• The power of systems: How to stay on top of school and money

    College is an exciting time, but it’s also full of new experiences and obstacles. Among the usual challenges, you'll face higher prices and a higher cost of living. That makes striking a balance between money and school a top priority.

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    The power of systems: How to stay on top of school and money
  • Tips for Creating a Spending Plan

    Tips for Creating a Spending Plan

    How to Make Sure Your Spending Aligns With Your Goals

    Spending money is easy; saving it is hard. Yet, there are moments in life when planning for small and large expenses such as a car, house, vacation, repairs, or even a shopping trip makes sense. How you accomplish both matters; it all begins with a solid plan.

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  • Paying for College: Financing Options, Scholarships, and More

    It's no secret that paying for college can be expensive. The average cost of tuition and fees for the 2021-2022 school year was $38,070 at private colleges, $10,740 for state residents at public colleges, and $27,560 for out-of-state residents attending public universities. For students living on campus, that number can climb to nearly $14,000 more for room and board, and the costs to attend college rise yearly. But don't worry! There are plenty of ways to finance your education without breaking the bank. We'll run through some options to get you started.

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    Paying for College: Financing Options, Scholarships, and More
  • 7 Do's and Don'ts of Holiday Credit Card Spending

    7 Do's and Don'ts of Holiday Credit Card Spending

    The aroma of sugar cookies, chestnut lattes, and a quick look at your calendar confirms it’s the holiday season. Many people welcome the cooler evenings filled with festive meals, gift-giving, and credit card spending. While holiday shopping using a credit card can bring joy today, using it without a plan can lead to sorrow while reviewing your next billing statement.

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  • How to avoid holiday scams

    Common scams that pop up during the holiday season

     

    The holidays are a time of joy, celebration, and gathering with family, friends, and neighbors. However, fraudsters also look forward to the holidays for different reasons. For them, the holidays are just brimming with opportunities.

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    How to avoid holiday scams
  • How to Avoid a Credit Card Mismatch

    How to Avoid a Credit Card Mismatch

    Like wearing sneakers one size too small, using a credit card that doesn’t fit your active lifestyle can be painful. Owning a credit card that requires you to juggle purchase categories to maximize rewards or jump through hoops to avoid high fees might signal a credit card mismatch. Fortunately, you have options. You can step into a credit card that supports your active lifestyle and financial goals.

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  • How Many Credit Cards are Too Many?

    Cash back rewards. 0% introductory interest rates. Sign-up bonuses. These are a few reasons consumers can’t resist adding one more credit card to their wallets. While each new credit line expands purchasing power, accepting the latest offer is not without risk. Before adding another card to your financial toolkit, weigh the pros and cons of owning multiple credit cards to determine if you already have one card too many.

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    How Many Credit Cards are Too Many?
  • How to Max Out Credit Card Rewards

    How to Max Out Credit Card Rewards

    Rewards credit cards come with many perks, including points, miles, cashback, bonuses, and more. Instead of missing out on those benefits, we're bringing you some expert tips to help you max out your credit card rewards, and it all begins with understanding your loyalty program details.

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  • Refund Scam

    What is a refund scam?

     

    You may be familiar with the idea of a refund scam if you've sold goods online before. In this setup, someone typically "overpays" you for an item and claims that it was an accident. When you send them the extra money back to correct the "error," they cancel the original payment and thus steal your money.

    Tech support refund scams follow a similar setup. Let's walk through how malicious individuals have set them up, so you don't fall victim to this.

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    Refund Scam
  • Sweetheart Scams

    Sweetheart Scams

    A sweetheart scam occurs when a victim is romanced though online dating sites or social media networks, then manipulated into sending funds to fraudsters or giving them account access.

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  • Work from home scams

    Scams targeting jobseekers are increasing. Now it is even easier for scammers to target people who are looking for work, using newer tools such as phony websites, unsolicited emails, robocalls and cold calls using faked origin phone numbers, remote interviews using tools such as Skype, social media, instant messenger services, Internet pop-up ads, and more.

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    Work from home scams
  • Trouble Adjusting Financially to College?

    Trouble Adjusting Financially to College?

