The PFM provides classes on the 26 Standard Curriculum topics and the eight in-depth topics in three settings:
Unit Requested Classes
The highest priority is assigned to unit-requested classes. Call, email, or use the contact link to coordinate a location, date, and time for your unit PME.
Henderson Hall “Brown Bag” Classes
The next priority is to noontime classes conducted at Henderson Hall. Call or email or use the contact link. These classes are normally small. If two or more persons sign-up, the class is conducted per the lesson plan. If one person signs up, the class is conducted as a tutorial focused on the person’s interests. Feel free to bring your lunch.
PLEASE PRE-REGISTER! Please register 24 hours in advance by calling 703-614-6950. If no one calls, the class will not be conducted on that date.
All classes held 11:30 AM – 1 PM, in Bldg. 29, Rm. 100. Please register 24 hours in advance
DURING AUGUST AND SEPTEMBER ONLY
Please call the Personal Financial Management Program (PFM) to schedule an “individual class” on any PFM subject at a time convenient to you. This temporary change is due to an unusually concentrated schedule of “Command Financial Specialist (CFS)” classes designed to bolster the number of CFS-trained SNCOs in the National Capitol Region commands. The “individual classes” are intended to be convenient for you on a day and time that works for you. Please call 703-614-6950 to coordinate a time.
Personal Financial Management & Planning
Learn to set and evaluate your financial goals and objectives. Learn an easy method to track income, expenses, savings, and credit, and how to set and meet priorities for spending in the future. The class includes related facets of personal financial management: identifying needs vs. wants, fixed and variable expenses, discretionary expenses, emergency funds, revolving savings funds, and appropriate savings accounts. The course provides basic, easy-to-use formats for managing daily expenses. The formats are designed to be used manually (paper and pencil) or using an already formatted Excel workbook. The class also reviews a popular free, secure on-line application designed to help individuals manage their income and expenses entirely on-line. Please register 24 hours in advance: 703-614-6950.
Personal Credit: Credit Worthiness, Reports, Scores, and Management
Learn about the credit system, credit reports, credit scores, debt management, and consumer rights. Learn how to improve your credit score. Learn how to dig out of a deep debt situation. Learn to use an easy FICO Score Estimator.” Active duty personnel can follow up the class by getting a free FICO score based on either their TransUnion or Equifax credit report. Please register 24 hours in advance: 703-614-6950.
Consumer Awareness: Best Personal Practices vs. Frauds, Scams, and Unwise Purchases
Focuses on Personal Best Practices vs. Frauds, Scams, and Unwise Purchases. The objective is to help Servicemembers become alert, savvy consumers by recognizing advertising techniques that target consumers, and learning to detect, deter, and defend against consumer fraud, scams, misrepresentations and predatory practices. The class reviews (1) the impact of advertising, marketing slogans, common advertising techniques, meaningless terms and misleading ads, (2) key elements of identity theft, predatory lending, and internet fraud, (3) defensive techniques to include making smart purchases and borrowing wisely, (4) major consumer protection legislation (to include Servicemens Civil Relief Act (SCRA) and the Military Lending Act (MLA)) intended to protect servicemembers, and (5) legal rights with respect to entering into a contact, cooling off periods, and protections under federal and state laws. Please register 24 hours in advance: 703-614-6950.
Strategies for Buying a Car Class
Buying a car is a major financial transaction and is filled with pot holes for people who have not done their homework before stepping into a dealer’s showroom. This class covers the five planning steps recommended by experienced car buyers, including the process of determining how much a person can afford in total transportation costs, and arranging for advantageous financing before arriving at the dealership. Understanding the sales process from the dealer’s viewpoint helps the prospective buyer prepare for the first encounter at the dealership. The class includes negotiations with the sales force, the purchase decision, and cost-related contents of the purchase contract. Class also includes the relative advantages and disadvantages of buying new, used, or leasing. Please register 24 hours in advance: 703-614-6950. Please register 24 hours in advance: 703-614-6950.
Home Buying & Mortgages Class
Learn the home buying process: deciding to buy or rent, deciding what you can afford, working with an agent, qualifying and applying for a mortgage, types of mortgages (Conventional, FHA, VA; Fixed & Adjustable Rate Mortgages), negotiating a price, closing the purchase. The class reviews the normal sequence of events in home buying process, and describes the timing and services provided by the many parties that support the sale and the purchase of real estate property. The class describes the "good faith estimate" of settlement costs and the HUD-1 Statement of closing costs.
Investing: Basics of Stocks, Bonds, Mutual Funds, TSP & Compound Interest Class
Unlike the “Begin Confident Investing in Index Mutual Funds” class which examines business cycles, stock market cycles, and index mutual funds, this class is intended to provide more detail on stocks, bonds, and mutual funds (index, actively managed and a slightly different investment, the Exchange Traded Fund (ETF). The stock portion provides an overview of the “stock valuation” process; the bond portion describes why bonds that are actively traded (that is, are not held to maturity) go up in price when interest rates fall, and down in price when interest rates rise. The class highlights the difference between index mutual funds and actively managed funds and includes the use of free database tools to find high performing actively managed funds. Please register 24 hours in advance: 703-614-6950.
Investing: Focus on Mutual Funds Class
This class is intended for persons who know they need to invest money in the “stock market,” are uncertain how they can find relatively safe, prudent investments, but do want to have to become highly knowledgeable to begin investing in a prudent manner. The class starts with a brief review of Time Value of Money and several calculation that suggest the amount of monthly investment needed to achieve large account balances over time. The class links the concepts of business cycles and stock market cycles to the historical annualized rates of return for the S&P 500 Index [past performance is no guarantee of future performance]. The class compares and discusses the behavior (rate of return) of stock mutual funds, bond mutual funds, and balanced (stocks & bonds) mutual funds through two recent business cycles. The class then addresses the reality of “investor risk tolerance” The last building block in to the “safe, prudent” approach to investing in mutual funds is to understand “investor time horizons” and the type of investment that is prudent for both the investor’s time horizon and the investor’s risk tolerance. With these building blocks in place, the class then reviews two basic, prudent strategies for investing over long periods with the goal of being financially independent by the time the investor reaches full retirement. Please register 24 hours in advance: 703-614-6950.
Planning for Retirement: From Active Duty – Then, For Good
The class provides an overview of five elements of military retirement planning: (1) understanding “High-3” & “CBS/REDUX,” (2) introduction to the Survivor Benefit Plan (SBP), (3) retirement needs analysis (the estimated monthly income needed to support a desired standard of living during full retirement AND the amount necessary to invest monthly in order to build an investment account to sustain the monthly income), (4) an outline of company retirement plans a Marine is likely to find in his or her post-active duty employment, and (5) “legacy planning,” an overview of the purpose, scope, and limitations of the basic estate planning documents: wills, durable powers of attorney, advanced medical directives, and trusts. Please register 24 hours in advance: 703-614-6950.