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FLM 2017: 3 of the Best Tips for Dealing with Debt as a Family

Was debt repayment at the top of your resolution list in January? Did you accomplish your goals?

Financial Literacy Month (FLM) is the perfect time to schedule those Family Annual Meetings (FAM) and review your resolutions and goals. Getting all the family financial business on the table before the holidays can help avoid big spending expectations and allow the family to make a plan for the upcoming months. Here are three great tips for hosting your own FLM-FAM:

  1. Choose the best atmosphere

A FAM should be comfortable and casual, but should also have limited distractions. Pick a time that works best for all family members so you can all dedicate a couple hours to financial talk.

  1. Set an agenda

Cover the most relevant financial topics for your family. Here are some examples:

  • Debts – What is your family’s current debt load? Are you managing payments or are there debt warning signs you should be aware of? Online debt calculators like these can help you get to know your debt and your repayment options better.
  • Family budget – Which areas can be trimmed? How well are you tracking spending? This is a great time to discuss holiday spending. Set the expectations based on your overall financial outlook.
  • Family financial goals – If you have goals that require a lot of saving, make a plan together about how you’ll achieve them. Learn how to budget to reach your goals by watching this video as a family. Or you can discuss Danielle Kubes’ blog, Are you really saving money?
  • What’s important to your family? – If you’ve involved parents or adult siblings in your FAM, now is a good time to get on the same page. Discuss details of wills, passports and important issues like caring for aging parents.
  1. How to go forward

Once you’ve discussed important financial decisions, it’s time to set your plans in motion. For example: If debt repayment is a pressing concern, keep each other motivated and revisit your financial goals as a family when necessary.

What will your FLM-FAM look like? Share your tips by joining our conversation #DebtSolutions #FLM2017

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