|Kensington - Personal Finance|
I want to send this out to you to answer a question that came up in yesterday’s class regarding those Credit Counseling programs. The one’s where you give a company authorization to handle communication and re-payment arrangements with your debtors.
With the growing issue of people getting in to large amounts of debt this has become a thriving industry. There are good stories and there are bad stories from people using these company’s services. Mostly bad. I found a report by Fox Business, from February of 2013, that used a statistic from the National Foundation for Credit Counseling that stated only 21% of plans succeeded while another 21% of participants pulled out in order to finish paying on their own and 51% simply dropped out and filed bankruptcy. You make your own decision from those industry statistics.
The bottom line is getting to the root of handling the household finances. The root is ‘behavior’. Tthe major problem is that the use of these companies doesn’t address the change of behavior. Delegating the ‘clean up’ to someone else is like an ostrich putting their head in the ground. You are ignoring the #1 issue…knowledge to change behavior. By having someone else take care of it you are not addressing the knowledge and skillset to fix it and know what not to do to move forward in the right direction. By doing this people, most times, end up in the same spot they were before ‘credit counseling’.
FPU teaches us to take responsibility for our actions and teaches us to learn how to ‘not do it’ again. FPU is showing us what we need to do to dig ourselves out of hole and give us the strategy to put ourselves in a position to move forward towards financial security and financial freedom. A side note; by doing this we are setting ourselves up to use the blessings God has given us the way He has planned for us AND to establish a legacy for the rest of our family.
This is not easy. BUT, it is very VERY possible. And once you get to a point of seeing the light at the end of the tunnel you will be so excited about where you are going and the possibility of that ‘feeling of freedom’ that you will never go back to where you were.
I am so passionate about this that I felt the need to dig in to this and get back with you right away.
I hope this helps.
Jim Henkel - Clinton Twp Campus FPU Coordinator
Powerful things are happening at Financial Peace University. Our Birmingham, Orion, and Troy Campuses recently graduated their Winter 2015 Classes. KCC also had a partnership with Evangel Church in Detroit and will be graduating their first FPU class this week. I wanted to share a few of the victory stories with you. They are stories of life change, marriages restored, learnings for the first time, re-learning and breaking of bad habits. Many of these stories were told through tears. These classes get real and it's amazing to see people restored and transformed right before your eyes through the power of the Holy Spirit and the Biblical truths about how to handle money.
This story is about a newly married couple who wanted a house and a baby and were living in an apartment and excited to step into homeownership. The number one reason young couples I meet with are struggling is student loan debt and not paying them off and buying a house, having kids, and not following the Baby Steps. This couple shared at graduation that they were committed to paying of their mid 6 figure student loans before buying a house. They calculated they would be totally debt free in 18 months including the loans. They were bright eyed and excited to be on mission together as a young married couple. They are building a solid foundation for their young family and will be in a responsive position not constrained by debt to respond the Lords call.
There is another story of a participant who attended most of the classes, came early and stayed late and asked great questions. At graduation, through tears, he shared that things had been tough recently at home and his marriage was in trouble. Being a part of FPU for the last 9 weeks had given them new Hope and things were looking brighter at home. #wowsocool
A family came to our Clinton Twp classes and brought their twin 19 year old boys. The boys I understand weren't thrilled to be coming to church or a finance class. The boys now are serving on the audio/video teams and Clinton Twp Campus and connected to the Full Throttle Ministry. WOW.
I could go on but the point is this stuff matters and it's so needed in this upside down world we live in. It debunks the lie our society propagates that stuff = happiness and contentment. Lie, Lie, Lie. Living with a plan in community, externally focused with margin is the way to a life well lived financially. I'm so grateful to all the men and women who make this ministry possible. From the facility team that helps get our rooms ready, to the tech staff who make sure we have the AV equipment we need, to our amazing reception team that fields calls and posts signage around our buildings. Sharon for scheduling the rooms for us and juggling all the changes, she is amazing, yup. Our volunteers and FPU champions all through the KCC community are amazing folks. Thank you for all you do to make this happen.
