I know for this journey I have to open up and share…that is probably the hardest part for me. I don’t really discuss a lot of this stuff with people. I don’t know why. So here I go….
Heath and I have the same views when it comes to money. Let me clear that up, we have the same overall views...sometimes he wants to buy a new tree stand and I want to buy something for the house. We have read the Dave Ramsey books. We have read many other financial books. We both believe that debt free is the best way. I read this quote yesterday "I don’t know if this helps you at all but financial freedom is just that, freedom!" Pretty much sums it up. I think about how many people are going to bed at night with the worry of how they are going to pay the lamps off (that are on a credit card) that they purchased 4 years ago.
We are not better than anyone else. We are not trying to come off as that. We have chosen to live differently. We have chosen to watch our expenses so money automatically goes into our IRAs/Mason's college fund/401k plans/life insurance/stock every month. When Heath and I were married he had two small debts (my ring and a doctor's bill from just two months before we were married) besides his truck. On the other hand, I had almost 10k in the bank with me just owing a little bit on my car…which my parents paid off. The majority of my money came from school money. I was fortunate to receive scholarships and I would put the extra money back every semester. Heath had his money (a couple G's as Heath would say) working in an IRA, I just had my money sitting in a bank account drawing very little interest.
Heath is very smart when it comes to finances. Our first year of marriage, we were very fortunate to have a great set up with his company. We paid off the two small debts. We completed funded an emergency fund. We probably wasted some money. We bought a few pieces of furniture and other items for the house. Heath started my IRA. He already had an IRA. (Heath will probably do a post on the importance of retirement very soon, so I will not get into that right now) I was approved for life insurance. Heath was later approved. I have to say that we do have a credit card. Heath purchases so much stuff for work (then he is fully reimbursed) but it is easier then tying up our money. We have Mason a small savings account started. We do have his college fund started. We just have the truck left to pay off. This will be our last car payment, we do not like having a car payments!! One reason I love my scion...because it is paid off! :)
Now it seems like we have everything pretty well set up. I am happy with our set up, but I think it could be better. I think that we don't always know where are money is going. The debit card is easy to swipe for $20 here, $10 there. I feel like the grocery store is taking part of my savings sometimes!ha Our mindset is probably our biggest problem right now. We are trying to live like no one else, so one day we can live like no one else (I love this quote, you will probably read it a 100 times!)...but sometimes it is discouraging. We know our money is going into retirement, but it does get aggravating when we listen to other people talk about buying, spending, and doing...and we are trying to figure out if we have extra money to go out to eat or not! Do not get me wrong, we do not sit at home and stare at the walls because we are too tight. I know what Heath makes a year. I know what little I bring in. I know what we are trying to make do with our money. and I can't help but wonder....HOW DO PEOPLE DO IT?!?!?!
I am so glad people have already shared some stories! It is exciting and encouraging to read! KEEP SHARING. Share creative ways that have helped you cut back or just share your story. Or if you are swimming in debt, I want to encourage you...it is not to late to change your ways, do not give up!