Many people in our society are not able to save. They are barely able to cover their monthly expenses. However, there are some actions that can help you get on a path to saving.
In the first month, open an online bank account and deposit a minimum amount, such as $5. This is a very important first step. In month two, save $15 (or more) in your online savings account. One way to do this is with Paribus, an online tool that searches various retailers to determine if you are owed money for past purchases as a result of a price drop.
Your goal for month three is to work toward savings $100. This could be accomplished by signing up with market research companies to participate in providing opinions. Or, you could try selling old items online. By consistently using various ideas for earning extra money, you should be able to save $100 a month.
For additional information on starting a savings program, click here.
Have students to talk various people to determine actions they take to reduce spending or earn extra money.
Have students create a summary presentation describing actions that might be taken to increase a person’s savings.
Describe attitudes and behaviors that might result in people not being able to save for the future.
What are actions you have taken to reduce spending and to earn extra money for savings?
Many people grow up without learning how money works, which usually results in difficulties. Studies reveal that less than one-fourth of millennials have basic financial knowledge.
A vital starting point in the learning process is admitting that you don’t know. For example, most people do not know that credit scores show if a person has paid his or her bills on time and how much has been borrowed. Most people are not aware that credit reports often contain incorrect information, or how to check for errors.
Credit card rewards may seem like a good deal but only is you pay your bill on time every month. If you don’t, late fees and interest charges can more than outweigh any reward point benefits.
These are just two areas on which many young people, as well as others, lack a basic understanding. However, a wide variety of sources are available to add to your knowledge.
For additional information on learning how money works, click here.
Have students conduct research to determine the financial knowledge among various age groups.
Have students create a video presentation with suggestions for improving financial knowledge.
Why are people often not informed on basic money topics?
What are the most common topics that on which many people lack basic financial knowledge?
According to the Northwestern Mutual Planning and Progress Study on financial well-being, Americans have several worries. Based on interviews with 2,646 adults, 85 percent of respondents reported financial anxiety in some form. Approximately two-thirds of those surveyed indicated that financial anxiety negatively affected their health. In addition, 36 percent of those responding had increasing levels of financial anxiety over the past three years.
In the study, the greatest financial fears were:
Having an unplanned emergency
Having unplanned medical expenses
Having insufficient savings for retirement
Outliving retirement savings
Becoming a financial burden
Not able to afford healthcare
Loss of a job
Death/loss of primary wage earner
Having poor credit
Having to file bankruptcy
Being a victim of a financial scam
To address these concerns, the study recommends the following actions:
build an emergency fund for unplanned expenses
invest properly for retirement and long-term financial security
review your finances regularly to revise goals and savings activities
These actions can help to reduce the financial anxiety reported by a large portion of Americans.
For additional information on financial anxiety, go to:
Pokémon Go has resulted in a loss of money and other concerns. In this popular game, users interact virtually with Pokémon characters placed in real world settings. The app is free to download, however there are in-app purchasing opportunities. Players are encouraged to pay for hints and tips for a competitive advantage.
In addition to financial losses, the Pokémon Go app has been used to lure robbery victims. Other players have been robbed of their phones. Police departments caution players to be aware of their surroundings.
Be warned that “free isn’t the same as no cost.” Users may pay in the form of data use, legal confrontations, injuries, and reduced work productivity. Higher insurance costs can also occur when playing the game while driving, which might result in an auto accident. Social concerns include disturbing church services and other occasions with players capturing creatures during the events.
For additional information on the cost of Pokémon Go, click here.
Have students suggest ways that an app game might be used for improved learning or assisting others in need.
Have students describe safety precautions when playing Pokémon Go.
Why are people attracted to the game, often with a personal or financial cost?
What actions might be taken to avoid the financial and personal dangers of the game?
An estimated one-third of recently married couples are surprised by the financial situation of their spouse. A similar number (36 percent) are not aware of their partner’s spending habits. Based on a study by Experian Plc, only 40 percent knew the credit score of their partner.
Men more often hid money from spouses. About 20 percent of men had secret bank accounts about which their partners didn’t know; compared to 12 percent of women. Regarding the maximum amount that they would spend before consulting with their spouse, men replied $1,259; women said $383. Hidden financial information can have a significant adverse effect on the relationship of a newly married couple.
For additional information on newlywed finances, click here.
For additional information on the survey results, click here.
Have students survey newly-married people about their disclosure of financial information to their spouse.
Have students create a list of problems that might arise between newly-married people who do not inform their spouse about their personal financial information.
What financial information would be most important for newly-married people to disclose to their spouses?
How could a lack of disclosure of financial information to a spouse create relationship difficulties?
You are in line at your local grocery store and all the snacks, candy, and cheap gadgets are beckoning to be picked up and added to your shopping bag. You are shopping on-line and you only need to spend $8 more to get free shipping. How do you avoid falling prey to impulse buying? How are marketers reducing friction to get you to buy more stuff? As a consumer, factoring in additional transaction costs will help you avoid making impulse purchases.
Gas prices have been low for a few years but, it is always good to save a few more dollars!
What if you are in a new city? Gas prices can vary by 10-15 cents per gallon in a matter of a few blocks. How would you know where to find the cheapest gas? Good news! The GasBuddy app can help you find the best prices on the go.
While beneficiary, collateral, and fair market value are familiar to many, these terms can be especially confusing to those with limited English-language skills. In an attempt to assist various people, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has created the Newcomer’s Guides to Managing Money to provide recent immigrants with information about basic money decisions. These guides offer brief suggestions to those who are new to the U.S. banking system. The guides also include guidance for submitting and resolving problems with a financial product or service.
The Newcomer Guides include these topics:
Ways to receive your money, comparing cash, check, direct deposit, and debit cards.
Checklist for opening an account, to assist with starting a bank or credit union account.
Ways to pay your bills, providing guidance on whether to pay by check, debit card, credit card, or online.
Selecting financial products and services, providing assistance on deciding which financial services are right for various household situations.
Print copies of the guides can be ordered or downloaded. These publications are available to English and Spanish with additional languages to be offered in the future.
For additional information on money guides for newcomers: