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Notes from Financial Planning Discussion

16 Nov 2012 2:22 PM | Anonymous member

Thanks to everyone who made it out to our financial planning discussion this week! And an extra thank you to Stephany Kirkpatrick from LearnVest for Skyping in with us!


If you had to miss our discussion – no worries! We’ve taken some notes for you.



Stephany shared six key money mantras from LearnVest:

  • 1.    Organization is half the battle. The first step is to manage and track your spending, and LearnVest has a tool called My Money Center to help you do it.
  • 2.    Know your three most important numbers: your income, your expenses, and your credit score.
  • 3.    Conquer your debt. Prioritize debt with the highest interest rates (like credit card debt).
  • 4.    Have an emergency savings fund. This should be enough to cover about 6-9 months expenses.
  • 5.    Start saving for the future now. We know it’s early, but you should! Check out these 11 Biggest Retirement Lies to prove it to yourself.
  • 6.    Protect yourself. This means insurance: health, life, renters’, home and car.

There’s a ton more to learn, so you can also visit LearnVest.com for more tips and tools.



And in case you missed it, it’s Federal Benefits Open Season here on the Hill. That means you can switch your insurance and benefit plans. Payroll & Benefits took the time to answer questions from WCSA members:


Q:  What is the process for making changes to benefit plans during Open Season?


A: The Open Season period is November 12 to December 10, 2012. Any Open Season Elections made during this period will be effective January 1, 2013. In order to make an Open Season Election, you can utilize the below self-service tools and websites to enroll, cancel, or make a change.

1.         Federal Employee Health Benefits (FEHB): Self-Service Tool

2.         Combined Federal Campaign Charity Contributions (CFC):

3.         Flexible Spending Accounts (FSA): Third Party Administrator - enroll, cancel or change here. FSAFEDS customer service for questions on enrolling or making changes is 877-372-3337

4.         Supplement Dental and Vision (FEDVIP): Third Party Administrator - enroll, cancel, or change here. BENEFEDS customer service for questions on enrolling or making changes is 877-888-3337


Q:  How would a staffer who has a private money market retirement account from a previous job roll those funds into their TSP?


A: You would need to complete the TSP-60 form here.


Q:  Is the Student Loan Repayment Program open to all offices equally? If an office has not set up Student Loan Repayment for their staff, how would they go about doing that?


A: It is open to all offices if the employing office has chosen to participate. More information is available here.



If you’re feeling overwhelmed or have additional questions, Payroll and Benefits has been very helpful so reach out to them for more information!


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