Economic Freedom

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NEW EPISODE: Home Inspection Failures

The Mortgage Beat is live with an all-new episode featuring John Aretos, CEO, Police Mortgage, created For First Responders Who Are Second to None! 
To hear the episode, please visit: https://policemortgage.com/mortgage-beat-episodes/.

#PoliceMortgage #Mortgage #FirstResponders #LawEnforcement #EverybodyGoesHomeLetsGetHomeTogether

NEW EPISODE: Home Inspection Failures

The Mortgage Beat is live with an all-new episode featuring John Aretos, CEO, Police Mortgage, created For First Responders Who Are Second to None!
To hear the episode, please visit: policemortgage.com/mortgage-beat-episodes/.

#PoliceMortgage #mortgage #firstresponders #lawenforcement #everybodygoeshomeletsgethometogether
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16 hours ago
Thank you for 26 years of service!! Enjoy your retirement!!
#HeroImage attachment

Thank you for 26 years of service!! Enjoy your retirement!!
#Hero
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2 days ago
Congratulations and thank you both, K9 Loki Officer Schmidt-Quist! Stay safe!

Congratulations and thank you both, K9 Loki Officer Schmidt-Quist! Stay safe!The Racine Police Department would like to officially welcome K9 Loki and his handler Officer Justin Schmidt-Quist. Officer Schmidt-Quist has served with the Racine Police Department for almost 13 years. Loki is a two and a half year old Belgian Malinois. We would also like to thank S.O.L.E for their donation to purchase Loki. ... See MoreSee Less

2 days ago
Congratulations!! All the best to you both, Officer Glaum! Stay safe!

Congratulations!! All the best to you both, Officer Glaum! Stay safe!The KPD would like to welcome the newest member to the Canine Unit. After two full days of extensive testing, this 14-month-old male Belgian Malinois was selected to join the team. Officer Glaum and this pup will begin their 10-week training at the end of March. Thanks to a sizable donation from a benefit held by the Starlite Club, their team has naming rights to this very handsome boy. If you are interested in donating to the canine unit, naming our next canine, or learning more about the canine unit please contact Lt. Jurgens. We look forward to watching this team develop and progress. ... See MoreSee Less

2 days ago
Congratulations! Thank you. Stay safe!Image attachmentImage attachment+1Image attachment

Congratulations! Thank you. Stay safe! ... See MoreSee Less

2 days ago
Congratulations and thank you!
#Hero

Congratulations and thank you!
#HeroRepresentatives from KidsMatter and the Collaborative Youth Team stopped by the PD earlier this week to present a Kindness Award to one of our officers! Officer Maulding was nominated by a coworker for his extraordinary acts of kindness towards an elderly resident who was struggling after her closest family moved out of state. We are so proud of the extra mile he's gone for this resident and are very grateful that his kindness has been recognized. #kindnesscounts2us
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2 days ago

The Credit Union is honored to welcome the Whiting Police Department (Indiana) into our field of membership. We look forward to serving you and your families. ... See MoreSee Less

4 days ago
Thank you for 23+ years of service!
#Hero

Thank you for 23+ years of service!
#HeroMaster Patrol Officer Stanbery retired from the Stillwater Police Department on January 31, 2024. He served the citizens of Stillwater for 23+ years. He worked as a patrol officer, field training officer, Detective with our Special Projects Unit, Special Operations Teams, Honor Guard, and an investigator with the Drug Task Force. Thank you Master Patrol Officer Stanbery!

#SWO
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4 days ago
Rest in Peace, K9 Kex. We will Never Forget.Image attachmentImage attachment+4Image attachment

Rest in Peace, K9 Kex. We will Never Forget. ... See MoreSee Less

4 days ago
Rest in Peace, K9 Lun and K9 Max. We will Never Forget.Image attachment

Rest in Peace, K9 Lun and K9 Max. We will Never Forget. ... See MoreSee Less

4 days ago
Congratulation! Thank you! Stay safe!Image attachmentImage attachment+1Image attachment

Congratulation! Thank you! Stay safe! ... See MoreSee Less

4 days ago
Division President Jim Bedinger and Vice President Jorge Mendoza are honored to be attending the National FOP’s Leadership Matters, which is being held in Nashville, TN, from February 22 - 24, 2024.

Division President Jim Bedinger and Vice President Jorge Mendoza are honored to be attending the National FOP’s Leadership Matters, which is being held in Nashville, TN, from February 22 - 24, 2024. ... See MoreSee Less

5 days ago
Great picture!! Congratulations and thank you! Stay safe!

