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Friday, April 15, 2011

My 12 Cents....

 As our less than intrepid leaders continue to fight in Washington about the course of this country and its financial future a few thoughts occurred to me. Normally I try and use this blog as an educational tool to help consumers understand how policy and economics can effect their everyday lives and taxes. Instead, I felt it was more important to include a few thoughts about the people in this country and encourage folks to shoulder the responsibility that the politicos can't seem to figure out.

 We as society have a debt to the previous generation that should never go unheeded. While the politicians argue the fate of Social Security (this generation will never see it), understand that the previous generation fought and sacrificed for REAL Social Security. That is the social security we enjoy now without the goose stepping and the Gestapo. They endured years of hardship and rationing, tirelessly giving on Bond drives, to insure that this country and the WORLD remained free. That can of bacon grease on the stove your grandmother or great grandmother used to keep wasn't for flavoring, it was used  for Nitro to make explosives during World War II and that habit stuck.

 As that generation fades into the twilight and their sons and daughters come into their "Golden Years", I hope we as a nation shoulder the responsibility to insure that whatever aid and assistance the elderly need. They have given til it hurt, and now it is time to insure that if Washington falls down on the job we are there to assist. Personally I decided to partition 4% of my income and give to the generations that came before me. Be that in time, chores, meals , or donation I am prepared to give up 4 pennies on the dollar. Big sacrifice, right.....

 We have a responsibility to invest in our future as well. That future is in all our kids whether we birthed them or not. I have some friends whose children attend a charter school in Denver. The education is superb and the cost of admission is 40 hours per YEAR by each family. Less than one hour a week being a crossing guard, working in the classroom or lunchroom, coaching, whatever. Assuming that you are awake 12 hours a day, there are 4368 hours in a year. Do the math and you'll find 40 hours is less than .1% per year. The other 3.9% of the future generation investment will come in the form of time spent playing, teaching and listening to my kids, their friends and kids in the community. By being a part of the new generation, you are insuring a foundation and building blocks for our kids that can't be duplicated by any government agency. You create the tap root that keeps the tree of life strong in your community. You give your kids the character that will guide the future of this country. You are demonstrating involvment, charity and sportsmanship. By being there, you are investing.  In return, you will get 1000 hugs, smiles, and memories that will stay with you forever. All that for 4 more pennies per dollar. I'm now up to eight cents.

 The last 4 pennies is optional. I'll give another 4 cents to my church. I know that they will provide meals and fellowship to those in need, they did for my during more trying times. They donate to communities around the world, beyond the reach of my individual community. Many of this nation are not religious and don't attend church, and they have that right because they live here (Reference my first 4 cents). If that is the case consider giving that 4 cents back to the people that insured you got it in the first place. Split it between old and young. Another thought is to donate blood to the Red Cross. The investment you make here could save your own life.

That's my 12 cents anyway.....

 If you are looking for Texas Property Tax Loans, we at Tax Loans USA are more than happy to help. We have more than 12 cents to give so call us and let our professional staff take care of that problem with low payments, no cash to close, term options, and service that will not be beat. 800-719-4096

Monday, March 28, 2011

Ever Try To Give A Cat A Bath?

That's what the Federal Reserve is doing with interest rates. They are holding rates (the cat) underwater no matter how much the cat hates it. Cats will lash out, and so will the markets and when they do its usually bloody.

 In the past, this was the Nation of stability, where the words, "Backed by the full faith and credit of the United States Government" used to mean something. When I look at that statement I unfortunately feel that there isn't as much "faith" as there used to be, and too much "credit" issued by our fearless leaders in Washington. When those two factors fall out of balance it doesn't bode well for Joe Six Pack and Margaret Margarita...

 Under current market conditions, it costs money to save it. How backward is that? Because interest rates charged to preferred borrowers (JP Morgan Chase, BofA, Goldman Sachs, etc) are almost nothing, they will provide next to nothing rates for their customers who are actually trying to do the responsible thing...SAVE. With gas, food, metals and other commodities on the rise, costs will get passed through and finished goods prices rise. Everybody knows that rising prices equal inflation, except for our buddies at the FED. They contend that if we take food and energy costs out of the equation, prices are stable. Nobody has informed them that if take food and energy out of our lives we are cold, starving, and stuck where we are. They are necessities.

