I'm starting a new feature at The Coin Jar: "Finance Find." Occasionally I'll feature an interesting website or resource I come across in my travels that offers sound advice on personal finance or can help you better manage your own finances.
If you read my last article on co-signing, you saw I referenced an article on the Federal Trade Commission's website. Poking around the site a bit, I found that the "For Consumers" area is actually more helpful than I realized. It provides a lot of good--though unspectacular and basic--information on a variety of topics. Want tips on how to use less gasoline? Looking for facts on Lasik eye surgery? Wondering if prepaid phone cards are really a deal? FTC.gov can help.
The FTC's purpose, generally, is to prevent unfair methods of competition in business and provide consumer protection. They are the federal agency that requires businesses to do things such as put care labels in clothes and warranties on their products. They hear from consumers who get ripped off, and help write the laws to prevent it. So they are a good resource to become better informed as a consumer. And if you've been ripped off, they want to hear from you.
Here's an interesting tidbit from their website that I didn't know: If you buy something from a salesperson at your home you have three days to "cool off" and cancel the sale for a full refund. I wish I'd learned about this earlier. A friend of mine recently had buyer's remorse after a crafty carpet salesman pushed her into buying a carpet she couldn't afford.
So check it out when you get a chance: www.ftc.gov.
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