WACKY CONGRESS: DEBT CEILING vs COST FLOORING

We are being led by legislators that will continue to vote on increasing our current debt ceiling greater than $16.4 trillion which will result in another action that will take money from your paycheck, again.  Even though our great country is being led by debt advocates we have to make sure our personal/family financial status is focused on Cost Flooring instead of Debt Ceiling.  Meaning, we must find areas in our lifestyle where we can still enjoy our day-to-day life but incorporate lowering the cost flooring (instead of raising our personal debt ceiling).  This allows us to allocate our funds for long-term goals, short-term goals, build wealth and give.  So, get out of debt and stay out of debt.

Of course it’s tempting to take out ANOTHER mortgage and get something we want today (raising debt ceiling) but continue to build your wealth and pay cash for your goals and enjoy watching your growth.

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CIRCLE OF LIFE

We all have watched the circle of life or at some point we will. As Grandparents go and kids come into the world we must remind ourselves how thankful we are to be in the current situation we are in. Yes there are things we would love to take back yesterday and yesteryear as well as memories we would love to do again the exact same way. Regardless, lets not let anything we’ve done in the past be a burden in our tomorrow. Instead enjoy tomorrow where we have a choice to re-surface an old relationship that is on bad terms or just trying to be the best co-worker we can be.

We get one shot at this game of life. Just be sure when its the end of the circle for us that we’ve made attempts to forgive when someone won’t forgive. We loved one when they wouldn’t love back and when the result of the relationship still wasn’t how we’d prefer then we continue to be thankful for the relationships we have.

Enjoy tomorrow and make the most of your circle of life.

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FISCAL CLIFF AND CHRISTMAS

As we approach the season of giving we also approach Americans willingly stacking up consumer debt. Don’t be frustrated at legislators, banks and others that some like to blame for this so called fiscal cliff if you cant balance your Christmas budget. Please don’t be hungover after the holidays from debt that cumulated while purchasing goods for loved ones. Take an hour to write down who you’re shopping for and how much cash you have to use on them so you can truly enjoy the season of giving. Not the season of receiving debt. When you come to the crossroads of running out of money before everyone on the list has something; get crafty.

Maximize savings, minimize cost, stay within your budget and plan, while living happy. What’s your pan?

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THANKFUL, STILL

As the Thanksgiving leftovers slowly disappear from the fridge and Christmas is looking at us, enjoy making a plan for who your shopping for and set your spending limit. Over the next weeks ponder/pray for someone or some family that could use a gift and enjoy making an impact.

Have a Merry different Christmas. Enjoy giving within your limit and don’t let Christmas fallow you until May. i.e. paying off credit card and 6 months same as cash “deals.” Enjoy the season don’t let the season beat you.

Plan for Christmas. It’s the same day each year.

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THANKFUL

Whether or not you have recently encountered loosing a loved one or you have recently witnessed a new life being brought into this world, we all have faced or will face adversity and moments to be thankful for.  Each day we awake we can think of one thing that weighs us down but we can also think of at least one thing that makes us happy.  It’s up to you every day whether or not you choose to smile or frown.  Next time you feel weighed down from dealing with family issues or any other issue, try to transfer your mindset to how thankful you are for what you got.  Plus smiling on the inside and out is a much more enjoyable of a lifestyle anyways.  Stay thankful.

 

 

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YOUR VOTE, YOUR MONEY

Early voting is here and in a couple of weeks we will select our local, state and federal leaders.  As election season turns up you ponder some factors that come into play that lead to your decision on who will win your vote.  We have all noticed the increased political traffic on social networks, internet, TV, magazines, that promotes the candidates agenda.  Some major factors are the current financial deficit our country has; or regardless if you are rich or poor you deserve to pay the same tax rate, where the opposition believes the rich can afford to pay more in taxes to bring in revenue to pay down our national debt.  We also notice the comments between Facebook friends that voice their passionate difference of opinions in those factors just listed and other factors, which is great.  And this is where I begin scratching my head.  A few thoughts/questions cross my mind when I come across dialog where two passionate people begin to attempt to influence the other on what will lower our debt, bring in more revenue, or what program we should cut to avoid additional cost.  Question 1:  Does he/she meet with their spouse, father/mother or an accountability partner to discuss their own financial plan each month?  (Whether you are single or married with children or anything inbetween, you should have an accountability partner)  Question 2:  Are people meeting with their partner to discuss short-term and long-term plans that require savings for a certain project and or dream?

