Wednesday, January 15, 2014

How To Prepare For a Financial Storm

Financial storms can strike you at any time, usually without any warning.  When the storm of the century blew through the country in 2009, I realized I was not fully prepared.  The good news is that I learned some great lessons about how to get control of the debt monster attacking me and my family.  Here's a checklist to help you protect you when the next financial storm hits:
  1. Do whatever it takes to eliminate all your present credit card balances.
  2. Stop spending money you don't have.
  3. Pay cash for everything.
  4. Keep your clunker on the road until it dies.
  5. Shop at thrift stores.
  6. Use coupons.
  7. Make specific shopping lists before you leave your home and don't make unnecessary purchases.
  8. Brown bag it.
  9. Make automatic deposits to your retirement account.
  10. Save $100 dollars a month and deposit it into an emergency account.  Don't raid the account.
I have been battling my debt monster for a long time.  He beat me up badly five years ago.  I resolved that he would never hurt me again.  I see the sunlight in the horizon.  This is the year that I will finally slay my dragon.  How about you?  What are you doing to prepare for the next financial storm in your life?  Please add your ideas in the comments section below.


Marcie Rupcich said...

Your own grandma & grandpa were experts at living beneath their income. They survived the Great Depression and a cooper strike in Miami, Arizona, but still managed to keep their home & all their possessions. How did they do it? Cash, cash, cash on all purchases except their home mortgage. And Grandma bought US savings bonds each month. Conservative? Yes, but those same bonds saved them again and again when the revenue wasn't coming in and the mortgage was due.
They were never "rich" but they lived a comfortable life with all it's essentials. Their quality of life and happiness was built on broader more eternal treasures like: love, family, faith, trust & joy in the smallest of daily gifts. Too bad those values of the "greatest generation" were lost during the post war era to lives of opulence and extravagance. They would have died rather than paying over $3 for a cup of Starbucks coffee. The only manicure grandma every had was the one her daughters gave her!

Michael Mulligan said...

Thank you for taking the time to add your thoughts, Aunt Marcie. I agree with you about your assessment of my grandparents quality of life built on eternal treasures like: love, family, faith, trust & joy in the smallest of daily gifts. Don't despair about the next generation. I'm truly inspired by my own children, two of them working multiple jobs while attending college without much financial support from their parents who are rebuilding their own lives after a "fall."

In spite of my own shortcomings, I consider myself a rich man because I have found the eternal treasures you describe here. Above all, I have found my Lord and Savior who died for all my sins so that one day I can be reunited with my precious ancestors in Heaven. I certainly have no right to enter the Kingdom based on my performance here on earth. I can only thank Jesus for dying for all my sins so that I may have new life.

Happy New Year to you and your amazing family. And don't lose hope in the next generation.

Marcie Rupcich said...

The Good News is none of us "earn" our way into heaven. Christ died for all our sins, none is exempt. We merely are here to learn to live in harmony with God's great creation. It's trial & error. The more we listen to His Spirit and follow God's plan for us the more likely we are to live a life fulfilled in joy & peace. Shalom!

Michael Mulligan said...

Wow! Your comments demonstrate that we are blood relatives. I just finished writing today's story that will publish at 8:08 AM, Pacific Time. The title is "Life is all about the trials." Shalom!