Unity One Credit Union

Show, Don't Tell: Teaching Teens Money Skills

Thu, Aug 15, 2019 @ 10:11 AM / by Alyssa Guillory posted in financial education for teens, teens and money, saving money, Unity One Credit Union

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Originally posted on the CUNA Financial Resource Center. Written by Laura Varela. 

Do conversations with your teenagers about money begin and end with "How much do you need?” Then stop right there. If you want your teens to learn how to manage money successfully, show them how it’s done.
 
Being a good financial role model may prove challenging to some. According to a Debt.com poll of 1,000 American, 92% believe everyone needs a budget, but only 70% said they were using one. Many who do budget admit to slipping during holidays or on special occasions, sometimes undoing all their careful work during the year.
 

But don’t give up hope. You can still teach your teens how to manage their finances and brush up on a few skills yourself. Here are a few activities you can do with your teens that can help both of you:

  • Check impulse buying. If your teen wants something expensive, have him or her wait 24 hours before buying it. If the item isn’t as important to them by that time, then the money can be better spent elsewhere.
     
  • Comparison shop. Ask your teen to research the item with you to find the right one at the best price.
     
  • Show them how to create a budget. Debt.com has good instructions their website. There are some free budgeting apps you can use as well.
     
  • Compare credit card offers. Review with your teens several online offers or those you get in the mail so they can evaluate different interest rates and fees.
     
  • Warn them about the minimum payment trap. Choose a desired item that costs, say, $1,000 and use an online credit card repayment calculator to show how long it would take, and how much extra they'd pay in interest, if they pay only the minimum due each month. Or show them the table on your credit card statement that shows the cost of only making minimum payments.
     
  • Brace them for college sticker shock. Rather than telling your teens to save for college, show them why they should save. Have them choose three schools they're considering, then have them check the net price calculator required on all college and university websites. Discuss how financial aid, scholarships, and grants reduce the sticker price.

Finally, know that the real world is a far better teacher than a high school math assignment. Make your teens responsible for personal items, such as new clothing, hair and face products, and snacks. This teaches them how to search for bargains to stretch their dollars.

Open a Savings Account for your Child

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Reconciling a Spender-Saver Marriage

Tue, Aug 13, 2019 @ 07:02 AM / by Alyssa Guillory posted in family budget, budgeting, saving money, Unity One Credit Union

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Originally posted on the CUNA Financial Resource Center. Written by Monica Steinisch.

Money ranks high on the list of reasons partners fight or split up. In any marriage, even one where both partners manage money similarly, family finances create conflict at least occasionally. But when one spouse is a saver and the other is a spender, financial disagreements can be frequent, emotional, and divisive.

If you and your partner seem to be polar opposites when it comes to money attitudes, don’t give up hope of a truce. Experts say opposite money personalities actually can complement each other: Savers keep spenders out of the poor house while spenders encourage savers to enjoy themselves now and then. Of course, getting to a balanced approach to the family finances requires compromise and communication.

Understanding your partner's money personality

Your money personality—how you feel about money and the way you manage it—is a product of your upbringing and your life experiences. It was formed over many years and is unlikely to change significantly after you become an adult. Couples who understand this also understand that trying to convert one’s spouse is an exercise in futility. Instead, work on a compromise.

Here are some things counselors say couples should do to reduce conflict and to reach their financial goals.

Communicate

It's important that you talk about your finances. Throughout your discussions, remain open-minded rather than insisting that your partner do things your way. As you talk, make agreements to compromise. An agreement gives you the right to get your partner back on track if he or she veers from what was agreed upon.

Set goals together

It's crucial that couples set common goals. First, make separate wish lists and then, together, rank the items you both feel are most important. Some goals should be at or near the top of every couple's list. These include paying off nonmortgage debt and saving for retirement. Revisit your goals at least annually and make adjustments based on changing priorities and finances. 

Maintain individual accounts

One solution that works for many couples is to have a joint account as well as personal accounts for each partner. Use the joint account to pay household expenses, including mortgage or rent, utilities, insurance, and car and home repairs. If there's money left over, split it into personal no-questions-asked accounts. Use the money from these accounts for individual wish-list goals. For a spender, that might mean paying for a dream vacation. For a saver, it could mean beefing up an IRA (individual retirement account).

