Inside the Foundation  
 
Hoping for the Best in your Personal Finances Isn't a Good Strategy
Wednesday, January 29, 2014 8:00 AM

In all aspects of life, we all want to hope for the best, but when it comes to our personal finances, financial expert Jean Chatzky says hoping for the best just isn’t a good strategy. Chatzky was a special guest on the Cornerstone Credit Union League’s Your Money Your Matters Blog Talk Radio show yesterday. The “Let’s Talk Money” with Jean Chatzky episode can be heard on Cornerstone’s Blog Talk Radio channel.

Chatzky told listeners that it’s all about making conscious choices. If your goal is to pay down debt, for example, you have to assess the situation and develop a plan.

“I’ve never seen a budget where I can’t squeeze something out of it,” she said. “There might be a cell phone with minutes not being used or cable channels you don’t really need.”

Wherever you can cut expenditures, Chatzky says you can apply the savings toward paying down debt. Ideally, Chatzky says you should come up with $10 extra a day that you can pay towards debt. But if $10 is too much, she suggests trying $2 a day and then nudge that up to $3 a day until you can work your way up to $10 a day.

If your goal is to save more for retirement, Chatzky encouraged listeners to take advantage of employee sponsored 401K plans.

Chatzky also shared her thoughts on money management with Cornerstone in an interview that is available on Cornerstone’s YouTube channel.

Chatzky is headlining the Cornerstone Credit Union Foundation’s FOCUS Summit Feb. 6-7 in Dallas. This two-day summit addresses the financial literacy problem in our country, and is an opportunity for financial education advocates to network, share best practices, learn about available resources, as well as explore proven techniques and strategies for deploying financial education into their local schools and communities. Additional information on the summit is available at www.cscuf.coop/focus_summit.html.