Newspaper Page Text
by Rebecca Escort
Extension Home Economist
For Lehigh County
Avoiding the Rent-to-own
When’s the last time you said,
“I want it now. I don’t want to
Kids say that all the time, don’t
they? Well, sometimes I find
myself saying it, 100. I want a new
linoleum floor in the kitchen
NOW. I want the lawn to be weed
free NOW. Waiting is difficult,
and our culture does little to
encourage the practice of saving.
Instead it tends to promote the buy
now-pay later strategy. Instant
gratification is quite popular.
For some families, the desire
ends up taking them to rent-to
own store. It may be the only
option they see that stereo or
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HOLLINGER’S lawn &
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Harahay. PA 717-533-40*0
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refrigerator or bedroom suite now.
The stores do everything they can
to attack buyers “No money '
down. No credit check. Free
How tempting! The family with
little savings and lots of bills may
be very interested in this kind of
But this kind of offer can lead a
family down the path to financial
disaster. For example, a $299 TV
from a retail store could end up
costing a family as much as $B5O
when purchased at a rent-to-own
shop and paid for a bit at a time.
And the situation could become
worse if the family misses even
one payment In most cases the
store can immediately repossess
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SHARTLESVILLE A & B SALES
FARM SERVICE & SERVICE
R 0 1, Box 1382 370 Newport Rood
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Along 772 Thru Monterey
BLUE MOUNTAIN MARTIN HARDWARE &
ENTERPRISES, INC. EQUIPMENT CO.
Rt. 801 1H Milos South
717-885-2094 of Sehooflorotown, PA
GOTSHALL'S inc. leinbach
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717-730-4343 717-243-2313 mo RHntrMwy.
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ENFIELD EQUIPMENT TRUE VALUE
MOO Umoctono Rd. 220 Fulton 91.
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HERR’S REPAIR ENFIELD
SHOP EQUIPMENT INC.
RO 2, Box ii(A 720 Whaatar Ochoal Rd.
740 W. Msln St.
the item if a payment is missed.
And usually any previously paid
money is forfeited.
If you find yourself being
tempted to give in to the rent-to
own temptation (or if a member of
your family purchases items from
these stores), remember;
✓ The desired item can probab
ly be purchased at a discount retail
store for much less.
✓ There may be no grace per
iod if a payment is missed.
✓ You are responsible to pay
the fair market price if the item is
lost, stolen, damaged or
When you’re tempted to buy
now and pay later, I suggest two
principles to follow. First, read the
fine print on any purchase contact
that is presented to you. This is
true for any purchase not just one
at a rent-to-own store. Don’t allow
the salesperson to rush you into a
hasty decision. Ask questions like:
Are there any other charges
delivery, renewal fees, taxes?
Can I get only the item I NEED,
or do I have to buy the set as
How will I get a receipt if I do
not make payments in person?
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How much will my total cost
end up being including taxes?
This will help you get the full
picture about the purchase. If you
find that clerks are hesitant to give
information or seem impatient,
reconsider making the purchase.
The second principle I would
suggest is to shop around before
spending hard-earned money.
Checlt newspaper sales circulars.
Make Tax Filing Easier
UNIVERSITY PARK (Centre
Co.) Was filing your income
lax return this year especially frus
trating? Did gathering information
to compile your net income seem
an endless task?
Keeping organized financial
records can help spare you this
anxiety, says Dr. Marilyn Furry,
assistant professor of agricultural
and extension education in Penn
State’s College of Agricultural
“Good record keeping also can
help you improve your financial
situation,” says Furry. “Accurate
records are useful when consider
ing major purchases, savings
plans, loans, investments and
other financial decisions.”
Creating an efficient filing sys
tem is the first step in improving
your record keeping. “The filing
system doesn’t have to be elabo
rate or costly,” says Furry. "Clear
ly labeled folders, envelopes or
boxes will do the trick.”
Your financial files should
include account books, bank state
ments, a list of tax-deductible
expenses, canceled checks, previ
ous tax returns, credit transac-
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NICHOLS FARM EQUIP.
B. EQUIP., INC.
Lancaster Farming, Saturday, May 28, 1994-B5
want ads, browse around sales
floors and make notes on a piece
of scrap paper. The notes will help
you to remember where the best
deal was. Before shopping, dis
cuss with your family the highest
amount of money you are willing
to send to get the product. These
suggestions will help you avoid
the rent-to-own temptation.
tions, and receipts and receipted
“It’s also helpful to file related
materials, such as safe-deposit
box numbers; keys and list of con
tents; health, education and
employment records; credit card
numbers; warranties; and copies
of wills with letters of instruc
tion,” Furry says.
Be sure everyone in the family
is acquainted with the files.
“Someone may need to get infor
mation in a hurry if there is an
accident or crisis,” Furry says.
Some financial records are dif
ficult to replace and should be
kept in a safe-deposit box. These
include automobile titles and bills
of sale, government and corporate
securities, and mortgage and teal
estate papers. Items such as birth
certificates, original wills, and
marriage and divorce records also
should be kept in a safe-deposit
“When your records are in
order, you always have your
financial picture at your finger
tips,” says Furry. “You’ll be better
prepared when tax time arrives
C.J. WONSIDLER BROS.
Ntw Tripoli, Pa.