September 2008 Newsletter

September 10: Late Savers Retirement Guide
Are you behind in investing for financial security in later life? Want to stretch your retirement dollars? Come to this seminar and receive a free workbook with 14 worksheets.  To preview or print: Late Savers' Retirement Guide
Get your CREDIT SCORE for free. (I’m inserting this at beginning of newletter since the deadline for applying is September 24). While anyone can get their credit report for free at www.annualcreditreport.com , this settlement involves credit SCORES, not credit reports. Free credit scores are available as a result of a class-action lawsuit against TransUnion Corp. (credit bureau). The class action lawsuit “claims the Defendants violated state laws and the Fair Credit Reporting Act ("FCRA") when they sold lists containing personal and financial consumer information to third parties for marketing purposes. The settlement does not mean the Defendants violated any laws or did anything wrong. The Defendants deny any claims of wrongdoing in this case.” “The Court decided that the Class includes all consumers who had an open credit account or an open line of credit from a credit grantor (including, for instance automobile loans, bank credit cards, department store credit cards, other retail store credit cards, finance company loans, mortgage loans, and student loans) located in the United States anytime from January 1, 1987 to May 28, 2008.” Eligible Class members may sign up for credit monitoring or other benefits from the settlement. For more information, including a detailed notice, go to www.ListClassAction.com  or call, toll-free, 1-866- 416-3470.
Financial Planning for Women (FPW) is a monthly educational seminar that meets the second Wednesday (except December) at two times: 12:30-1:30 p.m. in Family Life room 118 on the USU campus. 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 Nolo Press book as a reward. (See list of books at end of newsletter).
Reminder: PowerPoint presentations for the past few years are available on the FPW website.
Upcoming FPW programs:
October 8: Reverse mortgages. Speaker: Cindy Stokes. Reverse mortgages are becoming more popular among senior citizens with limited incomes and more aggressively advertised by mortgage lenders. A reverse mortgage is a way for seniors to get money out of their home without selling it and without having to make regular loan payments. Before pursuing a reverse mortgage, it is important to learn more about the pros and cons of this mortgage product. Cindy Stokes is the co-director of USU's Family Life Center-Housing & Financial Counseling Services, a trained Financial & Reverse Mortgage Counselor, and instructor for FCHD 2100 Family Resource Management.
November 12: Investment Asset Allocation. How to allocate your assets is the most important part of any investment planning decision. We will also discuss whether USU employees who participate in TIAA-CREF should move any retirement assets to Fidelity, the new option offered by USU.
Workshops and events:
Smart Money Moves! 4 workshops on money management. Contact Cache County Extension: 435-752-6263.
9/4 Getting organized, setting financial goals
9/11 How does your cash flow? Slashing expenses
9/18 Credit and debt; Identity theft
9/25 the art of saving money; preparing to buy a home; credit reports
Smart Money education series for teenagers 14-18 years and their parents.
Wednesday September 17 & October 15, 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
Home Ownership Workshop. September 13, October 11, & November 8: 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Call 435-797-7224 to register.
Resources
Thursday Night at the Bar is a pro-bono (free) legal clinic designed to assist the public in determining their legal rights. Volunteer attorneys are available to meet briefly to provide preliminary counsel and general legal information. A variety of legal issues are addressed; the most common problems deal with family law, employment law, landlord/tenant law and estate planning. The clinic is conducted from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. on the second Thursday of every month at the Cache County Council chambers, 199 N. Main. Services are provided on a first-come, first-served basis.
Prepare Your Estate Plan “is broad and deep, and contains streaming video clips about living wills in the Communicate lesson, as well as many fact sheets and worksheets in the Organize lesson. As always, in addition to the rich resources already available, there is an opportunity to ‘Ask the Expert’ any question and get sound advice and information directly from a skilled educator at one of our nation's land–grant institutions.”
Utah home and auto insurance shopping guide (Utah Insurance Commission)
Home inventory Software: Free from the Insurance Information Institute.
Considering consulting a financial planner? “The Garrett Planning Network Inc. is an international network of independent financial advisors and planners offering hourly as- needed financial planning and advice to anyone regardless of income.”
What’s your “number”? A new way to look at retirement. When magazine editor Lee Eisenberg unexpectedly found himself beginning a new career in midlife, he started thinking about what retirement really means. His research led him to write The Number: A Completely Different Way to Think About the Rest of Your Life.
Foreclosure Rescue Scams
The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency has issued an advisory that provides advice to help prevent borrowers from becoming victims of foreclosure rescue scams. Most foreclosure rescue scams fall within three categories. In lease-back or repurchase scams, the con artist convinces a borrower to sign over their deed in return for a promise to lease back or eventually repurchase the property.  Refinance fraud involves a situation where the borrower believes the transaction is a refinance, but in fact, the fraud involves transfer of property ownership to the con artist.  Bankruptcy schemes involve repeat bankruptcy filings to get a temporary stay order to delay foreclosure, but can result in damaging the consumers’ credit without saving their homes. This consumer advisory  outlines what people should watch out for, and provides a list of resources people can use to find qualified sources for help.

Small Steps To Health And Wealth
Long Term Care Insurance
Utah Department of Human Services, Aging and Adult ServicesGeneral Information Included on this Web Page
Sending kids to college? Read these articles from The Wall Street Journal
How much pocket money does a freshman need?
Best ways to get loans for college
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 life’s big events
Nolo’s essential guide to divorce
Divorce and money: How to make the best financial decisions during divorce
Get it together: Organize your records so your family won’t have to
Quick and legal will book
Nolo’s simple will book (with CD)
Estate Planning Basics
The Busy family’s 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
Thanks to the Certified Financial Planner Board Grant for financial support of FPW.