SHOULD I BE SAVING MONEY, OR PAYING OFF DEBTS?


DAVE'S ANSWER:

That is a great question many members struggle with. Here are some tips to help you decide:

  1. Start getting in the habit of putting away as much money as you feel comfortable with each month into your SAVINGS ACCOUNT. But try to do this first as a part of your budget so you are “paying yourself” first!
  2. Consider paying down your higher interest rate credit cards. To help you achieve this, try to always pay more than the monthly minimum amount due. You’ll greatly reduce the amount of interest you pay, allowing you to pay down other debt sooner. Also consider transferring your higher interest rate credit card balances to a PLCU Debt Consolidation loan or a lower rate card. PLCU’s Platinum Visa card offers very competitive rates.
  3. Set savings and debt pay goals and stick to them. Try setting up a reoccurring AUTOMATIC TRANSFER to your savings or use your BILL PAY service to pay down your higher interest rate credit cards. PLCU’s new and enhanced Bill Pay is free and convenient.
  4. Having a budget and managing expenses are important. Try keeping a budget for two months and see how much you spend on incidentals. See how much that daily latte costs over the course of a month. Using PLCU’s Online Financial Management Tool can help. Those small things can add up fast! Start a list of things you want and begin saving for them.
  5. Open an interest bearing checking account like PLCU’s ULTRA REWARDS CHECKING. Let your checking pay you with higher dividends! Carrying cash is risky because it is easier to spend. Put your money to work for you instead! Please see our current rates!
  6. PLCU cares about your financial health. That's why we’ve partnered with GreenPath Financial Wellness to provide you with access to ONE-ON-ONE FINANCIAL COUNSELING, DEBT MANAGEMENT SERVICES AND FINANCIAL EDUCATION TOOLS.
  7. If you have the opportunity, participate in your employer’s 401(k) savings plan or open an IRA. A PLCU IRA is a tax-deferred investment in your future. Your Individual Retirement Account allows you to contribute up to $5,500 a year, even if you have a retirement program where you work. Both are great ways to save for the future.

Dealing with your finances can be challenging, and at times confusing. We’re here to guide you through this process and help you achieve your financial goals.

David R. Brooke

President/CEO


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