Financial Finesse Builds Over Time

Financial Finesse Builds Over Time

The financial stresses that keep me up at night are what I assume keep most women up at night – household expenses, debt and retirement. Thankfully, I’ve taken steps throughout my life to lessen those worries over time.

When I was 17, I bought my first car, a Ford Thunderbird. Growing up in a family of 10 meant money was always tight, however, and my parents couldn’t afford car insurance for a 17-year-old. So, I purchased my first insurance policy, automobile insurance. Oh how I hated paying that premium every month, but loved the freedom a car gave me!

A few years later, I purchased my first life insurance policy. It was a simplified issue policy that only required me to check “no” for a few questions. It wasn’t a big policy at all – a $20,000 benefit with a rider to double the benefit if I died as a result of an accident. But it gave me peace of mind knowing if something happened to me, my parents and younger siblings would not be burdened financially. 

Around this same time, I also starting working for a company that offered a retirement savings plan, called a 401(k). I knew if I saved 3 percent of my own money, the company would match that 3percent. Who doesn’t love free money?! As my earning power started to grow, I began contributing additional funds.

Fast forward to getting married … after a five-year engagement, I never thought that day would come, but it did. What was I going to do protect my husband in case something unexpectedly happened to me? What if something happened to both of us? Who was going to take care of our beloved dogs?  Did we want everything tied up in our estate to create a court battle between families? No, not at all! We had wills drafted that stated our intentions and named family members as executors of the estate. We also made sure our contingent beneficiaries matched the intentions in the will. 

Do I still lay awake in bed worrying about stuff? Yes! But not every dollar and cent because I know I have created a great foundation to continue building my financial dreams. 

Put It In Practice: August is #FinancialFinesse month. Take the time to help guide the next generation of women on how to make sensible financial decisions throughout their lives.