Great picture!! Congratulations and thank you! Stay safe!PPPD is beaming with pride today for long time, former PPPD Cadet & new Orland Park Police Officer Jacquelyn Skender, who was sworn in alongside her mother.

Jackie we are so very very proud of you!!! PPPD's Cadet program is comprised of young people who learn about police-community partnership and provide auxiliary resources in support of policing activities. We often learn more from them, then they from us. It is truly inspiring to support and watch the future leaders of public service excel.
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6 days ago

The Credit Union is honored to welcome the New Franklin Police Department (Ohio) into our field of membership. We look forward to serving you and your families. ... See MoreSee Less

7 days ago
NEW EPISODE: Home Inspections

The Mortgage Beat is live with an all-new episode featuring John Aretos, CEO, Police Mortgage, created For First Responders Who Are Second to None! 

To hear the episode, please visit: https://policemortgage.com/mortgage-beat-episodes/.

#PoliceMortgage #Mortgage #FirstResponders #LawEnforcement #EverybodyGoesHomeLetsGetHomeTogether

NEW EPISODE: Home Inspections

The Mortgage Beat is live with an all-new episode featuring John Aretos, CEO, Police Mortgage, created For First Responders Who Are Second to None!

To hear the episode, please visit: policemortgage.com/mortgage-beat-episodes/.

#PoliceMortgage #mortgage #firstresponders #lawenforcement #everybodygoeshomeletsgethometogether
... See MoreSee Less

1 week ago
Congratulations! Thank you!

Congratulations! Thank you!008th District officers accepting an appreciation award from our community partners at Sanad Social Services. We appreciate you too! ... See MoreSee Less

1 week ago
We will Never Forget.

We will Never Forget.Members of our OCSO Honor Guard were on hand today to pay our agency’s final respects to 26 year old Florida Highway Patrol Trooper Zachary Fink. He lost his life February 2nd in Port St Lucie during pursuit of a fleeing felon on Interstate 95. Rest in Peace Trooper Fink. 🙏 ... See MoreSee Less

1 week ago
Happy birthday🐾💙!!

Happy birthday🐾💙!!Woodbury City Police Department- NJ. K9 is celebrating birthday. ... See MoreSee Less

1 week ago
We will Never Forget. 
#HeroImage attachmentImage attachment+4Image attachment

We will Never Forget.
#Hero
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1 week ago
Our thoughts and prayers are with the Law Enforcement community.

Our thoughts and prayers are with the Law Enforcement community.The Boston Police Department extend our deepest condolences to the family, friends and colleagues of Officer Paul Elmstrand, and Officer Matthew Ruge of the Burnsville Police Department in Minnesota and Firefighter/Paramedic Adam Finseth of the Burnsville Fire Department in Minnesota, who were killed in the line of duty on Sunday, February 18, 2024, as well as another officer who was wounded during this incident and has a long recovery ahead. ... See MoreSee Less

1 week ago

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Economic Freedom

Arguably, the greatest freedom of all is the freedom of choice, the power to make your own decisions and command your own destiny.

Amongst all of the decisions that you can make in your life, your financial decisions typically have some of the largest impacts, positive or negative, on the quality of your life and the options that you will have available to you.

We recently faced an unprecedented convergence of economic challenges…depreciating home values, a plunging stock market, record levels of consumer debt, unemployment, a rise in inflation, high fuel prices, and restricted access to credit at the consumer and institutional levels.

While there are still issues and concerns that must be addressed, many economic indicators have fortunately stabilized.  Rest assured, however, that we will face further uncertainty and economic turmoil in years to come.

When challenges arise and economic uncertainty looms, virtually all of the volatility that is created in the financial marketplace is driven by two factors, fear and rampant speculation.

If you are somebody who is fearful and full of anxiety about your finances, do you also feel helpless and lost about what to do?  Can you imagine how great it would feel to be free of your fear and to experience peace of mind relative to your finances?

It is more important now than at any time in the last 75 years to make good financial decisions that will help you to achieve your own economic freedom and minimize any restrictions that will keep you from realizing your financial goals.

Make no mistake about it.  You can enjoy economic freedom no matter how much money you make and regardless of what your financial situation has been in the past.  You and your own actions will be the sole determinants of whether or not you achieve financial strength and soundness.   Conversely, if you do not set financial goals for yourself and get on the path that leads to the achievement of those goals, it will be your fault and your fault alone.

The peace of mind that comes with not having to worry about your finances during difficult times can be yours and the tools that will help you obtain it already exist.

When I was researching information for this article and trying to determine how best to summarize the steps you need to take to achieve personal economic freedom, I realized that we had already discussed the ten most important things that you can do to realize your life’s goals and to best prepare for uncertain and challenging economic times.  Because of this, much of what I will highlight in this article will be a summary or a reference to information in previous articles.

