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May 16th, 2006 at 01:35 pm

I misunderstood how the fees would be taken out at Sharebuilder so when I thought I was investing $17 and leaving $8 in my account for fees, I was actually
investing $9 and the rest of the $17 was for fees. So I got a much smaller share than I had meant to buy. I'll know in the future though.
The investments did count towards the promotion though, and they'll be depositing $25 into my account in roughly 4 weeks.

I am totally impressed by their customer service. I used their email service rather than calling, and when I first wrote to them I got an automated email saying, "This is an automated response to let you know that your email has been received and will be personally handled by one of our Customer Care Agents within the next 2-business days"

That emails hows in my inbox as being at 2:09pm. At 3:11pm I received an email from Customer Care. The email was not just a form email like it is with so many sites, and it actually fully answered both my questions and then some. Plus, at the bottom it had this: "I apologize for any confusion. If you need any further assistance you may contact Customer Care between 5:00am and 6:00pm Pacific Time, Monday through Friday, at 800-SHR-BLDR (800-747-2537)"

Since I ALWAYS have to write to Bank of America twice just to get an answer, if I choose to use their email service, and since just last night I was having to threaten that I would report a company to the Better Business Bureau and would even go to the media if I had to*, I am extremely satisfied with my experience at Sharebuilder. I may even write their main office and praise them for it.

*Tracfone. Please, do yourself a favor and never deal with this company. I think I may have finally gotten the issue resolved but I wish I had typed "Tracfone" and "scam" into Google before we decided to use them.

$20 Challenge

May 12th, 2006 at 09:52 pm

I've decided to join in on the $20 challenge. My first unusual action is joining HeliumKnowledge. I haven't taken part in any of the sites that pay you for writing. This will be my first experience with it. I'm hoping to make at least a little bit extra income by using it, we'll see how it goes.

I will probably put most, if not all, of my $20 challenge deposits into paying off debt since it does me more good to get rid of it than to earn interest on savings.

edit: Oh, another thing I did today that will count towards the challenge - I invested money in stocks for the first time ever. (Scary and exciting!)

I had signed up with Sharebuilder in order to qualify for a good chunk of money from one of my "get paid to..." sites. I deposited $15 at the time and another $10 this week, originally planning to earn money through the money market fund. Today I decided to put that $25 into 2 stocks. (I couldn't decide between them.)
One of them is almost 2 shares, the other is probably about a third of a share. A total of $17 dollars. The last $8 went towards Sharebuilder fees. Here's the thing though - I used their "Plan" link to make these buys. By doing that it should qualify me for $25 they agreed to give me thanks to a promo code I had.

"To receive the ShareBuilder $25 Promotion, all you need to do is make sure you've set up your ShareBuilder Plan and have a transaction before 02/05/2008"

If it does, then that makes $17 dollars worth of stock plus whatever my returns are on those stocks basically free since I will get another $25 put into my money market fund. and I will have $17+ to put towards my challenge, the way I see it.