Why Your Mail is Full of Credit Card Offers


A new Federal Reserve working paper is shedding light on credit card companies’ solicitation strategies.

Companies prefer to target potential borrowers based on credit score, however other data, like the amount of time since a personal bankruptcy filing, are also taken into account.

“Interestingly, several socioeconomic characteristics also appear to influence lenders’ offer decisions, even after controlling for credit histories,” the authors of the paper write.

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Avoid Credit Card Traps During the Holidays


Credit card companies make it easy for consumers to borrow money for the holiday season, but there are a few things you should be on the lookout for.

Many store credit cards provide a discount on the purchases you make on the day you open up the card. But interest rates are usually very high on store credit cards.

Also, a discount with an expiration date, such as the one that is only good on the day you open the card, means you’re more likely to spend more that day than you normally would.

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Warren Buffett Purchases Dallas Real Estate Firm


Warren Buffett recently bought Allie Beth Allman & Associates, a real estate firm in Dallas which specializes in luxury properties.

“Allie Beth Allman & Associates is a strong company with an exceptional reputation in a growth market,” said Ron Peltier, chairman and CEO of HomeServices of America Inc., an affiliate of Buffett’s firm Berkshire Hathaway. “This transaction aligns with our vision of acquiring distinguished companies in leading markets that share our core values.”

Found in 2003, Allie Beth Allman & Associates had $1.5 billion in sales last year.

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What You Should Know About Real Estate Investments


Your home represents a large portion of your overall wealth. But it might not be your best investment. However, it can still play an important role in your portfolio.

Real estate investments have low correlations to other investments, like stocks and bonds. That lack of correlation could signify stability in your portfolio.

From a tax perspective, real estate investments are hugely beneficial. But be sure you’re not overdoing it on real estate. It should make up just 5 percent of your portfolio.

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How to Shop For Your First Home


At some point, many of us grow up and decide we want to buy a house. But not everyone knows the steps they should take for the process to go smoothly.

The first thing you should do is take stock of your finances. Buying a house is an investment, and you’re going to be writing a few checks. Make sure your credit score is up to par.

Before you even start shopping, find out how much a lender will be willing to give you. You can get pre-qualified for a home loan. This will help you know the price range to look at.

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Real Estate Industry Sees New Trends


A new survey from Realtor.com reveals three hot new real estate trends: inviting, rustic and beachside charm. These trends are based on people’s preferences and what they want in a house.

Inviting spaces offer an open atmosphere with lots of seating and a huge kitchen for guests to gather in.

Rustic spaces incorporate natural elements in the home, such as wood, stone, water and light.

Beachside charm homes offer a relaxed atmosphere with sundecks and terracotta tile – no beach required!

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Virtual Reality Tech Is On The Rise For Real Estate


The future of real estate could be in virtual reality. The trend is picking up in bigger cities and has now reached Tampa.

Previously used for video games, real estate is getting the same treatment, making it easier for home buyers to search and tour houses from the comfort of their own home.

“I think it helps you a lot, because from the comfort of your home you can go throughout the entire house without ever actually wasting your time and your realtor’s time to physically go there,”said house hunter Holly Hostler.

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How to Create a Strong Business Credit Profile


Besides personal credit scores, small business owners need to make sure they have a good business credit profile.

“There’s a gap between what consumers understand about personal credit and what business owners understand about business credit,” says Brian Ward, a senior director at Experian.

Having good credit will especially come in handy when you need to borrow money.

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Switch to Chip Technology Leaves Credit Cards Vulnerable to Thieves


With all the confusion and delays over the switch to chip credit and debit cards, identity thieves are pouncing on the opportunity.

Many have not yet received their new secure cards, and with so much news coverage, people are waiting anxiously for their new cards to arrive.

“This creates a golden opportunity for identity thieves to attack and steal people’s personal information,” said Adam Levin, chairman of IdentityTheft 911. “Scammers thrive when there’s confusion and anxiety because that’s when people are most vulnerable.”

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Is Your Love Life Affecting Your Credit Score?


New research from the Federal Reserve Board reveals that your credit score may help you predict how successful in love you will be.

One of the findings was that the higher your credit score, the more likely you are to commit to a long-term relationship. Looking to settle down soon? You might want to find out their credit score first.

Another indicator of success is how well-matched your credit score is to your partners. Those with similar credit scores are more likely to stay together.

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