Our Fall 2016 Member Newsletter is Here!

change_leavesOur Fall Newsletter is here! Copies will be printed and available at your nearest branch. An electronic version of the newsletter will appear on our website, social media sites, and will be sent to our members via email.  No printed copies will be mailed to any members in a continued effort to go green.

The Fall Newsletter features the following content:

  • Upcoming First Financial seminars and events (September – November 2016)
  • Article – “4 Ways to Be a Good Financial Role Model for Your Children”
  • Message from the CEO
  • Auto Loan Limbo
  • “What Could Go Wrong Between Now and 50?” – Investment & Retirement Center Article
  • 2016 Erma Dorrer Literary Scholarship Recipients
  • EMV Chip Debit Cards are here!
  • 80th Anniversary Visa Credit Card Introductory Rate – 0.80% APR for 8 Months
  • “4 Ways to Avoid Cybercrime When Banking or Shopping on Your Mobile Phone or Tablet” – Article
  • New corporate office staff photo with address
  • Important information, holidays, phone numbers, and branch locations

To view a copy of the newsletter, click here.

Enjoy and Happy Fall!

How to Fix Your Bad Money Habits

toolsThey say it takes about 21 days to create a habit, whether good or bad. Once you start feeding into bad money habits, it can be harder to be financially responsible and become increasingly easier to continue splurging. If you feel your bad money habits are getting you down, don’t worry; there is hope for you.

The first step to changing your ways is to acknowledge that there is a problem. If you are blind to the issues your money habits are causing you, it will take you much longer to get out of your situation. By facing them head on, you will be able to turn your bank account around.

Here are some common bad money habits and ways to fix them:

Eating out multiple times a week. By making simple homemade foods at home, you can save quite a few dollars each month. If you figure that the average meal when dining out is roughly $12 compared to about $4 to $6 when cooking at home, you’ll save roughly $6 per person per meal each month.  Even by reducing the amount of times you go out for coffee every month, and making it more at home, you will be able to cut back on frivolous spending. For example, going out for a $2 coffee five times in one month is more than what you could pay for one bag of coffee. $2 may not seem like a lot, but it certainly adds up quickly. Have a hard time giving up your favorite cafe’s cup of Joe? See if you can purchase your own bag of their ground coffee beans to make at home.

Having no financial plans. Not having a plan to save any money is a terrible habit you should break away from immediately. Making changes like paying yourself first, creating an emergency fund, creating a budget, and opening a retirement account are all actions to consider implementing as soon as possible.

Not talking to your significant other. Not discussing the topic of finances with your significant other is a bad idea. Even if you are not married yet, you and your partner should have a general idea of what is going on in your bank accounts, especially if you have plans to move in together. Create a plan and financial goals together and work on being as transparent as possible with one another.

Impulsive buying. It’s hard to not want to dish out money on an item we see and feel we must have right away. But, this kind of impulsive spending on a regular basis is not only harmful to your bank account, but it tends to create negative habits that become harder to avoid even in times of financial struggle. One way to short circuit this process is to only carry cash. People tend be more budget conscious when paying with cash, so you can truly help yourself by paying in cash only.

Carrying a credit card balance. People use credit cards to create a tremendous amount of debt each year. If you have a balance – pay it down to get rid of any looming interest. Train yourself to skip using a credit card for unnecessary purchases or any items you haven’t budgeted for. If you do use your card, make sure to pay off the balance each month.

Don’t forget about First Financial’s free, online debt management tool, Debt in Focus. In just minutes, you will receive a thorough analysis of your financial situation, including powerful tips by leading financial experts to help you control your debt, build a budget, and start living the life you want to live.

Ignoring your savings. Some studies suggest that roughly 1/3 of Americans don’t have any money saved for emergencies. Consider cutting the fat out of your budget and automating contributions to your savings and 401k accounts. Contributing to your 401k will improve your tax situation, and building your savings will reduce any financial stress you might be having.

Neglecting to get the best rate. People often overpay for services they don’t use. A great example of this are huge cable bills for hundreds of channels that never get watched. Consider using a comparison website like lowermybills.com to get a sense of how much you should be paying. Once you have this information, you can call your provider to see if they can lower your rate. Or if it’s not being used, cancel your cable all together.

The above are just a few common bad money spending habits, but we know there are more to avoid. How do you feel about your own spending habits and knowledge of financial literacy? To get an idea, take this quiz and find out.

