National Foundation for Credit Counseling® (NFCC®) offers some simple steps to achieve financial success in the new year.
The National Foundation for Credit Counseling® (NFCC®) is offering some tips for consumers who are facing another new year with budget and debt concerns. A recent survey by Fidelity Investments revealed that more than a third of Americans intend to make a financial resolution for 2017.
“With each new year comes the hope for a fresh start,” said Bruce McClary, vice president of communication for the NFCC. “This is especially true for the millions of people who are living on the financial edge.”
To help make those first steps toward a financial resolution a little easier, the NFCC offers the following advice:
Take time in the beginning of the year to start a thorough financial review. This should include all income, expenses, debts and savings. The more often a budget review takes place, the easier it becomes. If it has been a while since the last review, restarting the process may seem daunting but the longer it is put off, the harder it becomes to get started.
Now is the best time to turn things around and get back on track toward financial goals. The best news is that help is available if and when it is needed. Free financial tools like MyMoneyCheckup, available through the NFCC Sharpen Your Financial Focus program, are a good place to start.
Time is the biggest enemy when debt is piling up and budgets are broken. Bringing unpaid debt into the new year leaves little to celebrate when the clock strikes midnight. Acting quickly to address these problems can help make it easier to recover financially. It is like pressing a reset button. The key to success is knowing what options are available, and making informed choices based on the facts. Learn more about personal financial management using online educational resources or reach out to a trusted financial advocate for guidance.
Put Debt In Its Place
If debt is imposing too much control over daily life, start the year on the right foot by putting debt in its place. Focus on the accounts that are charging the highest interest rates and start power paying the balances until they are gone. The faster debt is retired, the more money can be saved on interest and fees over the long term. That means more cash for savings and important financial goals. When debt problems are more serious, involving past-due balances and debt collection, it’s time to reach out for help from a nonprofit credit counselor who can offer expert guidance that may include a plan for affordable debt repayment.
Financial goals are important, so give them the time and attention they deserve. Putting a plan in motion this year can make all of the following years even better. For help making those goals a reality, speak to a trained and certified counselor. To locate a nearby NFCC Member Agency, dial (800) 388-2227, or go online to http://www.nfcc.org. For assistance in Spanish, call (800) 682-9832.
About the NFCC
Founded in 1951, the National Foundation for Credit Counseling® (NFCC®) is the nation’s first and largest nonprofit dedicated to improving people’s financial well-being. With 600 member offices serving 50 states and Puerto Rico, our NFCC Certified Credit Counselors are financial advocates, empowering millions of consumers to take charge of their finances through one-on-one financial reviews that address credit card debt, student loans, housing decisions, and overall money management. Make one of the best financial decisions of your life. For expert guidance and advice, call (800) 388-2227 or visit www.nfcc.org today.