Tag Archives: money

The Open Road: the Life of a Trucker

FRAN: You should go back to school. You should see how many credits—
ANTHONY: Nah, I’m thinking the open road. Me behind the wheel, on the open road. You can train to haul one of those big rigs in like no time, see the whole country right? That’s it, that’s what I’m gonna do.

Trucker Training:

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http://bit.ly/19H1m4o

In order to receive a Commercial Driver’s License, the state of Massachusetts requires that you be at least 21 years of age and have not had your driver’s license or right to operate taken away by the Registrar.

From the MA DMV about Commercial Driver Education:

If you want a Commercial Driver’s License, you’re going to have to pass some tough federal and state requirements. The Massachusetts Registry of Motor Vehicles (RMV) requires you to take and pass a 50-question exam, with a minimum of 40 correct answers to pass.

And that’s just to get the learner’s permit. Obtaining a Class A or Class B CDL requires you to pass a road test that will encompass a vehicle inspection and driving in a closed course and on the road.

Many CDL applicants take classes at private truck driving schools. These classes offer both classroom and hands-on instruction and are designed to help you pass the written and road exams. The schools even provide trucks and licensed instructors to help you pass the exam.

The good news: You can learn everything you need to know in 10 days to two weeks and classes are offered regularly. The bad news: These schools can be expensive. Expect to pay $5,000 and more to attend one of these sessions.

CDL Career Now lists CDL training facilities in and around Boston.

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http://bit.ly/1bHgp45

On the Road:

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) specifies that truckers are limited to 11 cumulative hours driving in a 14-hour period, following a rest period of no less than 10 consecutive hours. Drivers employed by carriers in “daily operation” may not work more than 70 hours within any period of 8 consecutive days. These stipulations are put in place to make sure that drivers’ abilities are not impaired by exhaustion.

Some drivers are paid by the hour, and some by the mile.

For information about life on the road, check out www.lifeasatrucker.com

Furniture Shinin’ Cause She Windexes It

LISA:
Hell no I ain’t cookin’ squat. Joe’s mother does it, the old bat, and I say let her. Whatever I make it’s too salty, it’s too sweet, it’s too hot, it’s too cold. She said that once, that what I made was too cold, once, and I looked at her, all the plastic on her furniture shinin’ at me through the kitchen doorway cause she windexes it, every day she windexes it like anyone’s ever allowed to sit on it and she says that to me, that what I made was too cold and I looked right at her, I looked right at her and I said, “It’s freakin’ jello and cool whip, it’s supposed to be cold”. First Thanksgiving we were married I told Joe, I told Joe, the best thing I make is reservations.

Covering new furniture in plastic is considered a way to keep it clean and in good condition for as long as possible. For families for whom an expensive furniture set is a one-time investment, keeping it in pristine condition is important, even if this comes at the expense of a soft surface to sit on or a couch that doesn’t shine in the sunlight.

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Re-Fi for Beginners

DAVE: All these papers?  You’re either a professor or a lawyer.
ALINE: Thanks for helping—
DAVE: Which is it?
ALINE: Thanks for helping.
DAVE: I say, I say think of the trees. 
ALINE: I’m…I’m refinancing.
DAVE: Like the Lorax.

Aline’s had her condo for at least five years, but her long term boyfriend Clive has moved out, and she’s changing jobs. It’s time to refinance that sucker. So what does that mean?

SFGate’s Home Guide provides this useful summary:

People get mortgages to make home purchases possible, but falling interest rates and other economic factors might spur borrowers to look for ways to save money on the loans. Refinancing provides an option for homeowners to reduce monthly payments or pay less interest over the course of the loan.

Refinancing means basically applying for a loan all over again. Lenders require new home appraisals for refinance transactions, even if the original appraisal is only a few years old. They also generally require verification of employment, family income and ongoing debts. A caveat in the refinance process is that any changes to the applicant’s status since the approval of the original loan reveal themselves. Recent drops in savings accounts, for example, might serve as red flags for lenders.

Refinancing trades the original loan for another loan with rates and terms that better serve the financial interests of the homeowner. Borrowers can choose between 15- and 30-year terms, and fixed vs. variable interest rate loans.

Benefits of refinancing include saving money on monthly mortgage payments, which can free a homeowner from burdensome or sometimes unaffordable loans. The lower payments homeowners make after refinancing free up cash for them to save or spend on other necessities. When owners change a 30-year mortgage to a 15-year mortgage, they potentially save thousands of dollars in interest over the life of the loan. Refinancing an adjustable-rate mortgage into a fixed-rate loan provides homeowners the security of an interest rate that locks in and stays the same over the loan term. Their new monthly mortgage amount stays the same, too, over the life of the loan.

Refinancing has fees associated with it, so owners must spend enough time in the home to recoup the investment they made with the savings gained by refinancing. Those considering selling in a few years might be better off just sticking with the mortgage they currently have.

mortgage refi

Realtor.com urges you to watch out for the following potential obstacles to the re-fi:

Four potential problems you might face:

– You just refinanced a short while ago.
– Your credit score has gone down.
– You missed a payment on your current mortgage.
– You moved out of your home, making it an investment home.

If you just got a mortgage loan, you will need to wait before refinancing. Some lenders will allow you to refinance after one year, others will want a longer period. On the whole, lenders don’t like the idea that you are refinancing often. They make their money on longer term mortgage loans.

If your credit score went down, you might not be eligible to refinance. Or if you are able to, the rates might not be as favorable for you. Lenders give better rates to borrowers with excellent credit.

If you have recently missed even one payment on your mortgage, you probably will not be eligible for a mortgage for a year or two. Not only will your credit score plummet, but lenders especially look at your mortgage history when considering a loan for you. They worry that if you missed a payment once, it could become a pattern. It makes them nervous.