Family Money Compass
The Family Money compass is a philosophy or creed. It focuses on what you as a family want to do and be around money. It brings your values or principles forward to guide the family on money issues. Have all family members sign and agree to the terms. Refer to it when you feel lost or off track.
- We will spend less than we earn. We promise to pay ourselves first by saving a portion of our income every month. It is the foundation of our financial security and independence. We need to invest in the future and be ready for challenging or uncertain times.
- We will continue to learn and grow. We believe in personal growth and lifelong learning. Knowledge is a seed that over time bears fruit. We will continue to learn more about money and the subjects that inspire us.
- We will use our home as a savings account. Besides shelter and comfort for our family, the role of a house in our financial life is to build equity by paying off the mortgage balance. We will not borrow from our home equity to pay off credit card debt.
- We will take care of our money. We understand the difference between a want versus a need. We will invest our money where it can grow, not in get rich quick schemes or lottery tickets. We will participate in employer sponsored retirement plans to prepare for the future.
- We will defend our credit worthiness. We will commit to maintaining a zero balance on our credit card. We will borrow only when we need to and in amounts we can pay back.
- We will ignore unsolicited credit card offers. We will decide what financial products are best for our situation, not a company marketing to us. Taking advantage of a special offer is not worth the headache of having multiple credit cards.
- We will know the cost of borrowing. When we finance a purchase, we will know what interest will really cost in dollars and add it to the purchase price. Then we will ask ourselves if it is still worth it.
- We will invest for the long term. We will understand what we are investing in and work with a fee-only financial advisor that will act as our fiduciary and educate us. We will focus on long term goals rather than short term gains.
- We will take care of the things we have. We will keep in mind how hard we worked for the things we have. We will not treat our possessions as disposable.
- We will remember what matters. We will not be influenced by peers to keep up with their spending habits. If we have to keep up spending to be friends, they are not our friends at all. We are not the things we own.
- We will be generous to others. We are fortunate for the love, laughter and joy in our home. We will express our gratitude by sharing with others.
- We will be heard. We will practice sound family money management. We will stop our consumption and build a secure future. We will change the status quo, one person, one family and one community at a time.