For the past few years, I’ve been volunteering at my church to coordinate Dave Ramsey’s Financial Peace University course. It’s a 9-week course that helps people get out of debt and get into strong financial shape. We just started a new session and our class is focused on Baby Step 1 (save $1,000 in an emergency fund).
This step can sometimes feel daunting when you’re just starting out, but it’s a very important one. When you have money in the bank, it keeps you from going further into debt when emergencies happen.
A few of the class participants inquired how to get through Baby Step 1 fast so they can get right into Baby Step 2 (eliminating all of their non-mortgage debt). I developed a list of 10 suggestions that worked well for me in the past and sent them an email so they could get after it. Here they are:
It’s home buying season! If you’re looking for a house right now, this very well could be one of the most difficult times to buy real estate. The amount of available homes is super low and prices have skyrocketed. I know where we live in Metro Detroit, it seems more difficult than ever to buy a home at a decent price. From what I’ve read and heard, it sounds like a similar story in other major metros in the US as well.
Hello all! Andy Hill here … We have a new guest post from personal finance writer Amy Beardsley from Early Morning Money. Amy is a self-described money geek that is obsessed with simplifying money and breaking free from the burden of debt. Her article below shares why we all need sinking funds in our budgets to help us create that freedom we desire. Enjoy!
When it comes to your family’s finances, you already know you need an emergency fund to protect you from a job layoff or major medical illness. But what about all of those little expenses that come up year after year, like car insurance, Christmas, or your annual family vacation?
That’s what sinking funds are for, and they’re the secret to a successful budget.
When money is tight, or you’re working on a big debt-payoff
goal, covering all of your expenses is key to making it work. With sinking
funds, you can easily stick to your budget even when faced with costs that
don’t come up that often. Here’s how to get started.
Our question of the month comes from Chad from Ohio:
I know I’m supposed to save, but I just don’t.
I read your blog and hear you talk about saving and it sounds natural for you. I’m not sure I’ve been blessed with the saver’s gene.
Do you have any advice for me to get motivated?
Thanks for writing in Chad!
I totally get where you’re coming from. Saving, budgeting, investing … they can be super boring.
I talk to my wife about these topics all the time and I just put her to sleep. In order for me to talk to her about these topics, she requires that I give her a back massage while doing it so she’s at least getting something out of it.
But you didn’t come here to hear my marital bedroom talk … you asked for motivation. And Chad, I’m going to give it ya brother!
Having an Emergency Fund is one of the first and most important steps in creating wealth. This simple act of saving will protect our families from the unexpected events of life and the dreaded ‘rainy day’.