consumers

Black Friday Trends and Tips

Posted on 11/25/2013 by | The Ultimate Cheapskate | Comments

Money & SavingsBlack Friday, the day after Thanksgiving and the traditional start of the holiday shopping season, seems to be starting earlier every year. First we saw stores opening to hordes of shoppers at 4 a.m. Friday, then at 3 a.m., a few years back. Now some big-box retailers aren’t even waiting that long. They’re opening their doors on Thanksgiving Day this year, hoping families will eat and run to the nearest mall. >> Sign up for the AARP Money newsletter So what …

Rent to Own? It Could Cost You Big Time

Posted on 11/14/2013 by | Money and Work | Comments

Bulletin Today | Money & SavingsAs the holiday shopping season gets under way, you may be tempted to buy that fancy flat-screen TV, a laptop with the latest technologies or a stylish sofa to replace the one your cat uses as a scratching post. (I’m talking to you, Indy). To pay for that big-ticket item, you may be tempted by rent-to-own deals in department stores that now offer them, like Kmart and Sears, according to a Bloomberg report. , rent-to-own deals usually take advantage of …

Holiday Shopping: Will You Spend Less?

Posted on 11/12/2013 by | The Ultimate Cheapskate | Comments

Money & SavingsThis could very well be the year when the Grinch steals Christmas, at least in terms of the gift-giving intentions of some adults. According to a new poll from the personal finance website GoBankingRates.com, 40 percent of some 1,500 survey respondents say they won’t be buying any holiday gifts this year. Blame the economy and the shaky finances of many Americans. The holidays only add to their stress and here’s why: 63 percent of those polled admit they haven’t set …

Stay Safe in the Health Insurance Marketplaces

Posted on 09/20/2013 by | AARP Executive Vice President | Comments

PoliticsThis week, the Obama administration announced a comprehensive, interagency initiative to fight fraud, prevent privacy violations, and protect consumers in the Health Insurance Marketplaces. AARP applauds this effort, and we encourage the administration to continue to take steps to protect and defend consumers from unscrupulous practices — especially people under the age of 65 who will soon be eligible to sign up for the marketplaces. Unfortunately, we know that there are scam artists who will try to take advantage of Americans as …

A New Voice for Homeowners?

Posted on 08/22/2013 by | Washington Watch | Comments

Bulletin Today | PoliticsWashington hears from interest groups that represent everything from medical specialties to cattlemen to professional wrestlers. Now there’s an organization for one of the largest constituencies in the country: homeowners. The current homeownership rate in the United States is 65 percent (down from a high of more than 69 percent in 2004), according to the U.S. Census Bureau. America’s Homeowner Alliance (AHA) is the brainchild of Phil Bracken, a former executive of Wells Fargo Home Mortgage and now the chief …

Smackdown: Consumers vs. Banks

Posted on 09/30/2011 by | AARP Blog Author | Comments

Money & SavingsWant to see people hopping mad? Then tell them, in the midst of a horrible economy, that you’re going to charge them a fee for something previously free. It’s Bank of America’s turn in the hot seat. A month or so ago it was Wells-Fargo, which floated the idea of merely testing additional ATM fees. We put a link to that story on our AARP Facebook page and asked our members if a fee would make them change banks. The …