In the VSECU Blog you'll find financial and lifestyle resources to help empower possibilities for your personal success.
COVID-19 has caused financial and job loss for millions of Americans, including tens of thousands of Vermonters filing unemployment insurance claims and wondering about their financial futures. For many, this includes worrying about how they can continue paying their mortgage—and continue owning their homes. Thanks to new federal legislation, accommodating lenders, and grant funding, there are several ways you can keep from falling behind on your mortgage amid the financial uncertainty of COVID-19.
How do you think about money? In many ways, our psychology of money determines what we do with it. Before you can build better spending habits, you may need to change the way you think about money. For all the budgeting tactics and money-saving life hacks there are, they may not help you stop wasting money if you don’t have the proper money mindset. Whether you’re just starting to independently manage your finances or are looking to escape a money mentality you inherited from your family, here are seven ways to adopt a healthier mindset and a wealthier savings account.
A first checking account is a rite of passage. Many children have savings accounts opened in their names when they are born, but as your child gets older and develops, he or she will need a checking account to gain experience managing their money. As said by the character Benjamin Parker in Spider-Man, “With great power comes great responsibility.” A checking account can be a great responsibility, so it’s important that your teen knows how they work.
When I began to consider writing about economic recession, the pandemic crisis was in its beginning stages and preparing for a recession was a largely theoretical conversation. Fast forward four months, and we are in a recession that surpasses the Great Recession of 2008. Downturns to both the state and national economies have caused a level of financial hardship most of us have never experienced—unless you were alive for the Great Depression from 1929 to 1941. Rather than heighten your concern or cause you despair, however, my goal is to answer some frequently asked questions and provide you with a framework to better understand the current economic recession and what we might expect moving forward.
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For many, investing can come with baggage. People often make different associations with the term based on past experiences with parents, teachers, and friends. The portrayal of Wall Street culture in American cinema tends to portray a version of investing that quite possibly keeps a lot of would-be investors on the sidelines reading the financial news and wondering how the “wolves of Wall Street” keep finding fresh kills. Being a market-based investor is not just for the ultra-rich. It’s something nearly anyone with a job can do. It’s about setting goals, making a budget that includes investing, staying the course, and remaining disciplined to the basic principles of investing.
The financial markets are experiencing unprecedented times. We have seen record-breaking ups and downs in a single day, and that trend will likely continue into the new year. These crazy market conditions can make even the most confident investors question their decisions. So, if you have investments in the market or are considering investing, here are some thoughts and tips on how to navigate these uncertain times.
Check fraud is a criminal act in which one person convinces another to exchange real money or property for a bogus check. In many cases, the fraudster creates a sense of excitement and urgency, giving their victims very little time to think rationally. By the time the victim realizes what has happened, they may have lost thousands of dollars (maybe even more), with no way to recoup their losses.
According to the Social Security Administration (SSA), Americans have lost more than $50 million over the last two years to Social Security scams—and that’s just from telephone scams. Unfortunately, the telephone isn’t the only method used. Between October 1, 2018 and September 30, 2019, more than 450,000 Americans reported being contacted by Social Security scammers by phone, email, or even physical mail. To help you avoid becoming a victim, consider this your guide to what tactics are commonly used, what to look for if you’re being targeted, and what to do to avoid the growing number of Social Security scams.