Your story sounds familiar to me. Even though I was good in algebra for several years, when I began Intermediate algebra there were a lot of math topics that seemed confusing. I remember I got a very bad grade when I took the exam on real-life example involving polynomials. Now I don't have this problem anymore, I can solve anything quite easily, even trigonometry and angle-angle similarity. I was smart that I didn't spend my money on a tutor, because I heard of Algebra Buster from a friend. I have been using it since then whenever I stumbled upon something complicated.
Algebra Buster is the program that I have used through several algebra classes - Pre Algebra, Remedial Algebra and Remedial Algebra. It is a truly a great piece of algebra software. I remember of going through problems with interval notation, function composition and linear equations. I would simply type in a problem from the workbook, click on Solve – and step by step solution to my math homework. I highly recommend the program.