MasterCard Encourages Better Financial Management with the Launch of its Financial Know-How Program in Korea
Seoul. - MasterCard Worldwide today announced the launch of the Financial Know-How program, a consumer education program that has been designed to give consumers in Korea access to free, easy-to understand tools to help manage their personal finances in these trying economic times.
In an effort to educate consumers of the importance of financial literacy and help them develop good spending and savings habits, MasterCard has designed a Web site which contains comprehensive information on personal finances.
The Web site which marks the launch of Financial Know How program in Korea is a comprehensive resource that empowers consumers to understand their financial situation better and encourages them to make personal financial plans by offering free tips and suggestions. An example of the type information available on the Financial Know-How Web site for consumers is the following “10 Smart Steps for Financial Know-How” which is also available on the Web site http://www.mastercard.com/kr/personal/ko/education/debt01.html
10 Smart Steps for better management of personal finances:
1. Asses your finances: Understand your current financial situation, including how much debt you have accumulated.
2. Set your goals: Set a big goal. Pay off your debt in three years and then break this goal into a series of smaller ones that will help you reach the finish line.
3. Create your plan: Put the plan for reaching your goal on paper. Set realistic targets and then try to spend even less. Make hard decisions about how to squeeze more of what you earn from your budget to pay off your debt. Don’t forget to budget for the unexpected, such as replacing a broken hot water heater or emergency medical treatment.
4. Track your spending: Using the plan you’ve developed, track your spending carefully so you can look for additional ways to save. The more money you can apply to your debt each month, the sooner you should be out of debt.
5. Curb your spending: Freeze unnecessary spending while you assess the problem and make plans to eliminate debt. Cutting spending can come in many forms. It may mean passing on buying big-ticket items, or it may mean bringing lunch to work or school rather than eating out every day.
6. Pay your most expensive debts first: Interest can add up quickly on debts of any size. Be sure to focus on paying off the ones with the highest rates.
7. Understand interest and late fees: Know your interest rates and what the late fees are on all of your debts. Avoid late fees to ensure they’re not adding to your debt, and explore options for lower interest rates. If you can’t make a payment, call the banks or companies you owe and talk with them about your situation.
8. Pay more than the minimum: Understand how paying more than the minimum can be a critical step in reaching your goals. This is particularly true for credit cards, though it may also be useful for paying other loans, such as those used to buy furniture, appliances, or electronics.
9. Reward success: Commit to achieving your goal and figure out what’s going to keep you motivated to stay on track. Consider sharing your goals with someone and ask them to be your “Debt Coach” then ask him/her to help “keep you honest” by checking in on a regular basis to see how you’re doing.
10. Be patient: It probably took you time to get into debt, so acknowledge that you’re not going to get out overnight. Keep yourself motivated. And remember, debt elimination will change your outlook on life. It’s worth the hard work.
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