Friday, July 30, 2010
Thursday, July 29, 2010
10 Hints and Tips for Using the Amazon Kindle
By Marco Gustafsson
The Amazon Kindle is one of the more popular of the e-readers, but by no means one of the first. That distinction belongs to the Rocket eBook and the Softbook introduced in 1998, with the Kindle not appearing until 2007. Nevertheless, it is often best not to be first, and the Kindle ironed out many of the problems associated with previous machines.
In taking the accolade of an 'advancement' in its field, any item of hardware will have introduced innovations and features that the general public might need help with, and here are ten hints and tips on how to get the best from your Kindle, although many of these also apply to other e-readers. These do not refer to how to use the various buttons, or most other aspects of the Kindle that you will learn by reading the Instructions, but they are things that you would only find out through using the device.
1. Read the Instruction Manual
Many technophiles are so confident that they don't ever need to read the manual. However, many of the problems people come across with their Kindle could have been avoided had they done just that, and had 'lowered' themselves to 'read the instructions'! That's what they are there for. However, given that you have done that, here are some other tips for using the Amazon Kindle, most of which are not mentioned in the instructions.
2. Free eBooks to Read
You can get free books from the public domain - in fact over 300,000 of them. Among them are Alice's Adventures in Wonderland, Grimm's Dairy Tales and many of Mark Twain's, Charles Dickens's and William Shakespeare's works. You can even download the Declaration of Independence free of charge.
Some of these are available on Kindle's own free library, from where you can download selected books using 3G, and because it is an Amazon site, the format is ideal for your Kindle. Project Gutenberg contains a massive selection of eBooks: that is what it was designed for. To render them compatible with the Kindle, just download them in .mobi format. As it is noted in the article "A Review of Websites About eReaders and eBooks", not all of these books are in the public domain, so make sure that you read the copyright license inside the eBook and adhere to its requirements when using it (Digital Book Readers). There are others useful sites, such as Kindlepedia that will change any Wikipedia page into an eBook for your Kindle.
3. Avoiding Image Burn
As with most screen displays, your Kindle screen can suffer from image burn from static text. This can occur if you leave the same page up for any length of time, but there is a way to protect your screen. You can't use a screensaver (yet), but if you refresh the screen by clicking Alt+G then you can resolve the problem.
4. Using Kindle Shortcuts
The Kindle offers you a number of shortcuts. Here are some of the more useful:
Alt+T displays the current time.
Alt+P will play MP3 files you have stored on an SD card.
Alt+ F will go to the next MP3 on the list.
Alt+SHIFT+R will reset your Kindle. Use this soft reset if your Kindle freezes when in use.
Alt+B will bookmark the page you are on.
Alt+SHIFT+G will take a screenshot of the page you are on.
Alt+H will move the cursor one space right when typing.
Alt+J will do the same to the left.
Alt+Backspace will clear all text.
5. Using the Read-to Me Feature
The read-to-me feature is a text to speech option that enables the Kindle to work a bit like an audio book. The speech is computer-generated of course, similar to ordinary PC equivalents using a word library, so it does not flow quite the same as an audio book, but it is good nevertheless. The tip here is that if you are holding the device when you are listening, such as if you are on a train or bus, or are taking a walk, then if you accidentally press the menu button or the space bar, the reading will be stopped. This can be a nuisance, so in such situations it is a good tip to hold your Kindle upside down: you are then less likely to hit these buttons. Even better, don't hold it! Keep it in a bag or a pocket.
6. Find Your Location
Amazon's 3G CDMA module has a location capability that can be used in Google Maps:
Alt+1 - shows your currently location
Alt+2 - shows nearby gas stations
Alt+3 - shows nearby restaurants
Alt+5 - shows a custom keyword used nearby
7. Fast Forwarding
To fast reverse or forward through your book pages: press Alt and hold it down while pressing the Previous or Next keys.
8. Defragmenting your Kindle
When you delete anything from your Kindle, it leaves a space in memory. When you load up a book it will use that space and perhaps some other spaces available, until the whole file is uploaded. This means each of your books could be stored in small areas all over the memory. You can defrag the device by attaching it to your computer and running your computer defrag utility, pointing to the Kindle as the drive to defragment. This can have a remarkable effect on the speed of your Kindle.
9. Newspaper Subscriptions
Many people use their Kindle with a newspaper subscription, but some papers are better suited than others for the Kindle. It makes sense to use a trial copy first: you can get these very cheaply just to try out, so do that first before making your mind up.
10. Saving the Battery with 3G
The Kindle battery life is good, but if you use 3G connectivity then your battery will run down quickly. The only way to turn 3G off is in the settings, so make sure that if you are not using it for a while, go to Settings and turn 3G off. Even if you are not using it, it will still drain your battery unless you do this. Always turn off Wi-Fi when your signal is bad.
These are just 10 hints and tips for using the Amazon Kindle. There are more, but these are some of those that come up most frequently.
