Financial Wellness in the Workplace
At LifeSpan we have determined that financial education classes can provide significant benefits to individuals and the community. More specifically, financial education classes provided in collaboration with another community partner can add value to the overall services provided and help promote wellness within an organization.
LifeSpan has its roots back to the mid 1940s. We have been offering credit counseling and financial education services since 1981 and serve over 1,400 people per year. We are a member of the National Foundation for Credit Counseling and accredited by the Council on Accreditation. LifeSpan is a United Way agency, and also approved to offer bankruptcy counseling by the U. S. Trustees office.
How LifeSpan can Help
LifeSpan has created a series of consumer financial education courses that will supply the tools and skills that will help consumers regain better understand their finances. These classes are designed to provide basic, yet specific information on several financial topics that people need.
The following classes would be offered by LifeSpan at the partnering agency’s location:
Getting a Grip on Your Spending (basic budgeting)
- Set goals and priorities
- Track spending
- Create a budget
- Change spending habits
Understanding Credit and Debt
- What is credit
- Types of credit
- Good and bad credit
- Avoiding problems
- What to do if you are having trouble
- What makes up a credit score
- What is a Credit Bureau Report
- Parts of a Credit Bureau Report
- Where to get a Credit Bureau Report
- How to manage and improve your score
Transitioning into Retirement
- Debt to income ratio
- credit cards
- Homestead exemption
- Student Loans
- Avoiding Identity Theft
- Buying a Home
- Buying a Used Car
- Saving Money Using Coupons & Smartphones
*Classes could be taught individually or in a series. Each class lasts approximately one hour and is taught using PowerPoint and handouts. Optimum class size is between 10 and 25 participants. More detailed information on each class is available.
To view our Financial Wellness in the Workplace brochure, click here.
To order your free credit report:
Note: If you request your credit report online, you will be asked a series of questions that only you can answer. Do not be afraid to select “None of the above” if the answer truly is, “None of the above”.
If your request for an online credit report is denied, you will be directed to either call or write a request for your credit report. You may never know why. Again, do not be afraid; just follow the instructions for phoning in or writing a request for your credit report.
How to improve your score:
- Pay all bills on time
- If you have missed a payment on an account, catch up with your payment(s)
- Keep balances low on credit cards – less than 30% of what you are allowed to charge
- Pay off your debt instead of moving it around
- Do not close your oldest account
- Do not get any new credit
- Shop for mortgage or car loans in a short period of time
This is a general idea of what is included in your credit score. There are far more variables than this graph indicates but this provides a good idea of the major variables.
Bad credit can hurt in many ways. We all know that bad credit will cause us to pay higher rates for mortgages and car loans. We may even be turned down for credit. But there are other ways poor credit impacts our lives:
- Job applications: Almost 50% of companies say they run a credit check on job applicants before they hire them, and bad credit can cause you to be turned down for a job. (Note: Employers can pull credit reports but not credit scores.)
- Utilities: Many people are surprised to learn that utilities check your credit before extending service. Bad credit may cause you to have to put down a hefty deposit before service starts, where no deposit will be required for those with good credit. Cell phone and cable providers frequently check credit before extending service.
- Elective medical procedures: If you have a medical procedure that is not covered by insurance, bad credit may cause you to have to pay your bill in full before the procedure, rather than being offered a monthly payment plan.
- Car loans: Not only does a low score force you into a higher rate, but you might even pay more for your car. A study by the Consumer Federation of America found that buyers with the lowest credit paid an average of 3.5% more for their car than did people with better credit.
- Car insurance: Many insurance companies use credit to determine both initial eligibility and what premium will be. The worse your credit score, the higher the premium.
- School loans: Bad credit can cause you to be turned down for school loans. There are no options here; you are either approved or denied.