MaineStream Finance

Article Title: Personal Finance & Savings

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  • Savings Accounts

    A Family Development Account or “FDA” is a savings account that makes a difference and can help in a time you need it most. For every dollar you save, the FDA Coalition matches it with four additional dollars, so your savings add up quick. You deposit $5 in your savings account, you earn $20 in match funds, for a total of $25.

    The FDA program can help you save money to reach a number of goals such as:

    Business

    FDAs can be used to save to start or expand a small business.  Funds can be used for the purchase of business equipment, inventory, marketing, and other start-up costs.

    Home Buying and Repairs

    If you’re looking for your first home purchase, you can use an FDA to purchase or construct a primary residence. You can also use an FDA to repair a home that is or will be the person’s principal residence.

    Car Repair and Purchase

    Funds may be used for the purchase or repair of a vehicle used for transportation to work or to attend education or training.

    Emergency

    FDAs can also be used to create an emergency savings fund to pay for urgent expenses that may cause the loss of shelter, employment, or other basic necessities.

    Eligibility requirements:

    • Earned income from a job or self-employment
    • Social security, disability, and/or child support does NOT count as earned income
    • Below 200% of the federal poverty line
    • A minor child in the home for the home repair, vehicle purchase/repair, and emergency FDAs

    MaineStream Finance/Penquis is the administrative body for the statewide Family Development Account (FDA) program and the FDA Coalition involving 9 partners that cover the entire state. We work with 19 local banks and credit unions in servicing these matched savings accounts.

    Need more information?  Contact Rebecca Grant at 207-974-2459

  • Financial Coaching

    All too often, Maine residents lack the tools needed to achieve financial stability and ultimately, financial security. 55% of residents do not have emergency funds, 58% have not tried to figure out retirement savings needs, 58% have not set aside money for children’s college education, and 18% used one or more non-bank borrowing methods in the past five years.

    To help families increase financial stability and improve child and family outcomes, MaineStream Finance and Penquis offer financial capability and coaching services, such as goal setting, improving credit, and creating budgets. We work with three main client groups:

    • Parents and guardians of children served through Penquis Child Development/Head Start programs.
    • Families located in residential facilities of the housing authorities of Bangor, Brewer, and Old Town participating in the Family Self Sufficiency (FSS) programs.
    • At risk young women with infants or pregnant at the Penquis Journey House.

    Eventually MaineStream plans to offer these services through all of Penquis’ social services programs and with other external partners.

    Participants may also be eligible for a savings account called a Family Development Account (FDA), for help with saving for car purchase/repairs or for emergencies.

    For more information, please contact Rebecca Grant at 207-974-2459.

  • Student Financial Aid

    COMING SOON – Student debt and affordability is one of our biggest challenges for all generations. Make Lemonade and Forbes state that there are 44 million student loan borrowers with over $1.4 trillion in debt.  The average student has over $37 thousand in debt after graduation.

    MaineStream Finance is currently in the process of exploring a way to help prospective students, current students, and former students on how to make the best financial decisions and budgeting for financing education and certificate training post-high school.  We are in the process of talking to partners and designing new curriculum. Please keep checking this space for updates. In the meantime, you can contact the Finance Authority of Maine (FAME) at 1-800-228-3734 for a free consultation, or visit their website at famemaine.com/education.

    For more information, contact Chris Linder at 207-973-3500.

  • Tax Preparation

    Penquis/MaineStream Finance partners with Eastern Maine CA$H and AARP’s Tax-Aide program to provide free tax preparation services from January to April of each year to the elderly and low income families.

    Visit Tax-Aide

    For more information, please visit http://www.cashmaine.org/coalition/eastern-maine/

  • Health Care Navigator

    The Health Insurance Marketplace is a new way to find health coverage that is affordable and meets your needs. Penquis’ Health Care Navigation can help! The Marketplace can help you access quality health plans, make apples-to-apples comparisons between different options, and access new tax credits that could lower your monthly premiums right away.

    Healthcare Navigator

     

Partners