The biggest problem I currently see

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luvbullmarkets
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Re: The biggest problem I currently see

Postby luvbullmarkets » Thu May 26, 2016 5:43 pm

I also dislike that many utility's do not except AMEX as form of payment. Only Visa, Mastercard, and Discover.
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TXviking
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Re: The biggest problem I currently see

Postby TXviking » Thu May 26, 2016 11:44 pm

luvbullmarkets wrote:I also dislike that many utility's do not except AMEX as form of payment. Only Visa, Mastercard, and Discover.


My local electric utility (FPL) charges a convenience fee to pay with a credit card at all. That's one of three bills I wind up having to pay from my bank account. (The other two are my mortgage and my car loan — would love to be able to get CC rewards for those payments.)

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Re: The biggest problem I currently see

Postby Vattené » Fri May 27, 2016 2:52 pm

TXviking wrote:
luvbullmarkets wrote:I also dislike that many utility's do not except AMEX as form of payment. Only Visa, Mastercard, and Discover.


My local electric utility (FPL) charges a convenience fee to pay with a credit card at all. That's one of three bills I wind up having to pay from my bank account. (The other two are my mortgage and my car loan — would love to be able to get CC rewards for those payments.)


I'm in the same boat. They charge a flat fee like $2 or $3 so even in high months it hasn't been worth it to use a card. Even so, mine still doesn't take Amex.
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Re: The biggest problem I currently see

Postby Dcyphrz » Fri May 27, 2016 3:16 pm

None of my utilities will accept AMEX either and the water company charges a convenience fee. Anything paid to the County Clerk, same thing.
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MemberSince99
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Re: The biggest problem I currently see

Postby MemberSince99 » Fri May 27, 2016 8:04 pm

A "convenience fee". You know that term is just a crock let's call it what it is - a tax on a tax. It can't possibly be cheaper for them to get checks and have to deal with those as opposed to a credit card.

While we are on the subject of these fees, I have another gripe. My state charges you a fee to e-file your taxes. I mean let's call that what it is - a bend me over fee. It's cheaper for them to do direct deposit vs having to cut and mail you a hard check, but they know people want THEIR money back so they are going to sock it to you to get it.

I mean come on it's our money you owe us and you have the balls to charge us to get it back? What BS.

And before some tedious dude jumps in and points out the totally obvious "well ya know you don't HAVE to e-file no one held a gun to your head saying do this or I will blow your brains out YOU chose to do it so you should pay dearly for that", oh wow I never thought of that, thanks for coming to the rescue and pointing that out Captain Obvious you have saved the day yet again!!!! All hail the infinite wisdom of Captain Obvious we could have never guessed something that hard!
Had to get that off my chest as there's at least one here who will do that. Anyway, the point is they are bending us and it always majorly irritates me. I still do it anyway and the ONLY reason is I'm concerned a check will get lost in the mail then who knows when or if I ever get my money back from these thieves. I've thought of making them send me a physical check just so it costs them more money, but I do fear losing it that way and them just telling me to go pound sand and I get totally screwed out of anything back. Wouldn't they love that. More of our money to waste.

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CarefulBuilder14
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Re: The biggest problem I currently see

Postby CarefulBuilder14 » Fri May 27, 2016 8:24 pm

MemberSince99 wrote:A "convenience fee". You know that term is just a crock let's call it what it is - a tax on a tax. It can't possibly be cheaper for them to get checks and have to deal with those as opposed to a credit card.

While we are on the subject of these fees, I have another gripe. My state charges you a fee to e-file your taxes. I mean let's call that what it is - a bend me over fee. It's cheaper for them to do direct deposit vs having to cut and mail you a hard check, but they know people want THEIR money back so they are going to sock it to you to get it.

I mean come on it's our money you owe us and you have the balls to charge us to get it back? What BS.

And before some tedious dude jumps in and points out the totally obvious "well ya know you don't HAVE to e-file no one held a gun to your head saying do this or I will blow your brains out YOU chose to do it so you should pay dearly for that", oh wow I never thought of that, thanks for coming to the rescue and pointing that out Captain Obvious you have saved the day yet again!!!! All hail the infinite wisdom of Captain Obvious we could have never guessed something that hard!
Had to get that off my chest as there's at least one here who will do that. Anyway, the point is they are bending us and it always majorly irritates me. I still do it anyway and the ONLY reason is I'm concerned a check will get lost in the mail then who knows when or if I ever get my money back from these thieves. I've thought of making them send me a physical check just so it costs them more money, but I do fear losing it that way and them just telling me to go pound sand and I get totally screwed out of anything back. Wouldn't they love that. More of our money to waste.

I don't know about the situation with Wisconsin's state taxes, but on the federal side of things, a lot of tax preparers dislike the federal e-file requirement. It actually doesn't cost the IRS very much (as far as mailroom labor costs) to open and scan a tax return, and shipping and printing costs are paid by taxpayers. A lot of people are worried about information being stolen at some stage in the return's filing (from the records of a private company or the IRS).

