Month: August 2014

Celebrate College Savings Month!


September means school is back in the swing of things and you’ve had to fork over some serious cash for books, supplies, and tuition for the semester. Why not start thinking about next year and how you will make covering these expenses less stressful?

The Personal Money Management Center wants to help you reduce stress that is associated with the financial obligations of getting an education. We want to help you so much that we are going to show you how to receive a $4,500 matched savings grant! We are holding two mandatory personal money management classes at the end of December (20th & 22nd 10am-2pm) to qualify you for this opportunity. Class sizes are limited so you need to register as soon as possible. If we have over 40 participants signed up by September 10th, we will hold an earlier session the last two Saturdays in September (20th & 27th).

The classes work in conjunction with the Utah Individual Development Account Network. UIDAN provides a matched savings account to qualified participants. When you save up to $1,500 you will receive up to $4,500; a 3:1 match! Your $6,000 can be used towards your education, the purchase of a first home, small business development, or assistive technology for the disabled.

We have been able to assist students in receiving $112,500 in matched savings money. Students chose to use their funds for education, buying their first home, or starting their own business. You could be the next student to lessen the financial burden of getting a college degree or to make your dream of owning a home or starting a business a reality!

IDA Infographic

To register for this amazing opportunity, simply call our office 801-585-7379 or stop by to see us on the 3rd floor of the Union in Room 317. We also have an event posted on our Facebook page.

Movie Time

This blog is for those of you that are movie lovers like myself. I love seeing all the new movies that hit the theatres, but I also love not spending $10.00 a ticket! Here are a few tips to keep in mind when watching the newest movies for a little bit cheaper.

  1. Matinee Show Prices. By going to the theatre earlier in the day most theatres if not all offer prices to be cheaper before their busy night hours. It is like their way of getting people their during the day, so if you are able to take advantage of the matinee times.
  2. Drive-Ins. This is something that my boyfriend and I do for a fun and cheap date from time to time, because you are able to get two movies for the price of one! The movies start a little later because you have to wait for the sun to go down, but you are able to bring your own food and drinks and blankets to cuddle up in. It is just a fun a different way to experience watching your movies, espically on a budget.
  3. Redbox. Sure it takes longer to see the movies you want to see but for 1 night you can rent the movie for $1.50 and watch with all your friends and family at home. They are also making it very convient with the website allowing you to hold movies for pick-up and insuring you get the movie your looking for without driving to multiple redboxes.
  4. Become a rewards memeber at your favorite theatres. At all the theatres I visit most they have some kind of point system that gives rewards for watching movies at that theatre. You can see if your favorite theatre has some kind of system by either asking when purchasing your next ticket or by looking online. Here are a couple examples of the ones I have:
    • Cinemark’s CineMode: this was a free app that I just downloaded on my phone and is really easy to use. When I am at the theatre watching a movie they always remind you to turn on your cinemode, then at the end of the movie they present you with a reward! It could be free popcorn with purchase of a drink, or I have even gotten a free movie poster before! http://www.cinemark.com/home.aspx
    • Megaplex Reward’s Card: This was a free card that I got after buying my tickets one time and I have used it everytime since. It isn’t like a credit card or anything alls you do is just present it at the time of purchasing tickets or even concessions and they’ll swipe it and for each dollar you spend you recieve points. There is a point system online that shows the different prizes you can win for your number of points and when you win something it is just printed on a receipt with your tickets. http://www.megaplextheatres.com/
    • Check out your favorites to see if they have similar rewards!

So there are a few things you can keep in mind when wanting to save a little bit of money while watching the movies! Good luck and movie on!

Win Cool Prizes from Zoo, Arts & Parks!

Psst! Salt Lake County Zoo, Arts & Parks has launched #ZAPTicketTuesday on Facebook & Twitter

zap

Keep an eye out each week, you can enter to win some pretty cool prizes from ZAP supported organizations, including:
-Tickets to The Rose Exposed 2014 (Enter now!)
-Tickets to Utah Symphony’s performance of “Video Games Live!”
-General admission to Tracy Aviary
-Day at the Museum Package from the Natural History Museum of Utah
-Family Passes to Discovery Gateway
-Tickets to Nova Chamber Music Series Concert “Mendelssohn Octet & Celena sings Bach”
-Tickets to Pioneer Theatre’s performance of “One Man, Two Guvnors”
-Tickets to Ballet West’s performance of “Giselle”
-Gift packs and tickets to Salt Lake Film Society movie screening…and more!

 

Pay Yourself Before Others

By: Vincent Mortensen

As Americans, we find it pretty easy to spend every dime we have versus saving for a rainy day.  There are so many cool things we can buy such as streaming movie sites, the cool new smartphone, that purse you must have, and many other things.  In short, we LOVE our stuff.  There is nothing wrong with loving stuff, but we must love ourselves first.  The greatest way we can love ourselves is financially securing our future.  Below are a few tips to make sure you pay yourself first before you pay for wanted items.