Marco Gustafsson is author of articles on ebook readers, e-inc technology and electronic books. Visit Digital Book Readers to find more information and discover new dimension of reading.
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Kindle International - Getting Hold of the Top Selling eBook Reader Around the World
The Kindle International is the latest offering from Amazon - an eBook reading device that works all around the world! The Kindle itself has been out for a while now, alongside its larger Kindle DX version, but it's left people wondering 'when will there be a Kindle UK?', 'what about a Kindle Canada?' and just how long they have to wait to get their hands on the hottest gadget around.
The Wait is Over
The good news for customers around the world is that the wait is over! Kindle (and now Kindle DX) is officially available in more than 100 countries around the world! Not only does this mean that the Kindle ships to you, but it also means that you have access to the wireless download service, Kindle's very own bookstore stocking all the titles you could ever need!
Kindle International is Great for Those Who Travel
Not only is the Kindle International perfect for people who live outside of the United Stated, it's also perfect for those in the US who frequently travel and may need to stock up on their Kindle books while they are away. Amazon's Kindle really is taking the international market by storm!
Where to Buy Kindle International?
The thing that's important for international customers to realise is that you still need to buy Kindle from Amazon.com: it has not yet been released on local versions of the online retailer. This just means that you need to make your purchase from the.com version of the site, pay your shipping free and the Kindle will ship to you within the estimated delivery time.
Remember, rel=nofollow Kindle International is available to customers from: the United Kingdom, Australia, Spain, South Africa, Japan, Germany, Hong Kong and more. For best results, check reviews to find out just how the Kindle is going to work in your country.
Why Buy Kindle?
Lastly, unless you haven't heard just why Kindle is such a hot item these days, take a look at some of these features:
o Ability to read PDF files and Amazon's own Kindle format,
o Ships to 100+countries,
o Lighter than your average book,
o Store over 3,000 digital books,
o Easy to use,
o Ink-link display makes it easy on the eyes,
o And much more!
Kindle has been the biggest seller for months now, and now you can get your hands on one no matter where you live!
Kindle is the hottest selling gadget without a doubt, and if you want my review of the new International Version just check it out here: http://www.squidoo.com/Kindle-International
Article Source: [http://EzineArticles.com/?Kindle-International---Getting-Hold-of-the-Top-Selling-eBook-Reader-Around-the-World&id=3542537] Kindle International - Getting Hold of the Top Selling eBook Reader Around the World
The Kindle - Amazon E-book Reader
By: Paul Rodgers
The battle of the giants, Sony eBook Reader and Amazon Kindle is fierce. The Kindle reader is now available from Amazon. Amazon Kindle is a revolutionary portable reader that wirelessly downloads books, newspapers, magazines and blogs to a crisp, high-resolution electronic paper display that looks and reads like real paper, even in bright sunlight. But overall the most important development in the Kindle reader is that it is going to break the stereotype that eBooks are not usable and convenient like normal books. Actually, Amazon's Kindle reader is an excellent product and a person can simply order books directly through the device without integrating with a PC or other wireless device - the Kindle has its own wireless connection that operates in the background.
Kindle's mission statement is to eliminate the need for hard copy documents, by providing you with a all-in-one reference source. Kindle is the first ebook reader with its own cellular wireless connection to let you get new books anytime, almost anywhere when the mood strikes. Kindle has a standard-layout keyboard that makes it possible for users to search the Kindle Store, their entire library of purchased content, and Wikipedia. Kindle simply plays MP3 files in random order as background music without any user control over the order of play. Kindle holds over 200 titles and Kindle does not use WiFi, but EVDO like cell phones. Kindle has no monthly wireless bills, service plans, or commitments.
Amazon pays for Kindle's wireless connectivity so you will never see a monthly wireless bill for shopping the Kindle Store. Using the same 3G network as advanced cell phones, we deliver your content using our own wireless delivery system, Amazon Whispernet. Amazon has complied with Linux licensing by making its modified source code freely available. But whether you choose to jump aboard now or later, Amazon's entry into the eBook market is a BIG deal -- it forever changes the game.
The same Amazon shopping experience customers are accustomed to is offered in the Kindle Store, including customer reviews, personalized recommendations, Click purchasing, and everyday low prices. The email service supports several formats of open-source books as well as Microsoft Word but not PDFs and text-based, but not image-based PDFs.
1- Amazon has actually out-Appled Apple in ease-of-use. Like the iPhone, Kindle lets you buy media-books and periodicals, in this case - without your PC.
2- Amazon's $9.99-and-under book pricing means book fans can buy more books. They can look up words in a dictionary, Wikipedia or on the Web right from the device.
3- Amazon already sells books. The company long ago figured out the complexities of online book distribution and most book buyers already trust Amazon.
In many ways, the Amazon Kindle is the ultimate ebook reader, but to see just how far that statement holds true, you will just have to try it for yourself. Recommendation: If you typically carry a large stack of books with you or travel semi-regularly, the Amazon Kindle is a no-brainer. The Amazon kindle is definitely a fantastic selection and can definitely be upgraded.