    Tips to Make Changes to How You Spend Money, So It Lasts all Semester

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  • Why an Annual Credit Card Fee Might Be a Good Thing

    You’re not alone if you’re looking for the right credit card. There’s a labyrinth of cards to choose from, each with a different focus and approach, including perks cards that offer points, miles, discounts, and more to conventional cards with no fees, low fees, low interest, or a combination of these. Of the different credit cards, some carry annual fees, but why would anyone want a credit card with annual fees? The answer might surprise you.

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    Why an Annual Credit Card Fee Might Be a Good Thing
  • 3 Tips for giving safely

    3 Tips for giving safely

    There are many ways to support causes that are close to your heart and align with your values. If you choose to donate money to charity, here are some tips to ensure your dollars make the impact you intend.

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  • Christmas Gifts on a Budget

    Ideas Beyond the Usual Homemade Foods to Give Gifts People Will Love, Without Breaking the Bank

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    Christmas Gifts on a Budget
  • How to Apply for Financial Aid

    How to Apply for Financial Aid

    What You Need to Know about the FAFSA

     

    Financial aid is a great way to cover college expenses. Yet, finding student aid and applying for it can seem like a daunting task for students and parents. Still, it's easier and less painful than it sounds, and what the aid covers might surprise you.

    College-bound students and their parents need to know the answers to common questions before applying for aid with the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). So, where do you begin, and how much can you expect to get? We researched the topic to bring you these answers and more to prepare you for your college career.

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  • What To Do When You Can’t Pay Your Bills

    If U.S. economic news is keeping you up at night, you’re not alone. With inflation at a 40-year high (8.5% as of July 2022, after rising to 9.1% previously) and economists predicting a recession, many Americans are concerned about their financial well-being. Figuring out how to stretch your paycheck to cover the increased costs of food, vehicles, and energy are only the beginning.

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    What To Do When You Can’t Pay Your Bills
  • Tips for Buying a New or Used Car in Today’s Market

    Tips for Buying a New or Used Car in Today’s Market

    Visit any dealership today, and the view will look much different from a few years ago. The effects of supply and demand, microchip shortages, and more have rocked the automotive industry, making it harder to find the car you want and at an affordable price.

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  • How to Build or Improve Your Credit

    Have you ever wondered how to improve your credit score or build one from scratch? It’s easier than you might think. Whether your goal is to create a credit score or improve a less-than-stellar score, we’ll cover a few steps you can start with today.

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    How to Build or Improve Your Credit
  • How to Build Credit from Scratch

    How to Build Credit from Scratch

    You know that you need a positive credit history to make big purchases, get the best insurance rates, and even get your dream job. But how do you get started? What should you do, and what should you avoid?

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  • How to Spot a Credit Repair Scam

    Having good credit can simplify your financial life. Paying bills on time and keeping credit balances low often results in fewer hassles and significant cost savings. Consumers with good credit typically have access to low-interest rate credit cards, deposit-free mobile service contracts, and smaller security deposits for housing rentals.

     

    On the flip side, the financial lives of consumers with poor credit can get thorny. Poor credit not only makes it more challenging to obtain the same approvals, scammers offer credit repair “solutions” that only make matters worse.

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    How to Spot a Credit Repair Scam
  • Easy Ways to Save — Even with Inflation Hitting Your Pocketbook

    Easy Ways to Save — Even with Inflation Hitting Your Pocketbook

    Inflation continues to rock the economy, leaving your pocketbook and savings accounts something more to be desired. We get it. Rising costs make it harder to save money. Still, there are plenty of ways to reduce costs while tucking money into a savings account. 

     

    We dug our heels in for this one and gathered some tips to help you save money, even during challenging times, beginning with what to do about your current debt.

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  • Best Practices: Digital Banking Security Measures to Keep Your Data Safe

    It doesn’t matter how small your business is; keeping your company financials safe is vital, especially today. Every year, small and large businesses lose about 5% of their revenue to fraud, and there’s no evidence that it’s slowing. The moment you think your business is protected, along comes a new scam or phishing method or something else that sets spidey-senses tingling, not in a good way.

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    Best Practices: Digital Banking Security Measures to Keep Your Data Safe
  • What Should You Do with Your Tax Refund?

    What Should You Do with Your Tax Refund?

    If you’re expecting a tax refund, you’ve probably got some ideas about what you want to do with it. Whether a few hundred or a few thousand dollars, here are our tips for making the most of your money.

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  • Back to School: Tips for Making This School Year Great

    With the school year off to a roaring start, it’s time to settle in and plan for a smooth year. You’re sure to experience some bumps and hurdles along the way, but the right plan will help you face those challenges head-on.

