Flood Cars ~ coming to a town near you

Sep 07, 2021

Did you ever think you may be someone who unknowingly purchases a damaged flood vehicle?

Well, you may be shocked to find out many flood vehicles end up back in the marketplace for unsuspecting buyers to purchase. Carfax data shows a 9% increase with “446,836 flood-damaged cars on the roads in 2020, and that number is expected to rise…”.

In the aftermath of the recent hurricanes I suspect this number will  substantially skyrocket in the coming months.  

Some owners will collect the money for the flood damaged vehicles from the insurance companies, if they have comprehensive coverage which only a third of people carry, according to Consumer Reports. They will then sell the damaged vehicles to private buyers or salvage yards for cash. The vehicles will sometimes get refurbished and re-sold. Then they will end up back on the roads by a way of title washing, which conceals the truth about a vehicles damage with a replicated “clean” title.


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Debt-to-Income Ratio ~ an expected future outcome

Aug 11, 2021

What is debt-to-income

A percentage of how much money you spend on debt payments every month vs. how much you make every month. This number determines your capability of being able to pay back a loan.

They are basically trying to determine a future outcome with a promise of your future income. 

I believe it is difficult to calculate a person’s future windfalls or failures simply based on scores. Everyone faces an unfavorable fate with completely different characteristics, it is never as simple as a number. That is where knowing and speaking with community lenders who care about the individual really makes the difference.


With average auto loan balances on the rise it is important to know how much you can afford to spend on a vehicle purchase. Always be clear on the terms of your loan and how much you will be paying in interest over the length of the loan.

Why I need to know

Your DTI is not something found on a credit report nor does it effect it but it is a number...

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Junk Cars ~ the final curtain

Jun 02, 2021

When it has finally come time to say goodbye to good old betsy and let her move on to greener pastures you will need to do a few things to prepare for the proper send-off.

First you want to get the paperwork in order.

*Locate the Title to the vehicle 

*Have your license to verify you are the owner (must match name(s) on Title) You will be signing on the seller portion of the title and the names must be the same.

*Keys if you have them

*Remove the license plates before pick up is scheduled if parked on private property. If the vehicle is in the street or public parking area, license plates usually need to be kept on to prevent being towed. 

If you are driving the vehicle in, you can remove the plates when you drop off.

*Either way make sure you have your plates and that you surrender them to your Department of Motor Vehicle. This will insure you don’t get fined or prohibited from renewing your license/registration or worse, someone putting your plates registered...

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Wanderlust ~ the rising costs of adventure

May 24, 2021

I’m sure a lot of you are planning your road trip destinations to weddings, long awaited celebrations, RVing/camping trips or perhaps just the open road with absolutely no destination in mind (my fave). 

Just one thing… did you plan a travel budget?

With gas prices on the rise it may be worth planning how much you want to spend for your get away so you don’t break the bank and go home with travelers remorse.

A good way to plan is to know the mileage between where you are ,where you want to go and how much you plan to drive once you get there. 

Also you will want to know the gas prices within the towns you are traveling through in case they are much higher or even better, lower then your home town prices. 

AAA has the gas price averages in all the states;)

Once you gather your estimated driving mileage you can budget for fuel costs and any other added expense you may have like snacks, special stops, or an unexpected car cost.

This will help...

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Pink Tax ~ not so pretty

Mar 11, 2021

Pink Tax: The pink tax is a broad tendency for products marketed specifically toward women to be more expensive than those marketed for men, despite either gender's choice to purchase either product. (Wikipedia)

Let’s start with the consideration that not only are we over worked, undervalued and  taking on more responsibilities than ever, but we are also targeted for additional “tax” on products and services specifically created and marketed to our gender.


Women earn 82 cents for every dollar paid to men
Source: national partnership for women + families (sept.2020)

Women pay more 42% of the time 
Source: From the cradle to crane: the cost of being a female consumer (NYC Consumer Affairs Study 2015)

Pink tax costs the average woman $1,351 a year 
Source: From the cradle to crane: the cost of being a female consumer (NYC Consumer Affairs Study 2015)

Household costs are on the rise: Average annual expenditures in 2019 was $63,036 a 3%...

