Thursday, June 17, 2021

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What’s your plan? (05/27/2021)

Last week I went off on a rant on Frontier. It looks as if I boiled over about the same time the Attorney Generals of a few of our states did too! They are suing the company for numerous bad practices. This even has the attention of the Federal Trade Commission and they’ve joined in. The main complaint is that Frontier has failed to deliver on the internet speeds they sell to their customers.

Alena Anberg is teaching at Arbuckle Elementary School. She has also been a fearless champion of getting the internet to the masses during Covid while students are banned from the classroom. She testified before the FTC’s dog and pony show, leading to Frontier’s license being extended. The last sentence might obtain a clue as to my personal feelings about the fiasco.

As for Anberg, I shout out high praises. I wish I had a fraction of the “getter done” she possesses! I support her in her efforts to hold Frontier accountable. But let it be clear, I appreciate those employees on the front-line applying bandages with their hands tied behind their backs. Anberg is collecting documentation to support our claims. Please share your Frontier experience with her at ajanberg@ucdavis.edu or 530-786-1916.

If Frontier isn’t enough today, I’d like to alert you to a new practice I find appalling in the credit card industry. This is labeled a monthly Maintenance Fee. This provides no service for the client and I will liken it to highway robbery. At least one of them is outlawed! It is lumped in under Set up fees and lost in the fine print. It is bad enough to pay an annual fee for the privilege of using a credit card, but this is an added insult. The company will charge you to have their card, above the annual fee and all the interest that most of us will carry.

For example, an annual fee of $120 is assessed to upkeep the account. You’ll see that split over your 12 yearly billing cycles at $10 per month. You would be silly to pay an annual fee and add this maintenance charge just to use the card. Also, these cards usually don’t issue a credit limit above three figures. You lock yourself into a monthly payment with little possibility to exploit the card in your favor.

I have been thinking of a kind way to express my thoughts on Dave Ramsey. I think he is a tool in his industry. I’ll leave there. I lean toward Robert Kiyosaki. Education is key and we all could use financial schooling. The more we learn, the more we can empower ourselves to not just be a slave managing our finances but have money work for us. Starting small pays big dividends over the long run.

There are always steps in the right direction. If I got this right, all seniors in Colusa County were passed out Jake Cousineau’s How to Adult – Personal Finance for the Real World. Cousineau is a county product, Colusa specifically, and has been teaching for a few years. A guy named Max reviewed the book on Amazon as a great financial crash course for young people. I got my copy and am looking forward to comparing notes on Chapter Six: Credit Cards. Brush up on your finances (you can get your own copy of Cousineau’s book) or, for that matter, learn something new! Godspeed.

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