.thousandaire.com/how-to-protect-your-car-from-depreciation/">How to Protect Your Car from Depreciation</a> &mdash; Keeping your mileage down and holding onto your maintenance records can protect your car from depreciation. [Thousandaire]</p> <h2>Other Essential Reading</h2> <p><a href="http://www.consumerismcommentary.com/save-money-at-the-gas-pump/">Save Money at the Gas Pump</a> &mdash; To save at the pump, maintain your car properly and plan your trips efficiently. [Consumerism Commentary]</p> <p><a href="http://www.dumblittleman.com/2007/01/20-ways-to-waste-money-on-your-car.html">20 Ways to Waste Money on Your Car</a> &mdash; Using a dealer for oil changes and not changing your fuel filter can end up costing you more on your car. [Dumb Little Man]</p> <p><a href="http://moneyqanda.com/car-salesmen-tricks-they-do-not-want-you-to-know/">Car Salesman Tricks They Do Not Want You to Know</a> &mdash; Car salesmen do not want you to know the car's real invoice cost. [Money Q&amp;A]</p> <p><a href="http://livingonthecheap.com/live-without-car/">How to Live Without a Car</a> &mdash; If you want to eliminate your car expenses entirely, consider using services like ZipCar. [Living on the Cheap]</p> <p><a href="http://parentingsquad.com/surviving-and-thriving-on-an-extended-car-trip-with-your-kids">Surviving and Thriving on an Extended Car Trip with Your Kids</a> &mdash; Packing treats (or &quot;bribes&quot;) can help make extended car trips with your kids a success and keep them frugal. [Parenting Squad]</p> <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/best-money-tips-the-car-edition" class="sharethis-link" title="Best Money Tips: The Car Edition" rel="nofollow">ShareThis</a><br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">Written by <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/ashley-jacobs">Ashley Jacobs</a> and published on <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/">Wise Bread</a>. Read more <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/taxonomy/term/"> articles from Wise Bread</a>.</div></div> Cars and Transportation best money tips car Cars Fri, 18 Jul 2014 19:00:06 +0000 Ashley Jacobs 1146782 at http://www.wisebread.com Best Money Tips: Ways to Save on Gas http://www.wisebread.com/best-money-tips-ways-to-save-on-gas-0 <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/best-money-tips-ways-to-save-on-gas-0" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://www.wisebread.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/pumping-gas-82635537-small.jpg" alt="pumping gas" title="pumping gas" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="148" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Welcome to Wise Bread's <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/topic/best-money-tips">Best Money Tips</a> Roundup! Today we found some fantastic articles on saving on gas, upcycling ideas that will blow your mind, and how to keep your identity safe.</p> <h2>Top 5 Articles</h2> <p><a href="http://kiplinger.com/article/saving/T050-C000-S001-five-ways-to-save-gas-money.html?si=1">5 Ways to Save Gas Money</a> &mdash; Targeting the best day and time to buy gas can help you save at the pump. [Kiplinger]</p> <p><a href="http://www.savvysugar.com/Cool-Upcycling-Projects-24338804">221 Upcycling Ideas That Will Blow Your Mind</a> &mdash; Would you have ever thought to repurpose your old maps into coasters? [POPSUGAR Smart Living]</p> <p><a href="http://www.creditsesame.com/blog/5-minutes-safer-identity/">5 Minutes to a Safe Identity</a> &mdash; To protect your identity, check your bank accounts daily. [Credit Sesame]</p> <p><a href="http://www.moneytalksnews.com/2014/06/27/are-you-making-these-6-costly-college-planning-mistakes/">Are You Making These 6 Costly College Planning Mistakes?</a> &mdash; When planning for college, don't make the mistake of not understanding how 526 plans work. [Money Talks News]</p> <p><a href="http://www.mightybargainhunter.com/allowance-teaching-tool/?utm_source=feedburner&amp;utm_medium=feed&amp;utm_campaign=Feed%3A+mightybargainhunter+%28MightyBargainHunter.com%29">Five Keys to Making a Child's Allowance a Teaching Tool</a> &mdash; Make your child's allowance a teaching tool by making it so that eventually they outgrow their allowance and have to find other ways to make money. [Mighty Bargain Hunter]</p> <h2>Other Essential Reading</h2> <p><a href="http://sustainablelifeblog.com/tips-save-energy-costs-mercury-rises/">Tips to Save on Energy Costs as Mercury Rises</a> &mdash; Adding some shade to the sunny side of your home can help you reduce your energy costs this summer. [Sustainable Life Blog]</p> <p><a href="http://parentingsquad.com/7-things-your-family-can-give-up-to-make-your-summer-more-sane">7 Things Your Family Can Give Up to Make Your Summer More Sane</a> &mdash; To make your summer more sane, your family can give up long car trips and enrichment activities. [Parenting Squad]</p> <p><a href="http://www.bargaineering.com/articles/ready-insurers-car-happened-accident.html">Be Ready for Insurers to Ask Your Car What Really Happened in an Accident</a> &mdash; If you are in an accident, your insurer may ask to download data from your car to find out if you are giving an accurate account of the accident. [Bargaineering]</p> <p><a href="http://www.moneycrashers.com/part-time-jobs-health-insurance-benefits/">11 Best Part-Time Jobs With Health Insurance Benefits</a> &mdash; Costco and Lowe's offer health insurance benefits for part-time employees. [Money Crashers]</p> <p><a href="http://www.smartasset.com/blog/personal-finance/top-4-budgeting-tips-for-new-parents/">Top 4 Budgeting Tips for New Parents</a> &mdash; Are you a new parent? Be sure to add up your out-of-pocket medical expenses. [SmartAsset Blog]</p> <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/best-money-tips-ways-to-save-on-gas-0" class="sharethis-link" title="Best Money Tips: Ways to Save on Gas " rel="nofollow">ShareThis</a><br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">Written by <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/ashley-jacobs">Ashley Jacobs</a> and published on <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/">Wise Bread</a>. Read more <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/taxonomy/term/"> articles from Wise Bread</a>.</div></div> Cars and Transportation best money tips gas money save Mon, 07 Jul 2014 19:00:05 +0000 Ashley Jacobs 1152747 at http://www.wisebread.com A Used Car Salesman Reveals Dirty Tricks (and How to Beat Them) http://www.wisebread.com/a-used-car-salesman-reveals-dirty-tricks-and-how-to-beat-them <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/a-used-car-salesman-reveals-dirty-tricks-and-how-to-beat-them" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://www.wisebread.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/car-salesman-151336938-small.jpg" alt="car salesman" title="car salesman" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="146" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Used car salesmen are generally portrayed in the media as sleazy, greasy guys in too-tight polyester suits that are trying to take you for a ride &mdash; and not just in that lemon sitting on the lot. Of course, not all used car salesmen fit that stereotype, but at least part of that image is accurate: There are dirty tricks that they're putting into action to get that bill of sale signed&hellip; by you. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/17-things-car-salesmen-dont-want-you-to-know?ref=seealso">17 Things Used Car Salesmen Don't Want You to Know</a>)</p> <p>Jason Lancaster made a living as a used car salesman for a decade &mdash; at an &quot;upstanding dealership,&quot; he says &mdash; but he's now committed to exposing the less-than-ethical business practices because he believes that &quot;customers deserve better.&quot; He left the car business in 2007 and started a website &mdash;<a href="http://www.accurateautoadvice.com">Accurate Auto Advice</a> &mdash; devoted to sharing accurate advice and information with consumers. According to Jason, &quot;The mission of the site is to give consumers advice that's 100% true. A lot of the info I see about car buying is false or misleading, and I'm trying to correct that.&quot;</p> <p>Lancaster exposes some of the more dastardly car-buying schemes in the following four tactics &mdash; and some advice about combatting them.</p> <h2>1. The Scream</h2> <p>Think of &quot;The Scream&quot; tactic as a riff on the good cop/bad cop scenario. The gist of it is that the buyer wants a certain car or a certain price that the dealer doesn't have or can't match. At the same time, the buyer says that they're not ready to buy at the moment. Instead of sending the buyer on their way without any hope of getting what they want &mdash; which, in truth, isn't available &mdash; the salesperson plants a seed that what the buyer wants may be available when he or she is ready to buy and suggests that they contact the dealer before they make any decisions at another dealer.</p> <p>&quot;Then, you sit back and wait for the phone call,&quot; says Lancaster. &quot;If the customer calls you for an unbelievable price, you tell them that you remember what they want and they need to come in to complete the deal. They come down to the dealership believing that you're going to meet their price, get their car, etc., and THEN you tell them the bad news.&quot;</p> <p>That's where the namesake &quot;scream&quot; comes in. Angry that they came back to a dealer that isn't willing to give them what they want when it was suggested that they would, the buyer, in theory, takes their frustration out on the salesperson &mdash; or the bad cop, if you will. And that's when the good cop &mdash; the manager, in most cases &mdash; comes in to seal the deal.</p> <p>Lancaster continues, &quot;The manager comes over, apologizes, then explains how the customer wanted a price that wasn't realistic (or a car that isn't available), that $XX is the very best price there is, offers to throw in a freebie, and makes the deal. If the salesperson is sufficiently scolded, and the manager is good at calming people down, it can work OK.&quot;</p> <p>The problem with this scenario, as Lancaster points out, is that the buyer no longer trusts the salesperson, which means that they'll never come back to them again. &quot;It's great in the short term, but really damaging to the dealership in the long term, so a lot of dealers won't permit it.&quot;</p> <h3>How to Avoid The Scream</h3> <p>First, don't let on that you're not ready to buy right now. That's basically where this scheme begins. Instead, inform the salesperson that you're looking for a car, and you want to find the best price possible, so you're keeping your options open by visiting other dealerships.</p> <p>To flip this tactic on its head altogether, round up a few prices on comparable cars from area dealers and bring them to the table with each salesperson. If the salesperson doesn't want to be competitive, and you don't feel like you're getting the best or fairest deal possible, walk. Simple as that. If they want your business, they'll work with you to find the most reasonable deal for the dealership and for you.</p> <h2>2. Rolling a Car They Know You Can't Finance</h2> <p>What's a dealership manager to do when he wants to move a vehicle off the lot, but he's dealing with a buyer who won't agree to make a sufficient or realistic down payment or who has bad credit with no chance of getting a good finance rate? Lancaster says there are two choices:</p> <ul> <li>The salesperson can tell the buyer what a realistic interest rate will be, and what that means for their payment; or<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>The salesperson can tell the buyer whatever they want to hear about interest rates, have them sign paperwork and take delivery, then call them back in a week or so and tell them the terms have changed.</li> </ul> <p>Did you just have a WTF moment, too? Truth is this tactic works &mdash; and it's still used fairly often for three important reasons, according to Lancaster:</p> <ol> <li>People want to believe the dealer tried to get them a good interest rate, says Lancaster. &quot;If you bring them back, show them all the decline notices from the banks, etc., you can prove to them that you tried. Then they'll admit their credit is bad and agree to a higher interest rate and payment.&quot;<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>People usually show their new car off to friends and family, often the day they get it or the day after. Losing the car a week later would be embarrassing, so people will often pay more just to avoid that embarrassment.