Thursday, September 14, 2006

please Used Car donation

Car donation is a fantastic way to give to those less fortunate and more needy than you. In a time when money is tight for many, charity giving is one of the first things to get squeezed out.

Understandably we find it hard to justify giving to strangers, when our own children and grandchildren are in need. However, with a little creativity and thinking outside of the box, we can help those in need without having to open our wallet.

Making a used car donation is just that. If you are preparing to buy a new you have a few options with how to dispose of your old one.

You can scrap it, sell it, trade it in or give it away. Used charity car donation is a way to get rid of you old car and help others at the same time.

what can I donate car?

At-risk teens face more life struggles in one day than most of us face in a lifetime.

Restore their hope and their education by making a donation of your car, truck, boat, plane or by donating your computer to America's Cars for Kids, a program of America Can!

America Can! academies provide a second-chance education for at-risk youth – kids who have significant social issues. Students learn in a non-threatening environment, receive focused attention, and complete their high school diploma.

Your car donation, boat donation, truck, plane or used computer donation can make a difference in the lives these kids.

Donate your vehicle (running or not) and show at-risk kids you believe in them. It's easy! We pick up the donated car, truck, boat, plane, and it's a great tax write off at no cost to you.

Let Us Help You!
Please give your vehicle even if it is not in running condition. We make all the arrangements to pick-up your vehicle at no cost to you. You can receive the full fair market value as a lawful IRS tax deduction for your vehicle ... Donate a vehicle today!

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

What home equity debt is

A home equity loan or line of credit allows you to borrow money, using your home's equity as collateral.

First, some definitions:

Collateral is property that you pledge as a guarantee that you will repay a debt. If you don't repay the debt, the lender can take your collateral and sell it to get its money back. With a home equity loan or line of credit, you pledge your home as collateral. You can lose the home and be forced to move out if you don't repay the debt.

Equity is the difference between how much the home is worth and how much you owe on the mortgage (or mortgages, if you have more than one on the property).


Let's say you buy a house for $200,000. You make a down payment of $20,000 and borrow $180,000. The day you buy the house, your equity is the same as the down payment -- $20,000: $200,000 (home's purchase price) - $180,000 (amount owed) = $20,000 (equity).

Fast-forward five years. You have been making your monthly payments faithfully, and have paid down $13,000 of the mortgage debt, so you owe $167,000. During the same time, the value of the house has increased. Now it is worth $300,000. Your equity is $133,000: $300,000 (home's current appraised value) - $167,000 (amount owed) = $133,000 (equity)

A home equity loan (or line of credit) is a second mortgage that lets you turn equity into cash, allowing you to spend it on home improvements, debt consolidation, college education or other expenses.

Equity loans, lines of credit defined

There are two types of home equity debt: home equity loans and home equity lines of credit, also known as HELOCs. Both are sometimes referred to as second mortgages, because they are secured by your property, just like the original, or primary, mortgage.

Home equity loans and lines of credit usually are repaid in a shorter period than first mortgages. Most commonly, mortgages are set up to be repaid over 30 years. Equity loans and lines of credit often have a repayment period of 15 years, although it might be as short as five and as long as 30 years.

A home equity loan is a one-time lump sum that is paid off over a set amount of time, with a fixed interest rate and the same payments each month. Once you get the money, you cannot borrow further from the loan. Bankrate surveys home equity lenders and is a good source for current rates.

A home equity line of credit, or HELOC, works more like a credit card because it has a revolving balance. A HELOC allows you to borrow up to a certain amount for the life of the loan -- a time limit set by the lender. During that time, you can withdraw money as you need it. As you pay off the principal, you can use the credit again, like a credit card.

Monday, May 08, 2006

Tax-savvy retirement saving

Don't put your retirement accounts on autopilot. Put a plan in motion for tax-smart investing.

Can you hear the waves lapping onto the sandy shore or the ping of a tennis ball across the net as you zone out dreaming of retirement? It's important to have dreams, for sure. It's also wise to have a plan in place for funding the golden days ahead so that Uncle Sam doesn't get more than his fair share of your hard work.

Merge retirement accounts for cash and clout
Almost 17 percent of American workers have five or more separate retirement accounts, which costs them time, money and bargaining power.

Can I write off retirement plan fees?
A reader did the smart thing by rolling over his company retirement plan when he left the firm. But our tax expert says his choice of where to put his pension money doesn't do him much tax or financial good.

Reporting your retirement plan rollover
When you changed jobs, you took your company retirement plan with you. Here's how to report that to the IRS.

Retirement savings credit
With this tax break, the money you put away for your golden years could cut your current tax bill.

Taking a retirement tax break before retiring
The retirement savings contribution tax credit gets you immediate tax benefits, long before you need your nest egg. Our expert explains how to claim it.

Monday, May 01, 2006

Why home equity loans are popular

Home equity loans and lines of credit have become increasingly common since the mid-1980s as property values have soared and homeowners have learned about managing personal debt. Among the reasons for this surge in popularity: attractive interest rates and tax deductibility.

Equity rates
Because home equity loans and credit lines are secured by one's personal residence, lenders consider them almost as secure as primary mortgages. While equity rates generally are higher than rates on primary mortgages, they usually have lower rates than credit cards and auto loans.

Average rates for home equity loans and lines of credit are available from's current rates of 4,000 financial institutions around the country.

Tax deductibility
Way back in the disco era, most interest on consumer debt was tax-deductible. That was good news for people who got auto loans in the '80s for Pintos and Fieros equipped with the latest eight-track stereo technology. But it was a bad deal for the federal government, which, by the mid-1980s, was hip deep in budget deficits. To reduce the need to raise income tax rates, Congress and President Reagan yanked the tax deduction for consumer interest. Except for mortgage debt. The deduction for mortgage interest remained. That goes for home equity debt up to $100,000.

Another route
While home equity debt has grown in popularity, getting an equity loan or line of credit isn't the only way to extract cash from one's castle. There is also the "cash-out refinance." For a cash-out refi to make sense, mortgage rates have to have dropped, and property values must have risen. This was the case for millions of homeowners in the early years of the 21st century, and cash-out refis were legion.

With a cash-out refi, you refinance the primary mortgage for more than the outstanding balance. Let's say you bought a house for $100,000 a few years ago, and now you owe $70,000. But the home has doubled in value over the years, so it's worth $200,000. You could do a cash-out refi of $150,000. You would pay off the $70,000 outstanding mortgage and take $80,000 in cash. Of course, you could only do this if you could afford payments on a $150,000 mortgage. You can also compare mortgage refi rates to home equity rates. Enter your ZIP code below to start the rate search process.

So far, you have learned what equity is and that there are two kinds of equity debt: home equity loans and home equity lines of credit, or HELOCs. Equity loans are provided in a lump sum, and they are paid off in equal monthly installments over a set period. Home equity lines of credit have revolving balances and work like a credit card.

Rates for equity debt tend to be relatively low, and the interest payments are tax-deductible. There is another way to extract cash from a home's equity, and that's the cash-out refinance, which shares the same rate and tax advantages that equity loans and credit lines have.