The counterargument is for convenience, speed, efficiency, and saving paper. I'm too early in my career to have a strong opinion on which is better, but I definitely don't think moderate-to-large preparers should be forced to e-file.
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Re: The biggest problem I currently see

Postby MemberSince99 » Sat May 28, 2016 4:52 pm

CarefulBuilder14 wrote:
MemberSince99 wrote:A "convenience fee". You know that term is just a crock let's call it what it is - a tax on a tax. It can't possibly be cheaper for them to get checks and have to deal with those as opposed to a credit card.

While we are on the subject of these fees, I have another gripe. My state charges you a fee to e-file your taxes. I mean let's call that what it is - a bend me over fee. It's cheaper for them to do direct deposit vs having to cut and mail you a hard check, but they know people want THEIR money back so they are going to sock it to you to get it.

I mean come on it's our money you owe us and you have the balls to charge us to get it back? What BS.

And before some tedious dude jumps in and points out the totally obvious "well ya know you don't HAVE to e-file no one held a gun to your head saying do this or I will blow your brains out YOU chose to do it so you should pay dearly for that", oh wow I never thought of that, thanks for coming to the rescue and pointing that out Captain Obvious you have saved the day yet again!!!! All hail the infinite wisdom of Captain Obvious we could have never guessed something that hard!
Had to get that off my chest as there's at least one here who will do that. Anyway, the point is they are bending us and it always majorly irritates me. I still do it anyway and the ONLY reason is I'm concerned a check will get lost in the mail then who knows when or if I ever get my money back from these thieves. I've thought of making them send me a physical check just so it costs them more money, but I do fear losing it that way and them just telling me to go pound sand and I get totally screwed out of anything back. Wouldn't they love that. More of our money to waste.

I don't know about the situation with Wisconsin's state taxes, but on the federal side of things, a lot of tax preparers dislike the federal e-file requirement. It actually doesn't cost the IRS very much (as far as mailroom labor costs) to open and scan a tax return, and shipping and printing costs are paid by taxpayers. A lot of people are worried about information being stolen at some stage in the return's filing (from the records of a private company or the IRS).

The counterargument is for convenience, speed, efficiency, and saving paper. I'm too early in my career to have a strong opinion on which is better, but I definitely don't think moderate-to-large preparers should be forced to e-file.


I believe, and please correct me if I'm wrong, that I read something not too long ago about just that scenario where the IRS got hacked. Did anyone else see that? I could be wrong but I really think I read something about that and thought (sarcastically) oh surprise surprise.

Of course your info could get stolen either way as what are they going to do if you physically file? Yep - pay someone probably in some third world country where it's even easier to hack your info to enter it into the computer system, where it could be hacked exactly the same.

I agree you should not be forced to e-file but I doubt it's any greater of a risk in the end. ALL of our info is always at risk. I learned that with Experian when my info was stolen in a breach. I mean you just have to realize and accept that in spite of all of your hard work, some lowlife criminal can end that at any time they please and there is little or nothing you can do about it. For that matter so can some bottom feeder debt collector who doesn't care who they get money out of and decides you are a good target because your name is similar to some deadbeat they are chasing and your credit is good. (or WAS good). Good luck fighting that it's like trying to get Congress to fix the budget.

I quit worrying about it. I learned years ago, if I truly can't do anything about a given situation, it's a waste of time to sit around worrying about it. I don't want my credit trashed but it could happen any time and all I can try to do is damage control. Oh well sucks to be me if it happens no one on the planet cares. Boo hoo. It's almost enough to make me enter a life of crime but I just am not that way. This system is a total joke though.

To My Credit
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Re: The biggest problem I currently see

Postby To My Credit » Sat May 28, 2016 9:43 pm

luvbullmarkets wrote:I also dislike that many utility's do not except AMEX as form of payment. Only Visa, Mastercard, and Discover.
Is there a particular reason why you'd want to pay your utilities with AmEx? As far as I know, AmEx doesn't really offer high rewards on utilities, does it?
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Re: The biggest problem I currently see

Postby Tubpbs » Sun May 29, 2016 7:35 am

To My Credit wrote:
luvbullmarkets wrote:I also dislike that many utility's do not except AMEX as form of payment. Only Visa, Mastercard, and Discover.
Is there a particular reason why you'd want to pay your utilities with AmEx? As far as I know, AmEx doesn't really offer high rewards on utilities, does it?


I assume the idea is that it does offer whatever standard rewards you get. i.e. 1 MR point earned from paying with an Amex is better than 0 of anything from using a checking account
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Nixon
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Re: The biggest problem I currently see

Postby Nixon » Sun May 29, 2016 11:00 am

Tubpbs wrote:
To My Credit wrote:
luvbullmarkets wrote:I also dislike that many utility's do not except AMEX as form of payment. Only Visa, Mastercard, and Discover.
Is there a particular reason why you'd want to pay your utilities with AmEx? As far as I know, AmEx doesn't really offer high rewards on utilities, does it?


I assume the idea is that it does offer whatever standard rewards you get. i.e. 1 MR point earned from paying with an Amex is better than 0 of anything from using a checking account


One way to combat the fees particularly a flat fee is to pay fixed cost utilities a year in advance or more.

In the case of scaled fees then play with the percentages and see what works best for you. Sometimes you can stumble into a zone where the opportunity cost is the same as the rewards but actually is worth more due to accumulation (and thus more reward redemptions)

This creates a case where your more lucrative earning subsidizes your break even or at cost earning.
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