My Financial Story
Each of us has our own financial story and here is mine. Growing up I learned about earning money at an early age. It started with a paper route that lead to bagging groceries at a local supermarket and eventually I took a job as a cook where I became a shift supervisor upon turning eighteen. I got a credit card with a $500 limit on it so that I could start establishing credit. Then I bought a computer with a personal loan and I started financing a $3000 truck with my parents as co-signers. This truck loan was the first of eight vehicle loans that I took out in ten years. Within that time period I also bought a brand new truck and a brand new Harley Davidson motorcycle.
Living a Life of Debt
When I graduated High School I left for the Air Force where I served for 10 years. I had a regular salary that was basically guaranteed. When I got to my first duty station I took out a Universal Life insurance policy on myself valued at $250,000. I bought a house during my second year in the service that I could barely afford. Within a couple of years though it became very affordable and it was great to be independent. Unfortunately, I bought at the peak of the housing market. When I tried to sell it five years later I did not have enough equity in the house yet to keep from taking a loss.
The Air Force took me to Missouri in 2008. When I got to Missouri I was able to get my house first house rented out which allowed me to buy my house in Missouri. This was my dream house but it quickly turned into a nightmare. I was barely able to make all of the payments that I had between bills and loans. Up until that point I was blissfully unaware of the danger that I had created around me. About a year later I found out that my renters were not going to renew. I tried once again to sell my house but after a couple months of making double mortgage payments I needed to sell my house in Missouri.
The Breaking Point
The final straw upon my back occurred about a month later when I no longer had food in the house or gas in my truck. Debt surrounded me and I was unable to pay my bills. Broke and broken I fell to my knees sobbing for God to help me. Within 24 hours both of my houses had received offers on them and I was able to get out of them without taking a loss.
For the first time in my life I was debt free, but only for a moment. I sold my motorcycle and bought a brand new Chevrolet truck. My wife and I met in 2010 and we married in 2011. We were able to cash flow our wedding which cost about $10,000. It was a great feeling to be able to pay for something with cash instead of going into debt.
I got out of the military in 2012 and in preparation for that we sold the truck and bought a different truck, which was our last financed vehicle payment that we would ever make. Our church was hosting a Financial Peace University class and we started the process of getting out of debt. We had roughly $80,000 worth of debt that we were able to pay off in about three years.
Today our financial story continues and we live a much different life. We live on a budget and are able to enjoy life. No longer are we controlled by money. We are on track to being able to retire with a healthy retirement fund, we have an emergency fund and we are saving up to buy a house with cash. Lord willing we will be able to buy a house in 2-4 years.
Our lives have changed drastically since we decided to take control of our finances. The changes we’ve made have allowed me to be able to stay at home with our daughter. It has also afforded me the opportunity to start my own business. There are things we wish we could do right now, but we have learned to save up for them. Our goals for the future overshadow our urge in most instances to spend extra money right now.
The financial freedom that we are able to experience today is what I want you to experience, but it takes a plan. Our financial story began to change when we got out of debt. We were making less money at that time, but we made a plan and stuck to it. Once we were out of debt our goals were updated and we were able to save up our emergency fund. Now we are working toward buying a house with cash while saving money for retirement and living lives filled with generosity and gratitude.
This was our plan based upon our goals and your plan will look a little different. It is my desire to see you win with your money by working with you to create achievable goals. We will also create a plan to achieve them. Changing our financial story for the better starts with awareness, it requires a plan, and it requires focus.
Financial freedom can be a part of your reality. I am available to help answer your questions and to help you create a plan with clear steps to take in order to achieve your goals. If you are interested in your one-on-one coaching session please contact me today so that we can start the process. I look forward to hearing from you and I also look forward to bringing you more information in the future.