Article Source: Jennifer Clark for Saving Advice, http://www.savingadvice.com/articles/2016/07/20/1041690_bad-money-habits.html

5 Tips for Buying Your First Home

Mixed race couple in new home

With U.S. mortgage rates near all-time lows, the appeal of purchasing a home has become much more enticing. For those who currently own, those lower rates mean looking into refinancing options to lock in lower rates; for those who rent, this may provide a nice entrance into home ownership.

According to the most recent National Association of Realtors® Home Buyer and Seller Generational Trends report, the demographics of first-time homebuyers has shifted over the last century. The current median age sits around 29, with over 65 percent of homebuyers under the age of 34.

Below are five tips, catering specifically for older Millennials who are looking to plunge into homeownership for the first time.

1. Have Stable Employment and a Robust Savings Account

Your financial security is of the utmost importance when looking into any large purchase. If you are unsure of the likelihood that your job and a steady paycheck will be there in 6, 12, or 36 months, you need to step back and logically assess how probable it is you can keep afloat while paying off a home for the next 30 years.

As with any basic personal finance advice, it is wise to have a substantial savings account. Particularly for large purchases such as homes, making sure there is a financial cushion to fall back on in case of unthinkable circumstances should be a determining factor when you are looking for your first home.

2. Understand and Adhere to Budgeting Strategies

If money management is not a strong suit, it will pay off to get down to business and take the time to invest in your financial literacy. Without basic financial know-how, taking on a loan for hundreds of thousands of dollars might not be a wise move for your long-term financial portfolio. Make sure you understand exactly what you are getting yourself into, how you will afford payments in the years ahead, and how you will handle unplanned financial obstacles.

3. Have a Healthy Credit Report and Know How to Handle It Responsibly

When applying for home loans, a healthy credit score is your MVP. Without stellar credit, you could find yourself paying far more than you should. Take the time to make sure your credit tells a story of a financially responsible individual, and you are bound to see the rewards.

Remember: Your credit reflects who you are to lenders. It’s a snapshot into how you have handled credit in the past and provides an educated guess as to how you will act financially in the future.

4. Understand Loan Approvals

It’s easy to become swept away by the glamour of home shopping. The excitement and possibilities can lead to pricy immediate gratification, instead of financially sound judgments. It is incredibly tempting to look at approval amounts as permission to push your budget, particularly when submitting loan applications and receiving approvals. Simply because a lender says you can borrow a certain amount, does not mean it is the wisest decision. Approvals are meant to be guidelines and firm upper limits, not excuses to push your budgeting envelope beyond its comfort zone.

Ashland University Professor of Finance and CFP® Terry Rumker says, “You should decide how much you are willing to spend each month on your home — principal, interest, insurance, and taxes combined — and then figure out how much money you are willing to borrow. Not how much a bank is willing to lend.”

5. Critically Assess the 20% Down Payment Rule and See if it Makes Sense for You

While the debate on how much to put down on a home purchase has been going on for decades, with the most frequently touted advice being that 20 percent is the golden rule, contracts can go forward with less — much less — brought to the table. Decide what fits best with your budget and if you would be okay paying (and affording) Private Mortgage Insurance (PMI), which could add possibly a couple hundred onto your mortgage payment on a monthly basis until you have paid that 20%.

Stop into any First Financial branch and we can help you with your home buying journey. We provide great low rates and offer a variety of Mortgage options – to speak with First Financial’s lending department, call us at 732.312.1500, option 4.* 

To receive updates on our low mortgage rates straight to your mobile phone, text FIRSTRATE to 69302 and each time our mortgage rates change, we’ll send you a text message with the new rates.** We’re here to help you achieve your financial dreams!

*A First Financial membership is required to obtain a mortgage and is open to anyone who lives, works, worships, or attends school in Monmouth or Ocean Counties. Subject to credit approval. Credit worthiness determines your APR. **Standard text messaging and data rates may apply.

Article Source: Rebecca Sheppard for Benzinga.com

How to Save Even If You Live Paycheck to Paycheck

fishing out saving dollars from glass jar isolated on white background

You know you need to save money, but it can be hard if you’re just trying to make ends meet on a small income. After all, you have bills to pay today, so it’s hard to make saving for tomorrow a priority. Even higher-income people can find themselves living paycheck to paycheck without much room in their budget to set aside cash. Despite what you might think, it is possible to save even when you’re strapped for cash. Here’s how to get started.