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Most dealerships make customers sign something called a &quot;bailment agreement&quot; that says the dealership can charge a very high fee for the use of the vehicle if financing falls apart, according to Lancaster. &quot;When I was in the business, bailment was $50 a day and $0.50 a mile. If someone drives a car for a week, that's $500+. That's a big cash penalty a lot of people don't want to pay.&quot;</li> </ol> <h3>How to Avoid This Trick</h3> <p>To avoid the dealer changing your finance rate after you take delivery, consider these three suggestions:</p> <ol> <li>Secure financing before you arrive at the dealer; or<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Request that the dealer show you a copy of the bank approval (they can print it out and show you easily enough); and/or<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Don't sign a bailment agreement, at least not one that specifies payment of a penalty for miles driven and days of use.</li> </ol> <p>&quot;The bailment agreement is typically the first or last document the dealer will show you,&quot; says Lancaster. &quot;If you see anything that says you agree to pay for vehicle use should financing fall through, don't sign it. However, understand that this may keep you from buying a car if you have poor credit. Sometimes, people with poor credit don't have much of a choice, unfortunately.&quot;</p> <h2>3. &quot;This Is the Finance Rate the Bank Came Back With&quot;</h2> <p>As you may know, dealers can make a percentage of a vehicle's interest rate if they can mark it up. One of the easiest ways to mark up interest rates is to bring a customer into the finance office, ask them a series of probing questions about their credit report, make a show of submitting something to &quot;the bank,&quot; then showing them a piece of paper and saying, essentially, &quot;this is what the bank came back with.&quot;</p> <p>Another dirty trick, of course, but it works.</p> <p>&quot;The customer assumes that whatever you're showing them is the actual interest rate they qualified for, not realizing that the dealership has marked the interest rate up 2% to 3%&quot; Lancaster explains. &quot;This is done all the time. Even at nice dealerships. Even today.&quot;</p> <h3>How to Avoid This Trick</h3> <p>The best way to avoid this trap? Join a credit union and ask them for pre-approval on a vehicle loan. Credit unions almost always offer excellent finance rates. From personal experience, I can tell you that my husband has done this in the past, and it's always resulted in a smoother negotiation. Lancaster echoes that sentiment and offers an additional tip: &quot;If you can't join a credit union, I'd go online and see what you can do to secure a loan from one of the lenders that partner with <a href="http://www.edmunds.com/">Edmunds.com</a>, <a href="http://www.cars.com/">Cars.com</a>, etc.&quot;</p> <h2>4. Failing to Disclose Damage</h2> <p>Prior damage to a vehicle will almost certainly play a part in your decision to buy a particular used car. But how do you know what that car has endured? Unfortunately there's no easy way to find this out &mdash; and it's not entirely the fault of the salesman or dealer.</p> <p>&quot;Depending on the damage and the state you live in,&quot; Lancaster says, &quot;dealers may not be under any legal obligation to disclose a vehicle's prior history. The vehicle could be a 'lemon' (manufacturer buy-back), it could have suffered damage while on the dealership's lot, it could have substantial body damage &mdash; and the dealership doesn't have to say a word about it.</p> <p>&quot;While a CARFAX report can help, CARFAX reports are often incomplete. I've seen CARFAX reports that are missing considerable information, to the point where it makes me doubt the quality of their service. In any case, dealers will lie about damage or problems because they're under no obligation to tell the truth, and the consumer can't prove the dealership lied after the fact.&quot;</p> <h3>How to Avoid This Trick</h3> <p>So what can you do to at least try to get the most up-to-date, complete, and accurate information about the vehicle? The answer here isn't the most appealing, but it's sort of a better-safe-than-sorry situation.</p> <p>&quot;The best way to protect yourself is to pay for an independent vehicle inspection and buy a CARFAX or AutoCheck report,&quot; advises Lancaster. &quot;A good inspector can usually spot a vehicle with undisclosed damage, and CARFAX/Autocheck reports are usually good about indicating if a car is a manufacturer buy-back (AKA someone else's lemon).&quot;</p> <p>If you choose to go this route, there are mobile used car inspection services in most medium-sized cities. If you live in a small town, you can take your car to the nearest independent mechanic and ask them to look it over.</p> <h2>How to Beat a Used Car Salesman</h2> <p>In addition to revealing these trickster tactics, Lancaster also has advice for car buyers, so you can walk into the dealership knowledgeable and (hopefully) maintain the upper hand.</p> <h3>Buy From a Reputable Franchise</h3> <p>Buy from a franchised new car dealership, as most of these &quot;tricks&quot; won't fly. New car dealers are carefully monitored by state authorities and the automakers they represent, so they're very careful.</p> <h3>Get It Inspected</h3> <p>Have whatever it is you're buying professionally inspected. It costs $100 to $150, and it's worth every penny.</p> <h3>Secure Financing First</h3> <p>Arrange financing at the local credit union then ask the dealer if they can beat that rate. Outside of a credit union, most of the larger banks have some sort of auto finance program, and most of the popular car sites have a partnership with finance companies.</p> <p><em>Have you ever scored a great deal on a used car from a dealership? How did you do it? Please share in comments!</em></p> <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/a-used-car-salesman-reveals-dirty-tricks-and-how-to-beat-them" class="sharethis-link" title="A Used Car Salesman Reveals Dirty Tricks (and How to Beat Them)" rel="nofollow">ShareThis</a><br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">Written by <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/mikey-rox">Mikey Rox</a> and published on <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/">Wise Bread</a>. Read more <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/taxonomy/term/"> articles from Wise Bread</a>.</div></div> Cars and Transportation Shopping car dealerships Cars scams shopping used car Thu, 03 Jul 2014 13:00:04 +0000 Mikey Rox 1153218 at http://www.wisebread.com 14 Things Insurance Agents Don't Want You to Know http://www.wisebread.com/14-things-insurance-agents-dont-want-you-to-know <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/14-things-insurance-agents-dont-want-you-to-know" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://www.wisebread.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/senior-insurance-178525693-small.jpg" alt="senior insurance" title="senior insurance" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="153" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Ignorance is bliss.</p> <p>The less that you know about how insurance works, the happier insurance agents are. As friendly as geckos, generals, cavemen, and ducks may look on TV, you shouldn't forget that insurance is a multi-billion dollar industry. These companies are out there to make money. It is the job of insurance agents to make as much as they can, too.</p> <p>Here are 14 things that insurance agents don't want you to know.</p> <h2>General Tips</h2> <p>Let's start with some tips that apply to several types of insurance.</p> <h3>1. Non-Smokers Pay Less</h3> <p>Non-smokers pay less than smokers for any type of insurance, including car insurance, home insurance, and life insurance. If you don't see a non-smoker discount listed on your policy, call your company and ask about it. Usual discounts for non-smokers range from 5% to 15%.</p> <h3>2. Quick Settlements Are Often Not the Best Deal</h3> <p>A quick settlement offer is never a good sign. This means that you are entitled to a payout, but the insurance agent is aware that if you look into it, you could get more. Remember that insurance companies are for-profit, so don't fall for those &quot;get on with your life&quot; and &quot;put this tragedy behind you&quot; comments. Take the time to carefully review a settlement offer before you accept it.</p> <h3>3. Payouts Can Be Extremely Slow</h3> <p>The airline insurance industry is an example of how slow insurance payouts can be. Lawyers are speculating that the litigation for <a href="http://fortune.com/2014/05/01/the-big-money-surprise-about-malaysia-airlines-flight-370/">Malaysia Airlines flight MH370</a> could take five years, with some families waiting up to 10 years for compensation. Airline insurance litigation in the U.S. can be complex as different states have different caps on damages for victims, so lawyers battle to file suits in states that benefits their clients. For example, in 1949 an <a href="http://ghostsofdc.org/2012/02/27/planes-collide-near-national-airport-killing-55-d-c-loses-home-rule-advocate/">Eastern Airlines plane</a> was cut in half. One half fell in Virginia, where then the cap was set at $15,000, and the other on Washington, D.C., where there is no cap.</p> <h3>4. Low, Low Premiums Can Hide Real Costs</h3> <p>Some insurance agents present you a quote so low that you won't believe your eyes. The reason that the quote is so low is that you would be opting for high deductibles and low coverage limits. These cookie-cutter policies may not only be a bad fit for you, but also end up costing you a lot in case of a claim.</p> <p>To avoid falling for a low-ball price and inappropriate insurance, compare apples to apples by requesting a quote for a policy with the exact same features. Take a second look at any quote that is way below the price of the others.</p> <h2>Car Insurance</h2> <p>Don't fall for cute mascots and look deeper into the coverages for those policies.</p> <h3>5. Credit Score Is a Major Criteria</h3> <p>Not used by just money lending institutions, credit scores provide insurance companies a look at your credit history as a predictor of potential payouts. The FTC also agrees that <a href="http://www.ftc.gov/reports/credit-based-insurance-scores-impacts-consumers-automobile-insurance-report-congress-federal">credit scores are effective predictors</a> of risk for auto insurance policies. This is why insurance agents request your social security number &mdash; so that they can pull up your credit report.</p> <p>Despite the validation by the FTC, this practice has been labeled as discriminatory by many consumer advocacy groups. Those struggling with debt or starting to build their credit history are hit with another big bill. This is why the states of California, Hawaii, and Massachusetts have prohibited car insurance companies from using credit-based insurance scores. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-improve-your-credit-score?ref=seealso">How to Improve Your Credit Score</a>)</p> <h3>6. If You Move or Change Insurance, You Get a Refund</h3> <p>It is a good practice to pay your car premiums in a lump-sum payment because you prevent insurance agents from tacking on a &quot;convenience fee&quot; to smaller payments. However, this doesn't mean that they have all of your money for good. They have to earn it. Your lump sum payment covers several months, so if you have to move to another state, the insurance company owes you a refund for the unused months.</p> <p>Make sure to check the fine print on your policy before cancelling. Some companies may have an early termination fee or require a 30-days notice. Also, plan to have new insurance already in place when the old one is done.</p> <h3>7. &quot;Optional Coverages&quot; May Be Necessary</h3> <p>Insurance agents have to meet sales quotas. Sometimes they may suggest to leave certain &quot;optional coverages,&quot; such as underinsured motorist coverage, to lower your quote and get you to sign.</p> <p>For example, residents of California, Colorado, Georgia, Illinois, Ohio, and Louisiana are not mandated to get coverage for underinsured drivers. Still, it is a good idea to get it. Across the U.S. about <a href="http://www.insurance-research.org/sites/default/files/downloads/IRCUM2011_042111.pdf">one in seven drivers</a> is uninsured. But in some states, such as Florida, Oklahoma, Mississippi, New Mexico, and Tennessee, the estimated percentage of underinsured motorists is 24% and above.