CLEVELAND, Ohio – Free help from a non-profit credit counseling agency is available for people coping with budget problems, which can be especially bad for many during the coronavirus pandemic, advises the National Foundation for Credit Counseling.
That’s one tip offered by financial experts as That’s Rich!, cleveland.com’s and The Plain Dealer’s personal finance column, this past week explored budgeting tips during tough economic times.
Among the advice: (1) break down your budget in terms of needs and wants; (2) search for better deals on things such as car and home insurance, electric bills and cell phone plans; (3) try to negotiate a settlement with credit card companies if you’re way behind.
Read what the experts said at this link – Is your budget tight during coronavirus? See these tips to help you cope, now and in the long run
As for that free counseling, the National Foundation for Credit Counseling website at nfcc.org can help locate local non-profit credit counseling agencies, or call NFCC at 800-388-2227 for help on a search.
Here are other topics covered recently by That’s Rich!
Answering questions about unemployment insurance
* Update: Ohio begins issuing $300 supplemental unemployment benefits
* Explaining what questions will have to be answered to get the $300, how to extend your benefits beyond 26 weeks, and more answers.
* Where’s my $300 extra for unemployment? How about my missing stimulus check? – Q&A.
* What you need to know to get an unemployment check in Ohio – Laid off? Hours reduced? Business slow or gone away if you’re self-employed? A lot of people have become eligible for unemployment checks who never before encountered the system. Here’s what you need to know.
* $300 Ohio unemployment benefit to be retroactive, plus status of extra 13 weeks of unemployment benefits and a second stimulus checks
* How to avoid scams; newest fraud tricks; can payment be stopped?
* Organize your financial records in case you get sick – A check list for what to get organized.
* Explaining Ohio’s maze of city income tax rates and credits, and why you should log where you’ve been working. You might be due a local income tax fund when you fill out your taxes next year. Included income tax chart shows difference in tax credits for each Greater Cleveland city and village.
* With mortgage rates at historic lows, should you join the rush to refinance? Here’s what to consider and how much money could be saved.
* Ohio has $3.2 billion in unclaimed funds; find out if some of that money is yours. The state might be holding money that’s yours from an old bank account, a company refund, a lost paycheck or other source. Here’s a how-to on finding the money.
* Roth retirement plan or traditional IRA and 401(k) plans? Is this the time to adjust your thinking? Pre-tax contributions through traditional 401(k) and IRA plans, knowing that the bill will come due when the money is withdrawn, or paying now but being tax free later with Roth accounts?
* Taking college classes online this fall because of coronavirus? Students can save a lot of money. The state maintains an online tool that shows what classes will transfer for credit between schools. This includes both two-year and four-year colleges. The difference could be a savings of thousands of dollars.
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