In the VSECU Blog you'll find financial and lifestyle resources to help empower possibilities for your personal success.
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.
Living in the Northeast when the seasons are changing can prove costly if your home is not energy efficient. You can easily spend hundreds of dollars on a heat pump, furnace repair or replacement, a pellet stove, air sealing, insulation, ventilation, or roof repair or replacement just to name a few. The list of potential fall weatherization and energy efficiency projects is often big, and finding funds necessary to pay for such efforts may be just enough to make some people think it’s simply not affordable for them.
When you pay off debt, you open up options for yourself. You improve your cash flow, so you can stop living from paycheck to paycheck; you free up money so that you can buy the things you need and want to live a more productive and engaged life; and you put yourself in a position to save more money for a more comfortable retirement.
If you’re not sure if you can afford to improve the energy efficiency of your home, you’re in good company. Lots of people wonder not only about how to pay for home improvements but also about what upgrades make the most sense. The good news is that you can get help about both concerns. At Efficiency Vermont, it’s my job to give objective advice about lowering energy use within any budget. One of the ways that many people are able to make their dream of an efficient home a reality is with a low-interest energy loan.
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You may be able to save a lot of money by refinancing your car, but is it time? If you’re asking yourself that question, read on to learn some good reasons for refinancing and some things you should consider as you get started.
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 vehicle has served you well – it has shuttled you safely to work, toted your belongings and groceries with care, covered the distance between you and your loved ones—but it hasn’t been working so well lately. You just had the brakes fixed and the motor is now making a strange clunking sound. Each visit to the shop seems to cost a little more and you know that some other (and possibly more expensive) repairs are looming. You just don’t know when to buy a new car.
There are many ways to save and invest your money, whether you’re putting away for a special occasion, a purchase, retirement, college, or something else. While you’re saving, it’s good to remember that your money can make you MORE money while it’s in savings. It does this by accruing interest or dividends (depending on whether you work with a credit union or a bank).