Earlier this week I received a call from a very dear friend of mine that her car died. It ran fine on her way to work but after work it didn’t have any power, it wouldn’t go over 30 MPH, and the motor sounded really bad. Upon taking it to a mechanic, her worst fears were realized… the motor was shot. It has a bad rod and piston and the motor either needs to be completely rebuild from the ground up or replaced.
As a single mom living in Michigan and working 5 miles from home, life is difficult with a vehicle. And, nearly impossible without one. How will she get groceries? Take her daughter to the doctor? Or, even make it to church that is 22 miles down the road? Public transportation won’t work as she often is at work before they are open and has days where stays until long after they are closed. A taxi could cost her over 25% of her take home pay. It’s unfortunate but walking is not a good idea either. Besides the weather, the neighborhood is not the place for a beautiful young lady to be walking around at 4:30 in the morning or 11:30 at night.
I’m a little bit of a numbers guy and I usually figure out where all I need to go for the following week and fill my car up by Sunday for the week. This week had been no different until I drove to rescue my lady from work and later take her to borrow a car so she could look at others to buy. As I left her at the car lot I had 47 minutes to drive 63 miles to work and my car said I had 80 left on the tank of gas. Thirty miles from work it simply said ‘Low Fuel’, at nine miles away it was below the orange line on the E. I was already fifteen minutes late and I needed to make it to work and then I would get gas. Just before the exit I tapped the brakes to take the cruise off and it hesitated a little. After slowing down a little for the first curve of the ramp I realized my car wasn’t running. The light at the top of the ramp was green but I still needed to make it there…. Up the hill. Somehow I managed to make it up the hill before the light changed and then I continued down the hill and made a left, between 2 vehicles, and stopped at the gas pump.
I see countless individuals and couples that live like this with their finances. Writing checks and hoping they can beat them to the bank. Spending money like they are congress then praying more money will magically appear before the heat bill is due. As a financial coach I help people go from cutting it to close to cutting the fat to creating some cushion! Please share my page with someone you know who needs to create some financial cushion in their life. Then, get a hold of me when your ready to cut the fat in your finances and begin living in financial freedom.
Steps to success…
- Live on less than you make.
- Stop borrowing money.
- Create a plan for every dollar you make.
How it looks…
- $1,000 Emergence Fund
- Paying off your debts from smallest to largest.
- Increasing your emergency fund to 3-6 months of expenses set aside in cash.
- Invest 15% of your income into retirement.
- College funding (if needed)
- Pay off your house early.
- Build wealth, spend some, and give a bunch away.