Thomas Neill, CPA, CGMA Finney, Neill & Company, P.S.
Certified Public Accountant, State of Washington for 30+ yrs Shareholder, Finney, Neill & Company, P.S., local CPA firm, working with businesses and individuals Board Member, Washington State Board of Accountancy Continuing Education Instructor in the area of Ethics and Regulation Treasurer, Bethany Community Church Former Adjunct Faculty, SPU and NSCC Graduate of the U of W Foster School of Business, 1980 Married 37 years, four kids (one SPU graduate!)
Four (or more) years of college, and now you are about to be launched into the “real” world. Many of you will now be faced with having to deal with the everyday stuff of life, including your finances We will cover many topics quickly this afternoon, with time for questions – hopefully!
Student Loans Credit Cards Credit Score Budgets Savings and Investing Words of Wisdom Questions
Simply put, pay off your debt as soon as possible This will reduce your overall interest costs Student loan are real debt, and cannot be canceled Pay on Time! Never ignore delinquent notices. This can have an impact on your credit score Deferrment or Forbearance – work with your lender Repayment plans – if your loan is a federal loan, you may be able to modify repayment plans – see
Check with your lender to see if there are other repayment options Loan consolidation for multiple loans Extension of loan term Modification of terms Forgiveness – Public Service Loans Teachers Loans Remember – Budgeting helps!
Credit cards are a tool, but a potentially dangerous one Don’t get cards just because you get mileage or points Interest rates – be aware of Teaser Rates – often high Stick with one card – discounts don’t warrant getting a card. Don’t use one card to pay off another Pay in full every month – don’t charge more than you can afford each month PAY ON TIME!! Avoid cash advances – these can carry higher rates Don’t exceed the credit limit Review Statements Protect personal information
This is a rating system used to rate your credit worthiness, known as your FICO score Important to establish a good score – used to determine insurance costs, employment, costs of debt Start small – get a small loan or credit card, comply with terms of agreement Negative impacts – paying debts late or not at all, too many charge cards, paying interest only
This is, simply put, a plan for coordinating your income and expenses. There is no average budget! What works for you depends on your spending and savings priorites Find the budget tool that works for you – don’t just look at your bank balance online to see if you can afford something Tools – Excel, Mint, Quicken, pen and paper. The key is – use whatever tool consistently. This is not a now and again thing – you have to develop discipline! Ask for help – remember everyone else is in the same boat
Start small Understand compound interest Contribute to your retirement plan Save thru payroll deductions or automatic investment plans Bank your raises Keep paying down loans Pay off your credit cards Reinvest dividends Keep track of where your money goes (i.e. budget)
Determine if you are a spender or saver – know yourself If you are in a relationship, find out what each other is, and most importantly, COMMUNICATE about finances. You should both be on the same page about your money, related goals, etc. Money is a key component in divorce Watch your card/account statements like a hawk. It is not a safe world out there Watch your impulse buys. Retail therapy can cause issues Tithing – don’t feel guilty if you cannot afford 10%. God wants a cheerful giver