We have a few spring FPU classes starting as well as a few YNAB workshops. More info here
Need help getting your YNAB budget setup? Have process flow / reconciling questions? We love YNAB and want it to be a tool for you to take control of your money. We are happy to help you and sometimes another set of eyes is helpful. Use the contact us form and we will be in touch. Using the Dropbox technology we can easily review your YNAB budget and offer suggestions.
We are excited to be offering 2 FPU classes this Spring.
Clinton Township starts Sunday March 15th 10:15am. Stop in to check it out this Sunday. You can register here or after the first class if your not sure now. Come check it out, you will be glad you did.
Orion Campus starts Tuesday April 14th at 6:30pm register here
Christy & I just watched this webinar live and it was really helpful. Its a great place to start to get to know how the software and zero based budget are combined.
Link to getting started with YNAB recorded webinar
Link to live training classes
PS - They offer a free license to high school and college students. Pretty cool
I've know about YNAB for some time now but never tried it. The lack of fully automated "direct connect" to my credit union was the show stopper for me. A few of my colleagues really are fans and love it. After being right back again to a frustrated place with Quicken I'm diving in with both feet. I've talked in previous posts about how fully automating your budget is unrealistic and that you need to feel your money at an emotional level. What I'm learning is the fully automated "Direct Connect" makes your money less emotional and you don't feel it as much. YNAB gets this and has wrapped good technology around this concept and added a few wrinkles of their own. I'm excited to begin using this personally but also for the families I have the opportunity to coach I think this can be a very tangible execution tool. There is a fair amount of execution risk in Dave Ramsey's budgeting tools. Both personally and as a FPU coordinator the pen and paper is not well received and something from another era. BUT the every dollar having a job on purpose before the month begins is indisputable. I believe this software is the perfect companion to put the knowledge your getting from FPU into action put you on the path to financial freedom. I've participated in the initial webinar at this point and setup my budget and loaded the app on mine and my wife's smart phones. There are some great recorded presentations to give you an overview of how it works. It is a bit different and I found more value thank I expected in participating in the live online webinar. I did the most basic how to use the software Getting Started class thought by Lee Hammel. Here is a LINK to YNAB's live class schedule. Also Click Here for their on demand recorded classes. A couple things to know. There is a 34 day free trial then the cost is $60 per year. I highly recommend having Dropbox installed before you install the software. It uses this to keep your data in the cloud and sync between devices. If you try it and want to buy it here is a referral code that saves you $6.00 and we I receive $6 as well. http://ynab.refr.cc/MXLDK4M
The timing of this is really good as the Troy Fall class just did FPU week 3 Monday on budgeting. This is a great way to start your October budgets. Happy budgeting and I look forward to seeing you Monday for Dumping Debt. Post up your experiences with your budget and trying YNAB in the comments section below this post. thx dave
Dave Ramsey's investing lesson is one of the weeks I get the most questions about. Can you really get 12% should you work with an adviser? How should the adviser be paid? Lots of questions. Here is a resource that I follow. I'm sharing it hear to help you make an informed decision on your investing strategy.
Exerpt below then follow link for more - Bogleheads® investment philosophy
The Bogleheads® follow a small number of simple investment principles that have been shown over time to produce risk-adjusted returns far greater than those achieved by the average investor. Many of these ideas are distilled from Nobel prize-winning financial economics research on topics like Modern Portfolio Theory and the Capital Asset Pricing Model. But they are very easy to understand and to implement, and they work. In fact, the basis of all of these principles is the idea that successful investing is not a complicated process, and can be accomplished by anyone with a small amount of effort.
These ideas come from the investing philosophy of Vanguard-founder Jack Bogle. They have been further distilled and explained in thousands of posts on the Bogleheads forums, starting with original contributors Taylor Larimore and Mel Lindauer. More advanced concepts were first widely introduced to the Bogleheads community by investing author Larry Swedroe, a tradition that has been carried on by Rick Ferri among many others.
This wiki article provides many details about how to apply these principles, given constraints, such as the specific tax-advantaged accounts an investor has available. For a video presentation of Bogleheads principles, refer to Video:Bogleheads® investment philosophy.
Dave Smith is part of the KCC finance staff and a Dave Ramsey Certified Coach.