Fine Print Alert: July 25, 2014

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Updated on Friday, July 25, 2014


In our weekly Fine Print Alert newsletter we call out any sneaky changes or less than favorable strategies employed by financial institutions.  We also wrap up MagnifyMoney news as well as share our favorite reads from the week.

Fine Print Alert

The Good

We just discovered Bank of the Internet will reimburse unlimited ATM fees with their reward checking account – the next business day. Yes, you can use any ATM in the country, completely free. You need $100 to open a reward checking account. But there are no minimum balances thereafter, no overdraft fees, no NSF fees and no monthly maintenance fees. You can also earn interest up to 1.25%. Accounts like these make you wonder why anyone goes to branches any more.

And the not so good

Today’s subprime market for auto loans eerily resembles subprime mortgages before the financial crisis. Consumers with damaged credit scores are receiving access to auto loans with incredibly high interest rates making it difficult to make any sort of dent in paying down the loan.

The New York Times published an article overviewing the issue with subprime auto loans and MagnifyMoney responded with our recommendations for how to avoid the subprime auto loan trap or how to dig your way out.

Ocwen is the most complained about mortgage company in the country and now the CFPB has ordered them to forgive $2 billion of principal balance for its customers and pay $125 million to people who have already lost their homes. Read more about it here.

MagnifyMoney News Wrap-up

MagnifyMoney teamed up with Professor Philip Zimbardo to analyze the impact of people’s time perspectives on their financial health. Our study determined an understanding of financial literacy doesn’t make someone financially health. Instead, a person’s relationship to time is a huge impact on their financial wellbeing.

You can take the quiz and find out your time perspective and how it could be impacting your financial health by visiting

We also released our 7 Financial Must-Dos for College Students. What do you think is essential for a college student to know about money?

MagnifyMoney around the web

Our favorite personal finance stories this week

Kick off your Friday with these great personal finance stories:

How To Climb Up When You’ve Hit Financial Rock Bottom – “I remember it like it was yesterday. I was in the Wal-Mart check out line, and I handed over my card. Declined. I nervously grabbed another card and handed it over. Declined.” Read Cat’s story about digging out of financial rock bottom on Frugal Rules.

3 Personal Finance Absolutes that Need to Go – “With time, I’ve come to learn that there are certain personal finance absolutes that need to go away entirely. Why? Well, because they’re stupid and irresponsible.” Find out Ben’s hated personal finance absolutes on Wealth Gospel.

At What Point Do You Consider Yourself Wealthy? – “The other day, my son had a friend over. They were looking at my son’s Lego collection and some of his other toys. As they used some of the loose Lego bricks to build whatever they wanted, the friend casually asked, ‘Are you rich?’ My son didn’t really know what to say, I don’t think. All he could really say was, ‘I dunno.’ “ Miranda tackles a potentially controversial topic on Planting Money Seeds.

A Disturbing Look at the New Retirement – “In the August issue of Harper’s magazine, journalist Jessica Bruder delves into the hidden world of these older, struggling American workers, many of whom live in RVs, frequently moving to the location of their next job opportunity.” – Kimberly Palmer interviews journalist Jessica Bruder for US News’ Alpha Consumer blog.

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