Check in with each other at least once a month—more if there have been problems—to re-evaluate and, if financial circumstances warrant, change the discretionary spending amounts. For the joint account, let the person who's good at money handle the bills, but sit down together to go over them regularly.

Get professional help

If you and your spouse reach an impasse, find a couple’s counselor or a financial planner to help you move forward.

For financial planning assistance or money management counseling, contact the professionals at your credit union. You also can find a nonprofit, accredited credit counseling agency through the National Foundation for Credit Counseling.

For couple’s counseling, check with your health plan or employee assistance program (EAP) to see if it covers counseling and to find a qualified, participating professional.

As you narrow the gap between your money management styles, remember that you and your partner are a team. For couples at opposite ends of the spender-saver spectrum, that means each partner has to inch his or her way closer to the center.

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Unity One CU informs: What kind of saver are you?

Fri, Apr 07, 2017 @ 10:51 AM / by Alyssa Guillory posted in saving money, Unity One Credit Union, youth month

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What kind of saver are you? Find out at your credit union. 

 

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Credit union informs: FREE Investment Fundamentals class

Tue, Feb 03, 2015 @ 08:35 AM / by Alyssa Guillory posted in retirement, financial education, wwk wealth advisors, saving money, Unity One Credit Union, family's financial future

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Financial Ed - Feb 2015Join Unity One Credit Union and WWK Wealth Advisors at an informative workshop on how to pursue your retirement goals. It's never too soon - or too late - to start!

No matter what your age, this workshop will provide you with insights and techniques that can help you manage your retirement investment plan. 

When: Tuesday, February 17, 2015
            6:30 - 8:00 p.m.

Where: Unity One Credit Union
             6701 Burlington Blvd.
            Fort Worth, TX 76131

Register Now!

*The views and opinions expressed at this event are those of WWK Wealth Advisors and not necessarily of Unity One Credit Union. 

ABOUT UNITY ONE CREDIT UNION

Established in 1927, Unity One Credit Union is the oldest credit union in Texas. A member-driven and not-for-profit cooperative, Unity One CU served the employees and families of the BNSF Railway for 70 years. However, after transferring its corporate headquarters to Fort Worth in 1998, the credit union expanded its field of membership to include other non-railroad companies, organizations and individuals.

Today, anyone who lives, works, worships or attends school in Fort Worth, Blue Mound, Saginaw, Haslet, Keller, Colleyville, Bedford, North Richland Hills, Southlake, St. Paul, MN and Kansas City, KS may apply for membership. Unity One CU has seven branches to serve over 30,000 members nationwide. For more information about Unity One Credit Union, visit www.unityone.org. Think outside the bank.™ www.unityone.org

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Credit union informs: Higher rates!

Mon, Feb 02, 2015 @ 01:42 PM / by Alyssa Guillory posted in certificate of deposit, high yield savings account, saving money, Unity One Credit Union

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CD HYSA rate increasesWe've increased the deposit rates on two popular savings options - Certificates of Deposits and High Yield Savings accounts! 

  • 1.25% APY* on a 3 year Certificate of Deposit
  • 0.40% APY* on a High Yield Savings Account

Choosing the right type of account for saving is just as important as saving money. With many variations, how do you know which type of account is right for you?

Certificate of Deposit (CDs):
When you save with a CD, you'll put a certain amount of money into an account for a fixed amount of time. When your CD matures, you'll receive your initial deposit as well as the earned interest, assuming you haven't made an early withdrawal (which can come with an early penalty.) CDs can be opened with as little as a $500 deposit. 

High Yield Savings Account:
A high yield savings account allows you to earn interest on the money deposited into the account. Unlike a CD, these funds remain liquid allowing you to make a withdrawal if needed. A high yield savings account can be opened with a $10,000 minimum deposit.  

Find a Unity One Branch 

*APY = Annual Percentage Yield. Rate subject to change without notice. Federally insured by the NCUA.

