This week is Military Saves Week, a campaign the nonprofit Consumer Federation of America. From financial institutions like USAA to bases to bloggers, you may have noticed the green logos cropping up everywhere and an increased focus on financial planning and literacy.
It’s no surprise to anyone within the military community that finances are often times difficult for military families and service members. From military spouses who are chronically under-employed, to families who use WIC and SNAP benefits to get by, to the steep costs of moving every few years, this lifestyle can take a financial toll.
Here are four quick ways to refocus on your finances this week:
1. Take the pledge
Commit to saving more and learning about financial wellness topics that are important to you. First step? Take the Military Saves pledge.
2. Go to a workshop
Often, installations host Military Saves Week programs and workshops. Keep your eyes open; if your installation is featuring activities this week, you should see information displayed on base and online. You can also check this listing through MilitarySaves.org. Then, take the next step and attend.
3. Read up
Is this the year you want to learn more about 529 Plans? Maybe you want to figure out SGLI or the blended retirement system more fully. What about growing your nest egg? There’s a lot of free information available about financial topics. Choose a reliable, reputable source (you can start with these) and commit to learning about one thing this week that will make a difference in your family’s financial future.
4. Use resources
Military OneSource provides free and confidential financial counseling for military families. If you feel like you’re in over your head or you just want to have a thought partner to map out a way forward, you can use their services in person or via phone or video. Make the appointment this week.
By J.G. Noll