by: Rich Jones
Credit unions and banks across the country have financial literacy on their to-do list, but what consumers really need/want is a road map to financial wellness, not just financial literacy. Well, what’s the difference?
Financial literacy is about understanding money basics. Typically the curriculum includes topics like “how to balance your checkbook”, “what is a savings account”, “what is a money market account and a certificate of deposit” and what are the different loan products with possibly information on how to apply and how to qualify for a loan. Sometimes the topics include information on the credit report, what is a good credit score, maybe strategies on how to improve credit scores.
Financial wellness curriculum is hands-on, real life, real experience training. It teaches consumers how to use money, credit and debt appropriately to improve their life. It deals with the strategies and tactics on how to save, how to borrow, when is it appropriate to borrow, how to spend and most importantly how to financially thrive versus just survive. This curriculum is not about learning what a credit card is but learning how to use credit wisely, not about what a savings account is but how to create a savings discipline and how to find money in your cash flow to save. Its not what money is but how to manage the in-flow and out-flow of money to manage your cash flow.continue reading »