We’re all grateful for our armed service members.
But, there’s a group of Americans who are too grateful.
Credit cards, pawn shops, payday loan organizations often treat soldiers, sailors, Marines and Air Force personnel like sheep coming in for the fleecing. If you don’t believe me, look at the strips of pawn shops and shady banking operations that line the streets leading to any major military bases.
These are just the obvious ones–internet and mail-based insurance, investing and banking scams target military members, as well.
Here are a few tips that will help military personnel devise a strategy for personal finance.
Most people entering the military are young and have little credit history. They also have little idea of how debt can impact not just their current bottom line, but their future financial lives, as well. And don’t the credit sharks just know it? They spread tantalizing offers for easy money in front of our military men and women, like landmines. You don’t see the harmful effects until it’s too late. Your best bet, then, is to avoid them entirely. Do you need emergency money? It happens. But there are other sources. Can your buddy spot you a few bucks? How about the folks back home? Another thing. Make sure it’s actually an emergency.
Flanking Budget Problems
For service members, money seems to be pre-budgeted. Meal allowance. Housing allowances. Clothing allowances. Extra money for hazardous duty. And so on. This arrangement may lead some service members to forego creating their own budgets and that can lead to lazy personal finance. They treat it like a lottery win or a bonus. A big payout.
One suggestion is to actually use the money allotted for the actual purpose. In this case, you would pull out the clothing allowance, for example, and use it for only clothing. Saving what’s left.
Investing, Money, Success