What can we do as a community to build up the same passion that we have for voicing our political differences during the political debates and instead channel that same passion into being in one accord with your partner through a financial plan that you can achieve through compromising. (This avoids any surprises when wifey comes back home with shoeboxes or when hubby comes home with a new four-wheeler)  By meeting once a month for an hour, it opens up dialog that sometimes doesn’t go as smooth as we would like but at the end you will have compromised and agreed to a plan that will get you closer to the dreams and goals you and your partner have.  Goals without plans are just dreams.  This also makes everything financial also transparent.  Both you and your partner know where the money is allocated.  If any purchases need to be made that are outside of the compromised plan then you regroup and find where you need to take the money from to make the purchase that both of you agree that needs to be made.

I believe it’s extremely beneficial for your partner to have just as much input as you on your family financial goals and dreams.  Construct a monthly budget that takes compromising to obtain those goals and now enjoy the journey to achieving those goals!  So next time we begin to voice our difference of opinions to another on facebook (or anywhere) regarding our national debt and goals for this country, instead tell your partner how passionate you are to being on the same page to achieving the family financial goals.

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OXYGEN AND FAITH

 

We can’t see or feel the oxygen we breathe in but we know it is a must for survival.  Our faith is in the oxygen, that it will continue to exist so we can continue to breathe.  Even though it’s taken for granted and there’s a lack of appreciation for the oxygen, the oxygen still shows up for our support, every time.

Faith in our Savior is very similar which is also something we aren’t able to see or feel.  And at times I act like he is not around and taken for granted which I’m convicted of.  But when our relationship with him is growing and efforts are put into spending time with him while sacrificing our time instead of wasting our time, we will begin to feel JOY and blessings that take part in our life that will forever exist.  In result we will enjoy and look forward to our time spent with HIM each day since that is what gets us through our day mentally, spiritually and physically; regardless that it can’t be seen or felt.

Take a quick moment to marinate on this question.  Who or what fuels you to strive to be better?

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DON’T WASTE YOUR LIFE

People who make a difference in the world have not mastered a lot of things but mastered few things that are very great.  Imagine putting your focus, energy, efforts in a few things and striving to be the best at those things.  Imagine the impact we’d make!  I was fortunate enough to be invited to a “backyard boogie” in Santa Rosa Beach, FL last night by Brad where the host family was obviously passionate and mastered a few things about creating a welcoming environment in their backyard while entertaining guest through music being played on a stage constructed by the home owners that was surrounded by beautiful landscape.  Not surprising that the host are great musicians and their passion for music and fellowship was represented very well in their back yard.  The moment you walked in the back yard you felt the welcoming environment and could tell good times have taken place here and good times were ahead.  Because of their passion to have a great back yard it impacted 40-50 people who were attending last night which creates a snowball where others pass on that joy and love (hopefully) which impacts others.  If we want our life to count we don’t have to be smart, don’t have to have good looks, don’t have to come from a good school.  Just have to know a few basic, simple, glorious, majestic, obvious things and be gripped by them and willing to lay your life down for them.  I’m sure last nights host would of been good at whatever they went to school for or whatever their parents/teachers told them they should do when “they grow up” but if they would have never pursued their passion and joy of entertaining others through their music while blocking out what other critics thought of their passion they would have missed out on a lot of the opportunities that I’m sure they have witnessed together through this journey.

