When you come to the Nashville Financial Empowerment Center for the first time, you may feel nervous about talking about your money and habits. Our job is to make you feel at ease so that you can discuss your financial hopes and dreams, and learn how to do the work it takes to accomplish your goals.
Here’s what you can expect at your first appointment:
- You will complete some paperwork that will help us set you up in our client database and know whether you were referred by another agency.
- Your counselor will discuss your finances with you and talk about what you hope to accomplish by working with the Financial Empowerment Center. What are your financial goals? Do you want to buy a home or car? Pay off your student loans? Establish an emergency fund? Get creditors to stop calling you at home and work? Pay your bills on time?
- Your counselor will ask you some questions so that they can complete a Financial Health Assessment. This provides us a picture of where you are right now. How much do you earn? How much do you owe? What things are important to you? You may want to bring these documents with you so we can understand your true income and expenses to best help you:
Don’t worry if you don’t have these documents at your first appointment, but they will help us to work with you to create a better financial plan.
- Pay stubs showing what you earn
- Paperwork showing what public benefits you have (LIHEAP, SNAP, unemployment, TANF, etc.)
- Child support or alimony information
- Bills – especially if you are in collections
- Credit card statements
- Bank statements
- Any other documents related to your finances that may help us learn more about your personal financial situation
- Depending on your personal situation and goals, you may receive an Experian credit report and score at your first appointment. If so, the counselor will explain it to you. We don’t charge anything for this service, and it will not affect your credit. If your credit report contains inaccurate information, the counselor will show you how to dispute it with the credit bureaus.
- The counselor will help you make an action plan after learning more about you to help you meet your financial goals.
- At the conclusion of the first session, you will work with your counselor to set up the next appointment so we can help you stay on track and meet your goals.