Personal Finance Round-Up: Used Auto Industry “Flooded” With Problems

flooded carsWho knew that the devastating Superstorm Sandy that battered the East Coast would have an impact on the auto industry? In a recent report, First Coast News explains that the storm destroyed an estimated 250,000 vehicles, and coupled with the fact that many people are keeping their old cars for longer periods of time, consumers are finding it difficult to purchase quality used vehicles.

Cars are inherently unsafe and unreliable after being flooded. Even though the car may at first seem functional, many problems can arise: rot, corrosion, problems with electrical systems, cooling systems, brakes, and mold or mildew entering the vehicle via the ventilation system.

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Personal Finance Round-Up: Fees, Fees, and More Fees

feesIt seems like everywhere you go, there’s a fee. Whether you’re at the bank purchasing a cell phone, or simply withdrawing your money out of a nearby ATM, you have to pay extra. There are setup fees, activation fees, and even early termination fees.

Had enough? It may be getting worse. According to a recent MSN Money article, Credit Card Check Out Fees by Beverly Blair Harzog, as of January 27, 2013, merchants are allowed to change a fee for accepting MasterCard and Visa. Merchants currently pay for you to swipe your credit card – and this fee can now be handed over to the consumer, with a tacked-on fee of 1.5% to 4% of the purchase price.

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Personal Finance Round-Up: Leveraging Strategic Outsourcing

outsource keyboardOutsourcing is a known concept to many businesses. They rely on others to do their payroll, accounting, and other important tasks. Paying others to do this can cut costs, increase efficiency, and help start new projects quickly.

Though it benefits the company to save money, be competitive, or be more profitable, it strikes fear into the heart of those who think they may lose their jobs. While most people agonize about having their job outsourced, a recent article on the Verizon Business Security Blog¬†explains how one man willingly gave his away and sent his work offshore to China. A software developer secretly paid someone to do his job for a fifth of his own salary while he played on the computer all day. ¬†Network logs revealed open and active connections to the company’s computer network from China.

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