Whether it’s being the best mom we can be by spending time reading, playing and educating your kids or a single business man who allocates time to building his business that can impact other lives through creating jobs, team building, life lessons and giving.  Anyone can make a difference!  I believe I am guilty at times, as well as many others as not wanting our life to make a difference but instead finish school, get a good job, find a husband/wife, nice house, nice car, long weekends, good vacations, grow old, fund retirement, die easy and no hell.  All those things are great to pursue and have and obviously it doesn’t mean you’re bad if you have these things but let’s not lose focus on something we are passionate about and want to pursue since we have one stab at making a difference in life.  And who knows all those things might be accomplished and much more if we wake up everyday passionate about making a difference in our job or our day.  We get caught of not giving a rip if we make a difference in our lives and others.  Find something you are passionate about and go after it!

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AMERICA!

The sound of fireworks and Lee Greenwood. I love this land!

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NEW LIFE

The refreshing feeling you get to see a new life brought into this world.  My brother Kevin and his wife Natalie just had their first child today, Harper! The amount of joy on his face and Natalie’s is indescribable but to see Harper’s eyes looking at her momma was priceless.  When trying to describe my thoughts of witnessing a new life, anything crossed my mind from how amazing it is to see a new branch on the family tree; to how much more respect I have for another human knowing that at some point every human was a child where a mother or family member was witnessing new life at the purest form.

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Now take that feeling when you witnessed a new life come; that same euphoric feeling flows too when you have invited Jesus into your heart.  Once we invite him into our life we are a NEW LIFE and from that moment we are pure and forgiven of our past since He made the sacrifice to walk with a cross on his back with a crown of thorns while being whipped.  Just so later  he could get nailed to the cross.  What a sacrifice to be made so that we on earth can enjoy a NEW LIFE!  Just like the newborn baby needs his/her parents to be fed, we have to remember we HAVE to fed by the word (bible) to grow and be stronger as well.  No one will walk a perfect path but the more we strive to value our relationship with our savior and our family and loved ones then we are living to the fullest.  Where are you being fed from?   Much Love.

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THE BEST PART OF WAKING UP

How do you start your day? Take some time and marinate on that cause how we start our day is setting the tone and preparing us for the rest of the day. Regardless of your faith, try starting your day with thankfulness and humbleness that we’re not promised anything. Then go attack your task. What we put in our mind and our stomach each morning prepares us for the battle. Much Love

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FORGET THAT!

New day.

Today a family member will say something that hurts or a friend will not stick up for you the way that you would expect him/her too. Don’t let these moments grow into separation between a loved one. Forgive and forget just like our Savior does when he forgives us when we hurt Him. Start today off recovering a relationship with a loved one, one day at a time (call them). Don’t expect full recovery immediately but enjoy the journey. Our time here is limited, use it to grow relationships.

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FAMILY MATTERS

FAMILY MATTERS.

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FAMILY MATTERS

Regardless if you come from a family where your father and mother seperated when you were three years old, we can make the decision TODAY to grow our family tree from this point on. Or if you come from a family that has been strong for many generations, then TODAY you are expected to uphold the values they instilled in you to pass on as the family grows. What type of family tree do you want to grow?

We have to first recognize our personal strengths and our weaknesses. Once they have been determined we have to humbly work on our weaknesses and continue to gain more strengths (whether it’s putting away our dishes or break the bondage of looking at porn.) Working on our weakness can be a battle that we consistently face. If we ask Christ into our heart/life and continue to lift up our weakness in prayer (lean/pray on Him every time we encounter our weakness) and know that today is a NEW day and God will forgive us regardless of the sin; the good Lord will give us the strength to conquer our weakness. This world is filled with lust that will turn into infidelity, lying that turns into brokenness and drinking to forget our weaknesses turns into a consistant drunk. But TODAY you can humbly look at yourself in the mirror and work on the weakness in your life that will not only restore a broken family but will pass down the good values that our kids need to continue the family. SAVE OUR FAMILIES AND KEEP SATAN OUT, Seriously.

 

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UPWARD OR DOWNWARD?

