Financial planning and debt management are key to securing and maintaining financial stability. The information below can help you achieve financial well-being.
The Benefits of Budgeting
Budgeting is important because:
- It helps you meet your expenses and create plans to reach your financial goals
- Building short-term and/or long-term financial goals helps to create a framework conducive to financial success
- It helps you develop a sense of control over your money
- It reduces anxiety levels regarding financial and academic matters
- It can contribute to your creditworthiness
- It improves understanding of the school’s Cost of Attendance (COA) and financing your studies
- It identifies where funds should be going versus where they were actually spent
- It demonstrates the importance of maintaining a balance between earning and spending
Use Credit Wisely
A good credit history can open doors to financial options such as buying a home or a car with favorable interest rates. Employers often review your credit history as part of a pre-employment background check for a job.
Credit can also come with some risks if you do not understand the specific terms and conditions or you abuse the power to make purchases on credit. Before you make a purchase or cash advance using a credit card it is extremely important to weigh the benefits and the risks to make sure it is in your best interest to do so.
|Helps in Emergencies||High Cash Advance Fees|
|Convenient||High Interest Rates|
|Easy for Internet Purchases||Leads to Impulse Purchases|
|Safer than Carrying Cash||Can lead to higher credit balance if not used properly|
Know Your Credit Status
You are entitled to a free copy of your credit report annually from each of the three national credit bureaus. You should review the report and work with the merchants to rectify any discrepancies. Access the Consumer’s Guide to Credit Cards to learn more about credit reports and your record score.
Student Loan Refinancing
AVOID AGENCIES THAT OFFER TO LOWER YOUR MONTHLY LOAN PAYMENT FOR A FEE
To help better manage your repayment you may consider refinancing your student loans with a private agency. Understand that when you refinance federal student loans through a private agency, you may forfeit the flexible repayment options and other student loan benefits offered by the federal government. A Federal Loan Consolidation may be a better option, and you do not need a third-party to process the loan on your behalf. Always consult with your loan servicer to assist you in managing your student loan repayment. Be sure that you have considered all options and that you understand the terms and conditions of your loan.
Other Useful Resources
Mymoney.gov - building blocks to make the most of your money.
Mint.com - interactive budget and financial planning tool.
Repayment Estimator - select the right student loan repayment plan for you.
Identify Theft - tools to protect your identity and steps on recovery from identify theft.