Figure Out Where Your Money Is Going

You might have more room in your budget to set aside money for savings than you think. But you won’t know until you track your spending for at least one month. Review your bank statement to figure out how much your necessary expenses — rent or mortgage, utilities, insurance, transportation and food are costing you. Account for credit cards, student loans and other debt payments. Then, add up how much you’re spending on things you can live without, such as cable TV or Netflix, restaurant meals, magazine subscriptions and nights out. Knowing how much of your paycheck is going toward needs and wants will help you pinpoint how much you can afford to save each month.

Pay Yourself First

You should think of saving as one of your fixed expenses that you pay at the beginning of the month rather than waiting until the end of the month to see how much you have left over to set aside. Pay yourself first, then learn to live on what’s left.

One of the best ways to pay yourself first is to automate contributions to savings so you don’t even have to think about setting the money aside. If you opted out of your workplace retirement account because you didn’t want to sacrifice your paycheck, you should opt back in and have contributions automatically withdrawn from your paycheck moving forward each month.

You also need to be saving for emergencies so you don’t have to rely on credit cards or even retirement savings to cover unexpected costs. To build an emergency fund, use the same approach as with retirement savings by setting up automatic monthly transfers from your checking account to a savings account so the money comes out before you have a chance to spend it. But, don’t get discouraged if you can’t set aside that much now. Even a small monthly contribution can add up over time.

Get Free Money for Your Retirement Account

If you can’t set aside 10% of your pay each month, contribute enough to your workplace retirement plan to get the full matching contribution from your employer — if it offers one, because this is practically free money. 25% of American employees don’t contribute enough to get the full match from their employer, leaving an estimated $1,366 of free money on the table each year, according to research by Financial Engines, an investment advice company.

Keep More of Your Paycheck

A tax refund can be welcome windfall when you’re living paycheck to paycheck. But a refund means you’re letting the IRS hang onto too much of your paycheck throughout the year. You can keep more of your money each month — and use it to boost savings by adjusting your tax withholding. Ask your human resources department at work for a new W-4 to claim more allowances, which will lower the amount of taxes withheld from your paycheck.

If you received the average refund in 2016 of $2,732, adjusting your withholding could put $227 back into your paycheck each month. If you invested that amount each month at a 7 percent interest rate starting at age 25, you could have nearly $600,000 by age 65.

Reduce Nonessential Expenses

If you discover you’re spending heavily on things you don’t need, those nonessential expenses are the first thing you should cut to make sure your paycheck can cover necessary expenses and savings contributions. If you gave up buying a coffee and bagel twice a week, you could save an estimated $40 per month. If you were to invest that amount each month instead with a 7 percent annual return, you could have $32,402.87 after 25 years.

Raise Your Insurance Deductibles

Another way to find more room in your budget to boost savings is to cut insurance costs. By raising your auto insurance deductible, you can lower your premium by 15 percent to 40 percent, according to the Insurance Information Institute. Raising your homeowner’s insurance deductible from $500 to $1,000 could shave 25 percent off your premium. You also can lower your health insurance premium by opting for a high-deductible plan. With a high-deductible plan, you also get the benefit of being able to set aside money pre-tax through payroll deductions to a health savings account (HSA). Money in an HSA can be used to cover out-of-pocket healthcare costs.

Lower Your Bills

In addition to insurance premiums, there likely are other monthly bills you can cut so you’ll have more cash to stash in savings (for example – Netflix, cable, expensive gym membership, etc.). If you aren’t using these services, why are you paying for them? If you don’t want to get rid of a service completely, you may even be able to opt for a lower data plan to cut the cost of wireless service and so on.

Let Technology Help You Save

If you don’t have the discipline to save on your own, there are several apps that can help. For example, the free Digit app takes automation a step further by linking to your checking account and analyzing your income and spending habits to figure out how much you can set aside in savings. It then automatically puts that money into savings for you.

Article Source: Cameron Huddleston for Go Banking Rates, https://www.gobankingrates.com/personal-finance/save-live-paycheck/  

13 Surprising Ways to Eat Healthy and Save Money in the Process

Woman with a shopping list for groceries at the market

Grocery bills can certainly add up, and it can be hard to prioritize healthy eating when you’re depending on a tight budget. Yet, eating with health in mind can make a huge difference for your mental and physical health, so it’s important to learn these money-saving hacks to make shopping easier and simpler. Eating on a small budget does not necessarily mean that nutrition must fall behind. Here are thirteen ways to save money, while still nourishing your body from the inside and out.