     

    One of the first steps is to start with a school calendar. So, get ready to dig in while we serve up some of our best expert tips to make this school year shine.

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    Back to School: Tips for Making This School Year Great
  • Smart Savings Tips: What You Need to Know About Interest Rates and Savings

    Smart Savings Tips: What You Need to Know About Interest Rates and Savings

    Do interest rates baffle you? Are you scratching your head over the differences between simple and compounding interest? Many members ask us these questions and more. So, we're laying out the differences and providing tips on what you need to know to make savvy money decisions.

     

    You probably already know something about interest. After all, it's everywhere, from credit cards to car loans, personal loans, mortgages, and more. Yet did you know the two types of interest – simple and compounding – work differently in lending and affect your savings differently, too? It's true! We'll dive into how it affects you, from borrowing to saving and investing.

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  • Time for a Financial Check-Up: Check on Your Budget and Goals After Inflation

    Rising costs have affected everyone's budget, including higher prices on groceries, gas, rent, and more. Inflation is currently at its highest in 40 years, and increasing costs mean less money in your wallet and bank account. It's easy to fall behind when prices get out of hand.

     

    Despite the pain of inflation, we've got some tips for you to ease the financial burden and meet those price demands head-on. Now is an excellent time for a financial check-up to see what's working and what's not.

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    Time for a Financial Check-Up: Check on Your Budget and Goals After Inflation
  • Three things to know about credit scores

    Three things to know about credit scores

    Applying what you learn here can not only improve your financial health but can put you on the path to achieving your financial goals.

    This article was originally posted in October 2021.

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  • How Student Loan Scams Work

    Student loan repayment is making headlines — and so are student loan scams. Whether it’s federal extended repayment pauses, loan forgiveness programs, or other forms of student debt relief, borrowers are likely to click through for details. While student loan borrowers are eager to learn ways to trim their debt, scammers are eager to get information from them to fatten their wallets.

     

    You can outsmart these bad actors by understanding how student loan scams work.

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    How Student Loan Scams Work
  • Mid-Year Financial Checkup (Inflation Edition)

    Mid-Year Financial Checkup (Inflation Edition)

    Rapid spikes in the costs of fuel, groceries, and other goods and services is putting the squeeze on household budgets. Escalating inflation has many people rethinking how they spend and whether they can save for the future. This reality makes performing a mid-year financial checkup more important than ever.

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  • Put These Hot Weather Scams on Ice

    This summer is a scorcher. But it’s not just rising inflation trying to burn a hole in your wallet — it’s those sleazy scammers. As you lower your guard while on vacation or relaxing at the beach, fraudsters are turning up the heat on their hot weather scams. Stay cool and put their attempts on ice by learning about these cons that pick up during summer break.

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    Put These Hot Weather Scams on Ice
  • 5 Reasons to Refinance Today

    5 Reasons to Refinance Today

    Higher prices on everyday goods and services are forcing households to reassess their finances and find new ways to save money. While eating out less and canceling unnecessary subscriptions are excellent ways to temper spending, another option might have an even greater impact on your budget — refinancing debts to a lower interest rate. When you refinance, a new loan is used to pay off existing debt.

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  • Starting Your Financial Life? Here Are Tips For New College Graduates

    Graduation is the end of one phase of your life — and the beginning of an exciting new one. You’re on your own. You’re ready to start your career (or take a stop-gap job until you find the right position in your field). And you’re poised to make your own financial decisions, maybe for the first time in your life.

    You have all the power here. But, as they say in Spider-Man, “With great power comes great responsibility.”

    Here are some steps you can take to make responsible choices with your finances as you’re starting out.

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    Starting Your Financial Life? Here Are Tips For New College Graduates
  • Home Buying Terms You Should Know

    Home Buying Terms You Should Know

    Once you start speaking with mortgage lenders, realtors, and even friends about buying a home, you might feel like you’re swimming in an unfamiliar pool of abbreviations and terms you’ve never heard before. We’re defining some of the most common terms here, so you learn to tell your PMI from your DTI.

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  • Mortgage Pre-qualification: What Is It and Why Does It Make Home Buying Easier?

    When you’re ready to buy a house, there is one step you need to take before you start looking at homes — get pre-qualified for a mortgage.

