Whether I am busy at work or simply relaxing at home, the one thing that is always by my side is my phone. This is hardly out of the ordinary; over 30 million Canadians currently own a cell phone1. Our handheld devices are now the primary method of communicating with others, entertainment, planning our schedules, and even dealing with our bills.
Fall is finally here. The leaves are changing, the days are getting shorter, and your worries seem just a little bit further away. But folks, I’m sorry to say, sometimes storms roll in on the most beautiful of days. And if I’m honest, the world is a bit of a scary place at the moment, with politics impacting the economic climate, and warmer temperatures affecting agriculture all around the world, the future is perhaps not as certain as it once was.
As most of you may know, my wife Stephanie is a teacher and we have a 15 month old son, Elliott. What that translates to financially is 12 months of maternity leave, 3 months of teaching, and now a summer with Steph earning zero income (by choice). Below are the steps we took to make sure our plan could be accomplished.
Thanks for taking some valuable time out of your day to read about our story on how we became debt free. Whether you are a long time reader or this is your first visit to my blog, I truly appreciate the visit.
Perhaps the most encouraging outcome of the latest recession is the increasing emphasis on debt reduction by most Canadians. We are borrowing less and saving more, and, hopefully, developing some more frugal habits that can lead to healthier finances in the future. Still, many people continue to struggle with their debt. It takes a firm commitment and a lot of discipline, but most people are only a few steps away from gaining the upper hand. By implementing these key step now, you can be more effectively managing your debt, and on your way back to prosperity.
Over the last month or so, I’ve created a list of "Ten Common Money Mistakes Millennials Make" and posted them to our Facebook Page found here. I’ve decided to summarize them in series of blog posts just so everyone can see them in one spot. The list in is no particular order of importance, but I feel they do all need to be addressed or considered. I’ll post the first five mistakes this week and the remainder next week.
Life happens. It’s a fact. Imagine meeting the love of your life, getting engaged, you’re working hard to save for the wedding and suddenly…Life happens. You know, those unfortunate events that occur at the absolute worst time? And they always suck! Your spouse becomes unemployed, you get in a car accident, a family member that lives in another province passes away – all reasons you may need to tap into your wedding savings. Not cool.
Last night my wife and I were strolling the mall – developing photos before Blacks closes forever, checking out new cellphone plan options, and grabbing some dinner. We realized that we had a gift card from Bath and Body Works from Christmas that we’d yet to spend (because we hadn’t run out of hand soap yet!) So we decided to go in and have a look around.
You walk into a dealership and see a big sign "$162 bi-weekly for 5 years and no down payment" – that sounds like a great deal! Lots of people can come up with $162 bi-weekly, but it’s the other expenses that people forget about. Let’s work through an example and see what a car really costs once you factor in all the associated expenses:
Monthly car payments $162 x 2 = $324