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Financial and Lifestyle Resources for Vermont

VSECU Blog

In the VSECU Blog you'll find financial and lifestyle resources to help empower possibilities for your personal success.

By: Brian Bristow

February 26th, 2019

How to Invest in a Bear Market

Saving and Budgeting | Investing in the Future

There’s no denying that the markets have become more turbulent. In fact, the major market indexes in the United States entered a bear market on Christmas Eve of 2018. In a bear market, prices for stocks and other securities fall, which can lead investors to panic and sell off their securities. As more and more people sell, securities prices continue to fall. In general, a bear market will eventually come to an end, hopefully leading to a bull market that brings the markets back up to their former glory, but in the meantime, your portfolios, mutual funds, IRAs, 401ks, and other securities-based accounts may lose value. Determining how to invest in a bear market can help protect your investments from the long-term effects of stormy markets.

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By: Christine Davidson

February 12th, 2019

Best Practices for Buying a Used Vehicle

Saving and Budgeting | Auto Buying

How to Find a Great Deal You have made the decision to purchase a used car, but you’re not sure where to begin. You know you want something that will last a long time and you know you don’t want to pay too much (which is why you’re buying second-hand). But how do you find that winning combination of long life expectancy and low cost in a vehicle you can enjoy driving? When it comes to used cars, there are three keys to finding a great deal: knowing your needs and limitations, eliminating damaged and unsafe vehicles, and finding affordable financing options.

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By: Heidi White

February 5th, 2019

How to Make a Budget

Credit and Debt | Saving and Budgeting

What’s the secret to saving money? Use less money than you make! Saving money is really quite simple, and yet many people struggle to do it. Instead, we tend to use credit to make purchases and end up paying high interest rates on our debt. Why is it so hard to save? Because in order to achieve any goal, you need a plan. With savings, the plan is called a budget.

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By: Brian Bristow

January 23rd, 2019

How to Start Investing on a Low Budget

Investing in the Future

It’s a new year—the best time of year to set resolutions and goals. If you don’t have savings or are living on a low budget, the idea of setting an investment goal might feel uncomfortable, but remember that discomfort often comes with growth. This is the time to challenge yourself to not just survive the year financially, but to come out ahead in the end. Even if you don’t have a lot of money, this is possible. Here’s how.

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6 Tips for Improving Your Credit Score

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By: Christine Davidson

January 16th, 2019

New Year's Resolutions for My Car

Auto Buying

I start each year off like everyone else, with New Year’s resolutions—eat healthier and exercise more. Well this year I thought I would have a New Year’s resolution for my car! If you’re looking for some smart resolutions that will help you save money and maintain the value of your car, here are some resolutions you may want to make.

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By: Mark Kelley

January 8th, 2019

A Free Tool for Assessing the Energy Efficiency of Your Business

Business Development | Energy Savings

Small businesses come in a variety of sizes and types in Vermont. So, it is no wonder that there is no “one-size fits all” solution for energy savings when it comes to how Vermonters make a living. According to the U.S. Small Business Administration, “over half of the U.S. workforce either owns or works for a small business.” It’s clear that small businesses, like yours, power our economy. And your business needs power to keep the lights on, to heat and cool, and more. And, chances are you are paying for more energy than you need to get the job done.

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By: Corinne Brochu

December 26th, 2018

IRA Contribution Limits Are Increasing in 2019

Investing in the Future

If you have an individual retirement account (IRA), your annual contributions have a limit. In 2019, those limits are rising, which is great news for those who like to save the maximum. Below, you’ll find everything you need to know about the new maximums and your phase-out range (if you are covered by a retirement plan at work). 

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By: Danielle Laberge

December 21st, 2018

Solar Energy & How to Prepare For a Power Outage

Energy Savings | Learn Something New

Extreme weather events are causing increasing numbers of power outages, and power outages can impact your life and your livelihood—maybe you have to throw out a freezer full of spoiled food, or you are cut off from loved ones during a storm, or can’t shower before work. It’s important to have energy alternatives that can help you meet your essential needs and keep your home habitable, maybe for an extended period, during power outages. Most people say water, food, warmth, and communication rank as essential needs. To help meet those needs, people are increasingly looking for new uses of solar energy that can help them protect their homes during outages. Here’s why.

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Cultivate and Maintain an Excellent Credit Score

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