</p> <p>If you are the sole breadwinner in your family, does it make sense to risk the chance of a huge, unexpected bill?</p> <h3>8. You Don't Have to Speak to the Other Guy's Claims Adjuster</h3> <p>Just like in those cop dramas, &quot;you have the right to remain silent and everything you say may be used against you in a court of law.&quot; In the case of a car accident, the claims adjuster from the other party might claim that she &quot;must&quot; have your recorded statement or &quot;requires&quot; your medical records.</p> <p>Don't cave in to these requests, unless ordered by a court or other authority, because the claims adjuster is trying to gather evidence against you. Even your most innocent comment could be twisted as an attempt to delay or deny your claim.</p> <h3>9. &quot;Captive Agents&quot; Cannot Offer You the Best Deal</h3> <p>For the next 30 seconds, write down all the car insurance companies that you can think of. Once the time is up, count how many you got. Three? Five? Ten?</p> <p>Here is some food for thought: There are about <a href="http://www.cheapcarinsurancequotes.com/car-insurance-companies/">100 car insurance companies</a> in the U.S. By only looking up the quotes from two or three companies, you're decreasing your chances of getting the best possible price for your insurance. On top of that, an insurance agent from a company can offer you only options that that company sells. Don't fall for their online comparison tables because those quotes are not accurate &mdash; they are just estimates. The final price can only be achieved by considering your credit score, driving history, and other factors.</p> <p>The easiest way to cover the most ground is to work with an independent insurance agent. She represents several insurance companies, so she is not limited to offer you products from a single company.</p> <h3>10. Rental Car Insurance May Be Unnecessary</h3> <p>Check what your policy has to say about car rentals. You may be surprised that your car policy may provide sufficient coverages. Also, some <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-awesome-credit-card-perks-you-didnt-know-about">credit cards</a> offer rental car insurance when using them as form of payment.</p> <p>Before you rent a car the next time, make sure to have read the contracts from your existing car insurance and credit card(s). Remember that personal auto insurance often doesn't cover rentals for business use.</p> <h2>Home Insurance</h2> <p>Home sweet &quot;appropriately insured at the right price&quot; home.</p> <h3>11. Force-Placed Insurance Is Expensive</h3> <p>While home insurance is necessary, it doesn't need to be prohibitively expensive. Some banks will try to issue you a Force-Placed insurance, which is very expensive and provides the bank a kickback from an insurance company. This practice is not only unfair to the homebuyer, but also illegal in the eyes of the <a href="http://www.consumerfinance.gov/regulations/2013-real-estate-settlement-procedures-act-regulation-x-and-truth-in-lending-act-regulation-z-mortgage-servicing-final-rules/#date">Consumer Financial Protection Bureau</a>.</p> <p>Make sure to read all letters from your lender because they have to provide a written notice in case of a Force-Place insurance policy. If the bank is trying to force you into a insurance policy, find an alternative policy that meets the required coverages (e.g. hazard insurance, replacement cost) but at a lower price. If you are able to find an appropriate policy, contact your lender to cancel the forced policy immediately.</p> <h3>12. Little Known Home Insurance Coverages</h3> <p>Your home insurance policy may be stronger than you think. Here are some lesser-known coverages:</p> <ul> <li>If you're out of power for several days due to a natural disaster and your refrigerator is full of food that goes bad, you may be able to claim compensation.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Your children's property is protected by your homeowner's insurance as long they are living in campus dorms.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Home updates required by law, such as a storm cellar, may be covered by your home insurance.</li> </ul> <p>Check your home insurance policy for more details. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-surprising-things-covered-by-homeowners-insurance?ref=seealso">8 Surprising Things Covered by Home Insurance</a>)</p> <h3>13. Private Mortgage Insurance Can Be Removed</h3> <p>The <a href="http://www.federalreserve.gov/boarddocs/supmanual/cch/hpa.pdf">Homeowner's Protection Act</a>requires homebuyers, who finance more than 80% of a new home's value, to purchase Private Mortgage insurance (PMI). This is an expense that you have to keep for several years. The good news is that once your loan-to-value ratio is close to 20%, you can request your lender to remove PMI from your mortgage.</p> <p>Here is an overview of requirements:</p> <ul> <li>No second mortgages on your home</li> <li>Current on all payments by the anticipated cancellation date</li> <li>No late payments within the last two years</li> <li>Good credit score</li> <li>No dramatic market value change of home</li> </ul> <p>Finally, here is a type of policy that is so easy for insurance agents to sell that it deserves a mention of its own.</p> <h3>14. Disease-Specific Insurance</h3> <p>The slight mention of AIDS and cancer are enough to send a shiver down anyone's spine. This is why policies for these diseases are an easy sell for insurance agents. By preying on your fear, they get you to hand over cash for something that you may never use.</p> <p>If you have a health plan or life insurance, you may be already covered for these diseases. By duplicating the coverages, you're just wasting money. If a specific disease runs in your family, get a comprehensive health plan that includes treatment for that specific disease.</p> <p><em>What are some other things insurance agents don't want you to know?</em></p> <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/14-things-insurance-agents-dont-want-you-to-know" class="sharethis-link" title="14 Things Insurance Agents Don&#039;t Want You to Know" rel="nofollow">ShareThis</a><br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">Written by <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/damian-davila">Damian Davila</a> and published on <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/">Wise Bread</a>. Read more <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/taxonomy/term/"> articles from Wise Bread</a>.</div></div> Cars and Transportation Real Estate and Housing car insurance homeowner's insurance insurance life insurance Mon, 23 Jun 2014 09:00:05 +0000 Damian Davila 1145900 at http://www.wisebread.com Do These 5 Car Maintenance Tasks and Keep Your Car on the Road Forever http://www.wisebread.com/do-these-5-car-maintenance-tasks-and-keep-your-car-on-the-road-forever <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/do-these-5-car-maintenance-tasks-and-keep-your-car-on-the-road-forever" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://www.wisebread.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/car-inspection-173299274-small.jpg" alt="car inspection" title="car inspection" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="167" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>You know the feeling: You start the car, and there's a weird noise. Or the check engine light starts to flash halfway into a road trip. Or before leaving for work you discover a disturbing pool of liquid under the car. Pangs of fear course your nervous system, and you frantically check your online banking portal to see if taking the car in will kill your budget. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-slick-tools-to-save-money-on-car-repairs?ref=seealso">6 Slick Tools That Can Help You Save on Car Repairs</a>)</p> <p>All it takes is some foresight to take some preventative measures that keep you from needing major repairs or even replacing your car. You can pay small amounts of money and time for minor improvements in the present that will save you lots of money in the future. Here are five types of maintenance that could save you from costly repairs or even needing a new car.</p> <h2>1. Regular Oil Changes</h2> <p>The average car needs an oil change every 3,000 to 7,000 miles, depending on your car and how often you drive it. At the very least, you should know where and how to check your car's dipstick or gauge to monitor the oil level. It doesn't hurt to learn <a href="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nng2Ey3z8to">how change your own oil</a>, either &mdash; that would save you about $40 every few months, and up to $200 a year!</p> <h2>2. Replace the PCV Valve</h2> <p>You car's positive crankcase ventilation, or <a href="http://www.agcoauto.com/content/news/p2_articleid/197">PCV valve</a>, is an important hub that ensures pressure is being relieved. This prevents such costly events as sludge buildup or engine oil leaks, which over time cause expensive damage to the engine. The PVC valve itself costs only $25, and remembering to change it out every 30,000-40,000 miles would prevent up to $1,000 in engine damage! The math is clearly in your favor. This is typically a repair that a confident DIYer can handle.</p> <h2>3. Brake Inspections</h2> <p>Oh, the brakes. So many things can go wrong. If you live in an area with tons of traffic (ahem, Los Angeles), you are putting crazy wear and tear on your brakes. The easiest thing you can do on your own is have your <a href="http://www.allstate.com/tools-and-resources/car-insurance/check-brake-pads.aspx">brake pads</a> inspected every 3-6 months, depending on your mileage. Not checking for wear early and often can lead to exorbitant rotor and disc repairs and replacements.</p> <h2>4. Replace Timing Belt</h2> <p>The timing belt is a crucial piece of simple machinery that synchronizes the turns of the crankshaft and camshaft(s). This ensures the valves, cylinders, and other components work well. If not replaced, the belt could fail while driving, which would cut the engine and potentially cause engine damage before the car slows to a halt (up to $2500 worth). <a href="http://www.motoringassist.com/motoring-advice/car-maintenance/engine-and-transmission/guide-servicing-timing-belt-replacement/">Change the belt</a> every 60,000 miles.</p> <p>This is not, however, an inexpensive maintenance item. Shop around and ask your mechanic to look at other items, such as possible oil or radiator fluid leaks, which may be more accessible while the timing belt is being replaced. You may be able to bundle the services and save. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/save-time-money-and-hassle-by-bundling-your-home-repairs?ref=seealso">Save Time and Money by Bundling Your Home Repairs</a>)</p> <h2>5. Prevent Rust</h2> <p>It seems simple, but in many areas of the US, it's unavoidable. Driving in a rainy, snowy climate can be a costly combo. Rust may be unsightly, but it can also cause other problems. Be careful to not let rust spread on your engine, chassis, exhaust system, frame, and trunk, because it can cause unsafe corrosion. Take simple measures to prevent it from spreading, such as a <a href="http://www.treehugger.com/green-home/rust-never-sleeps-you-can-stop-it.html">salt and lime treatment</a>.</p> <p><em>Any other simple or affordable car maintenance items that your regularly perform? Please share in comments!</em></p> <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/do-these-5-car-maintenance-tasks-and-keep-your-car-on-the-road-forever" class="sharethis-link" title="Do These 5 Car Maintenance Tasks and Keep Your Car on the Road Forever" rel="nofollow">ShareThis</a><br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">Written by <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/amanda-meadows">Amanda Meadows</a> and published on <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/">Wise Bread</a>. Read more <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/taxonomy/term/"> articles from Wise Bread</a>.</div></div> Frugal Living Cars and Transportation automotive Cars mechanic Fri, 06 Jun 2014 11:00:19 +0000 Amanda Meadows 1141811 at http://www.wisebread.com 10 Smart Things to Do During Your Commute (Even If You Drive!) http://www.wisebread.com/10-smart-things-to-do-during-your-commute-even-if-you-drive <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/10-smart-things-to-do-during-your-commute-even-if-you-drive" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://www.wisebread.