    Pre-qualification is the process of going over your finances, so you can see how much mortgage you qualify for. You’ll look at the factors that might affect your ability to get a mortgage, your estimated payments, and whether now is the right time to apply.

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    Mortgage Pre-qualification: What Is It and Why Does It Make Home Buying Easier?
  • Timeline of a Home Purchase

    Timeline of a Home Purchase

    Once you make an offer on a home, how long will it take before you can finally hire the movers and start your new life?

    Every situation is different, so we can’t tell you exactly how long it will be to the day, but we can give you some estimates for each part of the process, so you won’t be surprised at how long it takes. (And we know, if it’s taken you weeks or months just to find the right house, waiting even longer seems like a big hassle.)

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  • Stay Safe When Buying a Home: Common Scams Targeting Consumers

    Because homes are a high-value purchase, shopping for one or looking for a refinance deal can bring scammers out of the woodwork. A little knowledge of some common scams will help you protect yourself. Here are the things to look out for.

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    Stay Safe When Buying a Home: Common Scams Targeting Consumers
  • Why a Low-Interest Rate on a Home Loan Matters

    Why a Low-Interest Rate on a Home Loan Matters

    Preparing to buy a home while mortgage rates and real estate prices are on the rise can be nerve-racking. With each uptick in rates, you might wonder if delaying homeownership might be the better option. But trying to time the market by waiting until rates or home prices reverse course could result in missing out on an excellent buying opportunity.

     

    While rates are no longer at 2019 levels, they are still considered historically low. Plus, experts predict prices will continue to increase for homebuyers and renters due to the continued housing demand. Here's why securing a low-interest home loan approval is still a good idea — and how you can improve your chances of success.

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  • Security tips for kupuna and caregivers

    Many of us will need assistance as we age. Here are some tips for protecting your loved ones’ finances.

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    Security tips for kupuna and caregivers
  • Tips for Finding Your Dream House in Today’s Market

    Tips for Finding Your Dream House in Today’s Market

    The housing market may be slightly slowing down, but sales are still moving fast, and sellers still have their pick among multiple offers. Here is what you need to know to find your new home.

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  • Why It's Easy to Fall for the Free Gift Scam

    Text message scams aren't new. But a fresh twist on an old scheme is making the rounds as fraudsters collect financial details and other personal data from unsuspecting victims. Crooks use this information to empty bank accounts, make fraudulent charges on debit and credit cards, and steal identities. Fortunately, the more you know about how this scam works, the less likely you are to fall for it.

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    Why It's Easy to Fall for the Free Gift Scam
  • Buying a Multi-generational Home

    Buying a Multi-generational Home

    Is it time for your ohana to begin sharing a home? Maybe your parents need to move in to make it easier to ensure their safety as they age. Or maybe your adult kids need a place to live as they start their own families. Regardless of your situation, these are the features you should look for and the questions you need to ask as you merge your family into one home.

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  • HawaiiUSA talks financial wellness with ThinkTech Hawaii

    HawaiiUSA offers plenty of avenues to foster financial wellness in Hawaii, which include efforts through partnerships, education, school engagement, and funding support.

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    HawaiiUSA talks financial wellness with ThinkTech Hawaii
  • HawaiiUSA FCU helps students acquire real world experience in finance

    HawaiiUSA FCU helps students acquire real world experience in finance

    See the interview with Kainoa Carlson of HI Now, HawaiiUSA’s Bryan Yucoco, and Waipahu High School’s Brent Murakami

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  • Is it time to downsize?

    When starting a family or moving from a starter home, you may have thought bigger was always better. But there are times in life when you may be considering a smaller home. Here are some questions to help you decide if downsizing your home is the right option.

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    Is it time to downsize?
  • Easy Home Upgrades You Can Do Yourself

    Easy Home Upgrades You Can Do Yourself

    Do you feel like you need a change? Sick of looking at everything in your house?

     

    With some creativity, you can make changes that will help you feel like you’re in a new home. And the bonus? They are projects you can tackle yourself — no waiting for a contractor or other professional to slot you into their packed schedule. Nonetheless, if you are renting, you may need to get permission from your property manager or landlord before undertaking some of these projects.

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  • HawaiiUSA supports teachers’ professional development with Chaminade University

    HI Now host Kainoa Carlson speaks with HawaiiUSA’s Stacie Rosa to learn about our support for local teachers through their partnership with Chaminade University.