  1. Direct deposit – This is one of the best ways to save money. When money is directly deposited into a savings account that you will not touch, you don’t see the money.  If you don’t see the money, you probably won’t spend it (except for emergencies, of course).
  2. Trust someone – If you have a close family member or friend that you can trust with your money, feel free to give them a portion of your pay every month. Have them hold angreen-piggyd hide the money for you.  No matter how much you beg or plead or moan, tell them to not give it to you unless it’s an absolute emergency.  The pizza man is not an emergency.
  3. Fund your 401(k) – If you have a work 401(k) to contribute to, do it! Not only will your money grow over time for retirement, you will be penalized by the government if you take it out early.  It’s a behavioral win-win situation.  Also, if your employer matches your contribution up to a certain percentage (let’s say 3%), that’s free money you’re not tapping into.  Take advantage!

Saving money isn’t as sexy as purchasing a nice blouse or a new ATV.  It IS comforting to know you surpassed your wants today for a safe and prosperous financial life in the future.  As Murphy’s Law states:  If it can go wrong, it will!  It’s not IF you have a financial emergency, it’s WHEN.

The Ugly Truth About Marrying Bad Credit

By Kimberly Rotter
Featured from Creditsesame.com

wedding

If you’re thinking about marrying that special someone, now is the time to talk about money, credit and financial goals. Don’t wait until after the wedding to find out the ugly truth about marrying bad credit.

Even if you’re uncomfortable talking about finances, you must find a way to ease into the conversation. You cannot share your life and future with someone you can’t talk openly with. If you have good credit and your true love has bad or disastrous credit, slow down. You need to understand how that person’s bad credit affects your relationship and future before you tie the knot.

The good news: your spouse’s credit score will not affect your credit score.

You do not take on your spouse’s credit, good or bad. There is no such thing as a joint credit score or a joint credit report. That said, both creditfiles affect your ability to obtain financing as a couple. If you have great credit, you improve your chances, as a couple, of getting a good financing deal. If your partner has bad credit, however, they increase the likelihood that you’ll be turned down or offered more expensive terms when you apply for credit as a couple.

If you currently have no credit and your partner keeps all accounts in his name, your ability to get credit terms will depend completely on his score and history. And in the event of a divorce, you’ll have to build your own credit from scratch.

The bad news: your spouse’s financial behavior will affect you in the future one way or another.

Once you start combining accounts, your partner’s money management skills will most definitely affect you. If the utilities are in your name and your partner is responsible for paying the bill, make sure that bill is getting paid on time every month. If the two of you are on an apartment lease together and the property reports rent payments, delinquencies will be reported on both credit files — even if you can prove that you gave your half of the rent to your partner on time each month.

If you keep your finances totally separate and your partner has bad credit, you will be forced to rely on yourcredit alone when the time comes for a major purchase, such as a home.

If your partner has bad credit and you combine finances, you’re in for a rude awakening. Let’s say you borrow $150,000 together to buy a home. Because of your partner’s credit history, your interest rate is 6.5 percent instead of 4.5 percent (the lower rate is only available to borrowers with great credit). His poorcredit score will cost you $90,276 over the life of the loan.

What does credit have to do with the relationship?

Your ability to work toward joint financial goals will be very much affected by your partner’s money management skills, good or bad.  You’ll have a very hard time reaching goals together if one person is irresponsible with money, such as by paying bills late, failing to save money, maxing out credit cards or defaulting on financial obligations.

Even if you keep your credit files completely separate and you don’t plan to work toward joint goals (which many would consider unhealthy in a marriage), bad credit says much about a person’s lifestyle, behavior and level of financial maturity and it should raise a red flag. At the very least, bad credit is an indication that this person isn’t ready to take on adult financial responsibilities.

Fast- forward five or ten years. If you’re a saver, you may experience great disappointment when, as a couple, you are unable to set aside money for a vacation, a new appliance, a home or some other purchase that improves the quality of your life together because your partner spends every dime or is trapped in revolving debt. This kind of dissatisfaction can be very hard to overcome because the only real antidote is a complete lifestyle change and shift in values. In fact, nearly 30 percent of people who divorce cite differences over finances as a factor that led to the divorce.

What if the credit-challenged partner is truly dedicated to improving their credit?

A person with great credit can absolutely help their partner improve their credit. Communicating frequently about money, setting a daily example and providing moral support and accountability are excellent tools. Indeed, if you plan to build a life with this person, you’ll want them to have a better score when it’s time to proceed as a couple on a major purchase.

For a quick boost to your partner’s credit score, consider adding them as an authorized user on one of your accounts in good standing. The catch is that the account must remain in good standing. Otherwise, prepare for two consequences: (1) your credit could suffer, and (2) you, as the primary account holder, are liable for the debt (even if your partner incurred some or all of it).

Realize that you can’t make the changes for your partner. They have to learn to be responsible with money, even if they offer to relinquish every paycheck and let you handle the bills. Walking away from bad behavior does not equate to learning and practicing good behavior.

If you’re not married yet, don’t merge your finances until your fiancé has demonstrated responsible financial behavior for a period of time. You should see measurable progress over the course of 6-12 months. The changes might be difficult and frustrating, and setbacks are likely. Don’t expect perfection just because your partner wants to change. And remember that it could take a year or two or longer for his credit score to improve significantly. But if you don’t see progress in that first year, let that be a warning that he is not ready to change.