Friday’s need-to-know money news

Today’s top story: How students can avoid common bank and credit card fees. Also in the news: What to do if you can’t get a student credit card, how to lessen the financial pains of moving, and how to photograph your house for Airbnb.

How Students Can Avoid Common Bank and Credit Card Fees
Don’t pay the bank to access your money.

What to Do If You Can’t Get a Student Credit Card
A look at the alternatives.

Ask Brianna: How Can I Lessen the Financial Pain of Moving?
Painless ways to cut costs.

How to Photograph Your House for Airbnb
Attracting more renters.

Friday’s need-to-know money news

money-saving-militaryToday’s top story: Controlling your finances by ignoring short-term frenzies. Also in the news: A new definition of affordable auto insurance, how military members can save money while moving, and how to estimate the value of your travel rewards.

Control Your Finances by Ignoring the Short-Term Frenzy
Resist being reactionary.

What’s ‘Affordable’ Auto Insurance? Now There’s an Answer
Defining the parameters.

7 Ways Military Members Can Save Money When Moving
Making the costs more bearable.

A Rule of Thumb to Estimate the Value of Your Travel Rewards Miles
What are your miles worth?

Tuesday’s need-to-know money news

financial-toolboxToday’s top story: The best additions to your financial toolbox. Also in the news: Safeguarding your digital assets, saving money on moving expenses, and what you should look for when choosing a new bank.

10 Best Personal-Finance Tools to Better Manage Your Money
Additions to your financial toolbox.

Safeguard Your Digital Assets — In Just 10 Minutes
Ten minutes you can’t afford not to spare.

Moving on a Tight Budget: 7 Ways to Save a Ton of Money
Moving expenses don’t have to break the bank.

7 Tips for Finding a New Bank
The most important things to look for.

Monday’s need-to-know money news

Pink piggy bank and Stacks of money coinsHow to make the best out of credit card annoyances, tips on finding the best unsecured loans and how a little known settlement fee between credit card companies and retailers could save you money at the register.

10 Common Credit Card Complaints
From annual fees to lousy customer service, tips on how to manage the annoying side of credit cards.

Is Higher Education Still a Good Investment?
As tuition prices skyrocket, is a college degree still worth the expense?

Should You Get a Personal Loan?
Tips on finding the best unsecured loan.

How to Avoid Movers’ Scams
Moving is stressful enough without having to deal with shady movers.

Paying With Cash Could Earn You a Discount at More Retailers
How a swipe fee settlement could save you money at the register.

How to avoid moving scams

Unhappy MoverThe last time we moved, our stuff was held hostage.

The mover had a variety of entirely bogus reasons for hanging onto our stuff while trying to exceed the written, “not to exceed” estimate. Among the excuses: We didn’t tell him there were steps at the new house (there were two) or it was at the fringes of Los Angeles (we’re actually quite close to the geographic center of the city).

At the time, I didn’t know that reputable movers were being bought up by bad guys who pulled these stunts, or that moving in many areas is so lightly regulated that they can get away with this crap.

If you’ve got a move planned this summer, take the time to check out Consumer Report’s tips for avoiding scams.

One of the best tips I know isn’t included: Ask your employer, or another major company in the area, which companies they use to move their executives. These movers won’t be the cheapest, but since they rely on repeat business, they’re far less likely to be scamsters.

In the end, I paid a couple hundred dollars more than we agreed to ransom our stuff–much less than the $1,000 or so the mover demanded, but still too much. If we ever have to move again, I’ll be a lot more diligent in choosing a mover.