Five helpful tips for people who struggle to make ends meet

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The first-of-its-kind national survey on the financial well-being of consumers shows that more than 40 percent of adults struggle to make ends meet. Are you one of them?

 

The survey by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB), whose role includes empowering consumers to take control over their economic lives, also found that more than one-third (34 percent) of consumers have experienced material hardships, such as running out of food, not being able to afford a place to live, or lacking the money to seek medical treatment. In addition, adults age 34 and younger tended to have the lowest financial well-being score.

The survey also identified behaviors associated with people who have higher than average financial well-being. They include confidence in the ability to achieve financial goals, a regular habit of saving money, and effective day-to-day money management.

Consumers can measure their own financial well-being using the CFPB’s interactive online tool that also help them explore ways to take control of their financial future. The 10-question survey tool asks consumers to respond to a series of statements such as “I could handle a major unexpected expense,” “My finances control my life” and “Giving a gift for a wedding, birthday or other occasion would put a strain on my finances for the month.”

Along with a personal financial well-being score, the online tool provides advice to help respondents take control of their finances and make progress toward their financial goals. The tips include:

 

  • Use a bill calendar and spending tracker to see where your money goes and manage your everyday expenses.
  • Get a grip on your debt.
  • Repay student loans wisely.
  • Build and maintain your credit record.
  • Create an action plan to meet your goals.

 

AutoPayPlus can help consumers turn these tips into action and realize their financial goals.

Our affordable biweekly bill payment service accelerates the reduction of debts ranging from car and student loans to credit cards and mortgages. It’s an easy strategy used by more than 200,000 AutoPayPlus customers nationwide to shorten the terms of their loans while reducing interest charges and accelerating equity. And, the convenience of automatic withdrawals ensures that the payments are made accurately and on time.

In addition, AutoPayPlus customers have access to a free financial planning toolkit with a wealth of resources such as monthly VantageScore 3.0 credit score with trending from TransUnion and credit monitoring and instant alerts from TransUnion to help prevent identity theft.

 

Learn more about the AutoPayPlus service.