The Military Consumer Toolkit for Personal Financial Managers and other counselors
Military life comes with transitions. Each relocation, promotion, and change in duty status brings the need to make money-related decisions. Servicemembers’ financial decisions can have long-term effects on their family life, mission readiness, and security clearance.
Working with the Department of Defense (DoD) and other collaborators, the Federal Trade Commission has created Military Consumer. It gives servicemembers and their families the information to make sound financial decisions.
Helps answer questions like:
- Who will handle my finances during a deployment?
- What should I know when buying a car?
- Can I use my military training to further my career goals?
Military Consumer’s short, actionable tips are organized into articles in these categories:
- Spend: How to control where your money goes
- Earn: How to use military experience and benefits to advance your career
- Borrow: How to use credit and manage debt
- Save & Invest: How to make today’s paychecks work for the future
- Protect: How to safeguard money, financial and account information, and reputation
The Toolkit allows personal financial managers, counselors, command, and others in the military community to share practical financial tips. The toolkit includes one or two presentation slides for every article, each with a suggested script. Use all of them or just the slides on a particular topic. Want to know more? Check out the Military Consumer articles.
All materials from Military Consumer – and from the Federal Trade Commission – are free. There’s no copyright on any of our resources. Cut and paste the tips, slides, and talking points; print and make copies; or order free copies of consumer publications from FTC.gov/bulkorder.
Using Military Consumer in your programs
Here are a few ideas for reaching servicemembers or their families with these tips:
- Use the Military Consumer presentation slides for financial readiness lessons to units, at family readiness group meetings, and other gatherings.
- Access the tips on your mobile device at Military.Consumer.gov during one-on-one discussions.
- Order FTC’s print materials to share at workshops to prepare troops and their families for military lifecycle changes (basic training, deployment, discharge, etc).
Spreading the word
- Cut and paste the Military Consumer articles and blog posts to your websites. Use as-is or edit them.
- Share tips on social media with servicemembers, spouses, and financial counselors.
- Encourage servicemembers to share the information with their peers, commanders, and subordinates.
- Share the tips and slides with groups that engage servicemembers – such as Morale, Welfare, and Recreation (MWR) or Fleet and Family Support Centers.
Tips for perfecting your presentations
- Consider your audience. Are you speaking to young, recently enlisted servicemembers? Spouses? Transitioning personnel? What specific information do they need
- Collaborate. Work with groups like Personal Financial Managers, Morale, Welfare, and Recreation offices, or Fleet and Family Support centers.
- Avoid jargon: Everyone appreciates plain language. Break down financial terms and military acronyms clearly and plainly.
- Engage with questions: Use open-ended questions, such as, “Who in this room has bought a house?” to make the topics personal.
The FTC, the Department of Defense, and our partners welcome your feedback and questions on Military Consumer. Please email your thoughts to MilConsumer@FTC.gov. Thank you for helping us reach the military community with this important information.