Wednesday, October 21, 2009

How To Get Free Financial Advice From the U.S. Government

While that headline might sound like a bit of an oxymoron in the wake of unprecedented Federal debt levels, the USG has been trying to stimulate your wallet long before enacting the Economic Stimulus package. You might not have realized the wealth of information that is available for consumers that can help you save money, eat better, and obtain assistance with a myriad of financial issues. For starters, the My site, sponsored by the U.S. Financial Literacy and Education Commission, aims to "improv[e] the financial literacy and education of persons in the United States."  Financial education and literacy is something that needs to be introduced as early as possible in the primary school years (my opinion).  It might have helped to prevent some of our economic crisis from occurring at the moment (my opinion).

In addition, each year, the General Services Administration (GSA) publishes the Consumer Handbook, with a similar aim. You can order a hard copy for free from GSA, along with other publications, or download one at Consumer  The guide is easy (and I think fun) to read and pretty helpful when it comes to learning the basics about buying a home, shopping online, and obtaining a free credit report (hint: is the only Government-approved free site, the others will charge you). Other helpful sections include templates for writing complaint letters.  It's definitely worth a read through.