Are we protecting our kids too much?  There are leagues for kids to play in where they don’t lose or win and everyone tells them they did great.  (Yes, Upward).  No, I’m not talking about the cute little 3 year olds; I’m talking about 4th, 5th and 6th graders.  Some of the best lessons we can learn in sports or in life is how to handle a loss in a competitive environment.  Whether it’s losing a competitive game or dealing with adversity in life, I feel it’s vital for young ones to learn how to handle defeat when emotions are running high.  It’s also just as important to show good sportsmanship after a big win.  But Last year, nearly 550,000 K5 through sixth-graders participated in leagues where nobody won, nobody lost and the fans/parents consistently told them how good they were.  Let me make it clear that I’m a huge supporter in promoting good values and it’s great that coaches are volunteering their time to work with kids, but both of these things can be achieved and more while establishing a winner and a loser after each game.  What lesson(s) have you learned after a win or a loss?

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DIETS AND BLUEPRINTS

Happy Wednesday!

We all have at least one Facebook friend that is working hard on their fitness and to express their hard work all the Facebook friends see their oatmeal and fruit protein shakes, egg whites, chicken and veggie dinners. Maybe a few status updates later we see the results of their hard work by finding out how much weight they have shed. I like this person, and think it’s great that someone is passionate about being dedicated to a diet. Over time this person has achieved a personal goal and while doing so, each Facebook friend has been a witness.

I know very little about construction. I know enough that when a general contractor begins a project that one of the first steps is constructing the blueprint. Since building a boat or a house is very technical there has to be a detailed plan that the builder must follow to ensure the foundation is constructed properly. Even though throughout the building process, details can always be modified but the modifications have to be done while updating your blueprint.

We socially accept the person working hard in the gym and eating right while showing us there improvements while using a camera phone in the gym bathroom mirror and immediately posting it on Facebook. And once again, I like this person and that shows me that this person is focused and motivated on achieving the fitness goal and is proud of the accomplishments to date. We don’t find it awkward in any way when this person seeks a personal trainer for consulting or having the personal trainer write them up their diet. Shoot, this person is proud to tell others who their trainer is. Same principle with the general contractor. We completely accept and understand that the builder has to seek consulting from an engineer or an architect to have a detailed technical blueprint to build a beautiful boat or home.

So why is it that 40% of Americans have no idea where their money is going each month and hope to have some left over at the end of the month? Yea, I know you make a fixed payment each month for living, car insurance, cell phone but the remainder of your money; do you have any idea what those funds are allocated for? And why is it that when we catch word that someone is seeking guidance, counseling or getting consulting on how to manage money; most people frown upon that idea? Why was it harder on our pride to admit we are making mistakes on handling money so we change ways but not as hard on our pride to admit we are making mistakes on our body so we get a trainer? It’s socially accepted. And people can notice when we aren’t happy with our body so we must do something about it so we can feel better but it is easier to cover up our poor money management and dress it up to appear we are doing just fine. Would our domestic financial situation be better if having a financial trainer to keep us accountable to our financial blueprint was just as socially accepted as someone having a personal trainer to assist in making someone look and feel better? Our financial problems start from our home (which financial problems can easily grow into other major problems). Not our Presidents fault or any other republican or democrat government official. Get a financial blueprint (budget) prepared today and enjoy the results. Much Love.

Proverbs 6 (today’s Proverb)

My child, have you promised to be responsible for someone else’s debts? Have you been caught by your own words, trapped by your own promises? Well then, my child, you are in that person’s power, but this is how to get out of it: hurry to him, and beg him to release you. Don’t let yourself go to sleep or even stop to rest. Get out of the trap like a bird or a deer escaping from a hunter. Lazy people should learn a lesson from the way ants lie. They have no leader, chief, or ruler, but they store up their food during the summer, getting ready for winter. How long is the lazy man going to lie around? When is he ever going to get up? I’ll just take a short nap, he says; I’ll fold my hands and rest a while. But while he sleeps, poverty will attack him like an armed robber.


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IF WE TRY TO GROW, WE WILL BE OUTSIDE OUR COMFORT ZONE.