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/commuters-466716637-small.jpg" alt="commuters" title="commuters" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="167" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>If you take public transportation (or carpool and ride as a passenger) to work, you may feel that this is time wasted. So why not do something that can also improve your life? Even if you drive to work, there are ways to make your boring commute a smart commute. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-make-your-commute-profitable?ref=seealso">How to Make Your Commute Profitable</a>)</p> <h2>1. Listen to a Podcast</h2> <p>I used to ride the bus to work before I got a car, and my commute was an hour and a half&nbsp;&mdash; one way! I used that time to listen to my favorite comedy podcasts, some of which were as long as three hours, which was perfect for the entire commute. But there are hundreds of podcasts out there about any topic you can think of &mdash; <a href="http://gettingsmart.com/2013/02/50-educational-podcasts-you-should-check-out/">educational podcasts</a>, <a href="http://www.missedinhistory.com/">history</a>, <a href="http://radiolingua.com/shows/french/coffee-break-french/">language learning</a>. If you can think of it, there's a podcast for it. You can check iTunes, or go to sites like <a href="http://podbay.fm/">podbay.fm</a> for the top ranking podcasts. <a href="http://mashable.com/">Mashable</a> also has some excellent podcast suggestions. The <a href="http://www.nerdist.com/">Nerdist</a> is one of my favorites from that list.</p> <h2>2. Read (or Listen to) Something Challenging</h2> <p>Reading is a classic commuting activity, but if you are filling your time and brain with nothing but romance novels or mysteries, try elevating your reading list a bit. Join a reading group that will help you stay committed to reading and for a nice mix of reading options. Unless you have an eBook reader, don't forget about the library if you don't want to buy the book. And if you're driving? <a href="http://www.amazon.com/Best-Sellers-Books-Nonfiction/zgbs/books/2402185011/?_encoding=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;linkCode=ur2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;linkId=ZFOZZX76VUKWDYXD">Audiobooks</a>! (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/13-easy-ways-to-improve-your-brain?ref=seealso">13 Easy Ways to Improve Your Brain</a>)</p> <h2>3. Pay Your Bills</h2> <p>If you are like me and forget to pay your bills sometimes because you have so many other things going on, this is a perfect time to do that. While many bills can be paid automatically online, there may be a few that still require a paper check. Phone apps can also make it a little easier to pay bills on your smartphone during your commute. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-monthly-bills-you-can-slash?ref=seealso">10 Monthly&nbsp;Bills You Can Slash</a>)</p> <h2>4. Start a New Hobby</h2> <p>Because I'm a writer, people are always telling me that they really want to start writing but don't have the time. Commuting via public transportation provides the time and the perfect setting. &quot;People watching&quot; is one of the best ways to get inspiration for a story or even for a humor blog. As a writer, I'm also an eavesdropper, and I've heard some of the funniest and most interesting comments on the bus. Knitting is another hobby that is easy to do on your commute, and homemade scarves, hats, mittens, sweaters, etc. make excellent gifts. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-awesome-money-making-hobbies?ref=seealso">10 Awesome Money Making Hobbies</a>)</p> <h2>5. Get Some Work Done</h2> <p>Whenever I was under a strict deadline at my last job, I would bring my laptop home and work, and the next morning, I'd get a head start to the day by working on the bus. This helped ensure that I didn't miss my deadline. Or you can use your commute to do some of your own writing if you don't have time or the energy after work. I'm also a stand-up comedian, so I would sometimes write notes or my set list for a show while riding the bus.</p> <h2>6. Listen to Public Radio</h2> <p>For car drivers, listening to NPR is one of the best ways to keep up with the news while you are on your way to work. It also makes it less tempting to talk on the phone or text while you drive.</p> <p>If you're more of a printed word person than a radio person, <a href="http://umanoapp.com/">Umano</a> will select the top news stories and articles from the press, as read by other app users, and play them back for you so that you aren't fiddling with the radio dial while you are driving. And it's free!</p> <h2>7. Organize Your Day</h2> <p>Planning your day is one of the most productive things to do on your morning commute. Write your to-do list, prioritize your tasks, or update your calendar. There are plenty of apps that can help you get organized. Or, keep it simple with a <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/8883704894/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;creativeASIN=8883704894&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;linkId=MRUYX6XGQAIUOLTV">plain little notebook</a> and a pen. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-10-best-productivity-apps-for-really-busy-people-like-you">10 Productivity Apps for Really Busy People Like You</a>)</p> <h2>8. Exercise</h2> <p>Biking to work has become popular in recent years, especially in places that are truly bike friendly. Some offices have even installed showers for bike commuters. A couple of my coworkers who live nearby keep an extra set of clothes in the office and run to work. If you are biking, be sure to choose a safe route that includes roads with wide shoulders. And of course, familiarize yourself with how to change a tube and keep your bike maintained. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/a-guide-to-becoming-a-part-time-bicycle-commuter?ref=seealso">A Guide to Becoming a Part Time Bicycle Commuter</a>)</p> <h2>9. Practice Mindfulness</h2> <p>While the bus or metro may not be the best place to meditate, there are mindfulness practices you can do that are easy and can be done anywhere. <a href="http://www.pocketmindfulness.com/6-mindfulness-exercises-you-can-try-today/">Pocket Mindfulness</a> has some excellent suggestions, such as observing a natural object as carefully as you can, or thinking about the significance five usually unnoticed things. Journaling is another positive activity. Even if you don't think you have anything to say, you might be surprised what comes out when you just start writing down your thoughts.</p> <h2>10. Carpool</h2> <p>Be smart about your finances and the environment, and ask co-workers to carpool. Even though people find all kinds of excuses to avoid carpooling, there's really no excuse if you and your co-workers have similar schedules. If you don't live close to one another, look for a nearby Park and Ride or another central location with a large parking lot, such as a shopping mall, where you can meet and leave one car for the day. You would be surprised how much you will save on gas and the wear and tear of your car. And when it's your turn to be the passenger, you can break out your smartphone or your book and make the ride productive, just like commuters who take public transport.</p> <p><em>How do you make your commute more productive? Pull off to the shoulder and share in comments!</em></p> <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-smart-things-to-do-during-your-commute-even-if-you-drive" class="sharethis-link" title="10 Smart Things to Do During Your Commute (Even If You Drive!)" rel="nofollow">ShareThis</a><br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">Written by <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/ashley-watson">Ashley Watson</a> and published on <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/">Wise Bread</a>. Read more <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/taxonomy/term/"> articles from Wise Bread</a>.</div></div> Career and Income Cars and Transportation Productivity commute time management Fri, 30 May 2014 09:00:28 +0000 Ashley Watson 1141015 at http://www.wisebread.com Would You Drive One of the 10 Smallest Cars Ever Made? http://www.wisebread.com/would-you-drive-one-of-the-10-smallest-cars-ever-made <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/would-you-drive-one-of-the-10-smallest-cars-ever-made" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://www.wisebread.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/car-76800240.jpg" alt="toy car" title="toy car" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="166" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>I love my tiny Toyota Yaris (and the <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/best-money-tips-save-money-at-the-gas-pump?ref=seealso">terrific gas mileage</a> it gets), but it's a behemoth compared to some of the smallest vehicles ever made. Which one of these diminutive automobiles would you be willing to drive? (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/guide-to-buying-a-used-car-without-going-crazy?ref=seealso">Guide to Buying a Used Car Without Going Crazy</a>)</p> <h2>1. Motoplan</h2> <p><img width="605" height="301" src="http://www.wisebread.com/files/fruganomics/u784/motoplan.jpg" alt="" /></p> <p>Why make cars that seat four or six when most trips are made solo? Way back in 1957, Carl Jurisch became convinced that the future of transportation lay in a personal single-seat vehicle, and he set about building a prototype. His love for two-wheeled vehicles is evident in <a href="http://www.rmauctions.com/lots/lot.cfm?lot_id=1057136">the Motoplan</a> &mdash; a small, personal three-wheeled vehicle that bridged the gap between cycle and car.</p> <h2>2. Peel P50</h2> <p><img width="469" height="369" src="http://www.wisebread.com/files/fruganomics/u784/peelp50.jpg" alt="" /></p> <p>At a mere 54 inches long and just 41 inches wide, it's little surprise that the UK engineered <a href="http://www.peelengineering.co.uk/peels/peel-p50">Peel P50</a> held the Guinness Book of World Records' title of smallest car for over 50 years! Its 'big' sister, the Peel Trident, is the world's smallest two seater. Both are collector's items now, but still fully street legal in the UK.</p> <h2>3. Mia Electric</h2> <p><img width="589" height="384" src="http://www.wisebread.com/files/fruganomics/u784/miaelectric.jpg" alt="" /></p> <p>Experts say the higher price tag is why people have been slow to adopt electric vehicles. France's <a href="http://blogs.wsj.com/korearealtime/2014/03/18/in-korea-frances-mia-creates-electric-vehicle-buzz/">Mia Electric Company</a> hoped to overcome that barrier with this tiny offering: a three-seat all electric vehicle measuring just (9 feet, 5 inches), with two sliding doors and a centrally positioned driver's seat.</p> <h2>4. Tango by Commuter Cars</h2> <p><img width="464" height="325" src="http://www.wisebread.com/files/fruganomics/u784/tango.jpg" alt="" /></p> <p>When most of us get in the car, our destination is two miles away (or less), and we're typically alone. So why drive vehicles with massive gas tanks and eight seats? The <a href="http://commutercars.com/gallery.html">Tango</a> was designed to offer the speed and agility of a motorcycle along with the security of a sports car. At 8 feet 6 inches long (and 5 inches narrower than the average motorcycle) can park perpendicularly to the curb like a bike, making it a dream in crowded cities.</p> <h2>5. Smart Fortwo</h2> <p><img width="548" height="366" src="http://www.wisebread.com/files/fruganomics/u784/coupefortwo.jpg" alt="" /></p> <p>It's time to reject the notion that small can't be sexy. The Smart Fortwo <a href="http://www.smartusa.com/models/pure-coupe/overview.aspx">Pure Coupe</a> is a mere 106 inches long and just 61 inches wide, but once inside you'll forget all about its compact body. The two-seater Coupe offers both automatic mode (for ease) and manual mode (for fun), and hill start assist; and it's packed with standard safety features such as eight full-size airbags.