May 2009 Newsletter

Are you worried about having enough money for retirement? Stop worrying and do something! Find out how to start an Individual Retirement Account for as little as $50/month. If you already have an IRAó are you invested in the best place for you?
Wed. May 6 (FIRST Wednesday): The perfect mutual fund for your IRA.
My advanced Family Finance students have labored long and hard to research the best funds for your IRA. They will provide all you need to know to open an IRA. If you are a full time homemaker spouse without any earnings of your own, you need an IRA, too!
Note that the evening session will meet at FCHD West, 670 E 500 N, Logan the brick building immediately west of the FLC. This change applies only to May and is due to meeting on the first Wednesday. Parking is available at 670 E 500 N either in front of 500 N or in the well-lighted parking lot immediately west of the building.
Noon meeting at usual place: TSC 335
Financial Planning for Women (FPW) is a monthly educational seminar that meets the second Wednesday (except December) at two times: 12:00-1:00 p.m. in the USU Taggart Student Center room 335. Bring your lunch. The same program is repeated in the evening: 7:00-8:30 p.m. at the Family Life Center, 493 North 700 East, Logan (at bottom of Old Main Hill). The longer evening time slot allows for more discussion. Programs are free and registration is not required. For further information: (435) 797-1569; jean.lown@usu.edu; http://www.usu.edu/fpw/
Forward this message to a friend; bring a woman to FPW who has not attended before and receive your choice of a personal finance book as a reward. (See list of books at end of newsletter).
Reminder: PowerPoint presentations from previous programs are available on the FPW website. Click on PowerPoints at bottom of home page: http://www.usu.edu/fpw/
Upcoming programs: June 10 Spend, spend, spend like there is a tomorrow. Dr. Jan Andersen, USU Extension Family Resource Management Specialist
July 8 The Financial Checkup. Participants will receive a free workbook to conduct their own financial checkup.
Book of the month: Just in time for those June weddings! Financially ever after: the couplesí guide to managing money, by Jeff Opdyke, Harper. "The ultimate guide to restoring peace and harmony in your household." Opdyke is a writer for The Wall Street Journal.
Financially Ever After: How To Have Tough Money Talks With Your Spouse by Jeff Harper.
Quote of the month: "Donít wait until the time or the market is just right to start investing- start now. The best time to plant an oak tree was 20 years ago-the second best time is now." -James Stowers, Jr. Billionaire founder of AmCentury mutual funds.
Follow up to April program on making your money last in retirement (using annuities):
Longevity insurance
"Similar to traditional deferred annuities, longevity insurance is a fixed annuity that converts payments made today to an income stream with a deferred start date."
Example Buy at age 65 but payments donít start until 85 but continue until death p. 18 in A New Approach to Asset Allocation for the Retiree
Getting smart about annuities: WSJ podcast, slideshow and article to help you understand immediate annuities
Utah Life & Health Insurance Guaranty Association
"The total protection per owner per member company is $200,000 for all annuity contracts. As a result, if an individual owned three $200,000 annuities with the same insolvent insurance company, the individual would have total guaranty association coverage of only $200,000. The value in excess of this statutory coverage limit would be eligible for submission as a creditor claim in the receivership, and the annuity holder may receive distributions as the company's assets are liquidated by the receiver."
Resources:
Retirement planning for singles: Special Considerations for Singles On March 2, The Transamerica Center for Retirement Studies was featured on "A Singles Guide to Retirement" in PBS National Business Reportís special series on "Get Your Finances Ready for Retirement." Watch the video and read highlights for the 10th Annual Transamerica Retirement Survey about singles who are nearing retirement age.
Online savings accounts: compare to your savings rate. All are FDIC insured.
ShoreBankdirect.com is currently paying 2.45%
INGdirect.com 1.5%
HSBCdirect.com 1.65
Emigrantdirect.com 1.65
FNBOdirect.com 1.9%
Loose change calculator
It's easy to spend money on little things that aren't expensive. Just a few dollars a day buys a nice cup of coffee, an afternoon snack or some other "little extra." But even a little extra savings can make a big difference. Try our quiz and see how your loose change adds up.