Anything new that’s going to include change will always start off with a challenge.  On Sunday night when we say we’re going to eat better this week, that creates a challenge.  When we make a new years resolution, that also creates a challenge.  Anything we do to try to better ourselves will start off as challenging but transition into a smoother and beneficial life.  Let’s take a minute to look into our lives and find an area where we can grow.  Whether some might be a healthier lifestyle or some might be spending more time with our dog.  Regardless, we all have something we can find where we need to grow.

As a child we have growing pains.  unfortunately as we get older pains still exist when we grow.  As a child those pains result into being taller, stronger, etc.  The growing pains we get today may consist of eating less chocolate if we’re trying to live healthier or trading in that new ride for an older ride if we’re trying to grow our savings.  Or sometimes not associating with someone who will bring us down but we’ve known the person for years, can be painful.  Regardless, whenever you challenge yourself to grow, embrace the initial pain and don’t give up.  When the pain vanishes your growth will continue to snowball!

Challenge yourself this week to write down one area where you’d like to grow.  Have someone keep you accountable and then enjoy the pain!  much love.

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START FROM THE BEGINNING, PART II

We left off at phase I and phase II. Where phase I we are saving $1100 cash and phase II we attack the debt from least to greatest until it’s eliminated (except the mortgage). The battle of phase II will not be pretty and there will be countless days and nights where you wish you could go on a trip with friends or go out to eat every weekend, etc. But put those things on hold until phase II is complete. After phase II is completed we continue our momentum into phase III.

PHASE III: SAVE THREE TO SIX MONTHS OF EXPENSES

Make sure you are not contributing anything to your 401k, IRA, mutual funds, etc. at this point but remember the first line item, on the very top of the budget template I can provide you is the “charitable gifts” line item. Continue to give 10% through all the phases. In phase III you have conquered all your debts and now you are building your security when something happens to you or your family that forces you to take out $2500 to fix your A/C at the house or to get a new transmission in your car. (note that I said WHEN and not IF. We all no life throws us challenges). With a fund in place to cover the big expenses we are more financially and psychologically prepared to cover the cost. This phase will also take some time and patience to get to your three to six month savings but remember since you aren’t making any payment to any lenders, your momentum is still building and your savings goal will be accomplished in no time. You also already have the $1100 saved from phase I, so enjoy the head start. This phase is also really beneficial when it is time for you to leave the job you “like” and create or find the job you LOVE. In my recent blog, “DON’T FALL IN “like” WITH A JOB YOU DON’T LOVE” I mention how it takes time to save/prepare to transition out of the job you “like.” During phase III you will be saving/preparing for a dream or if you already are in the position of your dreams than phase III will still benefit you when Mr. Murphy affects you and your family.

PHASE IV: INVEST 15% OF INCOME FOR RETIREMENT

Now is the time you send human resources an email saying, “I’m ready to contribute again to our 401k!” If your company matches, than contribute at least the max amount the company will match. For example, if your company matches up to 7% then put 7% of your paycheck towards your 401k. HELLO FREE MONEY!!! So using this example we would have 8% remaining of your income to put towards retirement. Of course there are many Individual Retirement Accounts but I recommend contributing towards a Roth IRA. Now you have 7% of your income towards your 401k and 8% towards a Roth IRA. If you contribute $416.67/month (look familiar to a car payment amount?) towards your IRA with an average of a 10% annual rate of return over the next 25 years, you will have a smooth $557,458.37. Keep in mind you will be debt free including the mortgage while ALSO cashing in your Roth IRA at $557,458.37 and whatever the amount of value your 401k is. So approximately well over a million dollars in retirement after 25 years if you start now! DON’T RELY ON THE GOVERNMENT FOR YOUR RETIREMENT PLAN. I.E. SOCIAL SECURITY.