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    HawaiiUSA supports teachers’ professional development with Chaminade University
  • Are you Ready to Buy a Home?

    Are you Ready to Buy a Home?

    With low mortgage rates and rising rents, it certainly seems like all signs are pointing to buying a house. But are you ready? These questions will help you figure out if now is your time to buy.

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  • Steps in the Home Buying Process

    Buying a home is such an exciting milestone, but it can also feel overwhelming if you aren’t sure where to start.

    You know you’ll be looking at houses, putting in offers, and securing a mortgage. But what else goes into buying a home? How long does it take? What do you need to know and do between house hunting and moving in?

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    Steps in the Home Buying Process
  • HawaiiUSA FCU works to promote financial wellness in Hawaii’s schools

    HawaiiUSA FCU works to promote financial wellness in Hawaii’s schools

    See the interview with Kainoa Carlson of HI Now and HawaiiUSA’s Bryan Yucoco.

     

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  • Financial Literacy FAQ

    Money topics can spark lively online conversations. Whether shared in social media posts or website comment sections, much of the information can leave you feeling more confused than when you started. Whether due to incomplete answers or a failure to consider an individual's financial status, learning about personal finance can be a challenge.

     

    To help improve your financial literacy, we've gathered some of the most frequently asked questions (and the answers!) about credit, savings, making a major purchase, and retirement planning.

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    Financial Literacy FAQ
  • DIY or Hire Out? How to Decide if You Should Do a Home Improvement Project Yourself

    DIY or Hire Out? How to Decide if You Should Do a Home Improvement Project Yourself

    You’ve watched HGTV and seen all the things that can go wrong when taking on a big home improvement project or repair, so you’re a total expert, right?

     

    Maybe. There are some projects that the average homeowner can definitely tackle. But there are others that will benefit from a professional.

     

    Here are some tips to help you decide when to go it alone.

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  • Credit myths that stall your financial goals

    Your credit history report shows where you’ve applied for credit, who extended you credit and whether you’ve paid as agreed. The report represents a snapshot of your credit health. However, a record of these behaviors stays on your credit report for 7 – 10 years. A change in credit behavior can mean improved financial health or can serve to put a stop to the progress you’ve made towards reaching your financial goals.

    Believing and acting on credit myths can result in:

    • higher interest rates or fees on home and car loans;
    • a higher annual percentage rate (APR) on credit cards;
    • approval on less than favorable types of mortgages or straight denials; and
    • a decreased ability to save money since most of your spending plan is used to pay high-interest credit accounts.

    Lenders and creditors extend their best offers to consumers with good or excellent credit so dispelling myths by gaining a proper understanding of credit can improve your financial well-being.

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    Credit myths that stall your financial goals
  • Home improvements that add value

    Home improvements that add value

    Smart Home Improvements That Increase Your Value — and Those That Don’t

     

    Home improvements should serve two purposes. First, they should make you happier in your home. And second, they should add to the value of your home. But many improvement projects are undertaken without regard to whether they improve the value. And if they aren’t a home-run in your enjoyment, then do you even need to do them?

     

    Here are some ideas of home improvements that add value — and some common ones that don’t — so you can decide whether a project is worth it for your home and family.

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  • When does an Interest-Only HELOC Make Sense

    When an Interest-Only HELOC Makes Sense

     

    When faced with an extensive home repair or improvement project (new roof, anyone?), it can seem like saving up enough money to pay for it is impossible.

     

    But a home equity loan can be a smart choice. Yes, you’re borrowing against your home’s value. But you may be using that money for something that will only increase the overall value of your home. And with home values on the rise, you may have more equity than you imagined, so the overall debt burden on your home can remain reasonable.

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    When does an Interest-Only HELOC Make Sense
  • Financial Literacy Quiz

    Financial Literacy Quiz

    According to a National Financial Capability Study, financial literacy rates among Americans have decreased from 42% to 34% since 2009 — yet 71% of Americans believe they know more about personal finance than the data suggests. This has real-world implications for how people manage money today and prepare for their financial futures. How financially savvy are you?

     

    Complete this quiz to gauge your financial literacy IQ.

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  • Should you consolidate high-interest rate debt?

    Debt payments can put the squeeze on your financial goals. They often shoehorn themselves into your monthly budget, leaving little cash to put toward savings. Multiple sources of high-interest rate debt can make it seem impossible to gain control of your finances.

