The opinions expressed in this guest column are the views of the author.
Understanding and managing your finances well directly impacts your family’s overall health and well-being. When you’re beginning your journey towards financial security, a great first step is to make a budget. Studies show that having a written budget and financial plan result in being significantly more successful at staying on track, preventing overspending, and lowering costs — all while reducing stress and building confidence.
VETCENTS is here to help you succeed!
MFAN is here to ensure that you and your family know where to find the tools that will set you up for financial success. That’s where VetCents comes into play. VetCents.org was created to help military and veteran families easily access the personal finance support they need through a variety of resources.
When it comes to budgeting, you can begin by tracking your expenses in this free spending plan worksheet from the Office of Financial Readiness. This important step will give you the framework to customize based on your needs and financial goals. Through VetCents, you also have access to financial counseling, the National Foundation for Credit Counseling and the Association for Financial Counseling & Planning Education (AFCPE).
Take advantage of these tools, as well as the ones below, to help you spend wisely and focus on making your financial goals a reality.
additional budgeting resources:
- In early 2022, MFAN hosted Everything But the Kitchen $ink, a free webinar covering many topics related to financial readiness and offering real life hacks for planning and preparing for the future. Watch this webinar to learn how to create a budget and save for unexpected expenses.
- Military OneSource has a financial readiness resource library to assist military families with maximizing their benefits and reducing their financial worries. Free, confidential financial counseling along with articles and webinars that provide tips on budgeting and saving and How to Control Your Budget when a Spouse is Deployed, are accessible on their website or by calling 800-342-9647.
- The Office of Financial Readiness has recently launched the Sen$e App, designed to help military and veteran families set financial goals and plan for the future. The app features financial readiness information on Managing Your Money, offers useful financial calculators, and will assist in creating individualized spending plans. You can download the app by visiting Google Play or iOS app stores and searching “Sen$e.” You can also call 833-200-0035 for more information.
- The Veterans Benefit Banking Program (VBBP) seeks to simplify banking by helping eligible veterans select the right financial institution and services for them. They also offer veterans one complimentary consultation with an Accredited Financial Counselor or Credit Counselor.
By utilizing VetCents and these supplemental resources, you and your family will be that much closer to achieving your financial goals!