Financial Resources for Veterans in Debt

As Veteran’s Day approaches, it is important to reflect on the service and sacrifice performed by our armed forces who work to maintain our freedoms and lifestyles in this country. At Clearpoint, we would like to thank our veterans and also raise awareness about the troubling financial issues that plague our troops when they return home. As it turns out, many of our troops have not received the adequate financial education necessary to transition back to civilian life smoothly. Let’s take a closer look at this issue and what Clearpoint is doing to help raise awareness and solve these challenging problems.

Military Financial Education

It’s clear that our military personnel need access to more financial education resources. Even though employment figures and the economy as a whole have been improving, veterans have struggled disproportionately. This is particularly true for post-9/11 vets, also referred to as Gulf-War II era veterans. This group, made up of approximately 2.5 million, suffers from an unemployment rate of 10 percent, while for veterans in general the rate is 6.9 percent.

Studies and commentary have shown that many troops returning home struggle to reintegrate into a lifestyle where they suddenly have to manage finances and take on responsibilities that played lesser roles during their service. For those who suffered any sort of serious injury while overseas, this is an even bigger problem, as medical expenses can create dire financial situations. In fact, one recent study showed that veterans with PTSD face medical expenses that are three and a half times higher than for those without PTSD.

On top of this, many troops returning home don’t know of the programs and resources available to them and thus aren’t taking advantage of opportunities, like job training events, that could drastically improve their financial situations. Many also overlook the financial implications of the location they choose to live in. For instance, they return to their hometowns where job prospects may be slim. For these veterans, and even for veterans who do find employment, it’s important to have an understanding of financial concepts such as budgeting, using credit wisely, and avoiding predatory lending. But unfortunately, many don’t get these lessons until some damage has been done.

Financial Resources for Veterans

Thankfully, there are resources available. In fact, Clearpoint has played a vital role in helping vets get back on their feet through credit counseling and debt management services. In the last year alone, Clearpoint has seen a 38% increase in clients who are active-duty service members and a 51% increase in clients who are veterans. Other programs have proved useful too. Loans like the Asset Recovery Kit (ARK) from the PenFed Foundation have provided alternatives to predatory services like payday loans. And, many military-focused credit unions have rolled out loan services to help those affected by the recent sequester. Kiplinger’s Personal Finance and the Better Business Bureau have also demonstrated a commitment to financial education for the military by providing another edition of the Financial Field Manual. These are all reliable and helpful resources for military members and their families.

The Veteran’s Money Book

Veterans Money Book

There is a new resource available that can help members of our military develop healthy financial habits. Veteran and financial expert, Mechel Glass, along with colleague Scott Scredon, has developed “The Veteran’s Money Book.” Using this book, veterans returning home can learn how to:

  • Build a personal financial action plan that meets their individual needs
  • Understand credit and insurance, avoid scams, and develop life-long budgeting habits
  • Learn how other veterans are paying down debt and building wealth

Glass served as a U.S. Army intelligence analyst in Turkey during the Persian Gulf War in the early 1990s. Now, she speaks regularly with service members and veterans at military bases, VA hospitals and elsewhere, providing them with guidance and counseling on a variety of financial matters. She knows the financial hardships veterans face and gives them the information to overcome them.

Again, we want to give a warm thank you to our veterans. And remember, Clearpoint is here to provide counseling and budgeting services and promote needed financial education and resources for our troops.

Thomas Bright is a longstanding Clearpoint blogger and student loan repayment aficionado who hopes that his writing can simplify complex subjects. When he’s not writing, you’ll find him hiking, running or reading philosophy. You can follow him on Twitter.

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6 responses to “Financial Resources for Veterans in Debt”

  • Lawson Jones

    Am a Vietnam veteran who has always paid his bills on time. I losted my home in a fire an now am having a hard time making payments on new home. My loan has a high inter. Rate an I need to get a better inter loan. Can u help with this. My credit score is low cause am late on payments. Tks. Lj

    • Thomas Bright

      Hi Lawson,

      I’m sorry to hear that, but yes that is something our counselors can help you address. We offer Foreclosure Prevention Counseling and have a team with experience working with veterans. For the fastest response, please go ahead and give us a call at 877.412.2227.

  • Brent Harmon

    I am a disabled veteran trying to get help with some payday that I cannot seem to pay back with my fixed income. Thank you very much, Brent Harmon

    • Thomas Bright


      I’m sorry to hear that, and Payday loans can be so difficult and inflexible. I think in your case it will be best to schedule some time with a counselor who can provide a thorough review of your situation and help you sort this all out. You can call us at 877-877-1995 or fill out an online form.

  • Frank Oblinsky

    I am a retired navy Chief and have been unemployed since April 2013. My house is nearing foreclosure and I was wondering if there are any services available to help me in this trying time??


    Frank Oblinsky

    • Thomas Bright

      Hi Frank,
      Thank you for stopping by to comment, and I am sorry to hear about your current situation. I am passing along your information to our team here and someone should be contacting you shortly. Our counselors can review housing programs and other services that may be able to help you.

      Thank you,