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OnTrack - [title]
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May 2007

Dear Friend,
Do you know someone who always seems to be getting a better deal than you on everyday purchases? It's probably not because they're luckier than you; it's more likely that they were simply bold enough to ask for a better deal. The first step in getting a better price is being willing to ask. In this issue of On Track, we'll provide some tips on knowing when it pays to haggle and how to do it like a pro!
Negotiating Strategies... When Haggling Makes Cents!

Quick Quote In many cultures, haggling is a time honored tradition. In modern day America, however, it's been less commonplace with the exception of yard sales or big ticket items like autos or real estate. But more often, whether due to a weakening economy or an ever-increasing blending of cultures, people are starting to view any business transaction as an opportunity to negotiate.

Most people confine their haggling to goods rather than services, although in recent years, the cost of services has gone up more than the cost of goods. This means you're better off cutting a deal on the cost of a brake job, rather than trying to bargain down the price of a lawn mower. But regardless of the type of purchase you are considering, your best chance at getting a great deal is in adopting the attitude that "It never hurts to ask."

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Financial Toolkit

Spending StatReward Yourself - Success on the Debt Management Plan
We are pleased to announce that we have another Quarterly Prize Winner for our "Reward Yourself" contest, as well as three new monthly winners!

Meet our latest winners:

Quarterly Prize
Jean and Michael H., from Oklahoma City, OK won our quarterly prize of $5000! - Just for making their payments on time!

"CareOne (formerly The Freedom Point) saved us! The whole experience was simple and stress free. They helped our family get caught up on our bills, and once we made our first payment, we felt a huge relief."

March Winner
Name Withheld by Request, Spokane, WA

February Winner
Modistine D., Richmond, VA

January Winner
Stephanie N., Richardson, TX

Timely, consistent payments are the key to success on a debt management program (DMP). Creditors expect it in order to extend the benefits that help you get out of debt quickly. CareOne developed the "Reward Yourself" program as a fun way to emphasize this important aspect of the DMP. Each month that you make your monthly payment on time, you are automatically entered into a drawing to have your next payment made by CareOne - up to $500!

Make your payment on time three months in a row, and you are automatically entered into our quarterly drawing to have your DMP balance paid off - up to $5000!

Ask an Expert

  We just enrolled (in the debt management plan) 2 days ago. What are our next steps? Will we be hearing from a credit counselor? Also, we just got our usual e-bill from our credit card companies. What do we do with them?
- btru2him
 

  Good morning btru2him,

Listed below are some best practices to help ensure success on your program.
Contact the creditors, speak with the credit counseling department, and let them know that you joined a credit counseling program.
Move your due dates with your creditors, preferably to the end of the month. The 28th seems to work the best.
Create a filing system so you can organize your credit card statements and the statements from CareOne. This will help you track your progress.
As you have questions, feel free to post them here in the CareOne Community, or you can contact our customer care department at 800 437 3336. My phone is 800 348 6927 ext. 1811.

We look forward to hearing about your success.

Thank you for posting.

Rob Taylor
Financial Fitness Coach
 

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Tip JarTip Jar
Freedom to Get the Best Deal - Don't always assume that prices are fixed. Sometimes getting a better price on something is as simple as asking "Is that the best you can do?" It also helps if you are dealing with a manager, or someone else who may have the authority to be flexible on pricing. The Point of this Pointer: You'll never know if you got the lowest price if you never ask.
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Share The WealthShare the Wealth
See what last month's winner, Katie S., from Denver CO would do if she came into some unexpected cash.
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Tell us how you successfully negotiated the price down on a purchase and you could be the winner of a $250 gift card.
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Straight TalkStraight Talk
Straight Talk members are talking about tactics they've used to get the best deal on everyday purchases.
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