</p> <h2>6. Fiat 500</h2> <p><img width="425" height="232" src="http://www.wisebread.com/files/fruganomics/u784/Fiat500.jpg" alt="" /></p> <p>Fiat is another classic tiny car maker now experiencing a renaissance. Manufactured between between 1957 and 1975, the <a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fiat_500">Fiat 500</a> measured just 9 feet 9 inches long, and was originally powered by an itty-bitty 479 cc two-cylinder, air-cooled engine. It is believed to be the smallest car to complete a world circumnavigation.</p> <h2>7. Velam Isetta</h2> <p><img width="548" height="339" src="http://www.wisebread.com/files/fruganomics/u784/velamisetta.jpg" alt="" /></p> <p>This two-seater car used the motorcycle engine of the Iso Moto 200, so was dubbed &quot;<a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Isetta">Isetta</a>&quot; &mdash; an Italian diminutive meaning <em>little ISO</em>. The entire front end of the car hinged outwards to allow entry and the roof was made of canvas to allow for emergency exit in the event of a crash. Thanks to its small size (only 7.5 feet long by 4.5 feet wide) and egg-shape with bubble-type windows, the Isetta became known as the &quot;bubble car.&quot;</p> <h2>8. Mahindra e2o</h2> <p><img width="605" height="331" src="http://www.wisebread.com/files/fruganomics/u784/Mahindrae2o.jpg" alt="" /></p> <p>Most electric vehicles necessitate special charging stations that represent an added cost (or inconvenience) but not the <a href="http://mahindrareva.com/product/explore-the-e2o.aspx">Mahindra e2o</a>. Measuring just 129 inches long by 59 inches wide, this tiny EV can simply be plugged into a normal electrical outlet, just like your laptop. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/should-your-next-car-be-electric?ref=also">Should Your Next Car Be Electric?</a>)</p> <h2>9. DIY Car by Austin Coulson</h2> <p><img width="605" height="404" alt="" src="http://www.wisebread.com/files/fruganomics/u784/austincoulson.jpg" /></p> <p>If you look too quickly, you might mistake it for a child's toy, but this car built by <a href="http://www.azcentral.com/community/phoenix/articles/20130904phoenix-native-guinness-record-smallest-roadworthy-car.html">Arizona's Austin Coulson</a> is no joke. At just 2 feet 1 inch high, 2 feet 1.75 inches wide and 4 feet 1.75 inches long the car is fully drivable, licensed, and registered, and it earned the 2014 Guinness Record for the world's smallest roadworthy car.</p> <h2>10. Daewoo Matiz</h2> <p><iframe width="605" height="454" frameborder="0" src="//www.youtube-nocookie.com/embed/aqmlK6tTNzo" allowfullscreen=""></iframe></p> <p>Speaking of toy cars, many of us tooled around in one of those plastic pedal cars as a child, but few of us dreamed of making a road-worthy version. English mechanic John Bitmead recently made headlines by doing just that. Bitmead converted a tiny <a href="http://www.inhabitots.com/adult-sized-little-tikes-cozy-coupe-can-reach-60mph/">Daewoo Matiz</a> (now sold as the Chevy Spark) into an adult-sized replica of the classic toddler Cozy Coupe that's capable of traveling 60 mph.</p> <p><em>Can you see yourself in one of these diminutive daily drivers?</em></p> <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/would-you-drive-one-of-the-10-smallest-cars-ever-made" class="sharethis-link" title="Would You Drive One of the 10 Smallest Cars Ever Made?" rel="nofollow">ShareThis</a><br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">Written by <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/beth-buczynski">Beth Buczynski</a> and published on <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/">Wise Bread</a>. Read more <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/taxonomy/term/"> articles from Wise Bread</a>.</div></div> Cars and Transportation Green Living Cars classic cars small cars Wed, 28 May 2014 08:12:21 +0000 Beth Buczynski 1140738 at http://www.wisebread.com Best Money Tips: Save Money at the Gas Pump http://www.wisebread.com/best-money-tips-save-money-at-the-gas-pump <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/best-money-tips-save-money-at-the-gas-pump" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://www.wisebread.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/gas-186261713.jpg" alt="gas pump" title="gas pump" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="141" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Welcome to Wise Bread's <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/topic/best-money-tips">Best Money Tips</a> Roundup! Today we found some awesome articles on saving money at the pump, plugging your financial leaks, and conversation starters that make mingling fun.</p> <h2>Top 5 Articles</h2> <p><a href="http://canadianfinanceblog.com/10-ways-to-save-money-at-the-gas-pump/">10 Ways to Save Money at the Gas Pump</a> &mdash; Using your brakes as little as possible and avoiding traffic can help you save at the gas pump. [Canadian Finance Blog]</p> <p><a href="http://money.cnn.com/2014/03/03/pf/financial-leaks.moneymag/index.html?section=money_pf&amp;utm_source=feedburner&amp;utm_medium=feed&amp;utm_campaign=Feed%3A+rss%2Fmoney_pf+%28Personal+Finance%29">Plug the financial leaks, now!</a> &mdash; Don't waste your flexible spending dollars or pay too much for auto insurance. [CNNMoney]</p> <p><a href="http://www.savvysugar.com/Easy-Conversation-Starters-34313495">40 Conversation Starters That Make Mingling Fun</a> &mdash; Asking someone what their favorite holiday is can be a great conversation starter. [PopSugar Smart Living]</p> <p><a href="http://www.getrichslowly.org/blog/2014/03/12/why-paying-with-cash-hurts-and-why-it-should/">Why paying with cash hurts (and why it should)</a> &mdash; Paying with cash hurts because it forces you to consider the real purchase price of what you are buying. [Get Rich Slowly]</p> <p><a href="http:// http://www.fivecentnickel.com/2014/03/10/how-to-save-money-on-road-trips/">How to save money on road trips</a> &mdash; To save money on road trips, map out your optimal route to save on gas. [Five Cent Nickel]</p> <h2>Other Essential Reading</h2> <p><a href="http://fitzvillafuerte.com/10-practical-ways-to-avoid-overspending-when-shopping.html?utm_source=feedburner&amp;utm_medium=feed&amp;utm_campaign=Feed%3A+ReadyToBeRich+%28Ready+To+Be+Rich%29">10 Practical Ways to Avoid Overspending When Shopping</a> &mdash; Steer clear of samples and ads to avoid overspending when shopping. [Ready To Be Rich]</p> <p><a href="http://www.freemoneywisdom.com/5-pre-application-tips-appeal-landlords/">5 Pre-Application Tips to Appeal to Landlords</a> &mdash; Have references and cosigners lined up before applying for a lease. [Free Money Wisdom]</p> <p><a href="http://www.threethriftyguys.com/2014/03/early-retirement-its-all-in-the-numbers/">Early Retirement - It's All in the Numbers</a> &mdash; To retire early, lower your living expenses and remember that timing is everything. [Three Thrifty Guys]</p> <p><a href="http://www.lazymanandmoney.com/how-to-avoid-amazon-shipping-fees/">How to Avoid Amazon Shipping Fees</a> &mdash; Avoid Amazon shipping fees by paying for Amazon Prime if you tend to buy from Amazon frequently. [Lazy Man and Money]</p> <p><a href="http://parentingsquad.com/10-things-stay-at-home-parents-can-do-now-for-going-back-to-work-later">10 Things Stay-at-Home Parents Can Do Now for Going Back to Work Later</a> &mdash; If you are a stay-at-home parent thinking about going back to work, try to stay current in your profession. [Parenting Squad]</p> <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/best-money-tips-save-money-at-the-gas-pump" class="sharethis-link" title="Best Money Tips: Save Money at the Gas Pump" rel="nofollow">ShareThis</a><br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">Written by <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/ashley-jacobs">Ashley Jacobs</a> and published on <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/">Wise Bread</a>. Read more <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/taxonomy/term/"> articles from Wise Bread</a>.</div></div> Cars and Transportation Travel best money tips car gas pump Fri, 14 Mar 2014 11:00:32 +0000 Ashley Jacobs 1130797 at http://www.wisebread.com 10 Ways to Save on Your Next Car Rental Without Even Trying Hard http://www.wisebread.com/10-ways-to-save-on-your-next-car-rental-without-even-trying-hard <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/10-ways-to-save-on-your-next-car-rental-without-even-trying-hard" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://www.wisebread.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/car-4668871-small_0.jpg" alt="car" title="car" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="167" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>If you&#39;re planning a road trip or flying somewhere, booking a car rental may top your list of things to do. But while you may need a set of wheels when you&#39;re away, the daily cost of a car rental can add up quickly and eat into your vacation budget. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-budget-and-track-expenses-for-your-next-vacation?ref=seealso">How to Budget and Track Expenses for Your Vacation</a>)</p> <p>There is no such thing as a free car rental. But with these simple tricks, you can snag a car rental for less.</p> <h2>1. Rent From a Smaller Company</h2> <p>Big-name car rental companies, such as Hertz and Enterprise, may have earned your trust over the years. But like most things we buy, certain names come with a bigger price tag.</p> <p>It doesn&#39;t matter the company that issues your rental, as long as the car is safe and suitable for your family. Skip the big name car rental companies and go with a smaller company. To illustrate, a recent online search for a midsize car rental showed an average daily rate between $55 and $61 from major car rental companies, such as <a href="http://www.dpbolvw.net/click-2822544-10563915">Avis</a>, Enterprise, and Hertz. However, car renters who booked through <a href="http://www.dpbolvw.net/click-2822544-9468569">Fox Rent a Car</a> were able to snag the same sized vehicles for just $12 a day. Rates were before taxes, insurance, and other fees.</p> <h2>2. Search for Promotional Codes</h2> <p>If you&#39;re a frequent flier, own an <a href="http://www.dpbolvw.net/click-2822544-11505255">Entertainment Book</a>, or belong to an organization such as AAA, you may have access to promotional or discount codes that can reduce daily rates on your car rental. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/amazing-aaa-discounts?ref=seealso">Awesome AAA Discounts</a>)</p> <p>You can search codes online for a particular rental company, or call up your credit card company or AAA and ask about eligible codes. And the best part is that some rental car companies let you combine a discount code with a promo code for additional savings.</p> <h2>3. Avoid the Airport Rental Counter</h2> <p>It&#39;s certainly convenient to book your car rental through the airport if you&#39;re flying into your destination. However, there is a price for convenience. To save money on your car rental, book your rental through an off-airport location, and then take a shuttle or taxi there.</p> <h2>4. Return the Car Where You Got It</h2> <p>Returning a rental car to a different location may seem like a minor move. But to the rental company, it&#39;s a huge deal, as they&#39;ll have to drive the car back to its original location &mdash; which translates into extra fees for you.</p> <p>The exact cost for a one-way rental will vary by car rental company. Just to give you an idea of what to expect, while on vacation two years ago, I asked to drop off my car rental at the airport location, although I originally picked up the vehicle from an off-airport location. The distance between the two facilities was only about 20 minutes. However, the car rental company wanted to charge me an additional $100. Needless to say, I returned the car to the original location</p> <h2>5. Reserve a Smaller Car and Negotiate an Upgrade at Check-In</h2> <p>A midsize car or an SUV may be spacious, but do you really need it? If you don&#39;t need the extra space, you&#39;re simply paying more for nothing.</p> <p>When booking, go with a smaller car to save on the rental, and then try your hand at an upgrade once you check-in at the counter. This trick has worked twice for us. Simply ask. The clerk will either say yes or no. If it&#39;s a slow weekend or week and there&#39;s plenty of cars in stock, you may find yourself with a larger car for less. