December 2, 2009

FPW Survey thanks

Thanks to all who responded to the FPW survey!

FPW participant Catherine Sharpsteen was the grand prize winner of a free consultation with Suzanne Dalebout & Heather Shino of Polaris Financial Planning. Additional names were drawn to receive financial planning books. If you get an email please respond promptly with your book selection.

My grad student Sam Nelson and I are in the process of reviewing and analyzing the results to help plan future FPW programs.
I’m not a fan of gift cards because of the billions of $ lost by consumers each year to fees, unused cards, & lost cards, but mostly because the recipient cannot save any of your gift. If you gave cash or a check, you could encourage a child to a) save a % of the gift, b) give some to charity, & c) spend some on what they would really treasure. In today’s dismal economy many adults need help paying for rent, mortgage, utility, food, etc. You may not realize the extent of their financial distress because they are embarrassed to let anyone know. Another idea (especially for many Americans who have all that they really need) is to make part of your gift a donation to the recipient’s favorite charity, local food bank or animal shelter, or through The Alternative Gifts International: The December issue of Money magazine included an article about a Wharton School economist who studies gift giving. His research concludes that gifts are ‘economically inefficient” especially when we aren’t sure what the recipient really wants. 

Experience Utah, buy local first (help the local economy):
Global Village Gifts, 146 North 100 East in Logan offers lovely fair traded items from around the world. 

Send a gift subscription to a personal finance magazine like Kiplinger’s, Money, or Consumer Reports.

More resources for simplifying the holidays and your life: Simple Living network:
Alternatives for Simple Living:

The Federal Reserve wants to help you use your credit cards wisely as you shop for the holidays. A new 45-second video Public Service Announcement includes 5 tips for getting the most from your credit cards by:
  • paying on time each month
  • staying below your card's credit limit
  • avoiding unnecessary fees (such as late payment and over-the-limit fees)
  • making more than the minimum payment and
  • watching for changes in your card's interest rate and other terms.
You can view and link to the video at
Avoid the holiday hangover of credit card bills this year. Enjoy the holidays without all the shopping.

See you on January 13.


FPW Workbooks

Our upcoming programs for FPW will be coming from the workbook Money Talk: A Financial Guide for Women ($23.00; 192 pages; 2009). This workbook teaches women the basics of smart money management.
Money Talk provides answers to questions like: How much do I need to save for retirement?; How much insurance should I have?; How and where should I invest my money?; and How do I create a will? Over 45 worksheets help readers evaluate their personal finances, set goals for financial well-being, and implement a plan to reach those goals.

The book is divided into five sections -- Financial Basics; Are You Covered? Insurance Basics; Investing Basics; Investing for Retirement; and Planning for Future Life Events. Each section includes lessons that demystify important financial concepts and exercises that allow readers to apply the information.
COST: Although the workbooks cost $23 each I was able to order them in bulk for a reduced price. Because we do not want the cost to keep anyone away, FPW will make the books available for a suggested donation of $15 or any amount you feel you can afford. We will simply pass around an envelope so no one will know how much you contribute.
Financial Planning for Women does not sell, rent, loan, lease or otherwise provide any personal information collected at our site to any third parties.