Articles Posted in financial wellness

stockfresh_7102501_college-debt_sizeS-300x300Commencement ceremonies are going on all over America. While COVID-19 has disrupted many college experiences, the graduation festivities are there to remind young people that all their hard work finally paid off. While the lucky have landed some good-paying jobs, many graduates face the real world with a sizable amount of debt on their young shoulders.

 

The College Debt Monster

 

It is no joke at all. College graduates can be looking at a debt of thousands of dollars that will take many years to pay off finally. Graduation speakers tell their audience to take a few months and explore the world, but that is not feasible. The payments will start in about six months after receiving the diploma. Graduates may be tempted into declaring forbearance, but that will only delay the inevitable at an even higher price. Continue reading

stockfresh_709412_problems-and-solutions_sizeS-300x272COVID-19 placed many homes in financial jeopardy. Extended furloughs required people to rely on savings and 401(k) plans to ride out the storm. The stimulus checks were able to prevent many people from falling into economic ruin. Sadly, the situation was already so desperate for some that no amount of assistance would turn things around. These are facing bankruptcy.

The emotional stress of bankruptcy is mind-numbing. People are ashamed of the situation, but they are also terrified of what happens next. Hasty decisions can lead to even more problems. Young employees are especially vulnerable to making the wrong choices and reaping harsh consequences.

Compassionate employers do not want to see their loyal employees suffer under these circumstances. They want to help their subordinates get out of a major mess, and many times good advice from experts will help. Countrywide Pre-Paid Legal Services has a financial wellness program that will offer expert assistance to those in dire straits. Continue reading

stockfresh_5802529_generation-z-y-x-boomers-millennials-3d-word-gears-demographics_sizeS-300x300This might seem strange to think about, but COVID-19 makes it easier for organizations to innovate and try new strategies. Remote working is now the standard working environment, and telehealth is no longer a group health benefit novelty. Employers are ready to take risks to ensure better productivity, and the possibility of new employee benefits is on the table.

Competent executive teams realize there is an excellent opportunity to gain the goodwill of their employees by improving and introducing better employee benefits. An essential criterion is the immediate value of anything new. Subordinates do not want window dressing or just “feel-good” additions to the benefits program; they want programs that will help with various challenges in their lives. Financial wellness is an issue that is grabbing the attention of the employee benefits experts. It is a benefit whose time has now come. Continue reading

stockfresh_7560715_multitasking-woman_sizeS-300x300Employee benefits provide service and an opportunity to learn how to get rid of bad habits. Health insurance teaches an employee to be more concerned about his or her physical condition, and a 401(k) program encourages a person to think about the future and saving for retirement. Countrywide offers a benefits program that ends terrible spending habits that have harmed an employee for years.

Understanding the Origins

A typical spending problem is the overuse of credit cards. Folks will go so far as to do grocery shopping with their plastic, not understanding that the interest charged on the card increases the cost of buying food. Some financial habits are homegrown. Very frugal parents may have raised an employee. Reckless spending becomes a means of rebelling. Other households practice periodic splurges that only cause more money problems. Anyone who starts receiving large paychecks can be tempted to abuse plastic. Continue reading

stockfresh_7709431_stressful-bristle-man-with-headache-using-laptop-computer_sizeM-300x200We are moving into the Second Quarter, and those New Year’s resolutions are being gradually completed. The objective for the First Quarter might have been paying off those Christmas bills and some other debts. The COVID-10 stimulus checks helped, and now is a great time to address another 2021 goal, which could be putting the domestic finances in order.

The best way to put some structure to the personal cash is to develop a budget. Let’s face it, living from paycheck to paycheck is a recipe for stress. The employee does not have any way of sensibly meeting credit card payments or other incidental expenses if there is no budget in place.

That person may end up relying too much on credit cards. Budget less households are not ready for any emergencies and do not put money aside for the future. A big challenge is that these people have never worked with a budget and need help creating one. Continue reading

debt-relief-pill-300x255Organizations may be forced to make tough decisions in the coming weeks. Figures from the first quarter can make cost reductions necessary. Employee benefits will be a target for budget cuts. Employers with health benefits will use deductibles and premium increases to control the rising medical costs. Sadly, some organizations might stop providing medical coverage.

Countrywide Pre-Paid Legal Services is aware that employers might face difficult choices to maintain profitability. Medical insurance is a necessary expense because good employees will leave without it. An organization’s financial wellness will be challenging to maintain without hard-working people. We suggest that if an employer must raise an employee’s share of costs, that organization can introduce a benefit to offset these individual expenses. We have one in mind. Continue reading

stockfresh_5532754_home-mortgage-concept_sizeS-300x300Renting an apartment is not fun. You are restricted by what the landlord wants, and you can expect to be inspected now and then. The landlord can be so obnoxious that you cannot wait to move on. Buying a house seems to be a good option.

Employees who are doing all right and making good money on the job are motivated to purchase real estate. Spring is a beautiful time to go house shopping, but the purchase is substantial. A house hunter must contemplate a sizable mortgage payment for years to come. The effect on a person’s financial wellness can be enormous. Someone who is not ready will pay for their mistakes for years and even decades. Continue reading

stockfresh_7102501_college-debt_sizeS-300x300Those in school will be returning from spring break, and those who are graduating are wrapping things up. Everyone is hoping that after all those quarantines, life will return to near normal. COVID-19 caused some changes, but they were expected. The students might be back in the classrooms, and most things will return to the old days. That is terrible news for some about to graduate.

End to the Emergency

College graduates got a break from their student loans this past year. The last stimulus package probably means an end to the loan holiday. Those who have large college debts can expect to receive new interest rates and the payment schedules in a few more weeks. Those papers can be a real problem for the unprepared. Continue reading

stockfresh_4170119_what-is-next-black-marker_sizeM-300x200Nothing lasts forever, and that includes hard times. We all have endured quarantines and other sacrifices for over a year. Now we have the vaccines and COVID-19 figures are going down. It is time to plan for the financial future.

Readjusting Almost Everything

The stimulus checks helped, but these economic boosts to the wallet are history. People must now rely on their own resources to pay the bills. Those expenses, by the way, may come as a shock. Eviction prohibitions are going to be lifted and tenants must pay back rent. The school loan holidays are not going to be around, and Congress might not pass debt forgiveness. Everyone is facing a significant adjustment. Continue reading

stockfresh_1676251_happy-young-family-in-front-of-sold-real-estate-sign_sizeS-300x200Employees appreciate benefits that have obvious value. The assistance an employer gives, which helps with a challenge or improves a person’s well-being, is what employees enjoy. Countrywide Pre-Paid Legal Services has one that is more than worth the cost.

House Buying Weather

Spring is a time when real estate agents are frantically busy. Folks have been saving their money and want to spend the cash surplus on a house. It is no surprise many springtime shoppers are first-time buyers. Being a homeowner is a great life goal. Getting a home might be a significant hassle. Continue reading