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Jeff and Sue's Journey:

Learning to be Proactive rather than Reactive with our finances

First off, we want to tell all of you how excited we are to be a part of Season 11 of Summit Credit Union’s Project Money! Just the idea of getting a handle on our finances feels like a weight is being lifted from us.

A little background about “Team Jeff & Sue.” We have our home in Columbus and in June will be celebrating our 33rd wedding anniversary. We have two grown children. Our daughter is a teacher; she and our son-in-law live in Madison. Our son finished his active duty in the Marine Corps and is currently living with us while using his GI Bill at Madison College. He will be transferring to UW-Stevens Point in January to pursue a degree in wildlife law enforcement. We feel we are somewhat different than most of the past participants of Project Money in that we are older adults nearer to retirement than “starting out.” We felt we had a handle on our finances and had built up a very respectful savings account when Sue was diagnosed with breast cancer two years ago. Our daughter also got engaged during this time, so we now had a wedding to plan for as well. We quickly learned how important it is to have an emergency savings account for those events that can pop up in your daily lives. Along with using the money in our savings account, we relied on our credit cards for additional unexpected expenses (sick dogs, vehicle repairs/maintenance, new furnace). Face it, we have all been in this boat at some time in our lives while even though payments are being made, it seems that you are not making any headway on the balances. True financial frustration!

To think that we almost deleted that email from Summit Credit Union looking for people to apply to be a part of Project Money! Since being selected as one of the four participants, we have already learned so much about how we can better manage our money, set budgets and goals, and all the amazing financial tools and services that are available to all Summit Credit Union members! Our goals are to reduce our credit card debt, plan for replacing our aging vehicles with high mileage, pay off our home mortgage, rebuild our savings account, and save for vacations. Initially this list seems somewhat daunting, but with the help of our awesome coach, Aidan, we feel confident that our goals are achievable!

Over the next several months, we will share with you some of the things we do to save money in our everyday life, so stay tuned. We look forward to you following along with us on this journey! Who knows, you may even pick up a tip or two along the way!


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