Monday, December 12, 2011
• For their own or a family member’s education expenses (11 percent)
• To build an emergency fund (36 percent)
• To reduce their debt (21 percent)
See full article from DailyFinance http://www.dailyfinance.com/2011/12/08/the-triple-threat-to-baby-boomers-retirement-plans/
Wednesday, November 30, 2011
At one of my last Managing Money in Tough Times workshops the financial reality facing retired Wyomingites became very apparant. We haven't been unaffected by the financial turbulance experienced in our country in recent years. It is a very real and difficult financial challenge for seniors who find themselves facing the reality of having outlived their retirement savings.
A tip from the class.... if at all possible, practice living on your retirement income before making the big decision to leave the workforce.
Tuesday, November 29, 2011
Tuesday, November 15, 2011
Monday, October 31, 2011
Monday, October 10, 2011
More than seven million Americans currently abuse prescription drugs, according to the 2009 Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration’s National Survey on Drug Use and Health. Each day approximately 2,500 teens use prescription drugs to get high for the first time according to the Partnership for a Drug Free America. Studies show that a majority of abused prescription drugs are obtained from family and friends, including the home medicine cabinet.
Find a disposal site at dea.gov.
Wednesday, October 5, 2011
The 11th Consumer Issues Conference begins tonight with a free showing of Big Bucks, Big Pharma at 7pm in the UW Union. The conference sessions begin Thursday morning in Laramie with speakers on business/legal, health and criminal aspects of drugs and consumers. Sessions include sessions on medical marijuana, alcohol and Wyoming law, the proliferation of drug ads targeted directly to consumers, alternative medicine, a panel of legislators focusing on policy issues raised during the conference, and more.
Continuing education credits are available for attorneys, educators, health professionals, and family and consumer sciences professionals.
Tuesday, August 30, 2011
Thursday, August 25, 2011
Information is at http://wyohomelandsecurity.state.wy.us/being_prepared.aspx and www.ready.gov.
Monday, August 22, 2011
Redefining the American Dream -- Nearly Half of U.S. Adults Say Top Financial Goal is Having Enough Money for Retirement
The National Endowment for Financial Education today released the results of a survey about what Americans' top financial goals are. They found that almost half of American adults say the financial goal that is most important to them is having enough money for retirement. Forty-seven percent of U.S. adults aged 18 and older say having enough money for retirement is their top financial priority, compared to just 17 percent who feel homeownership is their top financial goal.
Ted Beck, president and CEO of NEFE says, "Homeownership has been a traditional indication of achieving the American Dream. But whether it’s due to the decline in the housing market or because of challenges experienced during the economic downturn, people grasp the importance of planning for the future and seem to be having a shift in their approach—from physical to more financial security-based values."
NEFE found that, in thinking about their own financial situations, 57 percent believe they are achieving the American Dream. But the chase isn’t without its obstacles. A majority of US adults (70 percent) agree that a significant obstacle to achieving the American Dream is their inability to save enough, and 54 percent agree that managing their debt is a significant barrier.
Take the LifeValues Quiz
Understanding your financial values is one part to success in managing your money. NEFE has a LifeValues Quiz to help identify the values that drive their financial decisions. To take the quiz, visit www.smartaboutmoney.org/lifevalues.
Thursday, August 4, 2011
In August, you can participate in a personal financial webinar offered by Cooperative Extension personnel from the University of Florida. Sign-up at the link below. These Webinars offer you the chance to improve your finances from home or office with live, interactive on-line classes.
August 16 – 10:30 to 11:30 PM (MDT)
Find out how to:
· Evaluate your level of debt
· Use Power Pay to become “debt free”
· Evaluate debt management options
· Avoid scams
Register at http://bit.ly/oB6b2z
Webinars are provided by the University of Florida Extension in partnership with Lake County Extension, Hillsborough County Extension and Okaloosa County Extension.
Thursday, July 14, 2011
The EHLP program is an opportunity for homeowners who are behind on their mortgage due to underemployment, unemployment, or high medical debt. HUD has a new program that offers unemployed or underemployed homeowners up to $50,000 in mortgage assistance, but you must act quickly. There are 36 applicant spots available in Wyoming through the Consumer Credit Counseling Service. Applicants aren’t necessarily guaranteed a spot, but it would be nice to fill the allocated 36 that are available across Wyoming. Applications are needed by July 22.
To learn how to apply, call RDI Consumer Credit Counseling Service. The deadline for applications is July 22, so you must act fast. Find more on the web at CCCSWYO.org or call 1.877-275-2227. Information is also at http://www.cccsmt.org/ehlp.
Thursday, March 31, 2011
At some point you will have to take distributions from your retirement accounts -- our personal finance colleagues in Extension have been getting a lot of questions on the topic (especially in December!). If people don’t take the first distribution of their money at age 70 ½, they have until April 1 of the following year to take it…or there are fees to pay. Here are a couple resources are a great read to better understand what people will need to consider when it comes time to withdraw the RMD (required minimum distribution) out of IRAs.
Rules for Taking Distributions from Tax-Deferred Retirement Savings Plans, University of Illinois publication: http://web.extension.illinois.edu/countrysidecenter/downloads/26894.pdf
Distribution table link: http://njaes.rutgers.edu/money/ira-table.asp
There are also a number of FAQs on the topic at extension.org. Just search "RMD."
Thursday, March 10, 2011
You may have noticed a little more money in your paycheck this year. Federal legislation signed into law in December extended a couple of things affecting net pay: a temporary 2 percent reduction in the FICA tax (for Social Security), and a two-year extension of all tax rates.
A worker with an income of about $50,000 can expect to get a take home pay boost of $1,000 over the course of the year, which comes out to approximately $83 per month.
What should you do with an extra $1,000?
A few prudent things include
· Building up your emergency fund. Could you cover several months of living expenses if something happened to you or you needed money quickly?
· Pay down debt -- especially credit card debt. Make sure any high interest debt is reduced. Then put the rest toward an extra payment on your car loan or house mortgage.
· Save for retirement. Invest in your long term financial security by putting the money in a tax-deferred retirement plan, like an IRA.
· Reward yourself. If you're covered, it's okay to treat yourself. But shop around for good deals.
Tuesday, March 8, 2011
While on Facebook, look at your URL address; if you see "http:" instead of "https:" then you do NOT have a secure session and you risk getting hacked and your personal information may be at risk. Go to AccountAccount SettingsAccount Security and click Change. FB defaults to the non-secure setting.
It's also worthwhile to take a look at the other settings that FB may have as a default.
Tuesday, January 11, 2011
The number of delinquinces in Wyoming has been on the rise. If you're under stress, remember that doing nothing is the worst thing a delinquent borrower can do. And the longer the delay, the worse it gets.
US Comptroller of the Currency John Dugan says, "The record shows that the early stages of mortgage delinquency are the most crucial. The sooner borrowers reach out for help, the more options they have, and the more likely foreclosure may be avoided."
In half of all foreclosures, lenders say borrowers do not make contact with them. Yet, more than one-third of those who reach out for assistance are successful in finding alternatives to foreclosure.
Homeowners experiencing financial difficulties to call 1-888-995 HOPE, a toll-free hotline staffed around the clock, seven days a week, by 85 qualified housing counselors from agencies approved by the Department of Housing and Urban Affairs.