National Consumers League

From the Experts Blog

NCL staff is hard at work for you playing watchdog on a variety of issues. Get to know the latest From the Experts!

Mortgage News: Americans Not Alone in Housing Woes

It's turning out that American consumers aren't the only ones grappling with mortgage and credit crunches, according to international news reports. In Britain, Channel 4 News reports that March saw the fewest number of new home loan approvals in a decade. In Sydney, news reports predict that up to 80,000 Australians may lose their home by September! It's a tough time to be a homeowner, that's for sure. If you are a homeowner worried about losing your nest -- or if you're a prospective buyer hoping to take advantage of dropping house prices -- you might want to check out our new Mortgage Town site.

Groups Calling on Feds - Again - for Alcohol Facts Label

At a news conference today at the National Press Club, NCL is joining several other groups to call on the federal government to get with it and make a final decision on whether or not manufacturers of beverages that contain alcohol will be required to include a standardized "Alcohol Facts" label on the products. It's something that consumer and other health groups have been calling on for years - 30, actually - the kind of standardized labeling information on beer, wine, and distilled spirits products that is now required for conventional foods, dietary supplements, and nonprescription drugs.

Over the years, there have been times where we thought we were close; back in 2005, the federal agency that handles this - the Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau (TTB) - received more than 18,000 letters from consumers and groups supporting the standardized label. But more recently, the TTB seems to be regressing; in 2007 its proposed "Serving Facts" label would have left out information about alcohol content.

So, back to square one. Today's press conference should be interesting. NCL will be joined by the Consumer Federation of America, Shape Up America!, Mothers Against Drunk Driving, and the Past President of the National Medical Association. Stay tuned for more on this.

Ways to Save on Car Insurance

Prices at the pump getting you down? Here are a few tips on getting your money's worth when buying auto insurance:

  • Compare policies according to price, coverage, customer service, and company's reputation.
  • Ask for higher deductibles. The deductibles represent the amount of money you pay before your insurance policy kicks in when you have a claim.
  • Consider buying your homeowners and auto coverage from the same insurer. Insurers often offer a discount if you buy two or more types of insurance from them.
  • Check out the Insurance Information Institute’s Web site for more tips on getting the most for your auto insurance dollar!