What Every Woman Should Know about Social Security
Mortgage Relief
The new Making Home Affordable program (MHA) was released by the US Treasury to help up to 7 to 9 million US homeowners stay in their homes. This free service can help you find out if you may be eligible for mortgage relief under the MHA Program, and if you can receive free credit counseling.
The Home Affordable Refinance Program gives up to 4 to 5 million homeowners with loans owned or guaranteed by Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac an opportunity to refinance into more affordable monthly payments. Our consumer website, www.MakingHomeAffordable.gov, provides homeowners with detailed information about these programs along with self-assessment tools and calculators to empower borrowers with the resources they need to determine whether they might be eligible for a modification or a refinance under the Administration's program. Through this website, borrowers can also connect with free counseling resources to help with outstanding questions; locate homeowner events in their communities; find a handy checklist of key documents and materials to have ready when making that important call to their servicer as well as FAQs from borrowers in similar circumstances; and much more.
Workshops and events:
The Family Life Center is offering a financial management workshop on budgeting, saving, and debt management. This workshop "The Nuts and Bolts of Nickles and Dimes" costs $15 per household; scholarships are available. The workshop is scheduled for the first and third Wednesday of the month from 6:45 P.M.-9:00 P.M. at the Family Life Center. To register call: 797-7224
Home Ownership Workshop. May 9 & June 13: 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Call 435-797-7224 to register.
Smart Money education series for teenagers 14-18 years and their parents.
Wednesday, May 13, 6:30- 8 p.m. @ USU Charter Credit Union, 198 N. Main, Logan. In downstairs conference room (enter at rear of building). Workshops are free. To register: 753-4080, ext 3400 or moneyteacher@usuccu.org
Resources
Has your local subprime mortgage peddler moved onto foreclosure scams? Do you turn to chocolate when trying to choose a college savings plan? Need some pink-slip pick-me-ups? Do you like to say the word philanthropy? If you said yes, then this month's edition of Idaho's Two Cent Tips is for you.
Large file, please allow 30 seconds or more for download.
Idaho's Two Cent Tips Archives
Send an email to erickson@uidaho.edu to subscribe.
The Color of Money (NPR) Michelle Singletary (personal finance advice from author and columnist Michelle Singletary via podcast; 5 minutes or less for each)
Find a Utah Lawyer Directory.
Thursday Night at the Bar "is a pro-bono legal clinic designed to assist the public in determining their legal rights. Volunteer attorneys are available during those meetings to meet briefly with individuals to provide preliminary counseling and general legal information." 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. on the second Thursday of every month @ Cache County Courthouse, 199 N. Main Street, Logan.
Small Steps To Health And Wealth
The USU Family Life Center, 797-7224, 493 N 700 East (bottom of Old Main Hill), provides individual financial counseling. This is the best source for basic money management and getting out of debt. They offer the PowerPay computer debt analysis. Counseling sessions cost $5 for first session with sliding scale charges based on family income and family size for subsequent counseling sessions.
Nolo Press Books from which to choose if you bring a new participant to FPW:
Your Little Legal Companion: Helpful Advice for Lifeís Big Events
Noloís Essential Guide to Divorce
Quick and Legal Will Book
Noloís Simple Will Book (With CD)
Estate Planning Basics
The Busy Familyís Guide To Estate Planning: 10 Steps To Peace Of Mind (With CD)
Long Term Care: How to Plan and Pay For It
Social Security, Medicare, and Government Pensions
Work Less, Live More: The Way to Semi-Retirement
Work Less, Live More Workbook: Get Set For Semi-Retirement (With CD)
For more info on these books go to www.nolo.com
Also: How to Care for Your Parentsí Money While Caring For Your Parents
Thanks to the Certified Financial Planner Board Grant for financial support of FPW.
FPW topics for 2009
June 10 Spend, spend, spend like there is a tomorrow! Dr. Jan Andersen: Family Resource Management Extension Specialist
July 8 The Financial Checkup. Participants will receive a free workbook to conduct their own financial checkup
August 12 Getting a grip on debt: 8 benchmarks for borrowing
September 9 The Sandwich Generation: Caught in the Middle: Are You Financially Prepared?
October 14 National Savings Rate Guidelines for Individuals.
November 11 IRAs: Should you switch from traditional to Roth in 2010?