Thursday, August 5, 2010

If Only Suzie Orman Could Help

That is exactly what I am asking myself this morning.  About two months ago my mans finances took a hit much like a tsunami..  This was the direct result of what I like to call careless spending, abuse of credit cards and not taking responsibility for finances.  Which can really happen to just about anyone.

Anyway, back to the story.  Last month after not paying attention to his bank balances, or keeping track of bills he almost lost his car. And let me tell you his car is his baby, so that set off a whole chain of events.  Those events led to him entrusting his finances to me. 

So you ask what does that mean?   That means that I have scoured through every bill that has been stacked up under his desk.  Let me tell you it was a daunting task.(much of his mail had not been opened)  First step was creating a budget spreadsheet in excel.   Then I set up spread sheets to track monthly bills, and old debt.   I have taken over managing his bank account so that he can somehow get back on track.

But yesterday I seriously had one of those moments where I asked myself "what have I gotten myself into" because even with me helping him his spending habits are not improving quick enough.  Yeah I know it takes time to change ones spending habits, or for that matter any habit.  But the reality of his situation is he needs to save as much as possible.  It is very crucial.

At this point I almost think he should get rid of his atm/debit card because like a credit card they are detrimental in the fact that most don't realize how much they are truly spending.

Fact of the matter is, managing another's finances is not easy because although I can set up budgets, create payment plans, etc, he is ultimately the one that has to take responsibility for his spending habits, the one that has to write the checks, not over spend and live within his means.  Not easy stuff.  Changing and incorporating new spending habits and taking financial responsibility is tough for the best  financial gurus, let alone the rest of us.

Oh let me just add this, he has a mba in corporate finance so I just assumed when I met him that he was going to be the most financially responsible guy I had possibly ever met. I imagined him being some financial guru himself.  And for the record he is very intelligent and a guru in his chosen profession.  The things he can do with numbers, spreadsheets and statistics usually leave me speechless.

I've learned a lot from him, in fact I think he has made me more financially responsible.  And taught me how important it is to create budgets and live within ones means.  To not waste money, or be frivalous with it.  And how scary it can be if you miss just a few credit card payments, between the interest rates and late fees anyone can quickly succumb to debt.

Dealing with personal finances is not fun for anyone really.  And spending is so much easier than saving, even a quick trip to the grocery market quickly adds up. 

A little while back I actually submitted his name to the Oprah show for an episode that Suzie Orman is doing on managing ones finances.  I know they probably get millions of submissions.  I just think it would help him to hear an expert giving him advice because I think in general most people seem to listen more to someone they consider an expert in a certain field, than say a loved one that has a degree in psychology. 

Hey after all this maybe I should go back for a masters in finance! Who knows I could be the next Suzie Orman!   ; )  Or maybe I should try out for The Apprentice.....

In fact, I hear Trumps theme song to The Apprentice.....
Money, money, money.
Some people got to have it, Some people really need it
Listen to me y'all, do things
Do things, don't do bad things with it
You wanna do things, do things
Do things, good things with it.


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