    But don't despair! Whether your cash squeeze is due to a job loss, unexpected expenses, or the pandemic, it's possible to relieve the financial pressure in a few simple steps. And if you're a homeowner, you have even more options than you think.

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    Should you consolidate high-interest rate debt?
  • 5 Things to know before you start a home renovation

    5 Things to know before you start a home renovation

    Whether you're planning a room addition to welcome a new family member or exploring ways to boost the market value of your home, a renovation can be a wise investment. While home improvement TV shows, blogs, and magazines provide inspiration, few of them share some of the most important aspects of renovation to consider before starting your project. Here are five things to know before tearing down your first wall.

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  • Can your home help pay for college?

    If your child recently received a college acceptance letter from their first-choice school, you both have reason to celebrate. But the letters that soon followed were likely a real party pooper. Is the gap between your child's college tuition bill and their financial aid award package larger than you expected? Even after adding in scholarships, grants, and federal assistance, the balance due before the start of the semester may be more than you have in your savings account.

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    Can your home help pay for college?
  • Protect Your Elders from Scams

    Protect Your Elders from Scams

    Unfortunately, many scammers target older adults because they may have large sums of money saved, and they may not be as savvy online or over the phone. In fact, Hawaii’s elderly lost $5.4 million to fraud and scams in 2020.

    So, how can we keep our kupuna safe from fraud? A combination of education and oversight will be your best option.

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  • How to Survive Inflation

    The last time you went to the grocery store, did you wince when you realized how all the price increases you saw on the shelves added up on your final bill? How about when you filled your gas tank? Or ate at a restaurant?

    It’s no secret that prices are going up. The national inflation rate is 7.5%, and fuel costs are a huge part, increasing nearly 40%. Hawaii has always had higher prices than the mainland, so these price increases put us way over the national averages.

    What can you do to reduce the impact of inflation on your budget?
     

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    How to Survive Inflation
  • Budgeting on a fixed income

    Budgeting on a fixed income

    HawaiiUSA’s own Kim Dodson, Financial Wellness Partner and Certified Credit Union Financial Counselor, gives budgeting tips to kupuna and those living on a fixed income. See the interview with Diane Ako on KITV’s Aging Well.

     

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  • 5 Costly Tax Filing Myths

    Many people have a love-hate relationship with Tax Day. They love to receive a tax refund but hate the work that goes into filing their tax return. Filing myths only magnify the dread taxpayers feel as April quickly approaches.

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    5 Costly Tax Filing Myths
  • Paying for unexpected expenses

    Paying for unexpected expenses

    Both the best and worst surprises in life can come as unexpected costs you weren’t able to plan for. There’s nothing we can do to stop these surprises from coming in the door, but we can work to find ways to cope with them once they do.

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  • It's Not You, Federal Tax Filing is Different in 2022

    Tax Day occurs every April in the United States. While the calendar deadline to file is predictable, changes to tax filing requirements are not. For 2021 tax year, there are over 60 tax provision updates you may need to be aware of to successfully navigate tax season. Here are five that are likely to impact most taxpayers.

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    It's Not You, Federal Tax Filing is Different in 2022
  • What is a Mobile Wallet and how to use one

    What is a Mobile Wallet and how to use one

    Is your wallet one-too-many credit cards away from resembling a condensed brick made of mostly plastic cards? 

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  • Got a debt hangover? How to pay it down

    At one time or another, we have all overspent during the holidays. Now that the holidays are over, many of us enter the new year with a bit of dread. If you set a holiday budget and you stuck to it, you're probably feeling pretty good. But what if you let the holiday season sweep you up? You might be wincing every time you open your email as you wait for those statements to come in. If you've got a debt hangover from the holidays, we can help.

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    Got a debt hangover? How to pay it down
  • Never share your Digital Banking password

    Never share your Digital Banking password

    You probably wouldn’t hand your wallet over to just anyone who asks. Did you know that when you share your Digital Banking login credentials, it’s very similar?

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  • Avoid tax scams

    It’s tax season. That means you’re gathering paperwork, filling out forms, sending items to your tax preparer, and dodging the scammers trying to take advantage of you. 

