My husband, Bob, and I had our mini schnauzers on a leash and were taking them for their morning walk. Our high-maintenance neighbor (who reminds me of the Wicked Witch of the West) came out of her house to get in her car. The dogs barked at her, she spilled her java, and she proceeded to inform Bob and me that if our dogs barked at her again, she would sue us! Then she added in a scary voice, "And your little dogs too."
But fate has a way of intervening in the lives of puppies and people. The rumblings of a predicted recession made short work of the green lady dressed in black. Her arm (adjustable rate mortgage) skyrocketed, and she had to move. Unfortunately, she isn't the only one in our upscale neighborhood to face foreclosure. Homes are being foreclosed upon in unprecedented numbers across the country.
America faces consumer confidence on a downward spiral, sub-prime rates that are rising, and wages that are relatively low. All of this has some economic forecasters muttering the "R" word: recession.
If most couples aren't concerned about losing their house in a recession, they're certainly concerned about rising costs, funding a retirement, or even the freedom to go on vacation. But there are answers for those who are willing to do something about it. Here are seven basic tips to help you beware and prepare.
Be diligent: check your credit scores
Now is the time to improve your FICO (credit score) as these scores can determine your auto insurance premiums, whether you'll get the promotion or the job (employers are checking FICOs these days), and whether you pay a security deposit for utilities. If you downsize a home or a vehicle in the recession, you'll also need an excellent FICO to get the best APR rates. To improve your FICO in three easy steps:1