In the VSECU Blog you'll find financial and lifestyle resources to help empower possibilities for your personal success.
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.
Winter is definitely here and you may be thinking about enjoying this early winter snow with a new snowmobile. You may wonder whether you should finance the sled or pay cash for it. If so, you can begin by asking yourself a couple of questions: Do have enough cash to purchase the snowmobile out of pocket? If I take out a loan, can I afford another monthly payment? Do I have to put insurance on the snowmobile? How much do I really want to spend?
There is no shame in shopping online or out of state for the holidays. I’ve found some of my best holiday gifts in distant cities. BUT! There is so much more to be gained, for you and your community, by weaving a good deal of local shopping into your holiday plan. The only trick is saving time and money while you’re at it.
Holiday shopping is more fun when you’re not worried about how you’re going to pay off your credit cards afterward. The best way to approach the season is to save money throughout the year, so you don’t need to rely on credit. But since we’re already counting down the days, let’s focus on what you can do if you weren’t able to save enough. Try these five ways to make the holiday season more affordable.
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Is your debt spread out in all directions—through loans, credit cards, a mortgage (or two), you name it? Are you carrying credit card balances on high-interest cards that you can’t seem to pay off? Are you struggling to save for future needs or significant life changes like retirement? If so, debt consolidation could help reduce your monthly financial obligations (and your stress), open up your monthly cash flow, and ultimately allow you to reduce your debt more quickly.
Life experiences fall into three categories: cognitive (thoughts), emotional (feelings) and physical (physiology and actions). Though interconnected, one of these three has a disproportionately larger impact on your decision-making when it comes to finances—emotions. Emotions are volatile and can be stimulated by many triggers, whether it be a new raise, a death in the family, or fluctuating market conditions.
Your credit score is a number, based on your credit report, that helps financial institutions determine if you will repay a loan. Credit scores can range from 300-850. Typically, the higher the credit score, the more likely the borrower will pay off their loan.
Reducing debt and saving money go hand in hand because you can’t save money if you use every paycheck to pay off debt and monthly bills. How do you get a grip on your debt so that more of your earnings can land in your savings account?