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Stack of money and toy car on table

Value is important now more than ever and if you’re in need of transportation, buying a car on a budget is a must. There are several factors that must be considered before any large purchase, but vehicles often come with additional expenses you may not be aware of prior to buying.

FIGURE OUT YOUR BUDGET

The first step in buying a car on a budget is to figure out what you can afford. Vehicle cost aside, you have to figure in maintenance expenses (oil changes), possible future larger repair costs (tires), insurance expenses, and even how much you’ll spend on gas. 

For general maintenance, AAA estimates budgeting around $100 per month. This includes oil changes and tire rotations and allows for a cushion for future unexpected expenses. If you purchase a vehicle that comes without a warranty, its a good idea to set aside more savings in case of a major repair being needed – [...]

Happy female behind the wheel of a car.

Knowing the basics of driving and vehicle operation might be enough to get a driver’s license, but it’s not enough to keep you safe. Whether you’re newly licensed or you’ve been driving for decades, it’s easy to have bad habits. Getting too comfortable behind the wheel, feeling invincible, or thinking the rules of the road don’t apply to you are likely to get you or other drivers killed. Driving is a big responsibility and should be treated as such.

Here are three critical safety skills every driver must know:

SMOG. When changing lanes, the SMOG systems is a great way to keep safe. It teaches drivers to SIGNAL their intention to change lanes, check their MIRRORS, look OVER their shoulder to check their blind spot, and then, when it’s clear, to GO. A driver should be able to see the entire front end of a car in the rearview mirror before moving in front of [...]

A young couple sitting at the kitchen table looking at bills.

When it comes to debt, there are all sorts of numbers that get thrown around. Interest rates, credit scores, fees. It can be dizzying. There are two terms that sound similar to each other and are often confused, but which are nothing alike. Those terms are debt-to-credit ratio and debt-to-income ratio. Let’s take a look at these two terms and see what they’re all about.

Debt-to-credit ratio looks at the relationship between the total amount of credit you have been offered, also known as your credit limit, and the amount of money you’ve borrowed so far. Basically, it’s the percentage of credit that you’re using. For example, let’s say you have a credit card with a limit of $2,000 and you’ve charged $500 on that card.

$500 / $2,000 = 0.25 or 25%. Your debt-to-credit ratio is 25%.

You can calculate this number for your total amount of debt (add up the balances on all your cards) compared [...]

Younger man holding a set of car keys.

When you have bad credit, lenders will need to look at factors other than your credit score to determine if you meet the eligibility requirements for a loan. For example, lenders want to know that you can afford the car you want to buy (read our blog to find out some Tips & Tricks To Build A Better Credit History). At CreditYES®, we look at your monthly income to help determine your eligibility. You’ll need to earn at least $1,500 per month before taxes to qualify. But there’s a little more to it than that.

Your lender will also want to know how much of your income is already being used for debts. This is known as your debt-to-income (DTI) ratio. This would include such items as housing payments, student loans, credit card payments, and other loans. Your debt should ideally not use up more than 35% of your income each month. You can learn [...]

5 Important Auto Insurance Terms To Know

Liability, Collision, Comprehensive, Deductible, Subrogation
Man who is frustrated rubbing his brow.

When it comes to car insurance, do you feel completely lost? It’s so full of jargon and insider-talk, how is a regular person supposed to understand? Well, although there are many terms you can leave to the professionals, there are a few you should know to know if you have the best coverage for your situation. We’ll walk you through five important terms you need to know.

Liability Coverage

This is the coverage that protects you if you cause an accident, hurt someone, or cause damage to property. If you are sued by another party, legal expenses may also be covered. The limits of coverage are broken down into two types – property damage and bodily injury – meaning the policy will pay up to the specific limits for the specific damage from the accident. It is required in almost every state and each state sets its own minimum. You can generally buy more coverage [...]