Why am I writing this blog?

Financial education is what I am passionate about. I have devoted my professional life to that cause. I thrive on delivering workshops about the financial decisions we face, but I wanted another way to share my take on personal finance. I missed blogging, and I made the decision in early 2020 that I would start blogging again. I blogged for University of Illinois Extension’s Plan Well, Retire Well blog for over ten years, and I missed writing! Writing and talking about personal finance makes me happy.

But of course, I procrastinated. Then the coronavirus hit. The COVID-19 pandemic closed libraries as well as almost everything else. Money Smart Week 2020 was cancelled and along with it, all of my workshops . I needed another way to reach out. So here we are, with the first post for this blog.

If you want to learn more about me and my background, check the About Karen page. If you’d like to know where I’m presenting, go to Upcoming Programs or sign up for a quarterly email listing those events.

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Financial Help During the Pandemic

The American Recovery Plan provides several forms of financial assistance. Learn more here about student loan forbearance, mortgage forbearance, economic impact payments, and how filing your income taxes for 2020 could get you a substantial refund - even if you owe no tax. .

Freeze Your Credit Reports for Free

As of September 21, 2018, anyone can freeze, unfreeze, or temporarily thaw a credit report for free. You must do this separately with each of the three major credit reporting agencies:

Equifax.com/personal/credit-report-services or 800-685-1111

Experian.com/help or 888-EXPERIAN (888-397-3742)

TransUnion.com/credit-help or 888-909-8872

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