The Amazon Kindle is the first ebook reader that I have truly loved. The Kindle is a game-changing revolution in buying, reading, managing and using electronic books and other content. It's also the hottest holiday gift you can buy this year for anyone who loves to read.
About the Author
Paul Rodgers specializes in marketing fitness, diets, health and beauty products and services.
You are invited to visit The Kindle - Amazon E-book Reader
(ArticlesBase SC #356476)
Article Source: http://www.articlesbase.com/ - The Kindle - Amazon E-book Reader
Monday, July 26, 2010
Applying For Government Grants - Should You?
Each year, the United States government is required by law to make millions of dollars available for grant purposes. Government grants are given to different individuals and organizations for numerous reasons - and these reasons range from scientific research to artistic pursuits. Grants are given to pay for education, pay off debt, bills, housing and more. If you have a project or a specific need in mind, and you think that you are eligible for a certain grant - then there's no harm in applying.
If you need money for a specific project or purpose, instead of loaning money, you might want to try applying for a grant first. There are plenty of reasons as to why government grants are helpful.
Government Grants Are Free
The money you receive from government grants do not need to be repaid. Whether you use the money to pay for college or to put up a small business, what you get in the form of a grant aid is certainly free. You do not need any collateral, and you certainly do not need to pay the money back. This means that you can finish college without any debt to pay after, or that you can put up the business you always wanted even if you still don't have money for capital. The money that you receive from these grants is also non - taxable. This means that you will get the full amount that you are eligible to receive.
Everyone Can Apply For Grants
Another great reason to apply for grants is that everyone can apply for them - as long as they meet eligibility requirements. These eligibility requirements usually focus more on an individual's financial standing, race or ethnicity and the like. There are no need for credit checks or collateral, which are usual requirements for loans and mortgages.
There Are Grants For A Lot Of Things
There are plenty of grants available such as school grants, medical grants, debt relief grants, car grants, tax grants, real estate grants and more. Because of the numerous categories, then there's certainly a chance for you to find a grant where your need will fall under.
Grants Can Be Found Easily
Government grants are easy to find. There are numerous websites that serve as agencies and tools to finding the grants that are suitable for your needs. There are some websites that require payment to use their services - but there are also free websites that provide valuable information.
You Can Apply For More Than One Grant
There is no limit to the number of grants that you can apply for - as long as you meet the requirements of each grant. This means that you can apply for a housing grant and a medical grant - and get money for both. What's important is that you meet the requirements for each grant and are eligible for both.
You should remember that sending an application for a government grant does not guarantee that you already get awarded with the money. The agencies that provide the grant money will still have to take a look at your application. But still, there's certainly no reason why you shouldn't apply for government grants. If you think you need money for a specific purpose - then there's no harm in applying. Your application might just get approved. [http://www.free-grant-money.org/federal-student-aid.shtml]Free government grants available and you can apply for them all as long as you qualify. See if you qualify and learn how to apply today at HowToApplyForAGrant.org
Article Source: [http://EzineArticles.com/?Applying-For-Government-Grants---Should-You?&id=4426124] Applying For Government Grants - Should You?
Buy Foreclosure Homes and Secure Your Financial Future
By: Joseph B. Smith
What makes real estate foreclosure market so hot? You can buy foreclosure homes at staggeringly low prices and expect to earn huge revenues in less time and effort. Foreclosure homes are flooding the market because many homeowners are unable to pay their mortgage for varied reasons, including divorce, sickness, death in the family and unemployment. Mortgage lenders, either banks or the government, prefer to sell foreclosure properties in their portfolio and recover their investments. And what better way to dispose these properties immediately than by selling them at outrageously low prices.
Buying Government Foreclosures:
Government agencies such as the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) and Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) act as insurers to allow eligible persons to buy a home. In the event that homeowners fail to pay their mortgage, lenders will inform the government agencies that in return will pay the mortgage loan balance to lenders. In return, the HUD or VA will take over the troubled properties. The agencies will then re-sell these properties immediately in an effort to recover their investments.
Buying Bank Foreclosures:
People who failed to pay their mortgage loans will find themselves face to face with foreclosures. Depending on the state's rules concerning foreclosure properties, the usual is three months after the first receipt of a notice of default for foreclosure action to proceed. You can either buy foreclosure homes at auctions or real estate owned.
At foreclosure auctions, you get a chance to bid on bank foreclosure homes. Properties that remained unsold after an auction are called real estate owned. This means that these houses are returned to banks that will immediately find quick ways to sell them in order to recover their investments. Also, it would not be good for the bank's image to have a long list of foreclosure homes in their portfolio. It reflects inefficiency on the part of the banks.
There are thousands of foreclosure properties on the market. So do not buy foreclosure homes as soon as you see one that took your fancy. It would not hurt to compare at least three foreclosure homes.
About the Author
Joseph B. Smith has been educating buyers on the finer points of Buy Foreclosure Homes at ForeclosureDeals.com for over ten years. Contact Joseph B. Smith through ForeclosureDeals.com if you need help finding information about Buy Foreclosure Homes.
