The 2×2 System is where you set aside two hours on the calendar two times a month to complete a predetermined financial task. This modest but consistent effort can help you sustain financial health and build wealth in bite-sized chunks. Read October’s blog to learn about creating a financial emergency plan and educational savings plans. We hope you find this month’s information helpful.
November Session 1: Research Your Employee Benefits
For most people working for a company, a significant part of the job is sifting through a whole lot of emails to determine which contain vital information. That means a bunch of potentially useful stuff—like updates on employee benefits—gets weeded out simply because there’s not enough time to engage with everything. But now, during this month when open enrollment typically happens, give yourself time to review the offerings for each of these potentially valuable employee benefits:
• Retirement plans
• Life insurance
• Training and development reimbursement
• Stock option plans
• Profit sharing
• Wellness resources/mental health coverage
• Student loan repayment assistance
• Remote work
• Disability insurance
• Commuter reimbursement
Tip: The standard calculation is that your pay is only 70 percent of the total resources offered by your employer. If you’re not making the most of the rest of your benefits, it’s like throwing away 30 percent of what’s available to you. Now is also a good time to review your 401(k) contributions. Can you increase your allocation? How are your investments doing? Is it time to rebalance your funds? For many people, their 401(k) is a critical part of their retirement planning. Regularly reviewing your plan is an important part of a financial fit retirement.
November Session 2: Use Your Flex Spending Money
Do you have a flexible spending account (FSA) through your employer for medical costs? With the year drawing to a close, it’s time to use any money remaining in your FSA before you lose it. If you don’t have an FSA or Health Savings Account (HSA) currently, take this opportunity to research whether or not one might help you save some money. You might be surprised.
Tip: You may have been advised to use your leftover FSA money to stock up on practical items like bandages or sunscreen. That’s fine, but do yourself a favor by exploring the full spectrum of available products. A personal massage device or air purifier might do more to enhance your quality of life right now than something you’ll stash away in a drawer and maybe use someday.
Did you know your Credit Union offers a Health Savings Account? This tax-free account enables you to pay for qualified medical expenses, including dental and vision care, while you earn dividends on your balance. Plus, we offer an industry-leading 2.50% APY* on all balances. There are no fees, and for a limited time, we will reimburse you if your existing HSA charges fees to move your money to us.
One Final Thought
The holidays are full of good cheer but also fraudsters. We will NEVER call or text you for any personal information, username, passwords, or passcodes. If you receive a call or text from any number or person claiming to be an employee of the Credit Union requesting this information, HANG UP AND CALL US DIRECTLY at 800.877.2345. Have a safe and wonderful holiday season!
*APY = Annual Percentage Yield. Yields are subject to change at any time. Fees could reduce the earnings on an account. Fee reimbursement promotion offered is subject to change and termination.
Consult your tax advisor or refer to IRS Publication 502. Contribution limitations and other restrictions apply to HSAs. To have a Federally Qualified HSA, you must purchase and maintain a HDHP with minimum deductibles of $1,300 (individual) and $2,600 (family), and maximum out of pocket expenses less than $6,850 (individual) and $13,700 (family). Generally you cannot be covered by another low-deductible health insurance policy. The tax treatment of HSA contributions and distributions under your state’s income tax laws may differ from the referenced federal tax treatment, and from state to state. Consult with your financial or tax advisor for more information. This Credit Union is federally-insured by the National Credit Union Administration. Refer to section 213 (d) of the IRS Tax Code. Visit the U.S. Department of Treasury website for up-to-date contribution limits and more detailed information on plans and taxes.