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    Avoid tax scams
  • Tax Tips for Side Work

    Tax Tips for Side Work

    Have you ever had a friend or family member ask you to help them by using the skills you’ve learned on the job? Perhaps you’re putting your HVAC experience to use by upgrading their air conditioning or using your years as an auto technician to finally solve that pesky check engine light. Or maybe you’re helping their new business get off the ground by designing a website.

    And once you help one person, they tell their friends. And they tell their friends. Suddenly, you’re working many weekends. Wait, did you just start your own side hustle?

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  • How to get out of the paycheck-to-paycheck cycle

    Do you often feel like you have more month than money? Do you worry when your paydays won’t hit until after your biggest bills are due? Maybe you avoid going out for saimin with friends until you get paid again — then find that you still can’t go out because an unexpected bill came in?

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    How to get out of the paycheck-to-paycheck cycle
  • Funding your next chapter

    Funding your next chapter

    If there’s one thing you can always count on in life, it’s change. Some changes are little; some are big. Some are “lose-a-week-of-sleep” big. Some changes are as simple as picking out a new color of carpet, while others are as complex as picking who you’re going to spend the rest of your life with – living on that carpet.

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  • 2 Ways to take control of your debt - without extra payments

    Paying off debt tops most lists of New Year's resolutions. But many households are experiencing financial hardship and are not in a position to make extra payments. Hundreds of thousands are finding it difficult to even make ends meet, which can result in feelings of helplessness about their financial circumstances. If this sounds like you, there's good news! You have options.

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    2 Ways to take control of your debt - without extra payments
  • Setting financial goals - tips for beginners

    Setting financial goals - tips for beginners

    Retiring early, losing weight, and even starting a business necessitates planning to turn these dreams into reality. Each one requires that you set a series of realistic goals. Failing to do so can leave you with dreams for financial or physical improvement that are never realized.

    But, it can be tough to know where to start with financial goal setting.

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  • Ways to celebrate the year-end

    The count-down to 2022 is upon us. Whether you have been looking forward to it since June or you’ve found something to savor in 2021, we will all soon be saying “goodbye” to this year. Here are some ideas for enjoying the rest of the season by focusing on what you can do instead of what you can’t.

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    Ways to celebrate the year-end
  • 6 Safe shopping tips

    6 Safe shopping tips

    Physical health and safety has been top-of-mind when out shopping this year. While it’s smart to continue to use contactless payments at the store, don’t forget the basics about protecting your money when shopping, no matter where you are.

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  • 8 Ways to protect your debit card from fraud

    Here are some proven ways to protect your debit card from fraudulent activity and safeguard your hard-earned cash.

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    8 Ways to protect your debit card from fraud
  • Two Bitcoin/Cryptocurrency scams trending on social media

    Two Bitcoin/Cryptocurrency scams trending on social media

    Beware of these two new Bitcoin/Cryptocurrency scams trending on social media that are affecting unsuspecting consumers. 

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  • 5 Steps to take if you discover fraud

    Scammers are skillful at getting people to trust them with their money and personal information. They’ll bombard you with calls, texts, or emails promising you the world, or pretend to help you out of a (made up) sticky situation. But all they want is your money and private information. They are out to steal your account numbers, passwords, or Social Security numbers.

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    5 Steps to take if you discover fraud
  • Smart Holiday Spending During Rising Inflationary Periods

    Smart Holiday Spending During Rising Inflationary Periods

    With the holiday season fast approaching, you'll soon find yourself shopping for festive decorations, meaningful gifts, and a host of other merry expenses that pop up this time of year. But, this season is unlike those in recent memory. You've probably noticed that everything from gasoline to ground meat costs more today than it did a year ago. If you're intent on getting the most for every dollar you spend this holiday season, then shop now before prices go up even more.

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  • How to stay secure while shopping online

    To help protect your identity and practice safer online security measures, here are some tips when shopping online

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    How to stay secure while shopping online
  • 3 Ways to prepare for

    3 Ways to prepare for "what-ifs"

    Benjamin Franklin got it right when he said: “By failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail.”

    This especially rings true when it comes to finances. A natural disaster, sudden sickness, even a positive occurrence such as a child getting accepted to college – all these life events can quickly deplete a person’s bank account.

    And though many crises are improbable for many people, they are not impossible.

    While many parts of the future are unknown, it is always best to be proactive for when the unexpected happens.

    Here are three steps you can take now to prepare for what may or may not be coming down the road.

