Building financial capability and security over the life course strengthens Iowa families, however low financial literacy, coupled with stagnant incomes and rising living costs create economic pressures that erode financial security. Iowans scored on average just 60% on a national financial literacy test. Many rural Iowans struggle to find well-paying jobs and to access services. Targeted and timely Extension financial education programs build the knowledge and skills needed in today’s complex financial markets.
Increase understanding and knowledge about the home ownership process, including how to prepare financially to secure a home loan.
Increase skills and knowledge to use the NEFE HSFPP to teach financial literacy skills to middle and high school youth.
Participants will plan and track spending, assess insurance coverage, improve short-term financial security by reducing debt and establishing adequate emergency fund savings, examine current investment strategies, assess retirement readiness and preparedness for future life events.
Increase understanding of health insurance terminology, plan options, and provisions of the Affordable Care Act. Increase capability and confidence to make an optimal health insurance decision.
Participants identify goals, learn to use tools to plan spending and then follow their plans. Additional lessons help improve family communication about money, reduce debt and improve debt management practices, and increase short-term financial security.
Low- and moderate-income taxpayers electronically file tax returns (at no charge) to receive Earned Income Tax and other tax credits. Refunds are spent in the local community and improve financial wellbeing of low to moderate income wage earners.
Increase skills and knowledge in financial management. Develop and make progress towards financial goals.
Social service providers and other professionals will increase confidence to integrate financial empowerment into work with limited resource individuals, improve ability to access financial empowerment tools, unbiased information, and to make referrals to community resources; increase ability to help clients manage their financial goals and challenges, and increase community support for people with financial challenges.