1. Join a CSA (Community Supported Agriculture)

“In season and local often means better prices and tastier produce! Plus, you will support small businesses, and the goods are delivered right to your door,” says personal trainer and running coach Susie Lemmer.  CSAs (Community Supported Agriculture) support terrific causes and are often loaded with fresh, nutrient-dense and seasonal produce that is easy on the wallet and heavy on the health.

2. Choose Your Market Wisely

Not all markets are equal in prices. “Buy food at lower-priced markets such as Trader Joe’s and Costco,” says certified holistic health coach and personal trainer Jen Bruno with J.B. Fitness and Nutrition.  Plus, don’t be afraid to make a few separate trips. While it might be more time consuming, it can help you save tons of money. For instance, you can buy fruit from one store and meats and seasonings from another.

3. Search for Coupons

You can often find coupons over the web, as well as in grocery stores themselves. Compile coupons in order to save well, suggests Bruno, as those extra dollars here and there can definitely add up. Plus, there are often chances to use coupons for healthy items, such as alternative milks, coconut water, legume chips and whole grains.

4. Make Leftovers … Intentionally

Cooking in bulk can not only save time and meal-prep for the week ahead, but it can also save lots of money through recipe makeovers and bulk purchases in store. “Use a slow cooker and double the recipe for leftovers,” advises Bruno. Slow cookers are great for making larger portions of meals, such as stews, soups and chili. Use throughout the week in different ways for diversity in flavor.

5. Buy in Bulk

Bulk sections at grocery stores, such as Whole Foods Market, offers nuts, dried fruits, legumes and beans, and grains, among other staples, that can save serious cash through avoidance of packaged, processed items. “Buy nuts, beans, and spices from bulk bins to save on costs,” says Bruno. Plus, when in bulk, the foods are often free of any additives and salts, which can be a lot healthier, as well!

6. Stock Up on Items with Late Expiration Dates

“Stock up on cooking oils, nuts, canned beans, and stocks/broths when they’re on sale,” says Bruno, as these pantry staples have a long shelf life and are incredibly versatile and practical for hearty, nutritious meals that work throughout the seasons. While they might take up space in your pantry, the cost will be worth it.

7. Be Cautious with Produce

Not all fruit and vegetables need to be fresh, as many studies show that frozen fruit and vegetables are just as nutritious as fresh. If produce is in season, it will often be cheaper and on sale; however, out of season produce is less available and pricier. Plus, it won’t taste as good when not in season! Purchase frozen varieties, as it’ll be easier on a budget and won’t make difference nutritionally.

8. Grow Your Own Garden

Whether you have access to growing a full garden within a wide open space, or have a smaller terrace in a cramped urban apartment, the ability to grow some fresh produce, spices and herbs can help cut down on costs and will increase the nutrition and flavor.

9. Make Your Home a “Restaurant”

“America craves the quality food, typically associated with ‘dining out’ experiences, but without the time and money constraints,” says Mike Starks, CEO of Personal Trainer Food. Set the mood to make eating at home enjoyable, so that you feel less inclined to head out to restaurants during the week. Also, you can look for gourmet meal services that are cost efficient and provide restaurant-quality foods.

10. Add Flavor without Expensive Ingredients

“Add a little extra flavor to your veggies that will excite your taste buds with herbs, oils and spices,” says Starks. This will help you make meals different and exciting due to various flavors and textures, without needing to add expensive oils, additives and sauces that can cost a lot at a grocery store. Different flavors and herbs can transform leftovers, as well, making the meals taste delicious and new.

11. Find Recipes with Similar Ingredients

“Look for recipes that have the same ingredients to avoid being wasteful,” says Starks. If most recipes incorporate the same items, shopping in bulk is easier, and if you run out of a certain ingredient, such as a spice, sauce or protein, you can find a quick and efficient substitute that will match the flavor profile well and not require any additional spending.

12. Plan Meals Ahead

“You can save money by avoiding eating out at restaurants and/or the occasional grab-n-go snacks that tend to add up by the end of the week, and having healthy food prepared will keep you on track to achieve your goals without breaking the bank,” says Kevin Curry, a Reebok Expert and founder of FitMenCook.  By figuring out which meals you will eat during the week, you can save money on additional items that are unnecessary purchases.

13. Learn to Buy in Moderation

Sticking with portion sizes and eating expensive items in moderation is a great way to maintain a budget and save. “Practice moderation and only buy what you’re actually going to eat. It’s easy to get distracted by all the fresh, vibrant produce in the grocery store and you begin to buy more than what you need because you ‘hope’ to eat the food,” says Curry.

