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Quick Wins Are Empowering

I walked up to the front desk and asked, “I have some questions about my account, can I speak to a manager?”. I was at the gym, and my plan was to ask about why they charged a $30 fee, and a mailing I got saying they offered a $7 membership. I wanted to see if there was leverage in negotiating a waiver of the $30 or my membership fee ($15) down.

The manager explained that the $30 fee was a yearly fee and that the $7 membership is a special membership that allowed you to only go 3 times a week. So, I didn’t get a negotiation win from that —

If you know me, I’m a big fan of Ramit Sethi and one of his main financial teachings is to have you negotiate a lot throughout the course of your life. When I first read his material I immediately agreed with his advice, but the thought of negotiating things seemed weird and out of the norm. I mean, I’m Chinese so I naturally inherited a lot of my Mom’s skills, but I didn’t know how to apply these skills outside of flea shops or Craigslist.

But since for the past year I’ve been playing the credit card signup bonus game, and incurred credit card fees and bank fees, I’ve made many attempts at applying Ramit’s negotiation techniques. His blog posts basically walk you through each step, and by following it, I’ve experienced how easy it is to win at these things. For example, I lost track of my Amex card and didn’t realize I didn’t pay the card for 3 months. This resulted in late fees of over $100. But Amex’s customer service is so good, all I had to do was call in and ask for them to be waived, and they did. When you experience wins like that, success can be addictive.

American Express Blue Cash Everyday

On Minimalist Wealth

I was never a fan of AMEX since they charge businesses so much, and thus aren't widely accepted. However,if you are looking to add a new line of credit, the American Express Blue Cash Everyday card could be a great choice.

Why I have it

It's not the most versatile card, but it is the only card that gives 3% cash back on US Supermarkets with no annual fee. The 2% and 1% cash back on other categories are useless to me since my Barclaycard gives 2.2% on everything. But everyone shops at supermarkets, and since this card is free, it's a good one to pick up, if not just for the $50 promo bonus, free year of Amazon Prime, and 15 months of 0% APR.

The Blue Cash Preferred Card is not worth the $75 annual fee, other than that, there's not much else to say.

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