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Michigan Attorney General releases top 10 list of consumer complaints | News

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LANSING — Personal service companies and robocalls topped the list of most complained-about scams and business practices in Michigan.

Attorney General Dana Nessel last week recognized National Consumer Protection Week by releasing her office’s Top 10 Consumer Complaints for 2019 to help consumers make well-informed decisions about where to spend their money. In 2019, the Michigan Department of Attorney General received more than 9,200 consumer complaints.

“By taking a proactive approach and educating residents about the top threats we’ve noticed, we hope to stop as many scammers and deceptive business practices as we can from causing further harm to Michigan consumers,‘ Nessel said. “I would like to thank the thousands of Michigan consumers who have taken the time to file formal complaints with my office. Those files are valuable pieces of information that may help us build a case against bad actors and allow us to hold accountable those who attempt to break the law.‘

The department recovered more than $680,000 in consumer refunds, forgiven debts and state recoveries in 2019.

Consumers can submit a complaint online by visiting mi.gov/agcomplaints or by calling 877-765-8388.

While the Top 10 complaint categories remained mostly the same from 2018, several of their rankings did change. Five of the 10 complaint categories kept their places, but the most drastic change was the rise in complaints against personal service providers, which jumped from seventh to the No. 1 spot due to action by the Attorney General’s office in 2019. Travel complaints also make an appearance on the list in the No. 10 spot, replacing a category of complaints related to gasoline fuel prices and energy providers.

Top 10 Consumer Complaint Categories of 2019

• Personal Service Providers: Moving up from the seventh spot last year. This jump was directly attributable to the large number of complaints against Western Michigan-based gym chain Family Fitness, Go Workout, Crown Jewel Spa and Salon and Light RX. Complaints in this category additionally range from dating services and beauty shops to home security and tax preparation services.

• Telecommunications, Cable and Satellite TV: Holding steady at No. 2 this year. This category includes complaints involving issues like robocalls, telemarketing, wireless communications, and cable and satellite TV services. Despite staying in the second spot, the department received more than 20% more complaints in this category. Many of those complaints were the result of the robocall initiative announced by the Attorney General’s office in November.

• Motor Vehicle and Automobiles: Also holding steady in the No. 3 spot. The total number of complaints in this category was up by 10%. Complaints against used car dealers continue to top this category, with other top complaints involving motor vehicles, new car dealers and passenger car rentals. The department took a step in protecting consumers’ interests when it reached a settlement with Executive Car Rental, securing nearly $40,000 in reimbursements for customers.

• Credit and Financial Concerns: Moving from first to fourth this year, there were 769 complaints. Complaints in this category cover a variety of areas including debt collection and reporting, credit repair, payday lending and mortgage brokering. In October, the Attorney General’s office filed suit to stop the predatory lending practices of online tribal lender Sierra Financial.

• Retail: Again, holding steady in the fifth spot from last year, retail complaints included concerns about general merchandise, food and furniture stores, business services, and eating and drinking places.

• Internet: Moving down two slots this year from four to six, the total number of complaints in this computer-based category stayed virtually the same. The majority of these complaints involved online purchases, and a significant number of complaints were filed against computer communication and internet service providers. In 2019, the department opened an investigation into Blvck Pods LLC and Blvcked Pods LLC for running a drop-shipping operation that relied on a Chinese company to supply wireless earphones to consumers who believed they were buying customized products.

• Landlord and Tenant: Moving up a spot from eight to seven, this category held steady with almost 500 complaints. Most of the complaints in this category involved apartment owners and managers; complaints against mobile home site operators and condominium associations accounted for the majority of the total complaints in this category.

• Contractors: Moving down two spots from last year’s list are complaints about residential building construction services, landscaping services, plumbing, heating and air condition services, and special trade contractors. In 2019, consumers filed 176 fewer complaints in this area than 2018.

• Health Service Providers: Staying in ninth place, this category’s total complaints increased by more than 17% compared to 2018. The category includes health service providers like doctors, dentists, hospitals and medical clinics.

• Travel: New to the Top 10 this year is the category of travel, which bumped out the category of complaints for gasoline fuel and energy providers from the 2018 list. This category includes complaints about companies like Outdoor Adventures, travel agents, travel companies and time-share companies.

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TML announce launch of new residential Lumi products

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Steve Griffiths TML





A new, Lumi-branded, residential product has been launched by The Mortgage Lender, following a rise in demand from borrowers who have been financially impacted by the pandemic.

TML say that the range is available up to 75% loan to value, across four Lumi categories and caters for customers with defaults, CCJs, and mortgage arrears. It also offers enhanced credit criteria for unsecured arrears, bankruptcy and payday loans when compared to TML’s core range.

Lumi products are available for employed, self-employed and complex income applicants. The minimum loan is £25,001 and the maximum loan is £1m with rates starting at 4.98% for a two-year fix and 5.29% for a five-year fix at 70% loan to value.

Steve Griffiths, The Mortgage Lender sales and product director, said: “Now more than ever lenders need to have criteria that caters for a wide range of customer circumstances and recognise that the last 12 months has been financially difficult for many people.

“Our Lumi range, which is available through specialist distributors, takes a pragmatic approach to the real-world experience many of our broker partners are presented with when they are sourcing a mortgage for their clients.

“It offers fair rates combined with a flexible approach to underwriting that provides a stepping-stone for home-movers or those remortgaging and, in some cases, credit repair.”

Doug Hall, 3mc director, adds: “We are seeing increasing numbers of customers whose financial situation has been impacted by the Coronavirus pandemic who need products that are appropriate for their circumstances now.

“Through sharing our knowledge and challenges with lenders, like TML, the specialist lending sector is proving it can meet those needs in a responsible way. The launch of Lumi is great news for brokers and customers. It shows lenders are listening and able to respond to the market, improving customer choice and competition.”

