Military Saves Blog
Tips, advice, and the latest news from the savings world.
October 25, 2012
Andia Dinesen, AFC ®
Why do you save money? Does the image of stacks of money in a bank vault excite you? For most, this probably isn’t true.
Saving is delayed spending. Unless you are Ebenezer Scrooge (and you can see how well that worked out for him), you are planning to spend the money you are stashing.
Here are some tips for making that delayed spending, disguised as saving, more appealing.
How Emergency Savings Saved Me
October 24, 2012
by Julie Roth, AFC® Candidate
FINRA Military Spouse Fellow
Six years ago, when we were still a kid-free, two-income household, my husband and I decided to get our financial life in order. We started with a small emergency fund of $1000. I was amazed at the freedom I felt once we had the $1000 in the bank, knowing that whatever came up, we could afford it and could get rid of those credit cards for good this time! This wasn’t our first time getting out of debt, but something always came up; a car repair or a move – that new house needed some new furniture to go in it, right? This time we were done and the emergency savings was the start of a solid, long-term financial change in our life. Living off one income, we used the other to pay off our debt and then fully funded our emergency fund to 3-6 months of our living expenses. I thought we were set. Now it was time to start saving for retirement and the new car I knew we would need in a few years.
The following post comes from the America Saves Blog. Follow them on Twitter and Facebook.
October 23, 2012
By Katie Bryan, America Saves Communications Manager
USA.gov launched the portal Help for Difficult Financial Times to highlight government resources that can make your life easier during tough times. As part of this effort
, they ran a poll asking: What helps you most when money is tight? 5,352 of you responded:
Given that only 15 percent of those surveyed said they turn to government assistance in tough times, USA.gov wants to make sure you know about benefits that could help you. Government assistance comes in different forms—from unemployment checks and food assistance to credit counseling and medical treatment. Here is a list of some of their most popular resources:
October 18, 2012
by Allyson Dennen, MC, AFC
Have you begun to think about holiday spending yet? Whether you have or not, the retailers definitely are! They are strategizing how to gain your money, and as much of it as possible. If you noticed an aisle or two of holiday items appearing even before the Halloween candy had been stocked, then you’ll realize retailers are already attempting to lengthen the holiday season this year. Several stores, including the Exchange, have rolled out special Layaway Plans for the holidays. While layaway can be a great addition to your holiday spending plan, you will have to make sure you understand the details before you commit to it.
Some retailers are offering layaway with no upfront fees, while others will refund the upfront fee, but only in the form of a gift card, after you pay in full. Some are even advertising no cancellation fees. If your desire is to be control your holiday spending and keep from increasing credit card debt, these layaway deals may be tempting. There are several things to consider, however, when deciding if this is a good way to purchase gifts:
By Sean Naron
Administrative and Advocacy Associate, Consumer Federation of America
Born in the fall of 1989, I am considered a member of the “Millennial Generation.” Millennials are often described as possessing an assortment of distinct character traits, the majority of which are not exactly positive. We have been labeled as narcissistic, a generation of multitaskers obsessed with online profiles (or online anything really), and have been dubbed the “instant gratification generation.”
While the jury is still out to how true all these labels are, a new study has shown that one commonly held idea about millennials is very accurate: too many of us hope to rely on our parents for financial support. A survey conducted by TD Ameritrade (via USA Today) found that 40 percent of teenagers and young adults between the ages of 13-22 believe their parents will leave them a sizeable inheritance.
Only 16% of parents said that they expect to provide an inheritance for their children.
So, fellow millennials, listen up: as much as we would like it to be true, we can’t bank on receiving an inheritance from Mom and Dad. We need to save for our own retirement.