Can a Bank Come After Foreclosure Deficiency Balances?

Many people lost their homes in foreclosures when the housing market collapsed. However, that has been a few years and many have made great strides to repair their credit. It was a shocking turn of events this week when many of that homeowner’s got a letter saying they were being sued for the balance of the homes.

Banks took a big hit in the record number of foreclosures, but now one bank is turning the tables and coming after their money. Florida attorney, Dyck O’Neal has personally filed more than ten thousand lawsuits this year on collections agencies coming after their money. It’s all because Florida changed their laws. In times past, a collector had five years to come back after the debt. With the new law, they have just one year to collect any deficiency balances owed to them. This has caused a surge of banks and collectors trying to get their claim in before their statute of limitations expire, which is something Christian Broda has been talking about with me.

When a bank sends the account to a collector, it puts another hit on the credit report. Those who were just starting to climb out of the hole are finding they’re taking another hit. It’s not right and they shouldn’t be allowed to come back after all this time. It is easy to see why the bank may be interested in coming after their money. However, if these people couldn’t pay for their homes, what makes the bank think they are going to be able to pay the tens of thousands of dollars they are owed?

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We Choose FreedomPop for Cell Phone Service, and Here’s Why

It’s rare now and days to see anyone without a cell phone. Even the government knows how important a cell phone can be to a person, because they have created programs that will pay for those with low income, to have a cell phone service for free each month. The only problem with the government programs is, that you have to qualify for the free service, and if your income is not low enough, you don’t qualify. How would you like to have the ability to get Free phone service without having to qualify for a government program? Then you should try FreedomPop.

FreedomPop is a unique service that can give you free internet and free cell phone service. The cell phone service is free of charge to start, and you can simply switch over your cell phone from your old company to FreedomPop. Don’t fear about having to give up your smart phone, as FreedomPop allows for the use of all of the newest technology cell phones out there. If you don’t have a cell phone currently, you can always purchase a cell phone from the FreedomPop website, and begin your service. With FreedomPop you get free texts, calls, and internet on your phone. And rumors that Sprint is interested in them mean this service can go mainstream in the blink of an eye. Imagine what that could do to other carriers and the way they market their plans.

For those who need internet service, FreedomPop is an excellent place to obtain it. With the many different devices that can give you internet while at home or on the go, you can connect your devices anywhere you are, to the internet. The best part about the internet service from FreedomPop, is that it’s free. You can get 4G speeds free of charge, and if you’re looking for anything faster than that, the charge just starts at $10 per month. Many companies will charge $50 or more per month just for internet service alone, so FreedomPop is a great alternative.

If you need internet while at home, you can choose to use the Freedom Hub, which gives you wireless internet while in the home, and you can connect several devices to it including your cell phone, tablet, laptop and more. The network connection is secure, so have no fear of unsavory persons lurking inside your private network. If you are constantly on the go, and you need internet for your laptop, there are several options that you can choose from. The Freedom Stick is a USB stick, that gives internet access when plugged into the USB port of your laptop.

Not only will you get high-speed internet, you can get it to use anywhere you go. If you would instead prefer a hotspot to carry with you, you can try either the Freedom Spot Photon, the LTE Hotspot, or the Freedom Spot Overdrive Pro. All three of these devices allow for internet on the go, especially the Photon, which allows for the connection of several mobile devices at once. Gone are the days of having to search for someone else’s WI-Fi connection while on the go, you can now bring your own connection with you, when you use FreedomPop.

For more information, check out their Facebook page and Techcrunch’s regular coverage on them.

Doesn’t get any more frugal than this.

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JetBlue ends free baggage

The airline JetBlue has announced plans to generate an additional $400 million in profits each year through a policy change that will decrease the amount of leg room that passengers receive and begin charging fees for baggage. This is sad news for frequent flyer Sam Tabar.

With this move, JetBlue will move more in line with the policies of other airlines. Previously JetBlue and Southwest Airlines stood apart in the airline industry by not pursuing these routes to increased profits which has led to their increased popularity with customers. There was no mention of whether a potential reduction of fees or decreased popularity with customers was included in the projection of $400 million of increased profits.

The seat size reduction will be approximately 1.6 inches per seat which will add about fifteen seats to each flight. Customers will be able to pay more to have larger seats. In addition, there will be three different tiers of pricing for flights with the ability to check one or two bags for fees, or no bags for free. By offering customers these different options the company believes they are catering to the individual customers’ needs in a more effective way.