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  • Keep your accounts safe with a digital identity app

    A digital identity offers two-way security. It's one thing to verify who you are with login credentials and one-time-use passcodes, but how do you also know the website or the person on the other end is who they claim to be? 

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    Keep your accounts safe with a digital identity app
  • Hurricane preparedness: are you financially ready?

    Hurricane preparedness: are you financially ready?

    Hurricane season is from June 1 through November 30. Stocking up on food and water is a given, but are you financially prepared? Many things in life are beyond our control; planning is not one of them. Get prepared now, and you'll have peace of mind whether a storm hits or (fingers crossed) not.

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  • Child tax credit not what you expected? Here's why

    Understanding how the credit is calculated could help you plan the best use of the funds or decide whether opting out of future payments is a better choice.

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    Child tax credit not what you expected? Here's why
  • Do's and don'ts of living on less

    Do's and don'ts of living on less

    Whether it be a temporary setback or permanent lifestyle adjustment, you will get through this

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  • 5 tips for lowering your monthly grocery bill

    When it comes to saving money in Hawaii, your food bill is a tough expense to lower.

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    5 tips for lowering your monthly grocery bill
  • Raising kids to have good money habits

    Raising kids to have good money habits

    Setting a good foundation for their financial health

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  • Savings accounts you need right now

    Three types of savings accounts that we recommend.

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    Savings accounts you need right now
  • Your first mortgage

    Your first mortgage

    As the single largest purchasing decision in most people’s lives, it’s worth taking some time to understand the mortgage process.

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  • 5 simple steps to planning your wedding

    To help you focus on what matters (you and your soon forever-to-be), here are some general guidelines.

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    5 simple steps to planning your wedding
  • 3 tips for managing your checking account

    3 tips for managing your checking account

    Understanding how to manage your checking account is an important step toward financial success. 

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  • Financial health in fatherhood

    Whether you’re a new dad or a dad with many years on the job, we’ve gathered some of our favorite fatherly advice in honor of Father’s Day, or any day.

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    Financial health in fatherhood
  • 5 Non-traditional jobs that can generate income fast

    5 Non-traditional jobs that can generate income fast

    If you suddenly find yourself in dire need of extra cash to pay bills, try your hand at generating income with one (or more) of the jobs in this list.

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  • 5 Employee financial wellness initiatives businesses can use to improve productivity

    Financial wellness initiatives that could help your employees reduce stress and remain engaged, despite their circumstances.

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    5 Employee financial wellness initiatives businesses can use to improve productivity
  • Auto buying myths that can cost you

    Auto buying myths that can cost you

    While uncovering the best car deal can seem like a battle of wills (you versus the car salesperson), it doesn’t have to be.

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  • 4 myths about mortgage loan approvals that keep you renting

    Four myths about mortgage loan approvals that prevent renters from becoming homeowners.

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    4 myths about mortgage loan approvals that keep you renting
  • What you should know about social payments

    What you should know about social payments

    A few things you should know about social payment apps before you sign up for the service.

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  • Can you use the KonMari method to tidy up your finances?

    Here’s how you can find your way to financial tidiness in five steps.

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    Can you use the KonMari method to tidy up your finances?
  • Drive akamai

    Drive akamai

    Everyone has their ideal dream car, but is your dream car the right car for you?

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  • Shopping

    Tips to help you stay on track with minimal financial regrets

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    Shopping
  • Adventure

    Adventure

    Are you staring at the clock hoping the work day will end? Did the week just start and you’re already looking forward to the weekend? If the answer to either of those questions is yes, it sounds like you’re in need of a little adventure!

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  • Travel

    The bags are packed and you’re almost ready to go! We all look forward to vacation, but before you head out the door make sure you have everything you need.

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    Travel
  • Food

    Food

    Nothing is as universal as food. But whether you’re eating in or spending an evening out on the town, why not save a little money without sacrificing that perfect bite?

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  • Need/no need: dorm room essentials and inessentials

    Buy this, not that. Know when to splurge and when to buy the cheap stuff.

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    Need/no need: dorm room essentials and inessentials
  • Need/no need: budget practices

    Need/no need: budget practices

    A college student’s guide to budgeting and saving.

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  • Need/no need: social engagements/entertainment

    Have fun with your friends, without going broke. Learn how to save money and have a social life.

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    Need/no need: social engagements/entertainment