September 20, 2014

Investing in CDs

Before we bought our rental property, I had planned on building a CD ladder with our emergency fund.  But then we ended up using all that money for the down payment for the property.  Now that we are building our savings up some again, I am contemplating the CD Ladder.

So far, I am leaning towards using Ally for this.  I like there website.  It seems really informative and easy to use. Their CD rates seem better than most and the reviews I've read are pretty good.  I haven't decided how I am going to do this yet.  I would like to put $500  in a 12 month cd each month for a year to start.

But the 5 year CD's have such a better return.  Hmmmm... I'll have to do some more thinking on this.

I have decided to take the $1229 in cash that is sitting in my sharebuilder account and depositing it into a cd.  The money has been sitting to be re-invested for a while now.  I don't touch that money anyways.    The APY for a 5 year cd with ally is 2%.  Estimated Earnings for the 5 years is $129.  It's better than having the money just sit in a savings account or my sharebuilder account.

Job Hunt 2014 Updates

I'm still looking for a new job.  I'm a little discouraged because I never thought it would be this long of a process.  I've been applying to jobs since March but really stepped up the job hunt just a few months ago.

I've interviewed with 4 companies: One that didn't sound like a good match to me, Two that told me that I was over qualified even though the job listing never stated it was entry level, and the fourth was for a seasonal job.  Even though the listing never said seasonal and the 2 people interviewing me didn't think it was important to tell me this until I asked them.  I had realized it might be seasonal when I was doing more research on the company to prepare for my interview.

I've decided to start saving job listings when I see them.  I get a lot of them through emails and check indeed.com on my phone each day.  But I am only going to sit down and apply to them all once a week.  Sometimes the application process is ridiculously long and I feel like I'm spending too many evenings working on this.

I'm lucky that I am still employed and hopefully will be for a long time.  That gives me plenty of time to look for the job that is the perfect fit for me.  I just wish when companies are advertising, they would include all of the important information so that I'm not wasting so much of my time and theirs.

September 19, 2014

Fighting the late fees...

I received a notice yesterday from our condo association stating that I haven't paid condo dues since July.  The late charge is $25 per condo per month, $100 total in late fees.  This happened one other time and I was able to prove that I had, in fact, paid the fees.  So I didn't panic.

I pay the condo fees through my banks bill pay service.  I thought the fees were do the 15th of the month but just found out they are do by the 10th.  The lady that handles the condo fees usually takes 3 or 4 weeks to cash the checks so when I noticed the money hadn't been deducted from our account yet, I didn't think anything of it.

According to the bank, they sent both of the checks when they were supposed to. So....

  1. Called Condo Association and told them I had confirmation that the checks were sent.
  2. Condo Association Lady stated she almost just picked up the phone and called us because we always paid on time and she thought something wasn't right that they hadn't received the checks yet.  (That would have been nice of her instead of sending me a late notice.)
  3. Condo Lady confirmed she received Septembers payment but not Augusts.  And since it was never cashed that proves she didn't receive it.  (Even though she usually takes forever to cash them so how was I to know?)  Late fees are now down to $50 instead of $100.
  4. Called bank.  They were very nice and said they would check into it but it could take up to 3 days.  Also, was told that if there are late fees they would cover them.  It's a benefit of using the bill pay service.  I told the bank guy, "That's great! Because I am being charged $50 in late fees."  We'll see how it works out.  I have a hard time believing the bank will actually cover the late fees.  Plus, I didn't have the bank send the money until the 11th and the notice from the condo association says they were due on the 10th.  So the bank could just say I paid them late anyways.  I always have sent the money by the 15th and never had anyone say anything to me about it being late before.
  5. If the bank doesn't pay the late fees, I'm going to email her the confirmation from the bank that shows they did send the check.  Not sure if that will help or not.  Really, in 9 years that we lived here, we have never been late so you would think they would cut us some slack this one time.  Especially since I have confirmation the check was sent.  
I'll let you know how it goes.