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how to boost a bad credit rating

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HOLLAND, Mich. — Your credit score is just a number, but it can make a difference in your ability to get a loan, house, or even a job ,and after a tough year for finances, now is an important time to pay attention to your score.

“You need to have options, and you need to be able to have access, and all of that boils right back down to your credit score,” says Bree Austin-Roberts, a credit expert and founder of Lakeshore Credit Management and Repair Services in Holland. “I think it was a reality check for a lot of people to saying, ‘Hey, it’s time for me to start thinking about my financial situation.’”

Bree’s story is similar to so many of her clients. A few years ago, before she founded her credit repair business, she and her family were evicted from their apartment. Searching for a house and facing homelessness, Bree noticed a similar roadblock everywhere she looked.

“The credit became a problem,” she said. “It always boiled back down to the credit.”

Bree buckled down on payments and in no time had raised her credit score enough to move her family into a home and start up her business. Now helping others achieve the same success, Bree says a few simple adjustments can make a big difference. Her first call was to the three major credit bureaus to check the accuracy of her score.

“Like 80 percent of people in the United States have something that’s inaccurate on their credit report, but a lot of people don’t know because they don’t monitor their credit.”

So start by checking with TransUnion, Equifax and Experian on the accuracy of your score.

If you’re having a tough time making payments this year on bills or installment loans (which Bree says you should always have at least one of), try contacting your creditors to see if they can delay payments or work out some sort of payment plan that works for you.

“Directly related to the pandemic, a lot of lenders are being very lenient,” said Bree.

In addition to making all your monthly credit card payments on time when you can, Bree says it also matters how often you use your credit card, and on what. She says most repair experts will recommend you keep your card usage below 30 percent, but Bree recommends a lower limit for her clients.

“When you’re in the building process, you want to keep it 10 percent or below,” she said. “If you’re planning on making a major purchase in like 30 to 60 days, you probably want to keep your credit card balances between 1 and 3 percent.”

Other tips include becoming an authorized user on a loved one’s credit card. If they have good credit, spending responsibly on their account could help boost your score faster. Just have them ask their bank or credit union about adding you as an authorized user.

You can also open a secured card on your own. A secured credit card is essentially a prepaid card that ensures you don’t miss payments.

And remember: no credit doesn’t mean good credit. Lenders want to see you can responsibly handle debt.

“Having something to report is positive, but it’s the amount that reports that shows your credit worthiness,” said Bree.

What it boils down to, Bree says, is having good habits and sticking to them. Building or rebuilding credit is a marathon, not a sprint, and Bree says patience is key.

“I was never always a credit expert. It was trial and error,” she said. “I have been there before, and it doesn’t take much to end up right back there again if you’re not budgeting well–if you’re not being credit conscious.”

You can reach Bree at [email protected] or on her website or her Facebook and use the hashtags #lakeshoreCredit and #CreditQueen to join the conversation with her.

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Adam Reich On His Journey From A Bodybuilder To Building His Own Empire And Making People Financially Independent

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Adam Reich

Adam Reich was born on December 17th, 1985, and brought up in Long Island, New York. Gym and fitness lover, Adam Reich, founder of True Credit Repair, Passive Profits Ecom Automation, ReinventU wellness center, and Health Supplements didn’t always have it all. He found a great deal of success in bodybuilding competitions when he was young. He was falling short of turning professional and thus, in the time that he had, he built a late online personal training business with over 100 subscription-based clients. In 2014, Adam Reich was blessed with twin daughters and a few months later, he had to go take up a job for the New York City department of corrections on Rikers Island. He worked 16 hours a day for 5 years straight surrounded by a bunch of violent people. It was an unsafe job. Adam Reich got fed up and decided to invest all the little money he had onto himself. He worked hard and invested all of his time to finally have something of his own and he did, not just one but multiple companies with 7 figure turnovers.

Adam believes that the success he has had by far is because of the client relations and the results and satisfaction that he and his company have given over time. He believes that he should treat his clients exactly how he would expect to be treated as a customer himself. The reason behind investing in a credit repair agency was because Adam Reich first paid to have his credit repaired by the same parent company and 4 months later his credit soared from 550 to 740 and that opened a plethora of financial opportunities for himself. All of his companies are driven by customer satisfaction. He has learned that he must never over-promise to make a sale. He provides a service to his clients that he is proud of but sometimes he tends to over-deliver but he has learned from his past mistakes. Adam Reich believes that delivering a product is important but what’s more important is building a brand along with a reputation as this would help him and his company in the longer run.

Since Adam Reich realized his worth was more than that 9 to 5 job, within 6 months, he left the prior job to invest in himself, moved to Boca with his family, and built a beautiful life in South Florida. It has been great for Adam since then as he has been able to increase his salary tenfold and all the credit goes to his determination and hard work. He also worked towards making it easier for his clients to change their financial situation by providing them with abundant opportunities. That’s all that Adam has always wanted, to help others better their situations. He has had the time to experience a 9-5 job and knows how it feels to miss important events and not being able to spend time with family because of lack of financial freedom which is why he has built this empire so that nobody else has to go through what he went through.

Adam Reich has always kept his priorities straight and his clients are everything to his brand. He goes out and about for them and relates with each individual. He believes in the saying, “show me your friends and I’ll show you you’re future” and that’s why he surrounds himself with the right people always. Since he moved down to South Florida from New York, he has made sure to keep the right people beside him who give him the motivation he strived for. Adam Reich even met his fellow investors at that time and is friends with them. These are the people he used to look up to and hoped to become like them one day. To the colleagues in his industry, Adam Reich wants to mention that people should focus their energy more on customer service. Building results and winning client’s trust is very important to go far ahead in this business.

 

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