I’m very familiar with YOLO (You Only Live Once) and I believe there is a must to have balance in our life where we are enjoying the present but also preparing for the future. While we were ATTACKING phase I – III, there were times where people would remind me that “we only live once” or “Dave, what are you going to do with the money when you’re gone?” And at times I was like this stuffing envelope thing and this budget stuff is to demanding! But now we are just entering the days of Phase IV and we are able to enjoy the PRESENT even more than ever while also preparing for the FUTURE. Words can’t describe the relief we have and during this journey it has forced us to communicate our dreams to each other or to communicate what Shannon is cooking for dinner this week while we were attacking our debt (I love food, a lot). Communicating each month while preparing the budget forces us to be on the same page and if anything comes up during the month that affects our budget then we just re-group and compromise while we modify the budget. Stay focused during the first three phases regardless if you only have $2500 in credit card debt or you have $100,000 in student loans. As you know time flies so start now and being free from lenders is a huge step in changing your family for generations to come! It’s up to you. Much Love.

Contact a Endorsed Local Provider in your area to get the best advise for investing your money.

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DON’T FALL IN “like” WITH A JOB YOU DON’T “LOVE.

Well if you’re like most human beings that are dreading work and hope we don’t get bothered to much by those, un-educated co-workers that never understand.  On our way to work each morning we tell our friends how miserable work weeks are and you can’t wait until Friday.  I understand most are motivated to go to work so they can put a roof over the family’s head but that doesn’t mean you have to be miserable each morning.  And as soon as we get to work we hope this day flies by.  We hope to get the report done by lunch just to get it submitted and then dream a little more on how good life would be if you had won the lottery last Saturday.  Or if you’re pouring drinks for a living to provide for your family or pay for college but you will explode next time you have to put up with one more “bar situation?”   If characteristics similar to these are happening regularly then it is time we transition out of the job we like and fall in love with our “dream job!”  But before you just quit next time your boss frustrates you, you need to think and pray about your dream and think out your expenses.  This could take at least a couple of years.  In my recent blog, “START FROM THE BEGINNING,” I mentioned to trade down in-car so we can get out of debt faster and not be “slave to the lender.”  PROV. 22:7.  By getting out of debt it relieves us from a lot of expenses and allows us to save/prepare for the job we love.  Not only will it take some time to save/prepare for the job we love while getting out of debt but it will also take some time for us to consistently have the mindset to put in your best efforts at the job you like so that you can prepare your heart and work habits for the job you LOVE.

As a man of faith in Jesus, I believe it’s mandatory we spend time with our Savior so we can listen to what He wants us to do with our lives.  If it happends we have different opinions of our Savior, that’s fine but you must sincerely enjoy sharing your dreams with your spouse, mentor or a loved one.  Which will lead to constant communication.  And no team executes well unless there’s good communication.  So currently, My wife and I continue to save and prepare but also more important we ask God to help us find what we LOVE to do, that will also be a platform to glorify Him.  We look forward to see where He takes us but also looking forward to the journey Shannon and I take, with Him.  Much Love.

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START FROM THE BEGINNING

As someone who was “riding clean” in a GMC Yukon (nothing wrong with nice cars, if we can afford them by paying with cash) I completely understand the complications of letting go of your ride and getting into a vehicle that doesn’t take away from your paycheck. Once we let go of the urge of being comfortable in a nicer/expensive ride and we can become more comfortable in a ride that can get the job done, then you will really start to see the momentum building towards seperating yourself from being a “slave to the lendor.” Proverbs 22:7

