Bankruptcy

FIGHTING BACK

Bankruptcy effects long-lasting

Christine Long At just 20, Vanessa Hall declared herself bankrupt. She's still paying for that decision.

Debt agreements rise to avoid bankruptcy

Bankrupt.

Nearly 50,000 people have used debt agreements in the past five years, resulting in a 20 per cent decline in bankruptcies, according to new figures.

CREDIT REPORTS

Do you know your credit history?

Mark Bouris Credit reports are a fact of life if you want to borrow money and they can be really helpful, so learn how they work and start planning.

ASK NOEL

Balancing baby and the mortgage

Noel Whittaker We earn a combined salary of $160,000 a year and are starting a family soon. What is the best way to manage our $680,000 home loan?

HOME LOANS

Ten more mortgage myths to bust

Mark Bouris dinkus.

Mark Bouris Informed borrowers make better choices, so here are another 10 mortgage myths we can bust:

MONEY MANIA

Jingling pockets could bring on a headache

Disgraced Wall Street financier Bernard Madoff leaves US Federal Court after a hearing on March 10, 2009 in New York. Madoff has agreed to plead guilty to 11 counts of fraud, his lawyer said in court.   AFP PHOTO/Timothy A. CLARY

David Wilson Doctors and lawyers are especially prone to it but everyone is at risk from money addiction.

Debt

Cassandras poised as debt sales surge

A trader at the Chicago Board of Trade Dow Pit.

Harry Wilson Sales of high-yield debt – or, as they were once known, junk bonds – have exploded this year, raising fears that the world is setting itself up for another crash.

Choosing the right contract

Louie Douvis.

Barbara Drury Buying a family home or investment property is a significant financial commitment, so it makes sense to share the burden with some form of joint ownership.

Tougher stand taken on credit files

Illustration by Caroline Adaszynski

John Kavanagh The information held on consumer credit files will change in the coming year so that lenders, utility suppliers and telcos can find out more about the way we use credit.

Back-up plan needed

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Home-loan repayments are taking increasingly bigger chunks out of the household budget. John Kavanagh looks at the fallout.

A guarantor's key decisions

Handing over keys to new owner. On blue sky with clipping path. generic..Above; Agreement; Beginnings; Business; Buying; Car; Close-up; Closing; Copy Space; Customer; Door; Finance; Gift; Giving; Hand; Holding; House; Human Arm; Human Hand; Incentive; Indoors; Investment; Key; Men; New; Owner; Real Estate Agent; Rent; Representative; Residential; Sale; Sales; Security; Selling; Service; Small Business; Start; Teamwork; Trader; Wealth

clouds, real estate, key

Barbara Drury Helping your child climb onto the housing ladder by guaranteeing a loan is a serious commitment.