(ArticlesBase SC #2904068)
Article Source: http://www.articlesbase.com/ - Buy Foreclosure Homes and Secure Your Financial Future
Sunday, July 25, 2010
Start Your Own Business And Taking Control Of Your FutureBy: June Sabe
New businesses are the backbone of the American economy. They provide new innovations, new jobs, and fresh concepts to the business industry. And owning a business is the dream of many Americans as well. Being your own boss has been ranked as one of the key goals of many Americans. The attraction of the freedom of running your own business, with no limitations or glass ceilings is impossible to deny. This mutualism has created a huge growth of small businesses in the nation, and today, many more people think about owning their own businesses than ever before. But starting a business requires money. Without start up capital, very few people have the resources available to launch a successful business idea. A new business needs a dependable source of income until it can generate the profits it needs to cover its own costs and produce an income. A unsecured start up loan can alleviate a lot of stress.
If you're thinking about starting your own business, you are probably in need of a start up loan. Unless you have a significant amount of money saved up, a unsecured start up loan is the first step in turning the blueprints of your new business idea into a reality. With a start up business loan, you can get the tools you need to make your first start the right start. You can build a strong customer base right from the beginning, a key factor in initiating and maintaining a successful business.
If you're starting a business, it's more than just a job. It's a personal dream and a quest for success. This idea may leave you feeling simultaneously liberated and inspired. But it also has an edge. Specifically, it's also your obligation to finance it beyond the "I've got an idea" stage. Starting a business requires so much more than an ingenious idea, and even more than planning, marketing strategies, and a well thought out future. How do you get start up business financing that will either advance your idea to the point where it can attract outside capital, or perhaps jump - start you into profitable operations?
There are several options that an individual may take into consideration. If you have nothing, you may find it's difficult. If you have personal assets, the hard part is putting them at risk, and doing so is the rite of passage to both success and failure.
Obtaining financing can sometimes be the most grueling part of starting a new business. The loan approval process for a business startup loan sometimes seems like a maze, with stringent credit requirements, complicated business plans, and paperwork full of terms that are like a foreign language to the layman prospective business owner simply trying to get a loan. Options can be rather slim and unfitting when it comes to financing for the new business owner; unrealistic collateral requirements and proof of projected business profitability can sometime seem more like a joke than a reality.
Collateral is often the biggest obstacle to the prospective business owner. Not only does a new business not yet have any commercial collateral to provide; but it is asking a lot for an entrepreneur to put his hard earned personal assets at risk in order to start a new business venture. Yet, without collateral, getting a business financing can sometimes seem impossible.
The good news is, though rare, some companies to have specialized programs for exactly this scenario. An unsecured business start up loan can get a new business owner the funding he needs to cover initial business costs, without having to provide collateral and place his or her assets at risk. With this type of financing plan, the lender utilizes something the borrower has worked hard for and should be able to take advantage of - his good or bad credit. With this approach, the lender can still lend an unsecured start up loan at great rates and with a variety of programs.
Applying for a unsecured small business start up loan is easy, all the business owner need to do is just go on line and submit their loan details. Then the lenders will refer back to you with the loan decision in a few days.
About the Author
Want to find out about freezing cherries and freezing okra? Get tips from the Freezing Tips website.
Getting A Cash Back Debit Card
The cash back credit card is the right card for the people who cannot get access to a cash rewards card. With this card you would be in full control of your spending and also get great rewards at the same time.
The concept of this rewards debit card is a new idea that just took shape. In some cases you have cash back reward cards which are very popular right now. Because of this reason you will need to do some research to find out which card is right for you.
There are some various steps to go through before you actually get this type of card. First you will need to open an account at a local bank to receive a credit card, when looking for this service most of the banks don't have but some new bank do to attract new customers.
You can also get in contact with various credit card companies to obtain a charge card. The type of service security you get depends on the area you are from, and this works just like how the debit card to the bank account works.
But make sure this card offer better or similar benefits as a debit card does. The next step is to open a PayPal account which is located online, this service will allow you to access and transfer funds easily.
To create a PayPal account you won't have to put in money you will have to enter your personal details and verify the account with your credit card.
The next and final thing is to go online and compare quotes to see if the choice you made was the best one, if you had made it already.
Colin Scott is a financial adviser. You can find more info on [http://www.applyformastercard.net/reward-points.htm]MasterCard small business credit cards at [http://www.applyformastercard.net/reward-points.htm]http://www.ApplyForMasterCard.net/Reward-Points.htm.