The stock price of JetBlue has increased approximately 3% during the presentation announcing these changes and it has increased over 50% on the year. Airline stocks have been fairing well this year in connection with an resurgence in the industry which has led to profits during the year.

The airline JetBlue has announced plans to generate an additional $400 million in profits each year through a policy change that will decrease the amount of leg room that passengers receive and begin charging fees for baggage.

With this move, JetBlue will move more in line with the policies of other airlines. Previously JetBlue and Southwest Airlines stood apart in the airline industry by not pursuing these routes to increased profits which has led to their increased popularity with customers. There was no mention of whether a potential reduction of fees or decreased popularity with customers was included in the projection of $400 million of increased profits.

The seat size reduction will be approximately 1.6 inches per seat which will add about fifteen seats to each flight. Customers will be able to pay more to have larger seats. In addition, there will be three different tiers of pricing for flights with the ability to check one or two bags for fees, or no bags for free. By offering customers these different options the company believes they are catering to the individual customers’ needs in a more effective way.

The stock price of JetBlue has increased approximately 3% during the presentation announcing these changes and it has increased over 50% on the year. Airline stocks have been fairing well this year in connection with an resurgence in the industry which has led to profits during the year.

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Snapchat Introduces Snapcash Which Allows People To Send Money Quickly

Snapchat is an application that allows a person to send a text message or photo to a friend or family member. The difference between Snapchat and a regular text is that the text or photo is only available for a short period of time. This brevity allows a embarrassing photo to not be put up on a social network or be forwarded around to a lot of people. Snapchat has announced today that they have partnered with Paypal’s square.

 

This partnership allows Snapchat users to send instant money to their friends or family. They enter the dollar sign and press the green button. Snapchat calls this new feature Snapcash. Some people such as Sultan Alhokair would like to use it right away to see how it works. No word yet on the specific amounts of interest or fees required with this new offering. Snapcash is only available to customers who are over 18 and live in the United States. Snapchat has not annouced if they plan to expand this offering past the United States.

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Richard Branson’s Space Program Slammed

Billionaire Richard Branson has come under heavy fire after his experimental ventures for launching space tourism failed miserably last week. Virgin Galactic’s SpaceShipTwo aircraft malfunctioned and came down free falling rather being launched up into the sky and into space. Pilot Michael Tyner Alsbury died in the accident while co-pilot Peter Siebold managed to escape a close encounter with death after quickly ejecting out of the burning aircraft. SpaceShipTwo remains were found in the Mojave desert of California. Immediately after the incident, the national media has been covering this story from all possible angles. However, Branson claims that self-proclaimed experts in the media are spilling lies that are full of “garbage.”

According to the National Transportation Safety Board, the aircraft crashed because certain equipment that was supposed to be used for decceleration was launched too soon. The chairman of the NTSB claims that this mistake occurred without any commands and most likely resulted from poor communication between the pilots and other crew on the ground.

Branson has already sold seats to space for a whopping quarter of a million dollars per passenger (a little out of our price range Bennett, eh). Celebrities such as Justin Bieber and Ashton Kutcher have already reserved their seat on Richard Branson’s ambitious space tours. Critics are now accusing Branson of launching experimental flights that clearly seem to be unsafe. The Brit’s ambitions to make space tourism a reality might be nothing more than a dream for now.

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MasterCard Announces Plans for Contactless Credit Card

Just one day after announcing their support for Apple Pay, MasterCard has revealed their next move towards revolutionizing the payment industry: a contactless credit card. The card will use biometric data stored on the card itself to allow users to make purchases by holding their thumb on the thumbprint scanner while holding the card in front of the payment device. Analyst Gianfrancesco Genoso says this will allow users to quickly and securely make purchases without the need to slide their card or enter a pin.

MasterCard is partnering with startup company Zwipe to develop the card. Expected to be released in 2015, the card appears alongside a slew of recent products that push the payment processing industry towards a contactless future.

Following in the footsteps of Google Wallet and Apple Pay, the new card will allow users to utilize contactless pay without needing to preload the card number onto their phone. Contactless payments have major implications for the future of credit card fraud, identity theft, and cyber security.

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Mark Zuckerberg Putting Riches to Good Use

It can be easy for the average person to envy celebrities who make so much money that they throw it away on thousand dollar shirts and the like. However, when rich people such as Mark Zuckerberg use their money to make a difference in the world, their richness is more easily digested by the common folks.

