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October 2011

Founded in 1951, the National Foundation for Credit Counseling is the largest serving nonprofit financial counseling organization. Find various topics in this blog, including personal finance, credit counseling, housing, budgeting and student loan help. Click here to speak with an NFCC-certified Consumer Credit Counselor.

Generation Y’s Take On Retirement

By Gary Silverman, CFP® Older Baby Boomers are starting to enter their retirement years. Generation X-ers (those born between 1965 and 1976) are in their prime earning years. Both generations have been studied to death. But now we are starting to get some indication of how Gen Ys (born between 1977 and 2001) are turning out. While the 10-year-old youngsters of the group aren’t spending a lot of time contemplating …Read More

Flexible Spending Accounts Slash Your Taxes

By Jason Alderman Senior Director, Global Financial Education, Visa, Inc. Admit it: You probably spend more time comparison shopping online than you do reviewing your annual benefits enrollment materials. That’s a big mistake, though, because the money you could save by choosing the right employee benefits package probably far exceeds any savings you could get on a big-screen TV. For example, many people don’t sign up for one of the …Read More

Survey: Married Folks More Retirement-Ready

Parents have any number of reasons for wanting an adult child to marry: They want you to have companionship. They want you to be settled. They want grandchildren. But a new survey suggests there’s also a financial argument for getting married. According to Charles Schwab, the investment management company, married people are more likely to have started saving for retirement and to feel more confident about their retirement readiness than …Read More

Bad Decisions Can Turn Financial Treats Into Financial Tricks

By Gail Cunningham Halloween tricks or treats come along only once a year, but the consequences of financial decisions usually last far past the next spooky holiday. Options that seem good on the surface, if not handled properly, can have long-lasting negative consequences. To understand how a seemingly good financial move can work against you, the NFCC encourages consumers to review the following to see if their actions are resulting …Read More

Start Making Some Money Plans

By Sara Gilbert, GreenPath Debt Solutions Why do we wait to take action? Especially when the chips are down and decisions are difficult, taking action can be tough indeed. Doing nothing, though, has its own set of consequences, so why do we wait? In our counseling sessions at GreenPath, many if not most clients, tell us that they waited quite some time before making an appointment with one of our …Read More

Start Your Student Loan Search Now

By Jason Alderman Senior Director, Global Financial Education, Visa, Inc. If you’ve got a high school senior, your household is probably knee-deep in senior-year activities – and expenses. Not to elevate your stress level, but this is probably a good time for you and your kid to start investigating how you’re going to finance college next fall. Seriously. Loan application deadlines will be here before you know it and there …Read More

Wells Fargo Supports Non-Profit Foreclosure-Prevention Counseling Through NFCC Grant

The NFCC has received a grant of $250,000 from Wells Fargo & Company to support the delivery of foreclosure-prevention counseling. The NFCC appreciates Wells Fargo & Company for recognizing the continued need for nonprofit foreclosure-prevention counseling, and supporting it through this grant to the NFCC and its member agency network.  “Wells Fargo’s commitment to funding nonprofit credit counseling speaks volumes about their concern for the financial stability of today’s struggling homeowner,” …Read More

Should You Seek Help From a Credit Counseling Agency?

By Matt Bell I was surprised to read recently that there’s been a strong drop in the number of people turning to credit counseling agencies for help in paying back their debts.  After all, plenty of people are still struggling under the weight of too much debt.  Gail Cunningham, spokesperson for the National Foundation for Credit Counseling, said, “I think some are just tired of trying and have given up.” …Read More

The Dangers of Co-signing Credit Applications

By John Ulzheimer The Credit Card Accountability, Responsibility, and Disclosure Act of 2009 requires that people under 21 have a co-signer or a job in order to open a credit card.  Further, the same law requires lenders to confirm an applicant’s capacity to pay their debt for any other loan.  This has thrust the prospect of co-signing for loans (or asking for someone to co-sign for you) into a new …Read More

One In Four Americans Would Not Inform Spouse of Financial Difficulties

The NFCC’s September online poll revealed that 24% percent of more than 1,400 respondents would not tell their spouse if experiencing financial difficulties.  Reasons given for withholding the information included the fear that it would worry the spouse (9%); that the spouse is unaware of the debt (8%); that it would damage the relationship (7%).  “Even if well-intentioned, withholding financial information from a spouse is not a sign of a healthy …Read More