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Financial and Lifestyle Resources for Vermont


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

By: Joshua Dobrovich

May 25th, 2021

How Much Car Can You Afford?

Saving and Budgeting | Auto Buying

You need a car but when you look at your budget, you’re not sure what kind of down payment you should make or how much you can afford to pay each month. Maybe you haven’t made a car payment in a while. Or maybe you have been making a payment all along and it’s been putting a damper on your budget. Before you strap yourself into a new car, take a minute to figure out how much car you can afford and still live comfortably within your means.

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By: Oliver Ames

May 21st, 2021

Need a New Dryer? Save Money with an Energy Efficient Heat Pump Dryer

Energy Savings

Since buying a 1929 Dutch Colonial a few years ago, my wife and I have been trying to reduce our energy bill and improve the interior temperature and comfort of our home. We’ve invested in weatherization, cold climate heat pumps, a heat pump hot water heater, and other energy efficiency upgrades with support from a local lender. After we completed these upgrades last year, I’ve been curiously exploring what else we could modify for further efficiency. Enter the heat pump dryer!

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By: Talithia Bonner

May 18th, 2021

How to Start a Business: Some Initial Steps and Advice

Business Development

Marc Anthony once said, “If you do what you love, you’ll never work a day in your life.” When you choose something you love, you are willing to pull out all the stops to make sure it is successful and enjoy every moment of it.

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By: Oliver Ames

May 13th, 2021

Planning a Trip? Here Are Five Tips for Traveling Safely after COVID

Learn Something New | Lifestyle

As of May 13, over 35% of Americans have been fully vaccinated thanks to the hard work of scientists, medical engineers, and state government officials. The result is a declining number of positive COVID-19 cases and death rate, leading many states to slowly begin reopening. Here in Vermont, we currently rank first in the nation for rate of vaccine administration! With all this good news, it might soon be safe to travel again and perhaps reschedule that trip you canceled in 2020. In fact, CNBC reports that 65% of Americans plan to travel more in 2021 than in years prior to COVID-19! Here are a few things to keep in mind as you plan your post-COVID adventures out in the world.

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6 Tips for Improving Your Credit Score

Cultivate and Maintain an Excellent Credit Score

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By: David Tepfer

May 11th, 2021

How to Tune up Your Bike this Spring

Energy Savings | Lifestyle

Spring is finally here and, with it, more hours of daylight, warmer weather, and greater opportunities for outdoor cycling. Biking is a great, gas-free alternative to cars and can save you money and improve your physical health all at once. So, dust off your bike and get it out of storage and onto the road. However, before you do, it’s a good idea to give your bike a tire-to-tire once-over.

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By: Stephanie Loscalzo

May 10th, 2021

The Hidden Costs of Being Frugal

Saving and Budgeting | Lifestyle

“Stop! Back up!” I shout enthusiastically to my spouse Ryan every time we drive or bike past a pile of free stuff on the side of the road. Next comes a debate between us over whether the discarded items are worth taking home or not. Most often, I say “yes,” Ryan says “no,” we take it home anyway, and Ryan ends up thanking me later for grabbing it. I find a lot of satisfaction in giving objects a second life, but is this obsession truly saving me money?

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By: Heidi White

May 4th, 2021

Why Bank with a Credit Union?

Alternative Banking

Credit unions and banks offer a similar experience but operate from a very different structure and philosophy. One is not necessarily better than the other, but one may be better for you, depending on your values and your needs. Which one makes the most sense for you? To determine that, here is a list of questions you can ask, and some answers to help you consider the options.

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By: Daniel Gauthier

April 30th, 2021

Five Ideas for How to Solve Your Financial Problems

Youth and Finances | Credit and Debt | Saving and Budgeting

Do you feel like your finances are a mess? What exactly qualifies your finances as a ‘mess,’ anyway? There are lots of rules of thumb and general advice out there—you should have two months’ worth of wages saved as an emergency fund, you should have three times your salary saved for retirement by age 40, and the like. What if you don’t; are your finances a mess? If you’re like most Americans, that may be the case. The truth is that about 63% of Americans are living paycheck to paycheck and 30% of Americans struggle to come up with $400 to pay for an emergency expense. Regardless of your personal circumstances, here are five steps to consider taking to improve your financial situation.

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