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The new year offers the ideal moment to reassess life goals, health and wellness, especially financial wellness. Member’s Choice Credit Union reveals simple strategies to help individuals enhance overall financial health for a prosperous 2024.

Featured on KPRC 2 Click2Houston – Associate Branch Manager Cheryl Ackbar, with Members Choice Credit Union, shares the importance of staying financially fit going into the new year and tips on how to get there.


“In pursuit of financial wellness, the first crucial step is to evaluate current finances. It’s important to set a budget and review spending patterns to gain insights on where money is allocated,” said Cheryl Ackbar, associate branch manager for Members Choice Credit Union.

With interest rates projected to remain steady at higher levels for the foreseeable future, Ackbar points to the new year as an opportune time to consolidate high interest debt and explore checking reward programs to maximize monthly budgets. 

The next step is to prioritize savings, with an emphasis on an emergency fund

“Build an emergency fund—at least $1,000—for unexpected circumstances and target for a fund equivalent to three months’ worth of expenses,” said Ackbar. “Establishing this safety net can provide a buffer and offer financial security during unforeseen challenges, such as needing to make home or auto repairs.” 

To enhance savings even further, Ackbar said individuals may want to explore avenues where their money can work for them, such as a high-yield savings account or a certificate of deposit

“With interest rates the highest they’ve been in years, automating savings by redirecting a portion of one’s direct deposit each month provides an easy starting point for building a financial cushion,” said Ackbar. 

The new year is also an optimal time to check credit scores. You can request a free copy of your credit card from the major consumer reporting agencies. Regularly reviewing the report for inaccuracies or omissions is critical for maintaining a healthy credit profile

The credit union also advises individuals obtain expert guidance from a professional to help navigate their finances. 

“A financial advisor can serve as a valuable coach for money matters. These professionals can assist in refining financial strategies, identifying savings opportunities, managing debt, and aligning goals with actionable plans,” said Ackbar. 

For more financial literacy tools and resources, visit

About Members Choice Credit Union 
At Members Choice, we strive to exceed your expectations. We believe in people-helping-people by providing sound financial solutions and resources, as well as sharing our passion for supporting the community. As a full-service financial institution based in Houston, Texas, we have proudly served the West Houston, Katy, and Cy-Fair areas for more than 81 years. For more information, visit

Post by Members Choice Credit Union
January 2, 2024