No matter your exact budget, it’s best to be mindful of your spending and look for deals at the grocery store whenever possible. Buying in bulk, planning meals and ingredients ahead of time, and scouting out the best options at local stores can save money over time and simplify the grocery store process so that you can feel less stressed about the money and healthier with your meal choices.

Article Source: Isadora Baum for Bustle.com, http://www.bustle.com/articles/168016-13-surprising-ways-to-eat-healthy-save-money-in-the-process

 

The 20 Money Hacks Busy People Swear By

Hand Drawn Life Hacking Concept on Small Green Chalkboard. Business Background. Top View. 3D Render.

In today’s fast-paced world, time is money — and there never seems to be enough of either one. But with just a few tweaks to your lifestyle, you can easily free up time in your day and money in your budget.

1. Get Free Shipping and Earn Cash Back

Shopping at cash back and rewards websites can help you earn money and points on your everyday purchases. But savings expert Lauren Greutman uses a hack to save even more money, as well as time that you might otherwise spend wandering the aisles.

“Order online at stores like Walmart and Target through Swagbucks, and earn points that you can cash in for free gift cards to other stores like Amazon and PayPal,” she said. “During your order, select ‘ship to store,’ pick it up for free, and you have just earned cash back on your purchase without having to pay for shipping.”

2. Use Apps to Track Your Finances

Angie Nelson from The Work at Home Wife is a huge fan of using technology to save time and money.

“Sign up for a money monitoring service like Mint or Personal Capital,” she said. “Unnecessary expenses and avoidance of saving can add up quickly when your busy mind is on other things. A quick glance or notification will let you know if you are on track or falling behind.”

3. Meal Plan Like a Boss

A little old-fashioned meal planning can help you save hundreds on groceries per month, said Greutman. It can also save you a lot of time by having your meals prepped ahead of time.

“I like to make a month’s worth of meals in one afternoon,” she said. “For only $150, I can make 20 dinners in just under three hours. I use ingredients from Aldi, and this helps me keep my grocery bill low and my stress level down.”

4. Set Calendar Reminders

Reviewing your accounts is crucial to your financial well being. It can help you keep tabs on your spending and make sure you’re on track to meet your goals. Furthermore, keeping a steady date with your finances can help you spot potential problems early on, before they become more challenging and time consuming to resolve down the road.

“Set a recurring event in your calendar to review your financial accounts at the same time and day each week, month, quarter or year,” said Taylor Schulte, a certified financial planner and founder of Define Financial. “Just like everything else in your busy life, if it’s not on the calendar, you probably won’t get to it. This hack will also help develop a healthy habit, and eventually you might not even need to rely on your calendar.”

5. Sell Your Old Stuff Online

You can also save time and money by selling your old items or items you find at thrift stores, on eBay for profit, Greutman said.

“One way that I make extra cash is to buy name-brand clothing at thrift stores and sell them for profit on eBay,” she said. “I find a dress for $4 and sell it for $50. This is a great way to make extra cash from home.”

On the mobile side – download the free Poshmark App, quickly setup an account, and you can take photos of and then sell clothing, accessories, and shoes.  When someone purchases your item, the app sends you a shipping label to print out and attach to your package.  Simply drop the purchased item off at your local post office, and when the buyer accepts it – you can elect to have the funds directly deposited to your bank account.  Cha-ching!

6. Monetize Your Down Time

Another way you can make money during your free time is by watching videos and taking surveys online on a site like Swagbucks, said Greutman.

“I love taking surveys and watching videos in my down time,” she said. “I may as well be making money while relaxing.”

7. Use Your Credit Card

Teresa Mears, CEO of Living on the Cheap, saves time and money by paying for everything with her credit card. Keeping most expenditures on one account can help streamline your budget tracking and bill paying process.

“I charge everything I can to one credit card, and then pay it off manually once a month,” she said. “I get email alerts for the accounts, like electric and water,  that I can’t charge to the card automatically.”

8. Do a 5-Minute Money Checkup

If you can spare just five minutes each day, Greutman has a money hack that can help make managing your finances a breeze.

“Every morning, my husband and I sit down and do a five-minute money checkup,” she said. “That way, we talk about what we have to spend money on that day, review the budget, and we both know what the day’s money movement is.”

9. Digitally Capture Your Receipts

If you find it difficult and time-consuming to track your spending, there’s a hack for that.

“One of the fastest ways for me to track spending is to take pictures of all my receipts,” said Mike Delgado, director of social media at credit reporting agency Experian. “I use a nifty app called Shoeboxed Receipt and share the account with my wife so we can share receipts with each other and categorize spending easily.”

