Plotting a Course to Financial Freedom: An MICPA Resource Roadmap



As awareness around financial literacy has grown, the number and variety of online tools and resources have also expanded. For those interested in becoming more financially capable, or for those with clients seeking to expand their personal finance knowledge, paging through Google to find those tools can be time consuming and draining – which is why the MICPA has curated a list of helpful, free adult financial literacy tools and resources. From determining personal money values and influences to creating an emergency binder, these tools can help draft a roadmap to personal financial freedom.

FDIC Money Smart
The Federal Deposit Insurance Company (FDIC) Money Smart program provides a free, instructor-led curriculum which consists of 14 modules. The modules include guides for self-learning individuals, but also provide instructor guides for those interested in training others, including cues, scripts and interactive exercises. The comprehensive curriculum covers everything from current financial products and saving strategies to income tracking and debt management. An FDIC Money Smart guide is also available for parents and caregivers for K-12 students.

CFPB Adult Financial Education Directory
The U.S. Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) recently curated every worksheet, handout, audio recording and other personal finance tool in their repository. Moreover, these resources are searchable by topic. It differentiates itself from the FDIC Money Smart program in that its topics provide more specific, in-depth coverage of every day financial decisions and transactions, such as auto loan comparisons, mortgages, money transfers, debt collection processes and more. Plus, many of its offerings are also available in Spanish.

MICPA Personal Finance Tools, Resources and Guidance
Finally, the MICPA and its Financial Literacy Task Force are constantly working to create new and updated resources and tools for individuals interested in improving their financial health and wellness. For instance, improving personal financial awareness is easier with this Comprehensive Financial Inventory worksheet, which can be used to create a budget, redefine saving plans, set goals and more. Having a defined financial inventory can also help individuals and family members prepare for the financial realities of aging and end of life care. Combined with The MICPA and Hospice of Michigan Guide to Financial Preparedness, these tools can help confront the most common financial issues that occur at the end of life. Of course, life is also full of unexpected, unforeseeable events that often disrupt personal plans and finances. Learn how to mitigate the impacts of the unexpected by using this guide to create an emergency binder, including what goes in it, how often to update it, and where to store it safely. Finally, for more tips, strategies and guides to improving financial knowledge and capability, check out the MICPA Financial Literacy Task Force’s curriculum, which features a constantly expanding library of resources on a variety of financial issues.

While financial advice and strategies will change alongside economic policies and conditions, the above tools and resources are frequently updated to coincide with those developments. In the spirit of Financial Literacy Month, MICPA members are encouraged to share these resources with their clients, friends and communities. Did one of your go-to resources not make our list? Share all your best personal finance tools and insights with @MICPA on LinkedIn or @MichiganCPAs on Facebook or Twitter!

Source: MICPA

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