Washington, DC - With Fathers Day over the NFCC Member Agency Executive are offering some fatherly advice.
"If father knows best, then the dads who lead the NFCC agencies are the perfect ones to provide financial tips to the young men of America," said Gail Cunningham, spokesperson for the NFCC. "These leaders direct over 2,000 NFCC Certified Counselors who deliver expert advice and provide solutions to the more than two million consumers who reach out to an NFCC Member Agency for help each year."
Below are excerpts from the experts:
• Mike Robards, Credit Counseling of Arkansas - "My one piece of financial advice this Father's Day to the young men of America is to be wary of stuff. I doubt that apple Eve ate was any more enticing than the stuff we men are attracted to today: season tickets to our favorite team's events, golfing, hunting and fishing equipment, nice trips with friends and family, picking up the tab at the café and the list goes on. None of these, other than the apple, are bad. The key is to count the cost, and take the time to get past the initial lure. Speaking of lures, think about fishing and how that fish on the hook flops around in the boat. That shiny lure must have looked pretty good at one time, but the fish might want to rethink the decision to go after it. Again, enjoy the wonderful material products available in a country as wealthy as ours. But think through each purchasing decision and look beyond the shining lure to the end game that could result in financial and marital stress; or with a sound, mature decision, the result could be enjoyment with peace. I'll take peace of mind over a piece of stuff every time."
• Paul Atkinson, Consumer Credit Counseling Service of Buffalo - "Value your credit reputation as you would value a friend. They will both serve you well through all economic times."
• Joe Schenkel, FinancialHope Counseling and Education - "My advice draws back on conversations with my father who passed away back in 1989. He grew up in tough times living through the Depression and wars. He taught me that nothing can take away your education. From him I learned the long term value of acquiring knowledge and a solid education. He also had a saying about work - that it is easier to push a pencil that to push a shovel."
• Jay Seaton, Apprisen - "The three tips I've given our 20 year old college son are to understand credit reports and scores; understand the pros and cons of credit and be very cautious about incurring debt, including student loan and credit card debt; understand the time value of money and that by starting at a young age, wealth can be built steadily over time."
• Steve Piotrowski, Advantage Credit Counseling Service - "If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is. Young people sometimes do not understand that the zero interest for two years on a major purchase has a caveat with it. If you are late on one payment in that two year period, all the interest will likely be added to the account balance from the date of purchase, and will continue until the account balance is paid in full. And this doesn't even count the potential late payments and fees. Be smart by reading the fine print before you take that great deal."
• Ken King, Consumer Credit Counseling Service of Sheboygan - "It is always easier to borrow money than it is to pay it back. If you think you really need something, first try living without it for a week. There are two ways of getting everything you want: keep accumulating, or desire less. To me, the second way is personally the most satisfying."
• Joe Allen Stokes, Consumer Credit Counseling Service of Springfield - "Avoid purchasing those 'big-boy toys' such as a boat or new car, unless the payments can be made without causing a cash-flow issue."
• John Jackson, Consumer Credit Counseling Service of the Mid-Ohio Valley - "It's never too early to start thinking about, planning and saving for retirement. Many fathers get serious about retirement planning when they start a family, but the earlier retirement savings is worked into a budget, the more rewarding those "Golden Years" can be."
"Taken collectively, this advice is a formula for financial success," continued Cunningham. "Even if a person only embraces one of these tips, they'll be in a better place than they were last Fathers Day."