Article Source: [http://EzineArticles.com/?Getting-A-Cash-Back-Debit-Card&id=4702335] Getting A Cash Back Debit Card
Saturday, July 24, 2010
How to Refinance Second Mortgage
Refinance Second Mortgage Techniques
Especially now, homeowners with a second mortgage may want to consider refinancing. Although it isn't necessarily a good financial move for everyone, the decision to refinance can be immensely beneficial to those who carefully assess their individual situations and needs and come to the conclusion that it will work to their advantage. The decision to refinance should mostly depend on how much your home is worth, how much you owe on it, and whether or not you plan on staying in it for a significant period of time. You should also consider the costs of the refinance, the underlying reasons for it, and the type of loan terms. If you're wondering to yourself whether it would be a good idea to refinance your second mortgage, the following are all good reasons to go through with it:
1. To do away with private mortgage insurance, which is often unnecessary and expensive
2. To get a better interest rate
3. To lower your monthly payments
4. To combine your first and second mortgages into one loan and one convenient payment
5. To match your current loan term with your current financial circumstances
6. To take advantage of cash-out refinancing and receive cash back at closing
Keep in mind that once the paperwork is completed, you may not be able to cancel, so make sure you are confident in your decision before you sign anything.
How to Go About Refinancing a Second Mortgage
If you end up deciding that refinancing your second mortgage would be a smart idea, but don't exactly know how to go about the process, the following step-by-step instructions should help you get started:
1. Crunch some numbers yourself or use one of the many mortgage calculators that can be found online to determine whether or not refinancing is the best decision for you.
2. Ensure that you're in a good financial position. Start by pulling your rel=nofollow [http://www.ftc.gov/bcp/edu/pubs/consumer/credit/cre34.shtm]credit report, and once you look it over, dispute any mistakes you may find right away. If you find any negative information in your report that may be bringing down your credit score, try your best to get it resolved. Then, make sure to add money to your savings account. Since you will probably face closing costs associated with the refinance, you will want to show to your lender that you have adequate funds to cover the charges.
3. Find several different rel=nofollow [http://www.personalhomeloanmortgages.com/articles_mortgage_lender.asp]lenders who can provide information on how to refinance a second mortgage using one of their programs. Compare rate information, loan terms, and lending fees, and decide which lender best suits your needs and meets your desired terms. It's best to not settle with the first loan offer you receive. Shop around and compare, and don't move on until you find a lender with whom you're comfortable and confident.
4. It's possible that some of fees associated with the refinance, like the appraisal and title fees, may be able to be waived, so try to negotiate with your lender.
5. Look over all the paperwork carefully, decide how much money, if any, you will need to cover closing costs, and make sure to ask any questions you may have.
6. Before you sign the paperwork, carefully review all the terms of the mortgage refinance one more time. Be sure to know if you will be able to make the required payments, and know what will happen if you can't for any reason. Once everything checks out and you're satisfied with the agreement, go ahead and sign and start enjoying the benefits of your refinance!
To Learn More Information About Home Loan Mortgages and To Apply Today Visit Us At ==> http://www.personalhomeloanmortgages.com/
Article Source: [http://EzineArticles.com/?How-to-Refinance-Second-Mortgage&id=4520696] How to Refinance Second Mortgage
Small Business Loans - Your Options and Ways to Get Approved
Small Businesses Have Many Options When It Comes to Loans
Most small businesses will need some financial help from time to time. For many of them, a small business loan can be the difference between staying afloat and complete failure. If you find that you are in need of lending, it is crucial to understand available small business solutions, particularly the different kinds of business loans available and how to get approved for them.
Getting Approval for Small Business Loans
When it comes to obtaining financing for their operations, small businesses are typically most concerned with getting approved for whatever kind of loan they apply for. Therefore, it is important to understand what lenders will be looking at during the approval process for each particular kind of loan, since lender has its own set of criteria for approval of each kind of loan. Before you apply for lending, it is extremely important to first contact the lender and study their approval criteria so that you can decide whether or not your business meets these criteria before you authorize the lender to begin reviewing your business.
Major Types of Small Business Loans
The major types of small business loans available are:
Micro Loan - a small loan, typically $5,000-$35,000, for small businesses starting up or recently established. All require some type of collateral and that owners fulfill training and business planning requirements. They can normally be used for practically any business purpose, including working capital, inventory, and supplies.
SBA Loan - an excellent source of funding from private-sector lenders, such as banks, that is supported by the Small Business Administration (SBA) of the U.S. government. The SBA offers several kinds of loan guarantee programs, and with an SBA loan, there is no limit to the amount of capital a business can request. Approval for SBA loans relies on the owner holding some level of stake in the business, a strong business plan, and a good personal credit score.
Franchise Financing - a specialized loan reserved for franchisees of established, well-known franchises.
Development Financing - a small business loan that provides long-term, fixed-rate financing for various major fixed assets, such as land and buildings. Designed to contribute to the economic development of communities, Certified Development Companies (CDC) work with the SBA and private-sector lenders, such as banks, to provide this kind of financing.
Import Export Loans - Export financing of goods and services in the U.S. through different loan, insurance, and guarantee programs.
Moises Reyes is a writer for [http://www.ChamberofCommerce.com]http://www.ChamberofCommerce.com, the only National Chamber of Commerce.
We provide tools and solutions to help businesses develop and manage their online reputation.