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/negotiate-all-your-travel-the-ultimate-guide?ref=seealso">How to Negotiate All Your Travel</a>)</p> <h2>6. Skip Car Rental Insurance</h2> <p>Sure, it provides peace of mind in the event that you damage the vehicle. But if you already have auto insurance, there&#39;s no reason to purchase supplementary insurance offered by the car rental company. Your personal auto insurance policy <em>should</em> provide coverage whether you&#39;re driving your personal vehicle or a rental car. Your credit card probably does, too. Check your policies for coverage amounts and limits. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-myths-about-car-insurance?ref=seealso">Myths About Car Insurance</a>)</p> <h2>7. Book in Advance</h2> <p>Booking your car rental online or over the telephone prior to your trip locks in your rate. Unknown to some people, car rentals are usually cheaper when the company has a lot of cars in stock. For this reason, you should not wait until the last minute to book your reservation. By waiting until the last minute, there&#39;s a chance that the rental company will have a limited stock, and since there&#39;s a greater demand for vehicles, this will drive up your rate.</p> <h2>8. Prepay for Your Car Rental</h2> <p>When booking a car rental, the company will ask for a credit card number to hold your reservation, but they won&#39;t charge your card at this time. However, if you agree to prepay for your car rental, you can save as much as 20%. Unfortunately, if you were to cancel your reservation, the car rental company may charge a cancellation fee between $10 and $50.</p> <h2>9. Plan Your Trip Around the Weekends</h2> <p>The way car rental companies determine rates can be a bit tricky, but in some instances, including a Saturday or Sunday in your reservation can help drive down your final price. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/make-your-escape-with-these-14-affordable-weekend-getaways?ref=seealso">14 Affordable Weekend Getaways</a>)</p> <p>&quot;The strategy takes advantage of lower prices aimed at leisure travelers who are more likely to travel on weekends,&quot; said Marty Paz, a telecommunications manager from Las Vegas.</p> <p>If you&#39;re planning a four or five-day trip, rather than book the trip for a Monday to Thursday, perhaps you can plan a Thursday to Sunday or a Friday to Monday trip.</p> <h2>10. Read the Fine Print</h2> <p>Make sure you understand the car rental agreement and what&#39;s expected of you before you drive off the rental lot. The car rental company will undoubtedly require that you refill the gas tank, and if you fail to put gas in the tank, they&#39;ll charge you a ridiculously inflated per gallon price. Additionally, there may be an extra charge to use the car&#39;s GPS or the satellite radio.</p> <p><em>Do you have another trick to help pay less for a car rental? Let me know in the comments below.</em></p> <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-ways-to-save-on-your-next-car-rental-without-even-trying-hard" class="sharethis-link" title="10 Ways to Save on Your Next Car Rental Without Even Trying Hard" rel="nofollow">ShareThis</a><br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">Written by <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/mikey-rox">Mikey Rox</a> and published on <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/">Wise Bread</a>. Read more <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/taxonomy/term/"> articles from Wise Bread</a>.</div></div> Cars and Transportation Travel rental car rental car savings Wed, 29 Jan 2014 10:36:11 +0000 Mikey Rox 1119564 at http://www.wisebread.com 5 Cars That Thieves Don't Touch (and 5 Simple Anti-Theft Tricks) http://www.wisebread.com/5-cars-that-thieves-dont-touch-and-5-simple-anti-theft-tricks <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/5-cars-that-thieves-dont-touch-and-5-simple-anti-theft-tricks" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://www.wisebread.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/car-157407030.jpg" alt="car theft" title="car theft" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="167" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Most of us won&#39;t ever know the heartache and misery of having our car stolen. <a href="http://www.fbi.gov/about-us/cjis/ucr/crime-in-the-u.s/2012/crime-in-the-u.s.-2012/property-crime/motor-vehicle-theft">Despite the fact that thieves steal a car every 43.7 seconds in America</a>, you have to be pretty unlucky to walk to the street or parking lot only to see an empty space where your car once was. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-things-we-learned-when-our-car-was-stolen">What We Learned When Our Car Was Stolen</a>)</p> <p>But is it all just luck? As it turns out, thieves play the odds and favor some cars way more that others. So it&#39;s in your best interest to choose a car that fits your needs and also makes car thieves look the other way. One of the best ways is to avoid luxury cars (which won&#39;t be an issue for most of us). The penalties for stealing cars are the same, whether you choose a clapped out old banger or a top of the line sports car. So why risk going to jail for something that will make you a few hundred bucks, when you could earn many thousands? But that&#39;s not the only factor.</p> <p>The <a href="http://www.iihs.org/iihs">HLDI (Highway Loss Data Institute)</a> recently released its list of <a href="http://www.iihs.org/iihs/news/desktopnews/ford-f-250-has-highest-theft-rate-of-any-2010-12-vehicle-cadillac-escalade-drops-to-6th-on-list-after-years-on-top">the top five cars thieves avoid</a>. The data comes from claims filed over the past year, parts taken from vehicles, or personal property stolen from within the car. Of course, we should all make sure we don&#39;t leave valuables in plain sight, that&#39;s just painting a target on your car. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/disguise-your-stuff-to-prevent-car-break-ins">How to Prevent Car Break-ins</a>)</p> <p>So, in reverse order, here are the five cars you should consider if you&#39;d like the odds to favor you and not the car thieves.</p> <h2>5. Toyota Matrix</h2> <p>(Starting price: $19,275)</p> <p>Theft rate: 0.4 claims per thousand insured vehicles</p> <p>The biggest reason this car (and most of the cars in this list) is not attractive to thieves is that it spends a lot of its time in a garage. The Matrix also suffers from styling issues and poor sales (<a href="http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2013/08/toyota-matrix-discontinued-for-2014/">the model will be discontinued in 2014</a>). If the paying public doesn&#39;t want it, thieves don&#39;t want it either. After all, they&#39;re looking to make quick cash selling it or chopping it up for parts; a basic case of supply and demand. However, the car is cheap, and if you like the styling, it&#39;s well worth a look. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-much-should-you-spend-on-a-new-car">How Much Should You Spend on a New Car?</a>)</p> <h2>4. Acura RDX</h2> <p>(Starting price: $34,520)</p> <p>Theft rate: 0.39 claims per thousand insured vehicles</p> <p>At almost double the price of the Matrix, you&#39;d think this one would be much more attractive to thieves. But once again, it&#39;s a crossover favored by suburban moms and spends the majority of its time in a garage. And if you&#39;re going to steal an Acura, why waste your time on a mom car when you can rip off a sportier version with a higher price tag?</p> <h2>3. Audi A4</h2> <p>(Starting price: $32,500)</p> <p>Theft rate: 0.38 claims per thousand insured vehicles</p> <p>I was surprised to see this car in this list. It seems far more likely to be one of the top five most stolen cars. It&#39;s got a high starting price, it looks great, it&#39;s fast, and there are a lot of them on the road. But the Audi A4 does come with some sophisticated anti-theft devices, and it&#39;s also regularly garaged.</p> <h2>2. Volkswagen Tiguan</h2> <p>(Starting price: $31,425)</p> <p>Theft rate: 0.37 claims per thousand insured vehicles</p> <p>Not to sound like a broken record, but the reason this car is at the number two spot is the familiar combination of style and location. The Tiguan is very popular with suburban moms and is not a car the thieves particularly care for. However, don&#39;t let that deter you. It&#39;s a dependable, good-looking crossover with a decent starting price. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-simple-tips-to-keep-your-car-running-longer">Simple Tips to Keep Your Car Running Longer</a>)</p> <h2>1. Dodge Journey</h2> <p>(Starting price: $19,195)</p> <p>Theft rate: 0.36 claims per thousand insured vehicles</p> <p>This is it. The least stolen car in America. I have to admit, I wasn&#39;t surprised to see it in the list at all. The 2013 model is boxy and dated (the 2104 is much better). It&#39;s the cheapest car on the list, and it&#39;s very cheap for a crossover. Power and performance specs are nothing special. I think that helps explain why thieves pass this one by. It probably isn&#39;t hard to steal though, but as it&#39;s likely to be housed in a garage, it&#39;s not easy to get to.</p> <p>The expanded top 10 list also included:</p> <p><strong>Toyota Sienna</strong></p> <p>(Starting price: $26,585)</p> <p>Theft rate:0.5 claims per thousand insured vehicles</p> <p><strong>Jeep Compass</strong></p> <p>(Starting price: $18,495)</p> <p>Theft rate: 0.5 claims per thousand insured vehicles</p> <p><strong>Lexus HS 250</strong></p> <p>(Discontinued)</p> <p>Theft rate: 0.4 claims per thousand insured vehicles</p> <p><strong>Honda CR-V</strong></p> <p>(Starting price: $22,795)</p> <p>Theft rate: 0.4 claims per thousand insured vehicles</p> <p><strong>Hyundai Tucson</strong></p> <p>(Starting price: $20,595)</p> <p>Theft rate: 0.4 claims per thousand insured vehicles</p> <h2>5 Simple Ways to Deter Car Thieves</h2> <p>So, if you don&#39;t see your car on the list, or even worse, you car is <a href="http://www.bankrate.com/financing/insurance/americas-most-stolen-vehicles/">one of the most stolen models</a> each year (the <a href="http://www.latimes.com/business/autos/la-fi-hy-most-commonly-stolen-cars-in-2012-20130819,0,591830.photogallery?index=la-the-most-commonly-stolen-vehicles-in-2012-2-010">Honda Accord</a> is up there every year), what can you do about it?</p> <p>Take a <a href="http://www.progressive.com/vehicle-resources/vehicle-theft-prevention/">layered approach</a>, and start with these basics.</p> <h3>1. Park in Busy, Well Lit Areas</h3> <p>If you park your car in a dimly lit side street with very few people around, you&#39;re just asking for trouble. If you were a thief, would you take on a car in plain view of the public, or the one no one can see? Exactly.</p> <h3>2: Put Valuables Out of Sight</h3> <p>Nothing happens by chance when it comes to car theft. Thieves are actively looking for reasons to grab your car&hellip;or whatever is inside your car. If you leave an expensive GPS system mounted on the windshield, or leave a purse, iPhone or laptop on the passenger seat, you&#39;re taunting them to rob you. And they&#39;ll be more than happy to take you up on your invitation.</p> <h3>3. Use the Emergency Brake</h3> <p>A sophisticated operation may use tow trucks to grab cars. You&#39;re making their lives so much easier by not using your emergency brake. Also, if you&#39;re parked on the street, turn the wheels towards the curb. You could also use wheel locks, gear locks and other theft deterrents. They&#39;re easy enough to get past, with time, but any obstacle you put in their way will make them choose a different car.</p> <h3>4. Don&#39;t Hide a Spare Set of Keys</h3> <p>You&#39;ve seen the trick in movies. The crook (or hero) drops the sun visor and the keys fall into his or her lap. This is not a movie cliche; people do it, and it&#39;s dumb. Some will opt for the magnetic key box placed under the car. This is better, but still not a good idea. Thieves will look for a spare set before they smash and grab.</p> <h3>5. Lock Your Doors (Seriously)</h3> <p>Opportunist thieves will walk along a row of cars parked in the street, checking door handles one by one. Sure enough, they&#39;ll hear the satisfying sound of the door opening. It doesn&#39;t take much to hotwire a car, and your lax security has led to a very preventable theft.</p> <p><em>Do you have a surefire way to stop thieves in their tracks? Write your suggestions in the comments below.