If you have ever felt that financial institutions and lenders were taking advantage of the difference betweeen their knowledge and yours, there's a new Sheriff in town. Recent Federal legislation created a new form of regulator to watch out for consumers. You can find out more about the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau at its Website, www.consumerfinance.gov.
No matter how many regulators there are, and there are more than one for banks, more than one for credit unions, and now this one that crosses borders, you as a consumer can do more to protect yourself than all of them.
- Do business with those you have dealt with awhile or with whom you have been referred by several trusted friends.
- Know about the products and services you need whether loans, savings accounts or complex investments and mortgages.
- Say "no thanks" when you do not understand the contract and your obligations, and what can happen to you later.
- Understand that if it sounds to good to be true, it probably will hurt you.
- Put follow up dates, reviews and events on your calendar; as long as a contract is valid, events you miss can be costly.