 When the inflation rate exceeds the interest rate given to investors who try and save, they lose money by having it on loan to somebody. They lose money by simply holding onto it. That doesn’t sound like a very sound investment strategy and Bill Gross of PIMCO agrees.  He punted all his government bonds (loans to Uncle Sam) because the risk wasn’t worth the reward. Warren Buffett refunded all his short term debt into long term debt knowing he would have to pay more to secure funds at a future date. These guys have a pretty good track record, something about being self-made billionaires.

 It might be one thing if America was the perceived rock that it has been in the past. Unfortunately, Mr. Greenspan (ex-chief of the FED) thought free money was a good thing. Equate it to drinking endless amounts of grain alcohol. Nothing good can happen and didn't. Such thinking help blow up the housing market, leaving us severely hung-over and almost dead. Free money is almost never a good thing. Interest rates gauge risk, and provide reward. In these economic and some would argue political times, we have lots of risk and almost no premium (reward). If you have the chance to invest in something that looks a little shaky and pays you 10% percent, or the chance to invest in something a little less shaky that pays 1% which do you choose? I choose 10% on the odd chance that everything else being more or less equal, I get more money back.

 The main buyer of US debt is ourselves...the US taxpayer. If I promise to pay myself 100 dollars next week, because I can’t make my payments today, what are the odds that I'll meet that commitment to myself? Am I going to send a leg breaker to take the money out of my own hide, or do I give myself another pass and just write myself another IOU? If you chose the latter, you too could work well in Washington.

 The markets are the cat in a bathtub, and the tax payers are the bloody hands still holding onto it. Markets will force rates to rise whether the Fed likes it or not, one can't hold onto the cat forever. Eventually the Fed will be the only buyer left. The private sector is going to leave the US debt markets and invest where they can MAKE money not volunteer to lose it. The more disparity there is between US rates and rates with competing investments, the more the cat flails and the more damage done in the future. Pretty soon, we will bleed out from inflation. We won't have any money left for food and energy, so the Fed will finally be correct.... It doesn't matter what those prices do, we can't afford them. The only way to stem inflation is to raise rates and make loaning the government as competitive an investment as anything else. They will have to provide a return on investment.

  Eventually the cat will escape and the markets will be allowed to function in a logical manner without excessive tampering. When this happens rates will go up, in fact rates are going up now!! Do something about it. If you are looking to purchase something with borrowed money, do it now!! This goes for property tax loans and mortgages. They will NEVER be cheaper than at this point in time. If you are able to purchase a house, by taking advantage of the short time left you can buy much more house and enjoy your investment everyday as opposed to watching the flailing cat shred you limb from economic limb from inflation and poor policy.

If you are behind on your property taxes in the State of Texas, call Tax Loans USA at 800-719-4096 today and let us help you get to where you want to be. Conversely, if you are ready and realize the time is now to buy that house, call The Associates at 817-500-5008 and let us help finance your dream home.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Throw In The Towel....Everybody Else Is

   Debating the future of interest rates is now left to fools. The markets are speaking loud and clear, and rates are going to continue to climb. The best thing one can do if they are considering going into any kind of extended term debt is lock in now! One might be able to save a quarter point here or there, but you risk losing halves and whole points. In equity trading its called chasing an eighth and it costs you dollars. Not a sound strategy since 12.5 cents < $1.00.

  Rates are going to climb for a few reasons:

Inflation and Economies of Scale: What, the Fed says there is no inflation as they keep pumping billions out to large institutions. You may never see a dollar of it, but you are seeing the effects. Check oil and food prices. They are screaming...surprise, surprise. They are screaming because speculators and national governments have nowhere else to spend the money the Fed has been so kind to give them for the low price of next to nothing. The next time you see a Fed official or a Treasury official, you can thank them for crushing your spending power and putting the average consumer in a worse place than they were 6 months ago. The only upside to their strategy is that the unemployed don't have too many places to go, so they aren't burning gas at the same rate. To many dollars chasing too few goods is the definition of inflation. Typically it is an entire economy (all inclusive, you, me and them) that has too many dollars. The script changed this time. They improved it in their eyes for our salvation. Now it's too few institutions with too many dollars chasing too few goods thereby causing serious harm (to you and I) for benefit of too few citizens (Chase, Goldman, etc), which leads us to Economies of scale.