here’s my email to request a budget template. davidschmidt3@gmail.com (I know, that sounds sophisticated). We can walk through the early stages on building your game plan that will set you up nicely for the near future and long term. But it will start by getting a new ride, unfortunately. Get you a 2002 chevy colorado or a F150, Honda accord, etc. but look at something that has around a 100k miles and that will last you 4, 5 or 6 years. Obviously the more in-expensive truck/car you find will be a quicker route to getting debt free but regardless find something that is in the $5-8,000 range (i’ll explain more below on what to do with your truck). More then likely you’re not bad with money and most people we’re friends with aren’t bad with money, we just don’t have a GAME PLAN aka budget. Let’s look at this the same way as we look at a body builder when he/she is training for a show, they have to follow a strict plan. When a electrician is doing his/her job on a small house or a big commercial building, they also has to follow a strict plan. And for people to execute there goals, we need a PLAN. We have to tell our money where it’s going instead of wondering where our money is going every time we swipe our card.
Another reason why I know you’ll love this plan is because of how you already enjoy GIVING. If you notice on the budget, the first line item is “charitable gifts.” In our budget we will GIVE %10 away every month. I can’t speak for you but my “giving” used to be based on, “Oh, I need to drop this 20 bill in the offering plate today and I’ll feel better for tithing.” Yes, the intentions are good but the word tithing means “is a one-tenth part of something.” And after being more disciplined with my GIVING this past year I am convinced it is very therapeutical in flexing our tithing muscle aka it really does feel good to give. Everybody does there “charitable gifts” different meaning sometimes I give my money to something outside of the church. aka a youth person wanting to go to a summer camp or just a person that I feel like could use the money that week. But enjoy that “charitable gift” line item just like you will enjoy your “blow” line item and don’t think about, “man if i didn’t give money away I’d get out of debt faster!” Yes, mathematically you’re right (see more in the “how to attack your debt” section below) but again it is very healthy to workout your giving muscle.
Your way of transportation. Check out online the trucks/car at your local car dealer in town and see what’s on the market. If you find something you like, go test drive it (be prepared to feel really awkward if you’re used to riding in nice leather lol) and when you find something trade in your truck for it. You’re immediately going to shave off around $20k of your debt depending on how much you owe. Obviously, your truck payment will decrease but don’t let your foot of the gas. By using the budget template you will instantly be spending less money each month because when your cash is gone from your entertainment, miscellaneous, blow and restaurant envelopes you will find yourself watching a good red box dvd and/or doing something with friends or by yourself that doesn’t cost money. i.e. going to beach or bike riding or shooting some hoops. (I know, those sound so horrible. ; ) But because of you telling your money what to do and knowing where it’s going; you will have money for grocery, bills, etc. but you will more importantly be able to aggressively attack your debt with a vengence.
With all that said, start with this. Begin filling in your budget for June. (It’s going to take you two or three months to get an accurate budget) and make sure you cover all your expenses. If you “take home” $600/week then you should have every single dollar of that $600 allocated to a line item. If you already have $1100 cash in savings then you will not need to add any money to your “emergency fund” line item, at this point (assuming you have debts). If you don’t have the cash then save up $1100 dollars for your emergency fund before you throw additioanl money at your debts. While we get out of debt your “restaurant” envelope needs to be next to nothing. The only time you see the inside of the restaurant is if you’re working. The more aggressive you attack your debts, the quicker you will be relieved from making debt payments and begin building wealth. I recommend putting in your numbers for each week. i.e. if your grocery budget is 400/month, put away 100/week in your grocery envelope. Once your budget is set for each week, go bye you some envelopes and construct you an envelope for each line item. On Monday of each week, withdrawal your cash from the bank for that week and go stuff your envelops to match whatever your budget says. I recommend only carrying around your blow, restaurant, misc. and gas envelopes. Keep all your other envelopes at your house. So now you have a plan for your spending each week and your giving and attacking your debt simultaneously.
How to attack your debt? Like I mentioned above mathamatically you could breakdown that by giving away 10% it will take you longer to get out of debt. True. You could also say, “I need to pay off my debt that has the highest interest rate since that’s costing me more?” Just avoid making it complex and simply ATTACK your debt from your least amount of debt to your greatest date. If your credit card balance is $1200, your new truck is $6,000 and your student loan is $10,000 then list your debts in that order, least to greatest. ATTACK your least amount of debt the most agressively while you are making the minimum payments required on your other debts. (If your truck payment is $220 then just pay $220 until your truck is your least amount of debt). Using this example, once you have completed paying off your credit card then you will throw whatever amount you were paying on your credit card and add that to ATTACKING your $6,000 truck note. So now you have the amount you were paying towards your credit card plus the amount that you were previously paying towards your truck. Yea you got it, once your credit card is paid off (AND CLOSED AND CUT UP!) and your truck is paid for then you will throw all that money you were paying towards those debts to aggressively ATTACK your student loan. This process will take some time, discipline and self-control (especially if you have a partner! lol) but training for anything else you have to have those some characteristics. Once your debt’s paid off you will have no obligation towards any lendor and then your savings is kicked into high gear! It’s like a huge pay raise. All the money that one time was paying towards debt is now applied to savings/investing! I’m going to stop for now but I’m going to summarize the TWO phases we just went over below. There is a total of six phases in your plan you need to adopt and we will go over those phases next time. As always stay in touch with any questions or concerns (850-685-0631). Much Love.
Phase 1: Save $1100 CASH.
Phase 2: ATTACK debt from least to greatest until eliminated.
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DRIVEWAY DREAMS***

