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Financial Readiness

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Financial Readiness Program is your resource for information on money matters. We provide counseling and training for Soldiers, family members of Active Duty Soldiers, DA Civilians, Retirees and their Family Members. We ensure emergency assistance is available when needed and educate the military community on debt management, consumer awareness, credit reports and more.

Financial Readiness

The Financial Readiness Program is your resource for information on money matters. We can help you better understand financial topics like: 

  • Military pay
  • Checkbook/debit card management
  • Financial responsibility
  • Credit reporting
  • Debt elimination strategies
  • Saving
  • Investing
  • Budgeting

 

We can also help you learn about other financial services, including:

  • Army Emergency Relief (AER): Army Emergency Relief is the U.S. Army's own nonprofit organization dedicated to alleviating financial distress on the force. AER provides grants and zero-interest loans to Active Duty and Retired Soldiers and their Families. Over 4 million Soldiers supported since 1942. AER officers are conveniently located at installations around the world. Visit ArmyEmergencyRelief.org to learn more."
  • Education Program: Offers need-based scholarships to help eligible Army Families with education costs.

For more information about how the Financial Readiness Program can help you, contact your nearest Army Community Service Center.

 

Other helpful financial readiness links include:

  • Thrift Savings Plan: A Federal Government-sponsored long-term retirement savings and investment plan, available for both Federal civilian employees and members of the uniformed services.
  • U.S. Savings Bonds: A shorter-term savings option with competitive interest rates and backed by the full faith and credit of the United States.
  • Military Saves: A component of the nonprofit America Saves and a partner in the Department of Defense’s Financial Readiness Campaign, Military Saves seeks to motivate, support, and encourage military Families to save money, reduce debt, and build wealth.
  • Money Matters: A mobile-optimized resource with calculators for savings, debt reduction and other reference material in one location.
  • Housing Resources for Military Members: The National Military Family Association has compiled a great list of resources to help Military Families who are struggling with the pitfalls of the housing crisis.
  • Army OneSource: Network of the services and delivery of support to Soldiers and their Families.
  • Military OneSource: A Department of Defense-funded program that provides comprehensive information on every aspect of military life at no cost to active duty, National Guard, reserve members, and their Families.
  • Office of Servicemember Affairs: A component of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau helps to educate and empower military members, veterans, and their Families in the consumer financial marketplace.
  • Saveandinvest.org: A project of the FINRA Investor Education Foundation, a free, unbiased resource dedicated to your financial health. Helps you make informed decisions through easy-to-use tools and resources, and arms you with the information you need to protect yourself from investment fraud.
  • Better Business Bureau Military Line: Provides specialized education and support services, which meet the needs of active and retired military personnel and their Families. 

 

Family Subsistence Supplemental Allowance (FSSA) Pre-screening

Pre-screening and counseling for Soldiers who qualify for the FSSA entitlement. FSSA is an entitlement authorized by Congress in 2001 and created to supplement the Soldier's Basic Allowance for Subsistence (BAS). This entitlement will not exceed $1100 per month. Information and application for FSSA is web-based and can be found under the "Life Events that Impact Your Benefits" tab.

Available Classes

Basic Money Management Does it seem like you never have enough? Are you confident in making financial decisions? Is dealing with money a constant stress? Take this basic money management course to build your financial readiness!

 

Money Smarts: Invest In Your Future This course is a detailed discussion of the new Blended Retirement System (BRS), the Thrift Savings Plan (TSP), investing and how to make all three work together to provide you with the maximum possible retirement income.

 

The Art of Buying a Car Do you need to buy a car or truck and have no idea where to start? We'll guide you through the entire process from applying for loans to shopping tips, and help you save some money along the way.

 

Managing Credit What is a good credit score? What is the best way to build credit? How do I repair my credit? Will my score go down if I apply for new credit? Should I pay for Credit Monitoring? Get answers to all your credit questions.

 

Should I Rent or Buy? Buying a home is one of the most complex and costly purchases you will ever make. We will help you determine if buying a home is right for you, and arm you with the skills and knowledge needed to make a smart purchase since getting the best deal can save you thousands of dollars over the life of a loan.

Army Emergency Relief (AER) Overview

Overview

Army Emergency Relief is the U.S. Army's own nonprofit organization dedicated to alleviating financial distress on the force. AER provides grants and zero-interest loans to Active Duty and Retired Soldiers and their Families. Over 4 million Soldiers supported since 1942. AER officers are conveniently located at installations around the world. Visit ArmyEmergencyRelief.org to learn more.

Education Programs

AER’s Education Program is a secondary mission to help Army Families with the costs of education. The three separate scholarship programs are:

Stateside Spouse Education Assistance Program
• Applicant must be the Spouse or widow(er) of an active duty or retired Soldier and reside in the United States. 
• Stateside applicants must be full time students. 
• First undergraduate degrees only.
• Active duty military personnel are not eligible.

Overseas Spouse Education Assistance Program Major General James Ursano Scholarship Fund for Dependent Children.

Overseas Spouse Education Assistance Program 
• Applicants must be a Spouse of an active duty Soldier assigned in Europe, Korea, Japan, or Okinawa. 
• Applicants must physically reside with the Soldier at the assigned location. 
• First undergraduate degrees only.
• Off post students are not eligible.
• Spouses may be part time or full time students.

Major General James Ursano Scholarship Fund for Dependant Children 
• Dependent children, stepchildren, or legally adopted children of Army Soldiers on active duty, retired or deceased while in active duty or retired status.

The children of Grey Area Reservists/National Guard are eligible as well.

Scholarship awards will be awarded up to half the cost of tuition. Scholarship awards are based on financial need, as evidenced by income, assets, Family size, and special circumstances.

Applications and instructions are available for all the scholarships on the AER website at https://www.armyemergencyrelief.org/resources/

AER Resources and Forms

View all AER forms.