Programs that provide information and/or support which helps people select a bank, open accounts, write cheques, balance their chequebook, use an ATM, make direct deposit arrangements, bank online (e.g., pay bills, review account balances, order cheques via the Internet), pay bills by telephone, change currency, conduct wire transfers or understand and manage other activities related to banking. Included are programs that help people who are homeless, people with little income and few resources and others with special problems to establish bank accounts and access other banking services.
Programs that provide assistance for people who want to improve their understanding of the consumer credit lending and collections systems, and maximize their skill in using credit. Services may include help in completing credit application forms, understanding how credit information is analyzed, choosing the best credit cards and/or interest rates available, determining how many credit cards can be managed, protecting one's credit information, communicating with creditors, improving poor credit reports and associated credit scores, eliminating credit card debt and dealing with other credit card issues.
Programs that provide assistance for people who are in the process of obtaining a loan or line of credit to ensure that they understand the terms and conditions of the document they are about to sign and, where relevant, prevent them from becoming victims of predatory lending practices.
Programs that help people who are having difficulty paying their monthly bills gain control of their finances. The process generally involves analysis of the individual's income, expenses, debts, taxes and other factors to create a personal financial assessment; development of a budget for basic living expenses; and agreement on a short-term plan for repayment of creditors which may include debt consolidation or other strategies and a longer term plan for realizing personal financial goals.
The above terms and definitions are part of the Taxonomy of Human Services, used here by permission of INFO LINE of Los Angeles.