This weekend, on the recommendation of one of our favorite money blogs, we went to a showing of Maxed Out, a recent documentary on the aggressive marketing tactics of credit-card companies, the moneymaking enterprise of debt purchasing/trading, the negative manipulation of credit scores by the companies that create them, and the support these three entities receive from our elected officials. The movie is only running in select cities, so we joked that America probably couldn’t afford to pay the $9.50 to see this movie. Seriously, though, we highly recommend this movie; it’s very informative and moving. It will inspire you to be more careful with yourself, your credit, and your money. Some important ideas that we learned in the movie include:
- Don’t get yourself in credit-card debt!
- Don’t ever get money at a payday loan shop – the average $325 loan will cost you $793 to pay back
- Don’t pretend that your long credit history with a company will protect you in the event of a late or missed payment. Even if you’ve had decades of perfect credit, they will slap you with the same late fees as everyone else ($43 on average), and promptly raise your interest rate to 26-30% or more. Read the fine print on your card, and don’t miss a payment!!!