Do you know about these 4 Financial Resources? Get Some Help Today!

Managing your personal finances can be difficult, and there are many times in which you need a little help to make ends meet but don’t know where to turn.

Fortunately, there is a large variety of financial resources that are available today, most of which you may not even be aware of. Here are 4 financial resources to make sure you know about in case they can be of use to you.

1. Credit counseling

If you are struggling with your credit, you are most likely already aware of most of the factors involved in determining your score. Missed payments, single lines of credit, outstanding debt all contribute to negatively impacting your score. However, are you aware that it is incredibly common for mistakes, fraudulent activities and errors to impact your score as well?

This is where credit counseling really shines as an important financial resource to consider. Not only will you be receiving expert advice on your particular situation with a professional that can help you craft a game plan to fix it, but they can also assist in identifying errors and reaching out to creditors to dispute these.

You may be thinking of credit counseling as of yet another expense you can’t justify while you’re already dealing with expenses, but at the same time it may be worth a call just to get a better understanding of your options.

2. Online budgeting tools

If you’re like most people nowadays, you rarely use cash in favor is credit or debit cards. Of course, it is much easier to use on a day to day basis, you can earn rewards simply for using your credit card, and it is usually mandatory to sign up for subscriptions. With all of the convenience of these cards it is also easy to lose track of your expenses on a monthly basis.

Online budgeting tools provide a simple solution to this problem. Instead of taking the time and effort to try and write down all of your expenses on a spreadsheet that you have to continuously update, online budgeting software such as Mint or Digit can take all of the work out of the equation. Simply put in all of your current expenses, including subscriptions, insurance, gas and groceries, as well as your current income sources.

Once you have everything entered in the app, they do the rest of the work for you! You can see how much money is coming in and going out every month, you can create a budget for yourself based on your current situation to save money and pay off debts, and some software will even help you invest extra money and create spending rules. Read our article on the best money saving apps to see which software is right for you.

3. Government programs

Government programs are an oft-overlooked set of financial resources that provide assistance to citizens who meet specific criteria. These include everything from grants, loans for homeowners and business owners, Medicare, unemployment insurance and food stamps.

Many people never look into the full set of programs available to them, but a lot of the time you may find that you qualify for more programs than you think. If you are in a specific situation like a student, looking to buy a house or start a business, or are even struggling with unemployment, it is well worth reading through both state and federal programs and see which ones line up with your situation.

4. Credit cards

You are probably no stranger to credit cards, but the variety of incentives and rewards that comes with each card is truly staggering. The issue most people have is when they receive a card that is tied to their current bank, and then use that as their primary payment method without paying attention to the options available to them.

Do gas and groceries take up a big percentage of your monthly budget? Consider a gas or grocery credit card that will award extra points or cashback for those expenses. Do you do most of your shopping at single stores, such as the big box retailers like Costco Or Sam’s Club? Use one of their own credit cards to get the maximum rewards for shopping there.

Beyond cards specific to certain expenses, there are also cards offered from each bank that cater to specific needs such as credit score, annual percentage rate, or even bonus offers. If you are struggling to pay off credit card debt, you might want to look into a balance transfer where you find a new card with a lower interest rate and move your debt onto that new card. Read this article from Nerd Wallet to get a great idea of how to compare cards and find the best one for you.

The first step to maximizing your financial well-being is to understand the resources you have available to you. So stop struggling all on your own and find out what’s out there today!

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