23MAY

Ever since the day my conscience could speak to me, I was full of big dreams and wanted to make a lot of money while accomplishing my dreams.  During the elementary days I was dreaming in my driveway, also known as “Driveway Dreams” that I just hit the game winning shot of the NBA finals, then later in life during the high school days I was still dreaming in the same driveway but only to hit the state championship game winning shot.  My point is, my dreams motivated me and pushed me to work hard so that one day when I was in position to execute my dream shot, I would make sure to knock down the big shot.  Unfortunately I was never able to be in the position to shoot a game winning shot for the state championship (even though Vegas currently has the over/under on the amount of “game winning shots”  I took in my driveway or pick up games is at, 23,109.5.) but during those “Driveway Dreams” from elementary to high school, it lead to hours, days, weeks and years of hard work that developed into being able to have the mental and physical toughness to accomplish many other things in my short life that were at one time ranked below my “Driveway Dreams.”  Do you remember a few of your “Driveway Dreams?”***

We all at one point had “Driveway Dreams.”  Yours might have been performing a guitar solo at a sold out Madison Square Gardens or kicking in the game winning goal to win the world cup or even finding a cure for cancer or dancing in the nutcracker.  At some point we’ve all been motivated by a “Driveway Dream.”

As years continued to stack on top of each other, I had no path or no clear vision on what my dream was but I just knew I needed money to do it.  My “Driveway Dreams” were modified from great achievements in basketball to dreaming of becoming wealthy and successful while consuming cold beer with a college buddy.  And as a few more years pass after college, I realize the “Driveway Dreams” are just, dreams if I don’t begin making a plan at some point.  And that’s all they were, just dreams.  A dream without a plan will always be just a dream.  And every time I was dreaming I knew in order to make money I had to get money, right?  I had the understanding; I first had to build on my credit so hopefully one day soon my credit was good enough to borrow more money to support whatever my money-making scheme was going to be.  Sound familiar?  (don’t act like you and your college buddy never dreamed of becoming wealthy).  So let me make this clear, I thought in hopes to become more wealthy I thought I had to pay a bank $475/month for transportation (I must have a car right?), payoff my credit-card balance each month to build credit (but I’m earning skymile points), and take out a small loan only to make the payments on your debt, so that one day since the bank likes me I will be able to take out a bigger loan to add more risk.  Sounds like a lot of risk?  And now after typing those last few sentences it sounds even more ridiculous that at one time I thought “getting ahead” was making a continuous payment to a debt.  Those are moves we take to establish and grow your credit score, right?  Not sure if these characteristics are familiar in your life but they kept floating around in my life for over 5 years, until I decided to kick them out.

Looking forward to following the Lord as he directs my family that consist of my wife for 8 months (that is also 7 weeks pregnant, YAYYYYYY!!!!) and myself.  Hope to see you readers back for next Wednesday’s blog on how our family is striving to achieve our current “Driveway Dreams.” Your prayers and accountability is greatly appreciated during my family’s journey.    Cya o.o.o

*** Driveway Dreams –  Time period in your life when you first started having dreams, up until the most recent time you dreamed.  Either by yourself or with a significant other.

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