Cornell Cooperative Extension of Steuben County offers 12-month program to learn about personal finances

2021 will likely be a tough year financially for many folks. So Cornell Cooperative Extension of Steuben County has partnered with Rooted Planning Group of Corning to offer 12 amazing classes on different aspects of managing your finances. The series will be a year-long training with each month’s information to be released online on the 15th of the month. CCE Steuben looks forward to helping our residents gain the tools to help them get on top of their personal finances.

You can choose one, two, or all of the classes depending on which topics are important to your financial success. These classes are typically offered at $50 per session, but CCE Steuben is pleased to be able to offer them at only $15 per class (or at the discounted rate of $10 per class if you purchase all 12 sessions). The sessions include:

·         January Challenge
Getting Organized – Paperwork Management
This class has three sections: Setting up your Mindful Spending Planning, Paperwork Management and Weekly Financial Management. Together these three short videos/classes will show you how to set up and maintain your files, manage weekly paperwork and stay organized for the year.

·         February Challenge
Take Stock! Annual Financial Summary & Analysis
This critical class shows you how to do an annual review, to check your progress using your key indicators and make your plans for the year. You’ll review the Mindful Spending Plan thus far or decide on your new budget after evaluating last year’s.

·         March Challenge
Prepare! The Tax Man Cometh OR Taxes x@!#
Find some last-minute moves you can make that will make you giggle in glee at pulling one over (legally) on the tax man. We will be giving you good practical advice on how to prepare and get the most from your tax advisor. This will also set the stage for making tax moves this year to make next year less, well, taxing!

·         April Challenge
Investments Review
There’s more to managing money than looking at returns. This class will cover the whys and how’s of assessing RISK, RETURN, FEES, TAXATION, & IMPACT ON DIFFERENT TYPES OF GOALS to help you determine whether your money is in the right place at the right time. We will give you some of the easy to use calculations and guides that professionals use and a list of questions to ask your advisor.

·         May Challenge
Protecting You & your Family – Personal Finance

Here are the stats: 70% of families will experience a crisis in a 10-year period. You have around a 1 in 4 chance of being disabled at least three months during your working career, and disabilities are the biggest cause of bankruptcy and major financial issues. And, according to actuaries, you have a 100% probability of death at some point. In other words, at some time, something bad is going to happen and there’s a good chance you will be surprised. Don’t compound one crisis with a financial crisis.

·         June Challenge
Projections & Planning
Retirement planning goes beyond how much you need to save and how to invest those savings. This class will teach you what you need to know and how to craft a plan to achieve a comfortable retirement. You will be guided through a retirement projection, starting with a minimum lifestyle budget. You will then be given access to a planning tool that will let you monitor your progress and play with the variables as you take the steps to reach your goals.

·         July Challenge
Getting to Where You Want to Be – Goals & Debt Reduction
Once you have identified what you wanted from your money and clarified goals, we will now look at strategies for addressing goals), strategies for addressing debt which can cut YEARS off your debt free date), and education planning. We will explore creative strategies, tax efficiency, and money saving tips for each of them.

·         August Challenge
Defusing Legal Bombs – Legal Documents & Crisis Planning
Getting the right legal documents can be daunting. If you don’t know what you need or want, it can be even more expensive to have an attorney take you through the concepts and develop your personal plan. Additionally, there’s more to crisis planning than legal documents. We will help you create crisis plans, including preparing you to get the documents you need at a reasonable cost! For those that have their documents done, we will let you know what changes in estate planning and documents have occurred over this last year that may require changes on your part. We will cover:

·         September Challenge
Me? Sued? Liability Insurance Review: Auto, Home, Umbrella, etc.

How do we get the right insurance at the right price without driving ourselves nuts? What mistakes can you avoid with your insurers? This class reviews critical information you need to know, a tool for assessing your risks + needed coverages, AND gives you the “request a quote” forms that you can send out to providers to get quotes.

·         October Challenge
Get the Most from Employee Benefits
It’s easy to let last year dictate what you do this year with employee benefits, but that can be costly! This class will walk through how to evaluate health insurance options to be cost effective for YOU,  pick the right amount for your FLEX or Health Savings Accounts (HSA) plans, choose between ROTH or Traditional 401k contributions, select the right amount of life, disability, or other supplemental plans for you, and more.

·         November Challenge
Year End Steps: Taxes & Holiday Budgets
Stop! Before you write that year-end check gift to charity, can you give them some appreciated stock instead and give away your capital gains too? Can you defer or should you accelerate your medical expenses? Are there tax moves you can make now that will help you reduce taxes AND achieve your goals more efficiently such as funding a Roth IRA or 529 plan? Also, what do you need to do to bring your budget in line with your goals before the holiday season spending?

·         December Challenge
Finding Financial Peace & New Year’s Resolutions
As we go into the holiday season, followed by New Year’s Resolutions, it’s helpful to remember what you really want from your money. By reviewing your goals and seeing where you stand on your budget, your chances of sticking with that holiday budget increase. It’s also the time to start thinking about next year, setting expectations with family and friends about money strategies, and preparing for the New Year.

Find out more about these classes at

Proceeds from the purchase of these classes will benefit the Financial Education Program at Cornell Cooperative Extension. Classes are offered by Rooted Planning Group of Corning, NY. The information provided should help you get a firm footing in your financial affairs, but if there is a specific area in which you need more information, you may want to talk to a financial planner. 

For more information and to register for any of these classes, please visit  or call CCE Steuben Financial Educator Nancy Reigelsperger at 607-664-2300.