Resilience seems to be a common theme in our country and our communities as consumer strength regains post-pandemic. A shared trend in the pandemic’s aftermath is to reassess personal finances to balance enjoyment with everyday expenses. Common Trust aims to assist our members and help budget for the road ahead this summer and beyond. We are ready to welcome the community for in-person financial assistance for a stress-free and enjoyable summer to help you navigate 2021.

Create a Summer Budget Strategy 

There are valuable lessons learned from the pandemic, and people adjusted their finances to ensure protection against worst-case scenarios. As a result of suspended everyday life, people, in turn, had significantly fewer monthly expenses during the consumer “time out.” Travel, shopping, and general discretionary spending were at an all-time low, resulting in accrued personal savings. Now the time has come to enjoy the extra financial padding while budgeting for sustained resources for your lifestyle. We recommend grouping recreation into specific categories and allocating an amount to each class. For example, if you’re planning a trip this summer, determine how much to pay for airline tickets, dining out, car rentals, and recreational activities, like National Park fees. Planning allows for a better grasp of your budget while anticipating other new types of expenses and analyzing where you can trim back. 

Technology is Your Compass

Technology continues to prove to be a great budget friend, and we encourage mobile app usage to track your spending. The ease of streamlined banking and mobile applications enhances the user experience to know the bottom line at any moment. Some applications go as far as to group your expenditures and send you activity notifications to protect you from overspending. These are improving by the day and continue to offer unique features to guide you on the right path towards creating a feasible budget.  Big box stores, grocery stores, and food deliveries also offer promotions and coupons on their mobile app programs to help cut costs. Energy providers’ mobile apps are another great tool to monitor your energy usage and stockpile small savings per month this summer.

Another potential source for savings is to participate in Common Trust’s Shared Savings Accounts. As a member, your member-owner status is represented by the shares you save at Common Trust FCU.  In this program, members have the ability to open multiple share accounts for specific savings purposes like education, taxes, vacations, or special purchases.  Members can access their accounts and customize the name on these secondary share accounts. Tracking the money earned from day-of-deposit to day-of-withdrawal and the quarterly-distributed dividends from the shared accounts are easily accessed in your mobile banking account. Learn more about Share Savings Accounts here.

Utilize Financial Education & Assistance 

As credit unions welcome back the community, this summer is an excellent time to apply for financial assistance to access savings programs that buoy financial sustainability. U.S wealth grew by $20 trillion over the last year, paving opportunities for members to consider buying or leasing a new car, financing a home remodel, or managing debt with offset savings. Lowering monthly rates helps maintain your cash flow. In addition, it allows for other types of consumer spending should you want to or to grow an emergency fund. Common Trust even offers Vacation loans if you are looking for a substantial getaway. People who accumulated savings are also investing in personal care matters and budgeting accordingly. For example, braces sales shot up 19% in the last year. Overall, people are finding ways to rebalance their finances while also investing in new opportunities and experiences. 

Summer Support

Reexamination of our member’s financial well-being is central to understanding all facets of monthly living expenses and how you can grow your nest egg exponentially. Common Trust helps you create a plan for you and your family by identifying where to cultivate savings. We are committed to maximizing savings opportunities and pledge to work for our members’ financial success. As we forge ahead together, we reduce the complexities of budgeting so you can enjoy life along the way. 

We invite existing and potential members alike to learn more about our Financial Products and Services here.