If you have been following along and have taken the steps that we have previously outlined, this will be a great time to check your work and fine-tune your plan if necessary.  If you have not taken the steps that you should have to prepare for what you may currently be facing or will possibly face sometime in the future, it is not too late to take the sting out of your current situation and better prepare for the next time.

 

1.   Create a Plan

Begin by honestly assessing your financial situation and determine what you have been doing and what you have not been doing.  Figure out what you know and what you don’t know and then devise a plan that builds on your strengths and addresses your weaknesses.  As an example, if you have not been as organized as you should have been and as a result have not balanced your checkbook regularly, make sure that part of your plan includes a regular review and balancing of your checkbook.  Then,  commit to that plan.  A successful financial plan must contain realistic, attainable action steps as well as measurements and checkpoints to ensure you stay on track.

 

2.   Develop and Follow a Budget

Clearly define your income and your expenses.  For the purposes of your budget, your income is not your gross salary, it is your actual take home pay. For this exercise to be of value, being specific and precise is a must especially as it relates to your expenses.  The more detailed that you can be about your exact expenses, the more confident  you will be about your numbers and what you will have left to save.  Once you have developed a budget, follow it.  It will take discipline on your part, but the reward is great, namely that you will be taking a big step toward commanding your own financial destiny.

 

3.   Become Credit Wise

The single biggest factor in determining your ability to borrow money and qualify for the best borrowing rates is your credit rating, specifically your credit score as reported by the three main credit bureaus.  The credit rating system is notoriously difficult to understand and susceptible to errors and inaccuracies so you will be way ahead of the game if you take the time to understand your credit report, the components of your credit score, and what you can do to ensure that your rating is as accurate and as strong as possible.

 

4.   Perform Credit CPR

To the extent that you identify inaccuracies or legitimate weaknesses in your financial standing, perform the necessary tasks to take corrective action.  In this case, CPR can be defined as strong Communication with relevant parties, sound Planning, and a commitment to Resolve any and all matters.

 

5.   Set Your Financial Priorities

Now that you have taken the steps that form the foundation of your future financial strength and your in-depth financial knowledge, it is time to determine exactly what your priorities should be.  If you have more debt than you are comfortable with, then the first order of business should be to pay off that debt or bring it down to a more reasonable level.  If your debt and expenses are in order, your priority should be to maximize your savings.

 

6.   Establish Goals and Incentives

Once your plan is in place and your priorities are in order, the next step is to establish your goals and the rewards you will reap when those goals are achieved.  As is the case with each of these steps, the goals that you set will be personal to you and will only be helpful if they are meaningful to you and attainable.  Setting the incentives is just as important because they will play a key role in your level of motivation to achieve your goals.

 

7.   Create Reinforcing Habits

Particularly when it comes to saving, but certainly in every aspect of your own financial management, you will benefit from making habits out of the actions you are taking and repeating.  Your plan is in place and it is based on accurate information.  You have set your priorities and established your goals.  The best way to reinforce this behavior is to make it second nature.

 

8.   Build Wealth

When you have realized the importance of saving, the next logical step is to go out and actually build wealth and there remains only two legitimate ways to do it.  You must either obtain ownership of something (i.e., real estate, stock, business, etc.) and/or build passive income; that is income that you generate that is not directly reliant on your labor or task completion (i.e., interest, dividends, appreciation).

 

9.   Insulate Yourself From Recessions

There are several things that you can do to lessen the impact a downturn in the economy can have on your finances in terms of preemptive measures and preparation.  If you have not completed the previous steps then these measures will be a lot less effective.  Once you have prepared for these times, you have essentially completed your path to economic freedom and you will find a peace of mind relative to your personal financial situation that will be both inspiring and liberating.

 

10. Trust Your Instincts and Stay Curious

At this point, you have completed all of the steps and have clearly learned how to make good, sound financial decisions.  You are following your own path and realizing power and command that previously seemed unreachable. You have all of your financial matters in order.  Enjoy the benefits of your commitment to this process by sticking with the decisions and choices that you have made, but do not rest on what you have already accomplished.  Stay curious, keep asking questions and answering your own challenges, and remain open-minded so that you are able to make adjustments to your plans and objectives as necessary.

So, follow these steps and keep the faith. Your Economic Freedom is at hand.

And, don’t forget, members of the Credit Union enjoy free and confidential Credit Counseling and Financial Planning through our Financial Planning and Education Center. We are here to assist you every step of the way.

Scott Arney
Chief Executive Officer
Chicago Patrolmen’s Federal Credit Union

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