</em></p> <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-cars-that-thieves-dont-touch-and-5-simple-anti-theft-tricks" class="sharethis-link" title="5 Cars That Thieves Don&#039;t Touch (and 5 Simple Anti-Theft Tricks)" rel="nofollow">ShareThis</a><br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">Written by <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/paul-michael">Paul Michael</a> and published on <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/">Wise Bread</a>. Read more <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/taxonomy/term/"> articles from Wise Bread</a>.</div></div> Cars and Transportation auto theft Cars theft Fri, 06 Dec 2013 11:24:06 +0000 Paul Michael 1098647 at http://www.wisebread.com Best Money Tips: Save a Fortune When Buying a Car http://www.wisebread.com/best-money-tips-save-a-fortune-when-buying-a-car <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/best-money-tips-save-a-fortune-when-buying-a-car" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://www.wisebread.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/car-4430180-small.jpg" alt="car" title="car" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="167" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Welcome to Wise Bread&#39;s <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/topic/best-money-tips">Best Money Tips</a> Roundup! Today we found some great articles on saving a fortune when buying a car, Black Friday sales to shop now, and sensible saving tips for a family.</p> <h2>Top 5 Articles</h2> <p><a href="http://www.freemoneyfinance.com/2013/11/how-to-save-a-fortune-when-buying-a-car.html">How to Save a Fortune When Buying a Car</a> &mdash; Doing your research and getting the inside scoop can help you save a fortune when buying a car. [Free Money Finance]</p> <p><a href="http://www.savvysugar.com/Early-Black-Friday-Deals-2013-32425125">Early Black Friday Sales to Shop NOW!</a> &mdash; Head to Walmart now to take advantage of &quot;Black November&quot; sales! [PopSugar Smart Living]</p> <p><a href="http://www.narrowbridge.net/sensible-saving-tips-for-a-family/">Sensible Saving Tips for a Family</a> &mdash; Save on your bills by evaluating your bills for items you can live without, then get rid of those items! [Narrow Bridge Finance]</p> <p><a href="http://www.bargaineering.com/articles/4-ways-fight-claw-increasingly-elusive-american-dream.html">4 ways to fight and claw your way to the increasingly elusive American Dream</a> &mdash; To achieve the American Dream, get a job and keep it, and save like your life depends on it. [Bargaineering]</p> <p><a href="http://www.creditsesame.com/blog/5-international-travel-costs-to-watch/">Traveling Abroad for the Holidays? 5 International Travel Costs to Watch</a> &mdash; If you are traveling abroad for the holidays, watch out for credit card fees. [Credit Sesame]</p> <h2>Other Essential Reading</h2> <p><a href="http://www.goodfinancialcents.com/how-to-break-bad-habits-replace-with-good-one/">How to Break a Bad Habit in 21 Days (Reader Challenge)</a> &mdash; Automating your finances is one way to break a bad habit. [Good Financial Cents]</p> <p><a href="http://www.moneytalksnews.com/2013/11/12/the-5-best-ways-to-teach-kids-about-money/">The 6 Best Ways to Teach Kids About Money</a> &mdash; Using cash and providing an active allowance are two great ways to teach kids about money. [Money Talks News]</p> <p><a href="http://kiplinger.com/slideshow/credit/T065-S001-your-guide-to-holiday-tipping/index.html">Service Providers You Should Tip for the Holidays</a> &mdash; Be sure to tip your mail carrier a gift and your trash collector up to $30 this holiday season. [Kiplinger]</p> <p><a href="http://www.moneycrashers.com/thanksgiving-family-traditions-start/">7 Thanksgiving Family Traditions to Start This Year</a> &mdash; This Thanksgiving, start the tradition of doing some charity work. [Money Crashers]</p> <p><a href="http://parentingsquad.com/8-ways-to-show-your-kids-good-health-fitness-and-nutrition">8 Ways to Show Your Kids Good Health, Fitness, and Nutrition</a> &mdash; To show your kids good health, fitness, and nutrition, use words they understand. [Parenting Squad]</p> <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/best-money-tips-save-a-fortune-when-buying-a-car" class="sharethis-link" title="Best Money Tips: Save a Fortune When Buying a Car" rel="nofollow">ShareThis</a><br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">Written by <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/ashley-jacobs">Ashley Jacobs</a> and published on <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/">Wise Bread</a>. Read more <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/taxonomy/term/"> articles from Wise Bread</a>.</div></div> Cars and Transportation Shopping best money tips buying car fortune save Mon, 18 Nov 2013 11:00:10 +0000 Ashley Jacobs 1098581 at http://www.wisebread.com Best Money Tips: Ways to Lower Car Insurance Rates http://www.wisebread.com/best-money-tips-ways-to-lower-car-insurance-rates <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/best-money-tips-ways-to-lower-car-insurance-rates" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://www.wisebread.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/car-4025979-small.jpg" alt="woman driving" title="woman driving" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="179" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Welcome to Wise Bread's <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/topic/best-money-tips">Best Money Tips</a> Roundup! Today we found some great articles on ways to lower car insurance rates, the best mobile apps for personal finance, and traits common of most millionaires.</p> <h2>Top 5 Articles</h2> <p><a href="http://thirtysixmonths.com/proactive-ways-to-lower-car-insurance-rates/">Proactive Ways to Lower Car Insurance Rates</a> — Installing an anti-theft device or taking a safety course can help you lower your car insurance rates. [Thirty Six Months]</p> <p><a href="http://bobbyfinance.com/2013/10/01/the-5-best-mobile-apps-for-personal-finance/">The 5 Best Mobile Apps for Personal Finance</a> — Have you downloaded the Venmo or MoneyKeeperPRO apps onto your phone yet? [BobbyFinance]</p> <p><a href="http://moremoneythanmonth.com/blog/7-traits-common-millionaires/">7 Traits common of most millionaires</a> — Did you know that most millionaires believe that financial independence is more important than displaying high social status? [More Money Than Month]</p> <p><a href="http://thehappyhousewife.com/frugal-living/5-ways-to-save-on-kids-costumes/">5 Ways to Save on Kids Costumes</a> — Organizing a costume swap can help you save money on your kids' costumes this Halloween. [The Happy Housewife]</p> <p><a href="http://theprudentpatron.com/100-birthday-freebies/">100+ Birthday Freebies</a> — If your birthday is coming up, check out this amazing list of freebies you can get on your special day! [The Prudent Patron]</p> <h2>Other Essential Reading</h2> <p><a href="http://bargainbabe.com/how-to-save-money-on-car-tires/">How to Save Money on Car Tires</a> — To save money on car tires, extend the life of your tires by rotating them. [Bargain Babe]</p> <p><a href="http://freefrombroke.com/free-online-checking-accounts/">Free Online Checking Accounts - Why Pay More Fees Than You Have To</a> — If you have a free online checking account, beware of minimum balance fees or transaction fees. [Free From Broke]</p> <p><a href="http://www.freemoneyfinance.com/2013/09/money-101-how-to-create-a-budget.html">Money 101: How to Create a Budget</a> — To create a budget, start by tracking your spending for 30 days. [Free Money Finance]</p> <p><a href="http://www.savvysugar.com/Remove-Wrinkles-Without-Iron-31999801">Never Iron Again! 6 Ways to Have Wrinkle-Free Clothes Without Ironing</a> — Shower steam or wrinkle-removing sprays are good ways to get the wrinkles out of your clothes when you don't have an iron handy. [PopSugar Smart Living]</p> <p><a href="http://parentingsquad.com/6-opportunities-for-quantity-time-with-your-teenager">6 Opportunities for Quantity Time With Your Teenager</a> — Take advantage of the opportunity to talk to your teen when you are in the car with him or her. [Parenting Squad]</p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/best-money-tips-ways-to-lower-car-insurance-rates" class="sharethis-link" title="Best Money Tips: Ways to Lower Car Insurance Rates" rel="nofollow">ShareThis</a><br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">Written by <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/ashley-jacobs">Ashley Jacobs</a> and published on <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/">Wise Bread</a>. Read more <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/taxonomy/term/"> articles from Wise Bread</a>.</div></div> Cars and Transportation Insurance best money tips car insurance insurance rates Wed, 02 Oct 2013 10:00:03 +0000 Ashley Jacobs 994523 at http://www.wisebread.com Best Money Tips: Tips to Keep Your Car's High Value http://www.wisebread.com/best-money-tips-tips-to-keep-your-cars-high-value <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/best-money-tips-tips-to-keep-your-cars-high-value" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://www.wisebread.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/car-wash-4525113-small.jpg" alt="car wash" title="car wash" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="165" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Welcome to Wise Bread's <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/topic/best-money-tips">Best Money Tips</a> Roundup! Today we found some awesome articles on tips to keep your car's high value, secret Starbucks savings tips, and making your nest egg last a lifetime.</p> <h2>Top 5 Articles</h2> <p><a href="http://www.threethriftyguys.com/2013/09/20-tips-to-keep-your-cars-value-high/">20 Tips to Keep Your Car's High Value</a> &mdash; Not smoking in your car and washing your car regularly will help it hold its value. [Three Thrifty Guys]</p> <p><a href="http://www.savvysugar.com/Tips-Saving-Money-Starbucks-3751741">Don't Tell Anyone: 11 Secret Starbucks Saving Tips</a> &mdash; To save money at Starbucks, bring your own cup. [PopSugar Smart Living]</p> <p><a href="http://www.freemoneyfinance.com/2009/09/five-ways-to-make-your-nest-egg-last-a-lifetime.html">Five Ways to Make Your Nest Egg Last a Lifetime</a> &mdash; Delaying claiming social security and withdrawing your funds carefully can make your nest egg last a lifetime. [Free Money Finance]</p> <p><a href="http://www.getrichslowly.org/blog/2013/09/01/7-rules-for-growing-slow-but-sustainable-wealth/">7 rules for growing slow (but sustainable) wealth</a> &mdash; If you want to grow slow yet sustainable wealth, create residual income streams and scale your financial growth. [Get Rich Slowly]</p> <p><a href="http://www.dailyfinance.com/2013/09/04/how-to-save-down-payment-house/?ncid=widgusdail00000002">How to Save $20,000 for a Down Payment in Just 2 Years</a> &mdash; Save for a down payment on a house by moving to a smaller apartment to save money. [DailyFinance]</p> <h2>Other Essential Reading</h2> <p><a href="https://www.mint.com/blog/consumer-iq/dont-fall-for-these-6-common-food-fakes-0913/">Don't Fall for These 6 Common Food Fakes</a> &mdash; Avoid buying pre-ground coffee. Instead, buy beans and grind them on your own at home. [MintLife Blog]</p> <p><a href="http://www.budgetinginthefunstuff.com/staying-on-a-budget-in-high-cost-of-living-areas/">Staying on a Budget in High Cost of Living Areas</a> &mdash; To stay on budget when living in a high cost area, take advantage of public transportation. [Budgeting in the Fun Stuff]</p> <p><a href="http://parentingsquad.com/infantsee-offers-free-vision-screenings-for-babies">InfantSEE Offers Free Vision Screening for Babies</a> &mdash; Early eye and vision examinations are important for your child's health, so get your child examined! [Parenting Squad]</p> <p><a href="http://www.fivecentnickel.com/2013/09/04/what-clay-pigeon-shooting-can-teach-you-about-finances/">What clay pigeon shooting can teach you about finances</a> &mdash; Just like with a clay pigeon target, you have to anticipate where your finances are headed so you can be better prepared for the future. [Five Cent Nickel]</p> <p><a href="http://moneyqanda.com/costs-of-investing/">Don't Be Kept In The Dark About The Costs Of Investing</a> &mdash; When investing, be prepared for professional fees and funds. [Money Q&amp;A]</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/best-money-tips-tips-to-keep-your-cars-high-value" class="sharethis-link" title="Best Money Tips: Tips to Keep Your Car&#039;s High Value" rel="nofollow">ShareThis</a><br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">Written by <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/ashley-jacobs">Ashley Jacobs</a> and published on <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/">Wise Bread</a>. Read more <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/taxonomy/term/"> articles from Wise Bread</a>.