After going through one month with a budget and now working on my second month I have a LOT of thoughts about trying to rope in your spendthrift ways but I'll wait on that and discuss instead the last two lessons of FPU: #8 Buying Houses and #9 Giving.
I have to say that I was so glad Dave finished with a whole lesson devoted to giving because the class before that on buying houses really depressed me.
There was nothing new to the house buying lesson. Just a recommendation to put at least 10% down and have a 15 year mortgage. But that was when it hit home for me just how daunting it would be to get out from under student loans, save 3-6 months of living expenses, and save for a house payment. The lessons before are kind of pump you up style: YOU CAN SAVE! YOU CAN SELL! YOU CAN DO THIS! GAZELLE LIKE INTENSITY and even though this lesson actually had a motivational speaker in it - when you think about saving up 10% on a home - AFTER all the other steps - I kind of wanted to put my head in the sand. All I could think of was: man I wish I had learned this stuff in high school. I'm not 25. I'm almost 35 and my house standards have drastically changed since my younger days. I have zero desire or energy to save up for a fixer upper. I've been perfectly content and somewhat spoiled renting houses that I would totally buy. So if I'm going to buy a house, I want to buy a house that I've been dreaming of. I don't want to do all these steps for a downgrade. That makes my 10% look pretty large. So yeah. Just another reminder to teach Lil' D all these lessons early so she isn't just figuring out how much a house costs at 35.
After being totally bummed out I was so glad for the lesson on giving. Dave comes from the tradition of tithing, which if you aren't from a tithing church community, means that 10% of your income goes to the church. I did not grow up in a tithing family and I would probably never give that much money to any church but I did grow up with a mom who gave a lot through volunteering and financial donations and I've enjoyed following her lead. As a child I did the kid's version of volunteering i.e. picking out an Angel on the Angel Tree, donating toys and books, or helping with a canned food drive. And as I got older I volunteered more and gave more donations to groups I was enamored of (See previous post on my wolf adoption. I paid for that myself.) Over the years I've donated to whatever tickles my bleeding, liberal heart at the moment. And I'm happy with that. But what would make me even happier would be to have enough money to REALLY make a difference. Because while I can create logos for non-profits all day, they probably would do well to have some money too. Envisioning a future where I can donate big or have long periods of time to volunteer put me back on the positivity train.
So that's a wrap folks! Hope you enjoyed or were at least not too annoyed with my Dave Ramsey recap.
Because there will be much more to come about working with a budget.