The police officer, school teacher, engineer, firefighter, attorney, doctor, professor, designer, manager and rocket scientist all have one thing in common: they’re killing it financially with YNAB.
I work as a systems engineer for a large online retailer (CSN Stores). My wife and I moved in together very shortly after dating. I had a substantial amount of debt (close to $35k) and she had none. She managed her money much better than I did and worked two full-time jobs through college to make sure she had no debt. I didn't want to tell her just how bad my money situation was. I had to pull $2000 from my over draft fund just to cover the expenses of moving in together.
Within months, money became a serious issue. My wife didn't know how to handle debt and it started to take a toll. I was head over heels in love with this woman, and was watching her cry every night over the money issue. I went from never really managing my money to having someone depend on me. I realized if I didn’t fix this, I'd lose her. She was my other half and I couldn't let that happen.
The YNAB program was very simple to use. It was the money organization that was tough. I spent a month or so tracking all our money and figuring out just how much we had so I could know how much we needed to pay down. I setup a snowball spreadsheet to help with the debt and dumped everything else into YNAB. It took a good three months for everything to solidify.
I was much happier. We had a plan. My wife stopped crying at night. We were paying debt off and had an approximate time-line for when it was going to happen. It's been three and half years since we started with YNAB. In that time we've paid off $35k of debt, paid cash for our wedding (roughly $6k), paid cash for our honeymoon (roughly $7200), and paid cash for a week long trip to Italy to celebrate our one year anniversary ($4000). Now we’re saving for a house. We'll be able to afford it MUCH sooner thanks to YNAB and some dedication. In June, we'll also be expecting the arrival of our first child.
Having a full grasp on our finances has really turned my life around. We manage it and don't let it manage us. I'm happily married with a child on the way and house hunting, without a huge weight on my shoulders. Money is no longer an issue.
I don't usually go out of my way to share my story like this, but I came from a place that was "scary" to say the least. Thanks to a solid system, YNAB helped me out of the hole. I just want others to know that there is a light at the end of the tunnel. Keep working at it. It is totally worth the work.
I was much happier. We had a plan. My wife stopped crying at night.