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Car Buying Budget ~ how much should I be spending

Feb 23, 2021

Income + Expenses

The first thing in creating a car buying budget should be to get a  income + expense report down to the last dollar. 

The only way to truly see how much you should be spending monthly on a car purchase is to determine your monthly and annual net salary as well as everything that is going out towards expenses. 

After you have figured out what is coming in, going out and what is left over after savings, retirement etc. you can get to the number that is right for your goals and you current lifestyle.


Vehicle Price / Monthly Payment

I suggest more conservative numbers when analyzing a car purchase and this is because I have seen too many people get themselves in trouble.

So for the suggested vehicle purchase price it should be 20%-30% of your annual income. The monthly payment should be 10%-15% of your monthly income with all vehicle expenses included. 

You may be surprised on what you should be spending because I’m sure it is a lot...

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Certified Pre-Owned Vehicles ~ what you're getting for the label

Feb 22, 2021

The cost of a CPO label can be an additional $800 -$4,000 depending on the year, make, model, condition , miles and coverage on a vehicle as well as who is backing the certification.

For my example I used a 2018 Kia Sportage LX FWD with 23,000 miles. 

So you can see the CPO is $974 more than the non-certified, which for this particular vehicle that is a base trim level is a lot more. Not to mention Kia’s original 10 yr/ 100,000 warranty coverage is non transferrable and only given to the first original owner of the vehicle. This warranty then becomes a  5yr/ 60,000 mile warranty for the new (used) car owner. 

Which basically means a CPO Kia is just transferring the original 10yr/100,000 mile warranty to you but you have to buy it back. Pretty ingenious! 

In my example you can see the overlap in coverage. This vehicle has an estimated 2 yrs. ( this will depend on the in-service date on the vehicle history report) and/or 37,000 miles left, which ever...

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Long Term Loans for Lower Monthly Payments~ champagne taste, beer budget

Feb 17, 2021

The average loan term for a new vehicle purchase has stretched to 71.54 months in the second quarter of 2020 and escalating now in 2021. With increases in loan amounts and higher average monthly payments.  

let's take a look…

-   longer loan terms

  • Increased vehicle price points
  • Higher monthly payments 

Average loan: $583/mo x 72 = $38,736

This means the average person is buying a more expensive vehicle dragging out the loan longer than ever and paying higher interest. This is good how???

During such an unstable time I can’t see how this scenario is good to anyone except the dealerships and the lending institutions.

And apparently it’s the super prime consumers with the largest percentage of increased length on their loans… which does not seem right. 

So the people with the best credit and who I’m sure have financial stability, track their finances and are finically savvy are deciding to pay even more for a car in every way?!...

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The True Costs of Owning a Vehicle ~ what to budget for

Jan 25, 2021


Your transportation costs are the #2 expense of household spending, a 10.1% rise from 2018 to 2019. That means you’re spending more on your transportation costs than savings, health care, entertainment, pretty much everything with the exception of home ownership. 


This was the largest increase among all other spending. This is the perfect time to finally get your costs in check to be sure you aren’t throwing money away that you could be putting into another , more important category. 


Working from home and riding your bike or walking places doesn’t seem like such a bad thing after hearing that. These are way to actually cut costs and keep money in your pocket. 


Sometimes the things we think are inconveniences are really exactly what we need.  Find out what you have been spending on your transportation and make some changes if you see things are out of balance. 


If you are in the...

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Road Trippin’ Homemade Hand Sanitizer Spray ~ antibacterial mood booster

Jan 14, 2021

So if you’re like me and are constantly on the go, in and out of your car completing the days daily tasks than this is perfect for you! 


I do use disinfectant wipes and germ spray in and on my interior car components but usually only after I have finished for the day. Plus I don’t like using the spray and wipes on my skin unless necessary and I really don’t like the heavy scented harsh hand sanitizer gels so that’s when I decided to whip up this safe + simple spray. 


I love it, you can customize the scents and it’s all natural ingredients to whatever you like. It’s non-toxic and only costs pennies to make ( I like giving it as gifts too!) 

I will list all the ingredients + products I used if you want to grab what’s on the list!


Measuring Cup

Witch Hazel

Isopropyl Alcohol (minimum 60%)

Vitamin E Oil

Essential Oil

Small Funnel 

2 oz. plastic/glass bottle with sprayer 



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