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[Monthly Checklist] 5 Smart Money Moves for August

1. Save on back to school shopping
Tis the season for supplies. From protractors and crayons to dorm necessities and clothes, there are plenty of back to school sales to keep your wallet happy. If you have a Choice Checking account, you have access to hundreds of deals with eClub‘s shopping rewards. You can even download a widget that reminds you of discounts from your favorite stores before you checkout! And don’t forget to take advantage of the Sales Tax Holiday on August 6-8. >>Use your West Community MasterCard® over the Sales Tax Holiday weekend for additional savings!

2. Set up a college savings
If you’re a parent of little ones, back to school season is the perfect reminder to set up a college savings account, like a 529 plan. By accumulating savings now, it could help you avoid taking out other burdensome loans to finance your children’s education in the future.

3. Check in on your emergency account
The reality is that emergency expenses come in many forms and that there are less traumatic examples out there that would be equally good at messing up your financial situation, so taking the time to evaluate your situation will make all the difference in tough times. Design it to fit your specific needs.

4. Continue to cut utility bills
As the summer heat rages on, there are simple changes that you can make around the house to ease some of your bills. This could be as simple as changing to energy efficient bulbs, replacing the air filters, and unplugging unused electronics. Use the oven less so the air conditioner isn’t continuously trying to keep up. If you really want to make an investment cutting energy costs, consider replacing appliances with Energy Star products. Some changes could be eligible for a tax credit.

5. Check in on your health
Take some time this month to check in on your health and evaluate the following questions: What has your family been eating? Have you been exercising regularly? Have you had your annual physical? It might be time to consider a Health Savings Account to save for unexpected medical expenses, tax-free. Your health is important for your financial future. Take care of yourself so you can take care of your family.

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