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Article Source: [http://EzineArticles.com/?Small-Business-Loans---Your-Options-and-Ways-to-Get-Approved&id=4589409] Small Business Loans - Your Options and Ways to Get Approved
A Guide on Writing a Credit Repair Letter
Checking our credit report at least twice a year should be a habit. However, not all of us are aware of what to do after finding errors and inaccuracies on our reports. To whom should we address the letter? To help you with this, below are tips on what to do after discovering errors in your credit report.
Verify the wrong information. Before even thinking about filing a dispute, make sure that you are in the position to complain. Look closely in your credit report and carefully analyze the items that seem to be erroneous. For instance, if you think the charges are incorrect or have already been paid, check your receipts or past billing statements. You do not want to go through the process of disputing only to find that you were the one mistaken all along. If you really think that you have a valid reason to file a dispute, then you can now proceed to the next step.
Send a dispute letter. Where should you send your dispute letter? This must be addressed to the issuing credit bureau. Address your letter to the Complaint Department of the Bureau to make sure that it will get the attention it deserves.
Observe correct letter format. A letter of dispute is a business letter and therefore you should observe correct formatting. Your personal information- complete name, address, telephone number and e-mail address- should be written at the top of your letter so that the bureau would immediately know who is sending the letter and where to send their response.
Explain the problem clearly. You can observe sample credit dispute letter from the web but it is recommended that you compose your own letter. Enumerate the items you want to dispute and explain why you want them to be corrected or deleted from your credit file. Specify if the items you are disputing are wrong or if some data are missing, or if it is incomplete.
Be polite and request the credit bureau to correct these wrong information in your credit report. Include a copy of your credit report and mark the items in dispute so you can refer to them in your letter more easily.
Enclose copies of supporting documents. If you have bills, receipts, transaction records that can help in clarifying the items you are disputing, enclose them in your letter as this can speed up the result of the investigation. You must also enumerate all the documents you have enclosed in the mail at the last part of your letter.
Follow up. It will usually take up to 30 days before the investigation is completed. Nevertheless, it is also recommended to make a follow-up call regarding the status of your dispute at least a week after sending your letter. This way, you would know for sure that your letter has been received and that action is already taking place.
Copyright (c) 2010 Suzy Vanstrusen
A credit analyst and a writer of EzCreditRepairSolutions.com, Suzy Vanstrusen has been providing consumers with tips and tricks in repairing your credit. Check the site for more tips on [http://www.ezcreditrepairsolutions.com]how to fix your credit
Article Source: [http://EzineArticles.com/?A-Guide-on-Writing-a-Credit-Repair-Letter&id=4721464] A Guide on Writing a Credit Repair Letter
Small Business Interview - Patriot Express Loans to Veteran-Owned Businesses - Are They Working?
Editor's note. This is an excerpt from an interview with an SBA small business loan provider, relating to the program known as U.S. Patriot Express. This program is for business loans available to veteran-owned ventures (active duty service members, veterans, and their widows and spouses), whether start-ups or existing businesses. The purpose of this interview is to get a real, in the trenches, view of how the program works from someone who does it every day. Does it is really benefit our veterans?
Excerpts of Interview
US Patriot Express Loan Program
Q. Greetings, and thank you for giving me the opportunity to speak with you.
A. My pleasure.
Q. I would like to begin by focusing on the U.S. Patriot Express Initiative Loan Program. Fancy title, but what is it exactly?
A. It's a long winded way of saying the Bush Administration came up with a vet loan program for business owners. These are loans for veteran-own business owners. The funding comes from private lenders and banks that are licensed with the SBA. As an incentive for the lenders to make the loan, they are guaranteed for default, namely are reimbursed 85% of the value of loan. I have to tell you, this makes a big difference because it really motivates the lenders. It gets them off the dime and makes them more willing to open up their coffers.
Q. So the money doesn't come directly from the VA or the Small Business Administration?
A. Right. The VA isn't involved in loaning the money. However, they are huge supporters of the program. The SBA directly loans taxpayers monies only under its disaster program. In this program the SBA approves the lenders and guarantees the defaults. Private banks and lenders actually loan the veterans the money.
Q. But it is called a SBA guaranteed loan program. Doesn't that mean the approvals would be guaranteed if you're a veteran?
A. I wish that was the case. It's not the approvals that are guaranteed. If you make a small business loan and don't make your payments and it goes into default, the bank has to alert the Federal government and after taking various steps and attempting to collect, the bank will eventually get paid 85% of the loan value. The SBA guarantee acts like an insurance policy to the lender; they guarantee the 85% to the lender who makes the loan.
Q. So the veteran doesn't get any special consideration in the approval loan process?
A. By law, the lender has to use their usual, customary, and prudent credit review practices that are used for both conventional and SBA business loans. But let me cut right through all of this. It depends a lot on the lender. We are pro "veteran small businesses" and will try everything to make the loan. Way before this program became politically popular in June of 2007; we were making lots of loans to veterans and trying everything in our power to say "yes." They just have to meet us half way, with more positive than negative on personal credit.
