Recent scams and frauds reported
to Attorney General King’s office
An early reminder came into the Attorney General’s office
last month. A New Mexico resident received a phone call at his home
from a “Midland Credit Management” representative attempting
to collect a $2,000 Fingerhut debt from his wife. The “representative”
gave the wife’s maiden name, also stating he had the last
four digits of the wife’s social security number. The husband
refused to verify any other information that was requested. Prompted
by the suspicious phone call, the wife reviewed her own credit report
and discovered she had no outstanding debt to Fingerhut.
New Mexicans facing foreclosures and seeking bankruptcy relief
are being victimized by unscrupulous companies that are making their
money problems worse, not better. Consumers are being contacted
by companies that promise to save their houses for a fee, but do
nothing to protect the homeowner. When it is too late, the company
refers the homeowner into bankruptcy and may even find someone to
fill out their bankruptcy petition. But, that person is usually
not a lawyer and cannot represent the homeowner in the bankruptcy
proceeding. A homeowner who files bankruptcy and represents himself
may not fully know how to protect his home and may still lose it
in the bankruptcy proceeding.
Attorney General Gary King’s office says there is potential
trouble on the horizon for a significant number of New Mexico homeowners
who have adjustable rate mortgages (ARMs). Recent national trends
show nearly one out of five sub-prime mortgages of this type will
end in foreclosure in the next couple of years.
The Attorney General’s office says the expected increased
costs for the ARM loans when interest rates reset upward could make
it difficult, if not impossible, for some homeowners to make their
monthly mortgage payment.
Consumers may report scams and frauds they experience by forwarding
suspicious emails to: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Rail Runner and RoadRunner fill barrels to feed
In nearly a month since the effort started, the New Mexico Rail
Runner Express collected enough food in its food drive to feed more
than 120-families of four—or nearly 4,000 individuals. This
is the second year the Rail Runner has teamed up with the RoadRunner
Food Bank of New Mexico for the holiday season collecting non-perishable
food items on the train. All eight collection barrels remained on
Rail Runner trains through December 28th.
Rail Runner passengers were encouraged to bring a non-perishable
food item on the train and deposit it into one of the collection
barrels. RoadRunner Food bank collected the items and distributed
them through their network of almost 700 agencies statewide that
help feed approximately 240 thousand New Mexicans each year.
The New Mexico Rail Runner Express will continue running special
Saturday service through the holiday season through January 5th.
For information–go to www.nmrailrunner.com
or call 245-RAIL
Regifting: It’s time to ask, “Why
—CONSUMER CREDIT COUNSELING SERVICES
Regifting has arrived. According to a recent survey by Money Management
International (MMI), if you haven’t regifted, you are in the
What was once a shameful secret is now a mainstream practice that
receives increased attention during the holidays, when consumers
are inspired or guilted into buying for everyone from family members
to the dog-walker. MMI’s holiday site, www.regiftable.com,
is a forum for all things regifting, including more than seven hundred
consumer stories, running the gamut from the heartwarming to the
This year, there are more reasons than ever to regift:
Everyone is doing it. Well, nearly. Fifty-eight percent of respondents
in MMI’s 2007 holiday survey say they regift, or are considering
Times are tough. Rising gas and energy prices, home foreclosure
rates, rising credit card minimum payments—the list goes on.
Forty-two percent of MMI’s survey respondents regift to save
money. With consumers expected to spend an average of $900 this
holiday season (according to the National Retail Federation), many
will accrue credit card debt that lingers well into the New Year.
Go green. For the first time in history, consumers are considering
the impact of the holidays not only on their pocketbook, but on
the environment. The good news is that “going green”
doesn’t mean forgoing all gift-giving and decorating. Regifting
is a small step towards reducing this holiday’s environmental
It’s the thought that counts. MMI’s survey found that
regifters have good intentions. Sixty-two percent regift because
they think it is something the recipient would really like.
“Whatever reason you choose, being a savvy regifter is key.
When people say, ‘really, you shouldn’t have,’
you don’t want them to mean it,” said Bran Wallin, spokesperson
for Consumer Credit Counseling Services Southwest. “With a
little care and common sense, you can help keep your holiday spending
under control, and participate in the holiday tradition of gift-giving.”
For regifting dos and don’ts, interesting facts and figures,
games, and more, visit www.regiftable.com. You can also share your
regifting stories for a chance to win a prize.