Mark Zuckerberg, CEO of Facebook, and his wife, Priscilla Chan, want to stop the spread of Ebola. Even with some people claiming the Ebola scare is a hoax or that we in America don’t need to worry, Zuckerberg and Chan feel it is a big enough problem to donate $25 million to the cause. Yes, that figure is correct. The couple has donated $25 million to the CDC to fight Ebola, just after making a generous donation to Keith Mann’s animal charity.

So far, there have been over 4,000 deaths attributed to the Ebola virus and over 8,000 infected. While there has only been one death in America so far, many Americans fear this is only the beginning. Only time will tell us if our fears are unfounded. A table showing the number of diagnosed cases and deaths can be seen here.

We offer a thumbs up to this generous couple for using their wealth to help those less fortunate. If all celebrities would take this as an example, the world would certainly be a better place.

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Sharp’s New, Well-Priced LCDs Can Take Almost Any Shape

Sharp, known for producing LCDs at affordable prices, has announced they have made a breakthrough on LCD displays. Their new displays can be cut in almost any shape. This has numerous applications, such as wide range camera views or safety systems.

Traditionally LCD displays are limited to rectangular shapes. These are the types of displays you see inside TV’s or smartphones. In LCD displays, each pixel is controlled by a chip. In traditional style displays these chips are located on the edge of the display.
With Sharp’s new displays the chips controlling the pixels can be nestled in between the pixels. This allows the displays to be cut in almost any shape. Unfortunately they still bear the limitation of requiring a straight edge along one side of the display. The rest can be cut in any shape, for example a curved edge.
We recently watched this Vine on Jared Haftel’s Sharp LCD through a Chromecast stream and it looked incredible.

Sharp claims that these new displays are ready for mass production, they are just waiting for orders to come in. Early concepts demonstrate the ability to advance the technology in cars. However concepts can take several years to materialize, so they most likely won’t be seen in next year’s models. Sharp says the new displays will cost more than traditional LCD displays, but did not give specifics.

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SodaStream Shares Fall Some More

For all you investors out there reading our stories, here’s a potential value play to keep an eye on. SodaStream may have come out of the starting gate strong, but as their time on the market grows longer, their profits and customer base are dwindling. The company announced their financial figures this morning and the news wasn’t promising, citing a lack of new customers on top of a decreased customer base.

Despite a reputation for being decidedly environmentally friendly, the nation’s gradual shift away from sugar loaded drinks may be to blame for the falling numbers. The company has recognized this and is trying to focus their attention on healthier alternatives. After the CEO’s announcement, the company’s share are rapidly falling today. The anticipated revenue for this year is supposed to hover around $125 million dollars; last year’s profits totaled more than $154 million. Since the announcement, the company’s shares have fallen 20%, down 45% from the beginning of the year.

SodaStream’s biggest competition comes from the nation’s biggest soda company, Coca Cola. Coca Cola has announced a collaboration with the K-Cup manufacturer to create a system where customers can make their own Coca Cola at home. Even with this future Coke/K-Cup combination, soda sales have been in steady decline for at least the past decade. The move for healthier drinks doesn’t seem to be allowing for much room in profit increase. Coca Cola only increased their profits two percent with their popular “Share a Coke” campaign.

SodaStream’s advertising consists mostly of word of mouth and existing customers, both of which don’t seem to be the trick. CEO Daniel Birnbaum says, “We have not succeeded in attracting new consumers to our home carbonation system at the rate we believe should be achieved. The third quarter results are a clear indication that we must alter our course and improve our execution across the board.”

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Detroit Turns To Extreme Bargains To Sell Homes

Detroit is in a state of crisis. But in an effort to get somebody to move to the city, they’ve taken extreme action by offering houses for remarkably low prices.

Most notably, Antjuan Wyatt picked up a 3 bedroom 1,500 house for $1,000 at an auction. Of course the house will end up costing more than $30,000 because of the repairs that will be required. But still, that’s a massive bargain for a home of that size, and in that type of condition.

But it also outlines the problem Detroit is currently having. The city had a population of around 1.8 million during their peak in the 50s. But since then the numbers have dwindled, with recent census results showing the city only has 700,000 remaining, with the numbers dwindling by the day.

I don’t know that extreme bargains are going to be the key to rejuvenating Detroit, but this certainly is an interesting tactic. Speaking to real estate expert Marnie Bennett, the situation is definitely dire, but getting new and interested homeowners into the area can be a great way to improve things dramatically.

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