Q. OK, so far so good. Because of 85% guarantee, doesn't that mean the vet applicant only has to put up 15% collateral because the rest is secured by the guarantee?
A. Unfortunately, it does not work that way. First, most of my small business loans are unsecured and so we don't even ask about collateral. You're not describing your equity in your house, the value of your trade fixtures, or anything else. There are simply no liens on property. For larger loans collateral will be required and in today's market, it will usually be real estate.
Q. Do they check the personal or business credit of the applicant? I notice that there are a lot of online businesses that claim you can get business credit without using your personal social security number. Will that work in this case?
A. Unfortunately, the lenders in most cases only check your personal credit report through Experian, TransUnion, or Equifax. There are companies out there that promise to get you a business credit card or unsecured small business loan only using your taxpayer ID number and not your social security number. Be careful. Although there are people who have been successful, there just as many who have failed doing so. And it takes a lot of time, because you have to create credit in the business name first and then make the bank application.
Q. I'm an adult and you can tell me like it is. What is the minimum credit score required?
A. These military loans are not like applying for a credit card. They rarely base the decision solely on your credit score. They look at the overall credit report. As to that report, they look at: 1) your credit paying history back seven to ten years, 2) the current status of your accounts, 3) the number of accounts, 4) the quality of the accounts . . .there's a big difference between a Capital One credit card and platinum American Express, 5) how long you have had the accounts, 6) matters of public record such as judgments and tax liens, 7) enquiries, and how 8) how high your credit card balances are.
Q. Who can qualify for these loans?
A. The good news is it applies to a lot of individuals. You can be a veteran, current active duty service personnel in the TAP program , service disabled vet, in the reserve component's or National Guard, or the spouse or widow of any of the above. And if you are the spouse of a veteran, you can apply in your own name. You do not have to be a combat veteran. All you need is your honorable discharge papers which are in the form of a DD 214.
Q. Can any small business qualify? I mean, can it be everything from raising chickens to developing software for weapons control systems?
A. It's funny you should say that, because I have done both of those. There are very few categories that make you ineligible, including multi-marketing, speculative real estate, gambling activities, your own private investments or self-owned real estate, to name some of the bigger exceptions.
Q. All right, we have some of the basics under our belt. How much can you apply for?
A. They go anywhere from $5,000 to $500,000. I specialize in the smaller Patriot Express ones from $5,000 to $50,000, which do not require any collateral. Above that will require security. In the good ol' days about a year ago, the bank's considered using your trade fixtures or business personal property. Then when the economy got worse, they started requiring some form of real estate equity. Now most of them are requiring 100% real estate equity, which is getting tougher in these times because the value of people's homes is falling.
Q. Well that's easy. Since I am a vet, I want the full $50,000.
A. I am with you, but remember you have to qualify for that amount, which is why you get to select how much money you would like to borrow and then all of the key components of our credit matrix system is matched to your request. We always try to loan you for the highest amount, but you must qualify for it.
Q. What is this going to cost me? What are the monthly payments and interest rate?
A. Although it is a tough time for credit, it is a great time for low payments. Currently a smaller Patriot Express loan is at a four year interest low of 7.75%, which equates to $60 per $5,000 borrowed. These are ten year fully amortized, principal and interest loans. Because there is no prepayment penalty, you can pay them off early and stop the interest.
Q. So the payments can go up?
A. The smaller unsecured loans are variable and not fixed. But because the payments are spread out over such a long period of time, as interest goes up, there is not a precipitous increase in the monthly payment. Historically, they started out six years ago at $89 per $5,000 borrowed and are now down to $60.00.
Q. Under your Patriot Express Initiative loan program, do I have to put up the equity in my house or have liens on my business assets?
A. Not at all. They are 100% unsecured small business loans. As a matter of fact, they don't even ask you to list or describe your assets.
Q. I'm in the process of finishing my business plan. Can I submit the application without one?
A. You can. It is not required. On the other hand, it helps. So I tell people if they are a couple of hours away from finishing their business plan, by all means do so. It is beneficial to have even if you do not apply for the loan. But if it is going to take you two or three weeks, don't sweat it, and simply send in the application. We can always work on the business plan later.
Q. How long will this take, from start to finish?
A. The larger loans take longer because there's more paperwork and more review required by the lenders. But the small ones I do are extremely quick. You can usually get answers within 24 hours and is wired into your business account within approximately ten days with the completed paperwork. We have special software that allows us to expedite the process. And, the program mandates a quick issuance of an SBA loan number from the central processing center -- so once everything is finished, you can usually get an SBA loan number within one or two days and then the money is wired.
Q. Do most banks do these types of loans?
A. Any bank that is already approved by the SBA is able to do these loans. But the sad fact is that most banks do not do them. I've even run into lenders who have never even heard of the program. They will simply run you through their application process without concentrating on the fact that you're a veteran. We are veteran friendly and encourage these applications.
Q. Before this interview, I didn't really know what a patriot loan was. How come it has taken this long to hear about this loan?
