Finances…not the most favorite topic to talk about but one we ALL have to deal with. The funny part is, everyone has questions but no one seems to seek out the correct answers from the proper people. My husband and I were sitting down discussing our finances, much to my dismay, but it was great to lay it all out there. Once we came up with some sort of plan, I figured we could use a little help from a financial expert.
Last week I spoke with a financial expert at PFCU (Philadelphia Federal Credit Union). With help from all of you, gathering your financial questions, and having questions of my own, we were able to talk about many different topics and answer your questions. Also, I brought some of my knowledge since I worked at a credit union and in banking for years.
What is the difference between a bank and a credit union?
Credit unions are not-for-profit financial cooperatives that are owned by their members. Banks are for profit and owned by shareholders. For credit unions, the profits are returned to members in the form of better rates and fewer fees. Anyone can be a customer at a bank whereas with credit unions, you must live, worship, study or work in the areas specified by the credit union. For PFCU specifically, you must live, work, worship, study or do business in Philadelphia or Columbia Counties.
How do you pay monthly credit card bills on a low income?
The key to this is to ultimately stop using the credit card. If you already have a low income but keep using the card, you will never pay down the balance.
Is it better to keep a credit card even if you are not using it? I always heard closing credit cards is bad.
To answer part 1 of this question, it is ok to keep a credit card if you are not using it. I’m assuming this card does not have a balance on it and you are not using it. Life happens and there may come a time that you need to use the card. Rather than closing it and not having the option of using that card if/when the emergency arises, it’s great to have that buffer. Part 2 of this question is not true. If you are dead set on closing a credit card, make sure you keep the oldest card. This is because this card shows your longest credit history and looks better on your credit report.
What is the best way to start saving for retirement?
If you are working for a company that has 401K benefits, this is the best place to look. Many companies offer employee benefits and even match their employees contributions.
I hope today’s post helped with some financial questions you may be having. If you have any questions regarding finances or PFCU, I would encourage you to get more information from PFCU online or find your nearest location. Personally, I’m a credit union girl because I love the service and better rate options. Not to mention that at PFCU checking accounts are free and come with free electronic banking services.
Thanks for reading!