My husband and I have been very frugal most of our married life, but after listening to your Automatic Millionaire CD’s, we really tried to go over our finances to see if there was anything we could do better.
In looking at the benefits we receive at work, I was getting my health insurance paid by my employer but I was also fully covered under my husband’s family plan. I spoke with my HR rep at work and found that if I opted out of my health insurance, they would put the money they were paying for my insurance into my 401k. This amount was $190 every two weeks! While I was at it, I decided to up my contribution to my 401k from 3% to 10%. My husband decided to increased his contribution from 5% to 10% as well.
Also, we looked at how much we were spending on our kid’s birthday celebrations. Birthdays have always been a big deal at our house and with their gifts, parties, etc., we averaged $250-300 per child each year. With four children, that was quite an expense! Since my youngest is now 10 years old and they don’t get as excited about parties anymore, we decided to make some changes. Now we will make their favorite meal at home, invite a couple of their friends over for cake and ice cream, and give them $150. This money must be put in their custodial stock account and they can chose which stocks to purchase (with input from my husband & I). We are also encouraging their grandparents, aunts & uncles to give them birthday checks for this purpose. The relatives like this idea a lot better than having to go shopping and trying to figure out what to get them. Our kids are really excited about this plan and they are checking the stock reports to plan which stocks they will purchase.
Another change we are making is we are looking into a 15 year mortgage with biweekly payments to get rid of the mortgage “chain around our necks” a lot faster than we would with the 30 year mortgage we are currently paying on.
With just these few changes, I know our financial future will be MUCH better for both my husband and I and our children as well.
Thanks David, for getting our financial creative juices flowing. I plan on listening to your program once a year to help re-evaluate our financial situation to make sure we’re doing the best we can.