    Simply put, he/she with the most capital (money) wins. Any large economy or company can sustain price shocks or price their goods below market value. They can't do it forever but they can outlast their competition and force them to commit to things that they would rather not do. Again, food and oil example. Smaller countries and companies have to participate and perpetuate the price runs because they lack the capital to hedge for the longer term. They are living "check to check" without adequate reserves. When nations (China) enter the trading pits, they have they capital to corner or at least jam markets. When they do, everybody has to play for fear of losing out on the resource. Throw India in the mix, and you have a bidding war. Where there is a bidding war there are speculators in between and price runs get exaggerated. Eventually the Fed will have to pull some of the money in before anymore nation get toppled due to resource riots. They need to raise rates to absorb the money supply. It is the first move against inflation! When the rates to direct borrowers go up, they get passed through to you.

Regulation: All politics aside (I have little positive say here), new regulation of any kind costs you money! The added "safety" of a regulated or over regulated market creates barriers to business. That costs money. Extra people in compliance and the lawyers required to deal with the regulators are not provide free of charge by the government. I'm not saying that there were and still holes in the law left to exploited, there are. I'm simply saying that the new Dodd-Frank laws are going to cost a ton of money and that will be passed on to the consumer in the form of new fees and higher interest rates.

Regardless, if you are fortunate enough to be in a position where you can expose yourself to increased debt or have no choice....the time is now. Lock in that loan and save yourself money. Six months from now could be too late and you could be paying thousands more. If you need a property tax loan, or refi, or finance a new home purchase, call the professionals at Tax Loans USA or The Associates Mortgage Company respectively. 800-719-4096 and you can get you everything you need from professionals who value you and your time.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

The Writing Was On the Wall.....And Still Is!!

Dallas County passed a 6.6% property tax hike to cover budget shortfalls. We told you this was going to happen on Dec. 8, 2010.

Mortgage Rates have gone up significantly in the past few months. We told you that would happen too...check our blogs and circle the dates. There is no time time like the present to get your financial house in order. Governments are finally forced to do it but as an individual you should be well ahead of them.

If you are behind on your taxes now, the bad news is that it isn't going to get any easier. Interest rates are going to go up. Property taxes in the future are going to go up. There is NO WAY AROUND IT!! There is good news however. You have a whole team of professionals ready and willing to help you do your financial spring cleaning. We give you control. We will loan you the money (90% approval rate) to get out from under the boulder that is quaking above you. We will not penalize you for paying off your loan early and we will let you choose the terms of your loan.

We have competitors that will do the least loan you the money. You miss a certain number of payments and they will foreclose on your house. You won't know until you get a letter that it's over. They are in the business to seize property. We are in the business of helping the consumer. We work with you to get you right, where you belong. We believe in people not property, so if you have a heavy tax burden call us. There is no obligation to use us but at least arm yourself with information....reliable information. We know what the markets are going to do, put us on your team.

800-719-4096...ten numbers and ten minutes, that's all it takes!

Friday, January 28, 2011

The Pain Starts on Tuesday!

Ahhhh, Feb. 1, a date which lives in tax infamy. That is the date that the first round of penalties begins for delinquent property taxes. We post the penalties often but a refresher course never hurts.

On the first of each month:
Total Added for the Month
12% + 20%*
Each month thereafter

Additional 1% each month

By July, you are paying OVER 1/3 additional just in penalties....and the beat goes on until the County decides to take house or you find a way to pay your taxes and make the bleeding stop. I'm sure the question pops up often,"If I can't pay my taxes now, how am I going to pay them AND PENALTIES later?"

We are the answer in Texas! We loan you the money due this year and allow you to pay it back over a period of several years. You are able to spread the payment out over time making it far more manageable than a giant lump sum due all at one time. We approve 90% of those that apply, and there is no cash required at close. It makes so much more sense than letting the penalties build until it reaches a level where there is no recovery. About the time that happens, the county comes and takes your house.

Don't kid yourself, the penalties are very real and very severe. Fear not, the solution is also very real, incredibly simple, and very economical 800-719-4096 and let Tax Loans USA help.