10. Stop Credit Card Fraud in Its Tracks

In addition to using Shoeboxed to capture your receipts, Delgado said it also helps him to spot any suspicious account activity at a glance.

“Shoeboxed also automatically adds your spending data into a downloadable spreadsheet so you can compare receipt data against what’s reported in your credit card transactions,” he said. “This can help you identify fraud faster — and find any discrepancies in what is reported in credit card transactions.”

11. Make Frequent, Small Credit Card Payments

If you’re struggling with managing your credit card bills, this money hack can help make your life easier. By making small but frequent credit card payments, such as 1% to 2% of your balance every other week, you could get out of debt faster and avoid racking up interest.

12. Turn Your Credit Card Into a Debit Card

Using your credit card to earn rewards and cash back takes discipline. However, if you make sure you don’t overspend and you pay your balance in full every month, this strategy can be quite lucrative. Fortunately, there’s a money hack that can help you build credit and earn rewards without going into debt.

One financial tool, Debitize, automatically sets aside money from your checking account after every credit card purchase, then pays the bill in full when it’s due. So, it essentially helps you use your credit card like a debit card, and takes some of the guesswork out of getting rewards.

13. Round Up Your Purchases to Save More

Automation can also help you stash more money in your savings account. One app, Qapital, lets you set up spending rules that trigger an automatic deposit into your savings account. You can set spending challenges, where if you spend less than an amount you set, the remainder is sent into savings. Another feature rounds up the change from each purchase and puts it into your savings account. Qapital said its average user saves $44 per month with this feature.

14. Get Tax Advice

A tax professional can help ensure you’re filing your taxes properly, and can offer the guidance to address problems when they do arise, potentially saving you a bigger, more expensive and time-consuming headache down the road.

15. Buy in Bulk

Buying in bulk can save you time and money each month, said Deb Shaw, COO at international money transfer service ForeignExchange.com.

“Examine what you purchase repeatedly every month, and buy those products or services in bulk,” he said. “For me, this means household items and food with a long shelf life.”

16. Save Before You Pay

If one of the first things you do when you get your paycheck is pay your bills, you might want to reconsider that.

“The best money hack I know is to pay yourself first: Put your budgeted savings into your account before you pay your bills or make any other expenditures,” said Mike Catania, co-founder and CTO of PromotionCode.org. Saving becomes a priority rather than an afterthought, and can help ensure that you stash your money away before you can spend it.

“It’s a common trope for investors, but it’s equally applicable to everyone, and it has the added advantage of helping you mentally shift into prioritizing yourself,” he said.

17. Call Your Cable Company

A short, single phone call once a year to your cellphone and internet provider could save you hundreds, said Bruce Harpham of Project Management Hacks. Do your research ahead of time to see what various deal packages your providers offer, which can give you a cost range to aim for.

Harpham offered tips to negotiate your cable bill. “In the call, point out how long you have been a customer, point out your good payment history, if applicable, and ask for any special promotions currently offered,” he said. “Patience and a bit of luck is required, but the payoff can be great.”

18. Take Online Courses

If you want to go back to school, but can’t imagine spending the money or the time, Adrian Ridner, CEO of Study.com, said online courses can help you achieve this goal in less time and with less money.

19. Buy an Affordable Quality Car

Nothing beats that new car smell, but the type of car you choose can have a major impact on how much time and money you spend maintaining your ride.

If you’re in the market for a new or used vehicle, stop by First Financial and apply for an Auto Loan with us! We have the same great low rates whether you plan on purchasing a new or used vehicle.* To apply, click here for our online application or stop into any branch location. 

20. Automate Everything

Automating can also help you stay on track to meet your investing and debt payoff goals. “The answer to saving time and money is very simple: automation,” said John Luskin of financial planning website UncleDMoney. “This way, you’re saving and/or investing automatically. You don’t even have to think about it.”

Automating doesn’t mean hands-off, though. You should still keep a close eye on your statements to track your spending, watch for signs of fraudulent activity and make sure your automated transactions are going through.

*Subject to credit approval. A First Financial membership is required to obtain an auto loan and is available to anyone who lives, works, worships, volunteers, or attends school in Monmouth or Ocean Counties. A $5 deposit in a base savings account is required for credit union membership prior to opening any other account/loan. 

Article Source: Morgan Quinn for Go Banking Rates, https://www.gobankingrates.com/personal-finance/money-hacks-busy-people-swear/