Many Small Steps | Big Money clients have had amazing results with their money. And yet, when people ask me which client had the most life-changing results, I always think about the same person.
In mid-2015, a client I’ll call “Jenny” came to see me. She was in her late 50s, divorced, and had a high school education. She worked two part-time jobs and also cared for her elderly mother, who lived with her full-time.
Jenny bought her house in 2004, several years before the the Great Recession of 2008. When housing values crashed, her house value did too and she owed more on her home than it was worth. Eventually, the housing market recovered and Jenny’s home was no longer underwater, but the recession left her feeling very nervous about her financial future.
When Jenny and I met about her finances, her two greatest fears were: 1) being unable to pay off her mortgage until her mid-to-late 70s, and 2) never being able to retire. So Jenny and I went through her mortgage statements, her retirement assets (she had no debt), and created a long-term plan for Jenny to take control of her finances.
With our initial plan, I estimated that Jenny would pay off her mortgage in about 10 years. She would be able to retire in her late 60s if she continued to live in a frugal manner.
In mid-2017, Jenny and I met again to review her progress. She gathered her most recent mortgage statements. When I saw the statements, I couldn’t believe my eyes.
According to her mortgage statements, in the past two years, Jenny paid off $60,000 of her mortgage! I started yelling with excitement, and told Jenny she had paid off nearly 38% of her loan! I asked Jenny if she understood the significance of what she did, and she seemed shocked that she had accomplished so much.
When I finally calmed down, I asked Jenny how she did it. She said that she simply followed the plan that we created, using every opportunity she could to work and to create passive streams of income. The best story she told me about creating money was that she saw a shop had a sale on potted plants. Jenny knew she could sell the plants for 3 times the cost, so she and a friend pooled their money and bought $400 worth of plants, then turned those plants into $1,200 the following weekend at a yard sale.
When I meet with Jenny now, I can see that her attitude towards money has totally transformed. Instead of being worried about whether she can pay her bills, she feels empowered about money and sees it as a tool she controls. She felt so free of old money constraints, she actually decided to take a trip around the world, visiting 9 different countries on 3 different continents – and the trip was fully paid for in advance!
Jenny doesn’t have a college education. She doesn’t have a fancy office job with a big salary. She was simply willing to learn about how money actually worked and to follow the financial plan we created.
Understanding your money and knowing how it can work for you can transform your life. Small Steps | Big Money can help you. Click here to find out how.