“As long as we have hope, we have direction, the energy to move and the map to move by, we have a hundred alternatives, a thousand paths, and an infinity of dreams.”
– Author Unknown

Chapter 1
The Key to Getting Ahead

  • A Budget Helps You Get What You Want
  • Wants and Needs
  • Goals are the Foundation of Any Financial Plan
  • Simple Steps to Setting Your Goals


Chapter 2
Developing a Budget to Get What You Want:

  • Calculating Gross and Net Income
  • Fixed, Flexible, and Variable Expenses
  • Your Budget Form
  • Savings and the Time Value of Money


Chapter 3
Financial Tools to Help You

  • Cash, Money Orders, Checks, and Debit Cards
  • Comparison Shopping and Coupon Clipping
  • Maintaining Accurate Financial Records


Chapter 4
Credit Can Enhance Your Life

  • Types of Credit Available to You
  • Secured and Unsecured Loans
  • The Cost of Credit
  • What You Need to Know About Credit Cards


Chapter 5
Your Credit Score—A Number to Know

  • Information on Your Credit Report
  • Getting a Copy of Your Credit Report
  • Disputing an Error on Your Credit Report
  • How Your Credit Score Affects You


Chapter 6
What You Need to Know About Contracts

  • Signing a Lease
  • Rental Leases, Utilities, Cell Phones, and Furniture
  • Choosing the Right Insurance


Chapter 7
Consumer Laws to Protect You

  • Resources for Help
  • Writing a Complaint
  • Seven Laws to Protect You


Chapter 8
What to Do When Things Go Wrong

  • Warning Signs of Financial Trouble
  • Taking Action to Correct the Situation
  • Choosing and Working with a Credit Counselor