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Click on any topic listed below to find a guide containing websites, databases and books chosen by librarians.

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Consumer Information

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Databases

Chilton Library
Diagnostics, step-by-step repair procedures, maintenance schedules, wiring diagrams, recalls and Technical Service Bulletins for automobiles and light trucks.   

Consumer Reports
Full text articles from Consumer Reports from 1991 to the present.  Virtual Tour

Consumer Reports Buying Guide
The Consumer Reports Buying Guide is a product-test and consumer advisory publication. Contains full text articles 1999 to the present.

General Onefile
A one-stop source for news and periodical articles on a wide range of topics. Features millions of full-text articles, many with images that are updated on a daily basis. NOVELny  Virtual Tour

MasterFILE Premier
A consumer’s best source of information comes from product reviews and comparisons. Contains full text for 1,935 periodicals covering general reference, business, health, education, science, multicultural issues and much more. Also contains full text for more than 300 reference books, 96,600 biographies, and 76,000 primary source documents.   Virtual Tour

Reference USA Business
Includes 24 million nationwide business listings searchable by name, location, line of business, size and other details. This product is for personal non-commercial use only.   Virtual Tour

 

Websites - various topics

Better Business Bureau
Locate a Better Business Bureau in your area, search for company reliability reports or file a complaint.

Consumer Action Website
Provides information on filing a consumer complaints, offers sample consumer complaint letters and lists state and local consumer protection agencies. The Consumer Action Handbook is available at https://www.usa.gov/handbook

Consumer Search
Consumer Search consolidates the reviews and ratings of the most credible online consumer experts and organizations. This site provides fast answers to which are the best products for the best price. 

Consumer.gov
This site provides information on managing your money, using credit, and identifying scams and identity theft. 

Federal Consumer Information Center
This Federal government site provides information on health, education, product recalls, scams, housing and more. Read information online or order pamphlets.

The Federal Trade Commission
Gives information on money & credit, homes & mortgages, health & fitness, jobs & making money, privacy & identity, enrolling in the National Do Not Call Registry. 

HSH.com
HSH.com® is the nation's largest publisher of mortgage and consumer loan information. This site provides mortgage rate comparisons, a mortgage calculator, home loan and refinance rates.

New York State Department of Finance Automobile Insurance Information for Consumers
Find auto insurance coverage requirements, contact information for insurance companies and reports on complaints made against automobile insurance companies.

New York State STAR Registration Program
New legislation requires all homeowners receiving a basic STAR exemption to register with the New York State Tax Department in order to receive the exemption in 2014 and subsequent years. From this link you can register online.

Unclaimed Funds
Think you have money being held for you by the government? Why not check. The NYS Comptroller's database of unclaimed funds allows you to search by name and includes directions for filing a claim. To search the entire United States for unclaimed funds, go to the National Association of Unclaimed Property Administrators.

U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission
Gives information on recalls and product safety news.    

 

Websites - Automobiles

Kelley Blue Book
Provides pricing information on new and used vehicles based on features, condition, and mileage.   Select the “Research Tools” and scroll down to “Payment Calculator".    Do not press the “Apply Now’ button unless you wish to apply for a loan.

Lease or Purchase
Smart About Money, presented by the National Endowment for Financial Education, provides this calculator to compare the final cost to purchase or lease an automobile.

National Automobile Dealers Association
Get price information for new and used cars, boats, motorcycles, RVs and mobile homes based on features, condition, and mileage.   The link to Autotrader.com provides dealer and private seller prices in your area.   

National Highway Traffic Safety Agency
Find vehicle safety ratings, recalls and tips on safe driving.  

National Motor Vehicle Title Information System (NMVTIS)
An electronic system that provides consumers with valuable information about a vehicle's condition and history. Prior to purchasing a vehicle, NMVTIS allows consumers to find information on the vehicle's title, most recent odometer reading, brand history, and, in some cases, historical theft data.  

U.S. Department of Energy Fuel Economy site
Find MPG ratings for automobiles.   The tab for “Save Money & Fuel” provides a link for local gas prices. The Trip Calculator will help you can figure out the cost for your next road trip and suggest a route.
 

Websites - Health and medicine
 

Affordable Care Act
Learn your healthcare insurance options as defined by the Federal government.

The New York State Doctor Profile
Provides information on a physician’s education, practice, and professional activities.   Under Legal Actions see if there are any malpractice suits filed against him or her.

U.S. News & World Report Hospital Ranking
See hospital rankings by specialty or perform general searches for information including patient satisfaction ratings.

 

Websites - Home construction, maintenance and repair

City of Buffalo Licensed Contractors list
Provides contractor license numbers, information on building permits, inspections and fees.

Energy Saver
Energy Saver is the U.S. Department of Energy's (DOE) consumer resource on saving energy and using renewable energy technologies at home.

New York State Worker’s Compensation Board site
Press the Does Employer have Coverage? search button.   Read the disclaimer and select the “I agree” box. You can verify that a contractor you hire to do house remodeling or construction has insurance for his/her workers.

 

Websites - Personal Budgeting
 

CNN Money Essentials
23 lessons on money management, saving, and investing presented by CNN.com.

MoneyInstructor.com
Money Instructor.com helps teachers, parents, individuals and institutions teach money management skills.  See http://www.moneyinstructor.com/budget.asp for budget planning resources.

Money Management International
Money Management International provides professional financial guidance, credit counseling, community-wide educational programs, debt management assistance, bankruptcy counseling and education services, and housing counseling assistance to consumers via phone, Internet, and in-person sessions.  

Smart About Money
Smart About Money, presented by the National Endowment for Financial Education, provides budgeting worksheets, savings & spending calculators, and helpful articles. 

 

Library Materials

Click on the following topics for a quick search in the Library's Catalog.

Automobile insurance 
Automobile purchasing
Automobile maintenance & repair
Budgets, personal
Clothes
College directories
College scholarships and financial aid
College selection
Computers: Windows 10
Cost and standard of living
Consumer education
Credit and debt management
Financial security 
Grocery shopping
Health care
Health insurance
Home buying
Home construction
Home financing
Home maintenance and repair
Household appliances
Property insurance
Real estate investment
Savings accounts
Shopping