</div></div> Cars and Transportation best money tips car value Fri, 06 Sep 2013 10:00:29 +0000 Ashley Jacobs 981775 at http://www.wisebread.com What to Do (and Not Do) When You're in a Car Accident http://www.wisebread.com/what-to-do-and-not-do-when-youre-in-a-car-accident <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/what-to-do-and-not-do-when-youre-in-a-car-accident" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://www.wisebread.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/car-emergency-4796220-small.jpg" alt="car accident" title="car accident" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="167" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>If you've ever been in a car accident, chances are that taking photos of the accident scene and remembering to get the other driver's insurance information weren't your first thoughts. (See also: <a target="_blank" href="http://www.wisebread.com/financial-iq-test-do-you-have-the-best-auto-insurance-coverage-for-your-needs">Financial IQ Test: Do You Have the Best Auto Insurance Coverage for Your Needs?</a>)</p> <p>Making sure you, your passengers, and anyone else involved in the accident are safe, and that medical help is on the way, should be the first step. But once things have calmed down and you have a few minutes to gather your thoughts, there are some things you shouldn't do, and a few you should, right after a car accident.</p> <h2>What You Shouldn't Do</h2> <p>It's hard to think straight after a trauma like an auto accident, but these mistakes can hurt you later, even if you follow all of the &quot;shoulds&quot; outlined below.</p> <p><strong>Talk Too Much</strong></p> <p>Police, insurance investigators, and the other driver may want to talk to you to find out what happened. If it's a minor fender-bender that you're at fault for, cooperating with police is a good idea. But if it's a criminal or negligent act, such as running a stop light, you may want to first talk to a lawyer after providing basic information such as proof of insurance, driver's license, and car registration to police.</p> <p>Talking to someone other than your attorney&nbsp;&mdash; including your own insurance company&nbsp;&mdash; after a car accident can hurt because your statement can be obtained by the other side's insurance company and <a target="_blank" href="http://www.onlineautoinsurance.org/6-things-not-to-say-to-your-insurer-or-a-cop-after-an-accident/">used against you</a>. Something as simple as an apology after the accident can be taken as an admission of guilt and liability.</p> <p><strong>Share Too Much Personal Info</strong></p> <p>It may be instinctive to give your home address and telephone number to the other driver involved in the crash, but you don't have to. To avoid having your personal information stolen, the National Association of Insurance Commissioners <a target="_blank" href="http://www.naic.org/Releases/2012_docs/wreckcheck_mobile_app_auto_accidents.htm">recommends not sharing personal information</a> such as a driver's license number. Since many retailers use that information to verify identity over the phone, it's best to only give your name and vehicle insurance information to the other driver.</p> <p><strong>Fail to Call the Police</strong></p> <p>Close to 20% of people believe the only reason to call police after an accident is if someone is injured, according to the NAIC, which has a free smartphone app called <a target="_blank" href="https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/wreckcheck/id543290503?mt=8">WreckCheck</a> to walk users through creating an accident report. Filing a police report, however, can help facilitate the insurance claims process, the NAIC says.</p> <h2>What You Should Do</h2> <p>While you're avoiding saying too much or giving up too much information, you should also be aware of safety and gathering information you will need later.</p> <p><strong>Get Off the Road</strong></p> <p>Get to safety as soon as you can. If it's a minor fender-bender, move your car safely off the road and out of traffic. If you can't move your car without creating more damage, don't try &mdash; leave it to a tow truck. State Farm <a target="_blank" href="http://www.statefarm.com/insurance/claim-center/auto/what-to-do-after-an-auto-accident.asp">recommends keeping flares or other warning devices</a> in your trunk to alert traffic of your emergency.</p> <p><strong>Take Photos</strong></p> <p>If you have your cellphone with you, videotape or photograph the accident scene, so that your insurer can see where it happened and get an idea of how it might have happened. You don't want to get in the way of police, and you should only do this if you, any of your passengers, and people in the other car (if one is involved) are safe. There are lots of <a target="_blank" href="http://news.consumerreports.org/cars/2012/07/android-iphone-smart-phone-apps-that-can-help-after-a-car-crash.html">auto insurance smartphone apps</a> that include accident reporting tools to help you collect photos, audio recordings, and other information so you can more easily file a claim with your insurer.</p> <p><strong>Take Notes</strong></p> <p>You should draw a map of what happened for your insurer, and write down how you remember the accident, along with weather and traffic conditions, <a target="_blank" href="http://www.wisebread.com/repair-the-car-or-spend-the-cash">property and vehicle damage</a>, and injuries to you or others. If there are witnesses nearby, get their names and phone numbers. And of course, get the name and insurance information from any driver whose car was in the accident. If your insurer doesn't provide you with an accident form to keep in your car, <a target="_blank" href="http://www.insureuonline.org/auto_accident_checklist.pdf">print one out from insureuonline.org</a> (PDF) and fill it out if possible at the accident scene.</p> <p><strong>Tell the DMV</strong></p> <p>Most states require drivers to report accidents to the DMV, so be sure to do that within a day or so of the accident.</p> <p><strong>Keep Your Documents Handy</strong></p> <p>If you've kept your proof of auto insurance forms that most insurers mail to policyholders in your glovebox, then a lot of this should be easy, and you'll have your insurer's phone number handy to call as soon as possible. Some states allow <a target="_blank" href="http://www.pciaa.net/web/sitehome.nsf/lcpublic/926?opendocument">electronic proof of insurance</a> on a cellphone.</p> <p>You'll probably get a visit from an insurance claims adjustor soon after the accident, which won't be as traumatizing as the accident, but will make life a lot more interesting as you try to recreate the accident and explain what happened. It'll be a lot easier if you've followed the advice above.</p> <p><strong>File Your Claim</strong></p> <p>Now that you're safe and have exchanged information, file an insurance claim with your carrier. Your insurer should be available 24 hours a day, seven days a week, so don't delay in making the call.</p> <p>If you can do all of this after an accident, you should congratulate yourself on <a target="_blank" href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-items-you-might-have-forgot-in-your-emergency-kit">being prepared and getting through a traumatic experience</a>.</p> <p><em>Have you ever been in an auto accident? What do you wish you had done, or hadn't done, afterward?</em></p> <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/what-to-do-and-not-do-when-youre-in-a-car-accident" class="sharethis-link" title="What to Do (and Not Do) When You&#039;re in a Car Accident" rel="nofollow">ShareThis</a><br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">Written by <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/aaron-crowe">Aaron Crowe</a> and published on <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/">Wise Bread</a>. Read more <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/taxonomy/term/"> articles from Wise Bread</a>.</div></div> Cars and Transportation Insurance auto insurance car accident emergency safety Wed, 24 Jul 2013 10:36:30 +0000 Aaron Crowe 980560 at http://www.wisebread.com Best Money Tips: Questions to Ask When Buying a Used Car http://www.wisebread.com/best-money-tips-questions-to-ask-when-buying-a-used-car <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/best-money-tips-questions-to-ask-when-buying-a-used-car" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://www.wisebread.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/car-4960033-small.jpg" alt="car" title="car" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="167" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Welcome to Wise Bread's <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/topic/best-money-tips">Best Money Tips</a> Roundup! Today we found some fantastic articles on questions to ask when buying a used car, summer fun for frugalists, and resume tips and tricks.</p> <h2>Top 5 Articles</h2> <p><a href="http://www.savvysugar.com/Questions-Ask-Used-Car-Seller-31000145">8 Questions to Ask When Buying a Used Car</a> &mdash; When buying a used car, be sure to ask for an accident record and maintenance records. [PopSugar Smart Living]</p> <p><a href="http://www.fivecentnickel.com/2013/07/15/free-or-cheap-summer-fun-for-frugalists/">Free or cheap summer fun for frugalists</a> &mdash; To have fun, frugalists can take advantage of $1 and $5 movies or learn a skill with a free workshop. [Five Cent Nickel]</p> <p><a href="http://www.freemoneyfinance.com/2013/07/resume-tips-and-tricks.html">Resume Tips and Tricks</a> &mdash; An excellent resume needs to be searchable, easy to read, and quantitative. [Free Money Finance]</p> <p><a href="http://www.thesimpledollar.com/2013/07/17/starting-the-school-year-the-frugal-way/">Starting the School Year the Frugal Way</a> &mdash; Before you head to the store to buy school supplies, search your home for the supplies your child will need. [The Simple Dollar]</p> <p><a href="http://www.greenpandatreehouse.com/2013/07/how-far-would-you-go-to-pay-off-student-loans/">How Far Would You Go to Pay Off Student Loans?</a> &mdash; Pay off your student loans by working during the summer or applying for programs with work terms. [Green Panda Treehouse]</p> <h2>Other Essential Reading</h2> <p><a href="http://money.usnews.com/money/careers/articles/2013/07/18/10-things-they-dont-tell-you-about-your-first-internship">10 Things They Don't Tell You About Your First Internship</a> &mdash; When you start your first internship, no one really tells you that work casual and campus casual are not the same thing. [US News &amp; World Report]</p> <p><a href="http://www.carefulcents.com/be-a-full-time-blogger/">How to Be a Successful Full-Time Blogger in 6 Months</a> &mdash; If you want to be a full-time blogger, start by assessing your ability to work alone. [Careful Cents]</p> <p><a href="http://www.freemoneywisdom.com/three-tips-for-new-landlords-2/">3 Tips for New Landlords</a> &mdash; New landlords should make sure to have insurance and tenant agreements. [Free Money Wisdom]</p> <p><a href="http://www.getrichslowly.org/blog/2013/07/16/is-there-morality-in-personal-finance/">Is there morality in personal finance?</a> &mdash; Personal finance can teach you the importance of taking responsibility for your actions. [Get Rich Slowly]</p> <p><a href="http://parentingsquad.com/3-good-reasons-to-let-your-kids-be-bored">3 Good Reasons to Let Your Kids be Bored</a> &mdash; Allowing your kids to be bored promotes creativity. [Parenting Squad]</p> <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/best-money-tips-questions-to-ask-when-buying-a-used-car" class="sharethis-link" title="Best Money Tips: Questions to Ask When Buying a Used Car" rel="nofollow">ShareThis</a><br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">Written by <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/ashley-jacobs">Ashley Jacobs</a> and published on <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/">Wise Bread</a>. Read more <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/taxonomy/term/"> articles from Wise Bread</a>.</div></div> Cars and Transportation best money tips buying car questions used Fri, 19 Jul 2013 10:00:31 +0000 Ashley Jacobs 980708 at http://www.wisebread.com