In June 2011 our church hosted its first ever Financial Peach University (FPU). I really wanted to attend this 13 week class but my husband was not interested. We knew we were in debt. We knew we needed out of debt. That was the picture he saw. At the time I had a sock drawer fund. I’d put any cash tips I made in there and occasionally I’d take some cash out when I deposited a check. It was my security drawer. Dave Ramsey talks about women having a security gland that spasms when you have no safety net of money and it’s worse when you’re in debt with no safety net. That was how I stayed moderately sane!
When something big came up like TIRES, we never had the money in the bank and so it was… the sock drawer fund! The cost to attend FPU was $100 and that was one argument that Cody had. We did NOT have $100 to spend. I had it in the sock drawer though. Between his mom and I, we convinced him to go… albeit reluctantly.
After the class, he was excited! I told him that I’d already started Baby Step 1 ($1000 in an emergency fund) and it was almost done. I think it was around $900. We finished off our emergency fund that night and within a few weeks we paid our car off!
Thursday evening is when FPU was and it quickly became our favorite night of the week. I looked forward to hearing the rest of the groups successes AND failures as well as being taught by the expert who had been to bank ruptcy and back again, Dave Ramsey.
By the end of the 13 week course we had paid off our car, a credit card, and our ATVs. We had also CUT UP (YAY FOR SCISSORS) any other credit card we had. We were on a fast track to having our pickup paid off and we were settled enough to start trying for our first child soon.
I cannot begin to express the level of security that that $1000 in the bank gave me. We actually had a $2000 Emergency Fund because we stepped back and looked at deductibles and IF everything went wrong at once, $1000 wouldn’t be enough. That was a personal choice for us.
At the time, we didn’t have $100 to spend on the class. We were already drowning and going to some stuffy class WE HAD TO PAY FOR to have a pressed shirt tell us what to do with our money didn’t sound like any place we wanted to be. But it really was a HUGE life changer. I’d say the biggest life changer, but diet change and having a child(ren) will rank fairly high with it.
I encourage you to find an FPU class nearby. The accountability of others in the same boat we were is what made that class pure MAGIC. If, like us, $100 just isn’t there, sell something! Have a yard sale. Scrape that money together. It will be the highest returning investment you’ll ever make! And, who better to invest in, than YOU?