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Repair shops have a bad reputation. One reason why is most of us don’t really know much about our vehicles. When a repair person tells us our framastat and carburatic overgloid needs replacement, we just nod and sign the repair order.

One of the most common cons is the Oil Change Add-Ons: Many repair shops advertise a very low price on oil changes. Once they get your car in their service bay, they’ll tell you about all the other things you need – like a new air filter or a coolant flush. Unless you know and trust your repair shop, treat these tactics with skepticism, especially if your car has been running just fine.

BTW – Many of the coolants used in today’s vehicles are good for 100,000 miles.

It would be a rare person who has not had at least one attempted scam via phone (cell or land line) this past year.

Law enforcement says these are the top scams of the year gone by:

  • Phone numbers on your caller ID that are very close to your own number. Scam artists know you're more likely to answer an unknown number that's close to your number. If you don't recognize the number, let it go to voice mail.
  • “The IRS” claiming they’re about to take you to court or have you arrested unless you make immediate payment via wire transfer or debit card. Tip: The IRS NEVER makes phone calls. Official business is always conducted by mail.
  • “Tech support worker” claiming they need access to your computer remotely to remove viruses. What they’re really going to remove is your personal information.
  • “Utility bill collectors” looking for immediate payment or else your utilities will be shut off. Again, real utilities do not operate this way.

When in doubt, get off the phone and make contact yourself with the agency the original caller claimed to be from.

Everybody thinks they got some treasure stashed somewhere - in the attic, down in the baseball or in the closet where old photos and more are lurking. But the truth is all that's old is not necessarily gold. Don't let Antiques Roadshow put dollar signs in your eyes.

Here's what's hot and what's not in the world of collectibles:

You may think you have enough socked away, but financial planners caution that these items may derail some of the best-laid plans:

Luxury Auto: Average cost $55,000

Dream Wedding For Your Child: Average cost $33,000

Dream Around-the-World Cruise: Average cost $25,000

Big Toys: 22-foot sailboat average Cost $25,000 + upkeep

What’s Hot in the World of Collectibles…

Space Program Memorabilia: Particularly from the Apollo moon missions. Our early astronauts tended to sign a lot of autographs, which they left with their families as a kind of insurance in case they dudn’t make it back!

What’s Not…

WWII Memorabilia: They may have been the Greatest Generation, but their wat souvenirs are fetching much on the collectors’ market.

Looking to raise a little cash and de-clutter at the same time? Here’s what’s hot and what’s not in the world of collectibles:

HOT NOT
Coins/Currency Pre-20th Century War Artifacts from WWI or II
Cardboard Advertising Signs  Metal Advertising Signs
Movie posters Pre-1990 Movie Posters Post-1990
Space Program Collectible Comics Books Post-1970
Vintage Mint Condition Toys Post-1960 Campaign Buttons

 

Happy hunting!

Authorities warn that today’s biggest scam is the supposed call from “Tech support.” Fraudsters are racking up nearly $460 every 10 seconds for a yearly haul of $1.5 billion.

Here’s how the scam works.

You get a call from somebody claiming to be from “Microsoft,” “Windows” (a giveaway as Windows is the name of the operating system, not the company) or an anti-virus software company such as Norton or Symantec. The caller claims that software on your computer is sending them messages that you have very dangerous viruses on your computer. They can remove the viruses if you give them remote access to your computer.

What that remote access will really do is give the scam artists access to all your vital information, account numbers and passwords.

Here’s what you need to know:

1.) Companies like Microsoft and Symantec will never call you out of the blue. They just don’t.

2.) Anti-virus software is designed to catch and remove viruses all by themselves. There is no anti-virus software that alerts the home office and then requires a live tech support person to remove it.

Don’t fall for the scam. Either hang up or do what we do. Ask the caller if they think their mothers would be proud of how they’re spending their days as a thief who hides their true identity and tries to rip off old ladies.

Have you received a phone call, text or email promising you a cruise or vacation getaway that sounds too good to be true?

Beware, it probably is.

If you receive an invite for a resort stay, airline tickets or other vacation come on via email, do not click on the link. Often times all you’ll get is malware. Or you may have to endure really hard-sell presentations for pricey travel and vacation clubs. And we don’t need to tell you never fall for any “free” offer that requires you to give up credit card numbers or personal information.

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