Last week, the hubby and I went to an appointment with one of the financial counselors through the MWR. Since we had such a great experience, I thought I would share with you.
Here's a little preface:
The hubs and I will be married for a year at the end of March. He is 19, I am 20. We both came from single-income homes (translation- neither of us grew up with money). We both got a job from a young age. I payed for all my bills (which, with a horse, a car, cell phone, etc. added up) and when Chris and I met, he payed for everything that included us. We know what its like to live paycheck to paycheck, both inside the military and out. Since getting married, we have done a good job with managing our finances.. But now we have so many bills and responsibilities. So Chris and I had a talk about managing our money, and building credit, and decided to make an appointment with a financial counselor.
The day before our appointment, Chris and I sat down to fill out the budget we were required to fill in and bring with us. Since there are so many factors into our net income, (we are currently getting BAS, but that will be up in the next few months.. I'm not employed now, but hope to be in the next few months) I got frustrated and said that I didn't want to go because I am fully capable of making our own budget. Chris convinced me that it would be good to hear from an expert, so we went! Our appointment was with an awesome and hyper man named Kermit. We went through the budget, filling in how much money we had in all accounts, how much we spent on every little thing, how much our assets were worth. At the end, we found out that we accounted for all of our money- we were less than 1% off. It was the closest he had seen, and we were pretty surprised ourselves. He then talked to us about retirement planning, investing, and he even had some advice about credit and car shopping.
Kermit was so surprised and happy to see us- most of the people who come in are so far in debt that they can't find a way out. We have everything in order, and just wanted some reassurance. He told us about some seminars, asked us to do some research about retirement plans (like tsp), and come back to him in a few months.
Here's the best part: It is completely FREE. So even if you think you have everything in order, I still recommend that you take advantage of MWR financial counseling. If anything, you will walk out feeling reassured and with a few tips to make the best of your own money.