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Vermont Veterans Outreach Personal Financial Counselor provides financial services to Vermont’s Veterans, Service Members and their families. These services include budgeting, debt reduction, retirement planning, and much more. Our Family Program Personal Financial Counselor can assist you in your efforts to become financially stable and independent. The Personal Financial Services integrates within the military life-cycle; from pre-deployment financial preparation activities through transitioning from the military to civilian life. These services are free, confidential and available to Veterans and families residing in Vermont.

Personal Financial Counselor

Contact: Megan J. Sather
Office: (802) 338-3446

Calculators & Comparison Tools 

NOTE: By clicking any of the links below you will be leaving VTNG Family Programs website  
Calculate how quickly you can pay off debt. https://powerpay.org
Information about credit cards, bank accounts, digital savings apps. mortgages and insurance. https://www.nerdwallet.com
Comparison of best rates available for high yield savings accounts, Certificates of Deposit (CDs), and mortgages. https://www.bankrate.com
Learn about the Military's Savings Deposit Program. https:www.saveandinvest.org
A wealth of financial calculators for loans, taxes, investments and more. Provided by Military OneSource https://www.timevaluecalculators.com

Financial Education

Games and information for teaching children, teens and young adults about money; quick and simple tips about budgeting, saving and spending. https://www.mymoney.gov
Offers a host of consumer tools, many created specifically for Service Members and Veterans. https://www.consumerfinance.gov
Information on consumer protection and fraud prevention. Tools and tips for military service members and their families.

https://www.saveandinvest.org

Free online tutorials on personal finance and economics. https://www.khanacademy.org

 

March 6, 2024

2023 Tax Changes w/ Megan J. Sather

We asked Personal Financial Counselor, Megan J. Sather, to come in and talk with us about changes to the tax law that you need to know about before filing this year. View Megan's 2023 Tax Changes PDF:
NEWS | June 24, 2021

Holiday's in July

Holiday’s in July?  The sun is shining the temperatures are climbing, who wants to think about the holiday’s, they are so far off.    I know we all have our sights set on getting out more this summer, but we are halfway to the holiday’s.  Now is the best time to start saving for the holiday season if you haven’t started already.

Here are 4 things to get you started planning and saving.

First you will need to do some research.  Look at how much you spent on the holidays last year. I know you may have spent your money differently last holiday season, but this will give you a starting point. Total all you spent on the whole holiday season, or for each specific holiday.  I leave this up to you and how deep a dive into your budget you want to do.  

Second this year the landscape of our holiday celebration will be different than last year.  This year may include bigger family gatherings, maybe flying instead of driving. You may want to host a big gathering, be honest how you want the holidays to look, then you can create a more accurate budget.

Third, now that you have totaled up how much you spent last year and decided what this year will look like. How much do you need to save to reach your goal?  Take that number and divide is up by how many paychecks you have left to save from for the year.

Last you need to save that amount each paycheck.  If saving is not the easiest thing for you, maybe you want to think about having your bank or credit union do it for you.  Many can set up an automatic transfer into a savings account each month, and some even have special holiday savings accounts, that will keep the money from you (unless you want to pay a fee) till the middle of November.  This I call saving you from yourself.  I am guilty of this just like everyone else, my emergency fund gets deposited straight from my paycheck into a bank I do not do any other banking with.  If I don’t see it, I don’t spend it.

Holiday spending is always tricky, and maybe you can’t save enough to pay cash for everything this year.  However, when you get into the habit of saving, you can start in January next year and have it all saved by the end of next year.  Start small if you must but be consistent, that’s the key to creating new habits.