“I may not be the primary breadwinner, but I can help my husband’s paycheck stretch by making good choices.”
This has been my attitude about money. As wives and mamas, we can make a significant impact on our family’s finances by making good choices and learning about budgeting. As of right now, 35% of money currently in circulation has been printed over the past ten months. That’s crazy. Think about it. Inflation is happening, and is likely to be substantial.
At the same time, we are in the middle of a pandemic. Stores are shuttering, and the future is unclear. All of these things have caused me to take a closer look at our finances to see if there is any room for improvement. While our hope comes from the Lord, being a good steward of His money does bring us a sense of security. This is a blessing.
In 2016, my family and I started following Dave Ramsey’s Baby Steps. Over the course of three years, we paid off $293,000 of debt, including our mortgage. We did this by God’s grace, and by being extremely frugal and using the real estate market’s boom to our advantage and downgrading houses twice.
Related: Sacrifice During Our Debt Free Journey
It was tough. We thought we could relax, and then the pandemic hit. We decided to purchase a fixer upper on five acres to renovate. We now have a small mortgage, but could again be mortgage free if we sold our cabin. My mother in law decided that she didn’t want to live alone anymore after quarantining for a month, so she sold her home and has moved into our paid off cabin for the time being. We have now been working for months at getting a contractor to finish part of our basement for her. They are swamped, and Lord willing will be able to start in February.
Related: Parts of Our Financial Story
Over the past six months our money has been funnelled into renovations, but I’m feeling to urge to reprioritize and organize. Now is the time to start upping our savings!
2021 is upon us, and what a better time to take control of our finances than a new year? I would like to encourage you to prioritize this.
First things first. Organization is key. Taking inventory of all of your expenses is sometimes painful, but necessary. Once you see your financial picture for what it is, changes can be made.
I remember doing this four years ago. It was super hard! But through this exercise I was able to see discretionary spending that could be cut. It was very helpful.
Next, a budget comes into play. For a couple of years, I tried to use Dave Ramsey’s Every Dollar app and wasn’t very successful at it. I realized that it was so much easier for me to budget each paycheck individually. A world of difference was made once I began to look at each paycheck, and our obligations during this time, separately. Maybe I wasn’t too bright, but it was very confusing to me to budget two to three paychecks at once while attempting a monthly budget.
I would love to share more about budgeting, and financial health in general on the blog. I’m by no means an expert, but we have changed our financial future significantly by making a few changes and working hard. Are there any questions that you would like for me to answer?
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