Goin' to the Chapel and We're...

This time of year, the Peyton household (that’s mine) gets fun mail rolling in. “Pretty gardening catalogs!” my wife would interject. Those are cool too, but I’m talking about the growing collection of announcements. Pictures of hope-filled graduates and beaming brides-to-be decorate our home.

When it comes to gifts, I want to be personal, meaningful, and helpful. (Thankfully, we’ve been keeping the “gifts” category beefed up in anticipation of this month.)

At the risk of sounding like an infomercial, this year I’ve offered YNAB to two of my favorite engaged friends as a wedding gift. While it’s not sophisticated as a crystal clock and probably won’t inspire “ooo-ing” and appreciative head nods from Grandma, it’s honestly the best thing I could think of giving people I want to see set up for happiness and success.

Here’s what led to a meaningful gift-giving experience for me.

Knowing the couple.

I knew my friends were taking a course on financial management together and they’re on the techy side. Anyone who can use a computer without drooling on it too much can benefit immensely from using YNAB, but in my mind, these are perfect YNAB candidates.

Making a sincere offer.

I suppressed my enthusiasm to just below happy puppy and talked to them about why I love YNAB. I said something like, “YNAB has made a huge, positive impact on my marriage and I wish we’d started using it on day one, or even before. If it’s something you’d use, I’d be more than happy to get it for you as a wedding gift. They offer a free, fully functional demo, plus you can use the free app. Once you’ve had a chance to try it out, let me know what you think. I’ll send you a link from my phone right now.”

Offering support

Budgeting can be tough to start, even with something as elegant as YNAB. Knowing this, I always offer emotional and even a little technical support to friends and family who start the journey. Don’t sweat the tech support though. If you’ve ever used YNAB’s help, then you already know how fast and well they treat folks. You can just focus on the cheerleading.

If the graduates in your life are heading off to college, you can pass along this link where college students get YNAB for free! If they’re graduating from college, YNAB is, again, my new favorite gift for helping friends start out right. The worst that can happen is they decline your offer, in which case you buy them the crystal clock. Best case scenario, however, is giving them a tool that will genuinely help them toward a happily ever after.