‘Tis the Season to be Shopping

Car Buying

Five worst cars for resale value – This doesn’t mean that these are bad cars. It just means that these cars depreciate more than other cars do. So all things being equal, if you plan on owning one of these cars for a couple of years, and then selling it, you are probably better off buying a different, comparable car. Conversely, if you are like me and like to buy reasonably priced, safe, reliable cars — cars with a solid maintenance history — and keep them for a decade or more, then it might not matter if these cars depreciate more quickly than others.

Alternatively, you could look at this the other way. If high quality cars depreciate quickly, you might be able to pick up a previously-owned, high quality car for a very reasonable price.

Home Buying

Four things that will ensure that you are able to secure a mortgage – Many people spend a lot of time and energy trying to buy a house only to find that the lender has rejected them. The four items mentioned in this article are those items that will help to ensure that you can get a mortgage. Arguably the most important aspect is having a low debt level. Lenders want to have a sufficient level of confidence that you will be able to repay the loan. If you have a mountain of debt, you are not only inhibiting your ability to pay the loan back, but you are also indicating that you might not be a good credit risk. Try to get yourself out of debt as quickly as you can.

Holiday Shopping

Complete list of store hours – If you plan to venture out on Black Friday to try to snag some of the deals being offered, you need to know when the stores open.

Black Friday Cell Phone Deals – There are many Black Friday deals on phones. These may be worth paying attention to — especially the offer from T-Mobile. Typically, phone carriers advertise that you can get a phone for free. A recent commercial shows a man happily walking out of the AT&T store with his free phone. In very small text, at the end of the spot is the legal disclaimer which indicates that you have to buy a $650 phone. The copy reads: Req’s $649.99 on installment… Granted, you get to pay for it over time, but $649 does not equate to free.

Some of the Black Friday deals on phones are worth investing. For instance, Wal-Mart, Target, and Best Buy are all offering $250 gift cards when you purchase specific phones. Granted, you may have to pay the full retail for the phone which could mitigate most, if not all of the discount. You might be able to find a better deal elsewhere. The one that seems to jump out is the deal offered by T-Mobile.

T-Mobile has coined themselves the uncarrier since they have no contracts which lock you in for two years. That may be going by the wayside, but if you are going to be locked in, this may be worth your while. T-Mobile is promising a free Samsung Galaxy S7 on Black Friday weekend in exchange for a qualifying phone trade-in. Plus, you get a free virtual reality headset, the Samsung Gear VR. You can sign up for, or already be on, the new T-Mobile One plan and trade in a Galaxy S6, Galaxy Note 5 or “other qualifying device.” Details on what else qualifies are scarce. You can get the deal if you’re still on the discontinued Simple Choice Unlimited plan, as well.

Granted, there are stipulations, like needing to already have a qualifying device, and S7 and a free VR headset… sounds like a deal worth checking out.

The T-Mobile Black Friday deal requires you to pay for the S7 with a 24-month financing agreement, but T-Mobile credits your bill for the monthly cost of the phone, making it free as long as you stay with the carrier for the full two years. Offer valid Nov. 24-27.

Deals at Amazon – Don’t forget to check out the deals available at Amazon, not only on phones, but on everything. For instance, you can get a Kindle for as low as $49. That sub-$50 offer includes the 6″ Kindle and the 7″ Fire tablet. There are also deals on Dots… you can buy a six-pack of Amazon Echo Dots. These hands-free, voice-controlled devices which use Alexa to play music, control smart home devices, provide information, read the news, set alarms, etc. are just $49 each, but if you buy six, you only pay for five.

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