Tuesday, February 23, 2010
Financial Peace University - Week One
Tonight Jason and I had our first class in Financial Peace University at Epikos. Over the next thirteen weeks we will be learning how to effectively budget, invest, give etc, and most importantly how to save, save, save.
Our membership kit included:
a hardcover "textbook", hardcover workbook, all 13 lessons on DVD in a nice holder, a folder to help us with the "envelope system" (which we will learn about later, though, I already know how it works and think it is a great idea), and a CD-ROM to "enhance" our experience in the program.
Basically, this week we talked about establishing an emergency fund and doing it NOW. Having that emergency buffer will help us stay cooler in the midst of a "crisis". For example, the car breaks, the money is there to fix it and then we just need to build up that fund again vs. having more debt sitting on a card account building interest. Way less stress! After that is done, saving up a few months living expenses is the next step.
Some may ask why I signed up for this. The reason is because we are in debt, like nearly every single other person we know, and I wanted us to get a handle on things, NOW. My student loan deferrment ends in June and I want us to have a better handle on our finances by then so that we will be better equipped to get the payments made. This program was being offered at church right after I had heard about it and it's creator, Dave Ramsey, and it just seemed like perfect timing. The program ends just a few weeks before the loan payments will start!
Our homework this week is to work on making a "quickie budget", read a few chapters and if we want to, bring any credit cards we want with us next session and shred them as a group! Jason wants us to do that, so we will be bringing a few in, for sure. We fall back on credit cards, they are a crutch to us and that needs to stop, NOW. This last pay period we didn't charge a thing and that was a huge feat for us when it should be something that happens all the time!
When I first suggested this program to Jason, he was skeptical and not totally on board. He told me that I could do it if I wanted, so I signed up. Well, I was delayed in my travels this evening so I sent him there for the start of the class and I showed up about 25 minutes late. God must have known he needed to be there because he would like to join me for the rest of the classes and he also told me that it was a really good move of me to get us involved with this. Now all we have to do is come up with a plan for someone to watch Amelia a few hours Tuesday nights for the next three months!
I am looking forward to seeing how we grow throughout this class and to seeing how it will improve our lives!