A. The plain fact is it is I run into veterans all the time that have never even heard of the program. What a shame. It is here for our military - and we need everyone to help get the word out.
Q. If my credit is not very good, can I use a co-signer?
A. Unfortunately no. On the other hand, anyone with a 20% or more interest in the business will fill out the application and have their credit checked. But bear in mind you have to have at least a 51% or more interest from veterans to qualify.
Q. What happens if I have gone through bankruptcy? Have I shot myself in the foot?
A. We have applicants all the time that have worked hard after bankruptcy and have their credit score in the high 600's. Some banks won't touch you but we will. We require that you conclude the bankruptcy, wait approximately 6 to 8 months after that to re-establish credit, and show that you're paying your bills absolutely on time after that. This means you can't go on an "all cash" basis because you must establish credit first and it has to show you are meeting your obligations on time. We give you one chance to make a mistake but after that you need to show you learned from the mistake.
Q. Assume I pay my bills religiously on time, but I have high credit card payments. Will this hurt my chances?
A. This has become a very big problem. We have lots of people who pay their bills absolutely on time, but have high credit limits. This is now a factor seriously considered by lenders. The more you have and the higher your limits, the more negatively it is considered. The only problem is that many businesses stay afloat only with their credit cards, and had no other options because the banks are not lending.
Q. What about business financial statements and tax returns?
A. This is definitely required on the larger loans, but not on the small ones. The paperwork is meant to be short and simple so they can be processed quickly.
Q. Do you have to incorporate or form an LLC?
A. Not all. You can be a sole proprietorship. The nature of the business is not one of the factors in making the credit decision.
Q. I have a good credit score and do not want any more enquiries which bring down my score. Is there anything I can do?
A. That is a definite problem. We have to pull your personal credit report it is mandatory. On the other hand, my staff can give you a general idea of your chances if we know your credit score. That way you'll not be disappointed.
Q. Do you find that the vets you deal with like the program?
A. They absolutely love it. For good reason, they have put their lives on the line and they feel entitled to a fair shake in starting or expanding their business. They are grateful there is a program out there for them.
Q. You have any inside suggestions as to how person can increase their chances?
A. Sure: The following really helps: 1) a business plan with financials. Financials are the most important part. But I also tell people that you're not trying to get an "A" on a term paper. Just do a good basic job and trying for a "C+". 2) Tell them exactly what you're going to be spending and on. Just saying that you needed it for cash flow doesn't quite make it. I had a case once where someone had a restaurant and were expanding their kitchen. They had spent weeks shopping around and gave a detailed list of the exact equipment, model numbers, and the pricing. This was very impressive and really helped them obtain a loan. 3) A well written letter accompanying the application that positively describes the market and your future plans. Please proof read it; a poorly written letter could back fire. Recently, we received one with fourteen typos in one sentence, that one is the winner!
Q. Are some businesses considered more risky?
A. Yes, but we are still able to fund them. For example restaurants and dry cleaners are considered more risky as a result of Federal studies.
Q. Are you finding more people are inclined to go into business themselves as opposed to working for someone else?
A. No question on that one. The days are gone when our adults are employed in factories, large corporations, and government offices, sometimes working for only one employer their whole career. There has been a massive unleashing of such persons because of our lack of jobs, and many of them are out in the private sector trying to start their own businesses. It's both sad and exciting at the same time. For this reason, the SBA must provide more loans to the 27 million small businesses that can fuel our economy.
Q. Now let us talk real practicality. We are in a credit crunch like never before. How has this affected your success rate?
A. You hit the nail on the head. We are definitely in a credit crunch, and I am seeing the lenders requiring better credit reports. Fortunately, we are not involved in the toxic sub-prime mortgage fiasco and have funds to loan. But remember they are supervised by the SBA and the big problem is the secondary market has shut down. Although this makes it more difficult, but we are still very veteran friendly and give special consideration to them. We continue to loan to veterans, several a day, and plan to do so in the future
Q. Overall, how would you rate the program?
A. It's a great and well-deserved program. If I were to improve it, I would increase the outreach so more veterans knew about it.
Q. Thank you for your time.
A. My pleasure.
442 Diablo Road, Suite 137
Danville, CA 94526
Sue Malone is a small business advocate and founder of Strategies For Small Business, a company devoted to providing SBA Loans for veteran-owned small businesses, whether as start-ups or for the expansion needs of existing businesses. For six years she has been a major provider of SBA Loans, having funded over 25,000 businesses in all 50 states. For a free loan consultation or for more information on the programs, visit our website at: http://www.StrategiesForSmallBusiness.com Or call (925) 899-8449.
©2008 Strategies For Small Business. All rights reserved.
Article Source: [http://EzineArticles.com/?Small-Business-Interview---Patriot-Express-Loans-to-Veteran-Owned-Businesses---Are-They-Working?&id=2002502] Small Business Interview - Patriot Express Loans to Veteran-Owned Businesses - Are They Working?
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