FINANCIAL HELPLINE

Financial problems plague a significant portion of Americans. From the most basic questions to the more complex, our accredited financial counselors can help. Debt, health care expenses, housing issues, credit card spending, taxes, college funding, retirement planning, are just some of the issues that our members can get help with.

Financial Helpline members have free access to experienced, accredited financial counselors. Our counselors will objectively assist members in assessing situations, discussing options, creating an approach, finding the right resources and information, and help resolve financial questions.

Ask AFS financial help line highlights include, but are not limited to the following:

FINANCIAL HELPLINE FAQs

Q. How may the Financial Helpline help members?
A. Periodically people need financial guidance and feel they have nowhere to turn; Financial Helpline is here to provide that guidance at no charge whenever the need arises. Financial Helpline helps members:

Q. What questions may members ask?
A. Members may ask questions covering almost any financial planning topic, everything from household debt and budgeting to retirement planning and saving for children's college education. Here are some questions that members frequently ask:

We also have a variety of planning tools members can use for quick calculations, such as a retirement planner, a Roth IRA planner, a college savings calculator, a 401(k) loan analyzer and many others. All are easy to use and easy to understand.

Q. Is there a limit on the number of questions asked?
A. No, members may ask as many questions, as often as they want.

STATISTICS

"Overall, from 2004 to 2007, the proportion of families that reported that they had saved in the preceding year was about unchanged at 56.5 percent, a bit higher than the level in 1998 but still lower than the 2001 level."
- Federal Reserve Bulletin - February 2009

"From 2004 to 2007, the fraction of families with retirement accounts rose 2.9 percentage points, to 52.6 percent.  The home ownership rate turned down slightly over the 2004–07 period, falling 0.5 percentage point, to 68.6 percent."
- Federal Reserve Bulletin - February 2009

"In 2007, 13.7 percent of families owned some form of residential real estate other than a primary residence (second homes, time-shares, one- to four-family rental properties, and other types of residential properties), a level that is up 1.2 percentage points from the figure in 2004."
- Federal Reserve Bulletin - February 2009

"Many families with credit cards do not carry a balance. 52 of the 73.0 percent of families with credit cards in 2007, only 60.3 percent had a balance at the time of the interview; in 2004, 74.9 percent had cards, and 58.0 percent of these families had an outstanding balance on them."
– Federal Reserve Bulletin - February 2009

"More than 28 million people, about a quarter of the workforce between the ages of 18 and 64, earn less than $9.04 an hour, which translates into a full-time salary of $18,800 a year."
- Michelle Conlin and Aaron Bernstein. “Working…and Poor”, Business Week, May 31, 2004

"One out of three households use credit cards to cover basic living expenses – including rent, mortgage payments, groceries, utilities and insurance."
- The Plastic Safety Net: The Reality Behind Debt in America, Demos and the Center for Responsible Lending, October 2005

"The personal savings rate in 2006 (as a percentage of disposable income) was a negative 1 percent, the lowest in 73 years."
- U.S. Department of Commerce

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