I have a balance of $17,000 on a car loan. I’m currently paying $439 per month. I would like to knock some years off this loan. How much extra should I pay on this loan to make this happen?

The calculators at PowerPay will allow you to enter your balance, current payment, and interest rate to determine the time and cost for repaying a debt. (Use the additional payment calculator from the menu once you get to the PowerPay site). You can try various debt repayment scenarios and find one that works for you. Without knowing your loan interest rate and original loan balance, it’s not possible to figure this out for you.

But if we put in some …

I recently lost my job. To adjust, what should I consider?

Unexpected loss of income can be one of the most stressful events in a lifetime. Here are some things to consider.

Reduce Expenses 
A job loss could potentially last for many months, so it is wise to track spending and tighten the family budget. Cooperative Extension offices in many states have information about living on a reduced income.

Apply for Unemployment Insurance
Each state has different eligibility requirements for unemployment insurance and benefits. Basically, if you’ve become unemployed through no …

I recently got laid off. How do I stay on top of things until I find employment?

 

  • Find out if you are eligible for unemployment and begin the process as soon as possible.
  • Contact your creditors as soon as you know that you’ll have a problem paying bills. Take the offensive. Call your lenders before they call you.
  • When you call a creditor, have the following information ready: account number, reasons why you would like to renegotiate your payment, and how much you propose to pay until you get back on your feet.
  • Keep the lines of

When Your Income Drops

Losing a job or otherwise experiencing a loss of income is a challenge in the best of times. In the current economy, it is essential to MAP OUT a plan to get back on your feet again. The PowerPoint presentation, fact sheets, and activities below are designed to help you MAP OUT your plan.

 

When Your Income Drops

Managing Stress in Financial Crisis

Sources of Stress

  • Prices rise but your income stays the same
  • Cut‐backs, layoffs, or other restructuring creates job instability
  • You feel frustration with family members’ spending or debt
  • You have medical, automobile or household expenses that pile up
  • An unexpected event or crisis creates money problems for the family (illness, death, divorce, etc.)

Take Care of Your Body

Try to eat a healthy and balanced diet.

Take time for an enjoyable physical activity to relieve stress.

Get enough sleep. We …

Making Extra Money

Odd Jobs

Think about the type of skills or equipment you have that others may need. Can you change the oil in their car? Make a birthday cake? Clean their gutters?Consider that your time may be helpful to others if you have free time when they do not. You can find odd jobs in the classifieds section of local newspapers or web sites like Craig’s List.

reading paper

Bartering

Trading goods or services with others may not yield cash, but it …

Debt Management in Tough Times

Debt management involves developing one or more strategies to help a debtor get that debt under control.

 

Should you shop for a lower interest rate on your debt?

• This can be a good option, if it substantially reduces your monthly payments and the refinancing is not too costly. Inquire whether other higher cost debts can be rolled into the lower cost loan.

What if you can’t pay your bills

• Prioritize your debt. Keeping a roof over your head …

Stretch Your Grocery Dollars

sunset shopping cart

Planning Shopping Trips

• Keep a pad and pencil handy for jotting down foods as they run low. Encourage all family members to add to the list.

• Don’t shop with a hungry or tired child, or when you are hungry.

At the Store

• Stick to your shopping list; avoid impulse purchases. However, watch for “in store” specials that you know you can use.

• When buying a food for the first time, buy a small amount in case …

Stretch Your Food Dollars at Home

Prevent Food Waste

• Cut down on the amount of food you throw away; freeze leftovers or use them in recipes like soups or casseroles. aInstead of thinking “leftovers” – think “planned overs.” Have a plan to use excess food from one meal, whether by using it within a few days or freezing it for the future.

• Take leftovers for lunch instead of eating out. Store properly to keep foods safe to eat.

• Before buying an unfamiliar food, …

Building an Emergency Fund

An emergency fund is money set aside in a readily accessible savings account for unanticipated events such as unemployment, medical bills, and car repairs. A sum of money to cover basic living costs for three to six months is recommended.

 

calculator

 

Accumulating Liquid Assets

• These are assets that can be easily converted to cash.

• The majority of these funds should be in accounts that have easy access, like checking accounts.

• Regular or passbook savings and money market accounts …