ABOUT UNITY ONE CREDIT UNION

Established in 1927, Unity One Credit Union is the oldest credit union in Texas. A member-driven and not-for-profit cooperative, Unity One CU served the employees and families of the BNSF Railway for 70 years. However, after transferring its corporate headquarters to Fort Worth in 1998, the credit union expanded its field of membership to include other non-railroad companies, organizations and individuals.

Today, anyone who lives, works, worships or attends school in Fort Worth, Blue Mound, Saginaw, Haslet, Keller, Colleyville, Bedford, North Richland Hills, Southlake, St. Paul, MN and Kansas City, KS may apply for membership. Unity One CU has seven branches to serve over 30,000 members nationwide. For more information about Unity One Credit Union, visit www.unityone.org. Think outside the bank.™ www.unityone.org

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Credit union informs: Solar Panels

Thu, Oct 24, 2013 @ 03:53 PM / by Erayne Hill posted in solar panels, saving money, Unity One Credit Union

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How much do you save?

You may have heard that solar panels are being installed on the roof of the White House. Not only is Washington offering you a tax rebate for energy efficiency, they’re practicing it, too. While solar energy sounds good in theory, does it really save money both short- and long-term? What are the upfront costs, and how long will it take to break even?

There are many types of solar power cells, and the type you use will determine how much money you’re saving based upon the efficiency of them. While standard crystalline silicon cells can convert as much as 23% of the sun’s light into electricity, and highly efficient cells, such as those used on satellites, can have efficiency levels of up to 50%. Both types are extremely expensive. The cells that are affordable enough for consumer use, which you’re seeing all over town, have power efficiency of just 15 to 18%.

In addition to both federal and state rebates, there are other economic benefits of solar panels. Did you consider the increased value of your home, should you decide to sell it? For a home-buyer, getting a home that already has solar panels can be a real benefit. Additionally, your electric bill could become a thing of the past. If your system produces more energy than you need, you can sell that surplus energy to your local utility providers.

If you have an electric car, or are considering the purchase of one, you’ll save on charging the car, too.

There are companies that will install solar panels on your home for free (or almost free). But, of course, nothing is ever really free. In exchange for their services, these companies require that you agree to give them a cut of the extra energy that’s produced (which you can also sell to your local utility company), all government rebates, and signing an equipment lease. If you opt for an arrangement like this, be sure to read anything you sign carefully, and make sure you understand you’re agreements.

Upfront costs, monthly savings, and your break-even point will depend on how large your system is and how much energy you use. While the price on photovoltaic panels has dropped more than 20% since 2010, it’s still a big expense. You can estimate your costs, and how long it will take to break even, here:  http://www.solar-estimate.org/?page=solar-calculator  

Consider saving money on installing solar panels by leasing them instead of buying them, getting them second hand on eBay or Craigslist, or possibly even building your own.solar panels

Yes, you can make your own solar panels out of wood and solar cells, if you’re so inclined. While it may sound simple, read up on how to do it before getting started. Here’s one place you’ll find information:  http://www.dsireusa.org/suhttp://www.slideshare.net/homeenergysolution/heres-how-easy-it-is-to-make-homemade-solar-panelsmmarytables/finre.cfm  

You can also see what rebates are available by state here: http://www.dsireusa.org/  

Of course, solar energy is not just about saving money. If you feel strongly about going “green” or being less dependent on utility companies, that’s another reason to go solar which may just make it worthwhile.

About Unity One Credit Union

Established in 1927, Unity One Credit Union is the oldest credit union in Texas. A member-driven and not-for-profit cooperative, Unity One CU served the employees and families of the BNSF Railway for 70 years. However, after transferring its corporate headquarters to Fort Worth in 1998, the credit union expanded its field of membership to include other non-railroad companies, organizations and individuals.

Today, anyone who lives, works, worships or attends school in Fort Worth, Blue Mound, Saginaw, Haslet, Keller, Colleyville, Bedford, North Richland Hills, Southlake, St. Paul, MN and Kansas City, KS may apply for membership. Unity One CU has nine branches to serve over 28,000 members nationwide. For more information about Unity One Credit Union, visit www.unityone.org. Think outside the bank.™

 

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