The following New Year’s resolutions could help you become a more informed consumer in 2013.
Resolve to check your credit report to make sure it is accurate and to help avoid identity theft.
Federal law provides consumers with the right to ask the three nationwide credit reporting companies annually for a free copy of their credit reports. Reports can be requested at www.annualcreditreport.com or by calling toll-free at (877) 322-8228.
If you are unhappy with too many strangers calling you to solicit sales of things you do not want, resolve to consider placing your telephone numbers on the government’s Do Not Call List.
Phone numbers can be registered on the national list at www.donotcall.gov. Information on Indiana’s Do Not Call registry is available at http://www.in.gov/attorneygeneral/2336.htm (click “Do Not Call” at the left).
Resolve to consider performing a 2013 energy assessment of your home.
Assessments can help alert you to problems which, if fixed, could save you money on energy bills. Visit www.eere.energy.gov for general tips on making your home more energy-efficient, including information on professional energy audits (click “Consumers: Save Money and Energy at Home”).
Resolve to spend some time in 2013 with your children or grandchildren helping them learn more about being good consumers.
An example of youth-oriented consumer information can be found online at www.mymoney.gov/category/topic1/youth.html .