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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: Caroline Cross

August 7th, 2020

Teach Your Teen How to Use Their First Checking Account

Youth and Finances | Saving and Budgeting

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.

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By: David Tepfer

July 16th, 2020

How to Use Spent Grain Left Over from Brewing

Saving and Budgeting | Learn Something New | Lifestyle

If you have ever tried or looked into the idea of brewing beer at home, you know all the great benefits. You can control the taste, carbonation, alcohol content, and character of what you drink; it makes a great last-minute gift; and by brewing at home, you are saving on cost and won’t have to recycle your own bottles. There is, however, one major drawback to home brewing—the high volume of leftover ingredients you have to deal with after every brew. These leftover ingredients are all the oats, wheat, barley, and other grains that are “spent” during the brewing process.

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By: Nick Bohlen

June 30th, 2020

Your CARES Act and Families First Act Cheat Sheet

Saving and Budgeting | Investing in the Future | Lifestyle

COVID-19 has changed many aspects of our day-to-day lives. Among other things, our personal finances, 401(k) accounts, job security, food security, social lives, and family lives have all been impacted. To mitigate the pandemic’s effect on our personal lives, the U.S. government enacted new laws to help Americans deal with the novel coronavirus. Passed at the end of March, the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act and the Families First Coronavirus Response (FFCR) Act made notable changes in how we take care of our health, our work, and our finances. Here are the key impacts both the CARES and FFCR Acts have had on these areas of our lives in 2020.

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By: Heidi White

June 15th, 2020

The Benefits of a Bank Account

Alternative Banking | Saving and Budgeting

If you don’t have a credit union or bank account, you aren’t alone. According to the most recent FDIC survey, “an estimated 6.5% of U.S. households (8.4 million households) were ‘unbanked’ in 2017” and “an additional 18.7% of U.S. households (24.2 million) were ‘underbanked.’ In 2015, an estimated 1.5% of Vermonters (out of a population of 626,299, that’s 9,394 people) were unbanked. 11.6% were underbanked. This is a fairly low rate in comparison to other states, but it’s still a lot of people who live without any or adequate banking services.

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6 Tips for Improving Your Credit Score

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By: Oliver Ames

May 6th, 2020

How to Manage Your Personal Finances during COVID-19

Credit and Debt | Saving and Budgeting | Identity and Fraud Protection | Lifestyle

COVID-19 has brought financial uncertainty to many, and even as we edge closer to recovery, the impacts of COVID-19 will be felt by many Vermonters for months to come. I sat down with Yvonne Garand, our senior vice president of marketing and business development, to talk about personal finance in the age of COVID-19.

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By: David Argentieri

May 4th, 2020

Home Improvement Projects: Increase Your Property Value & Home Comfort

Homebuying and Mortgages | Saving and Budgeting | Learn Something New

Home ownership is incredibly rewarding, both financially and personally. Building equity in your home puts you on the path towards a sound financial future, while pride of ownership can be immensely gratifying. Now that spring is arriving, a lot of homeowners finally have a chance to begin planning a renovation or tackling a repair that was put on hold during winter’s harsh weather.

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By: Nick Bohlen

April 30th, 2020

Eight Things to Do if Facing Coronavirus Lay Off or Furlough

Credit and Debt | Saving and Budgeting

In the last month, 22 million Americans have filed for unemployment due to the coronavirus. Here in Vermont, unemployment has jumped from 2.2 percent to an effective unemployment rate of over 20 percent, with more than 80,000 claims to date for unemployment insurance due to COVID-19. The economy is slowly restarting, as certain industries are reopening with social distancing parameters in place, but many Vermonters remain unemployed or worried about job security. If you or someone you know is out of work, here are eight things you can do to survive being laid off (or furloughed).

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By: Monica Taylor

April 27th, 2020

Free Local Food Resources to Feed Your Family during the Pandemic

Saving and Budgeting | Learn Something New

If you have lost pay, been laid off from work, or are working reduced hours, you may be struggling to cover food costs. Whether this is a new situation for you or a situation you have been in before, know that you are not alone and there are a number of free food resources available close to home. These programs are for ALL Vermonters and can help you and your family stay healthy and well-nourished through this emergency.

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