Welcome to Our First #Blab with Chris of MoneyPeach.com
In addition to the standard three question written interview (see below), we have now introduced a #blab video interview. We spend about 15 to 20 minutes asking some finance related and some fun and interesting questions about our featured Money Master. Join us every first and third week of the month as we get the low down on what makes our Money Masters’ financial clocks tick.
The Money Master Questions
This month’s Money Master is Chris Peach of Money Peach. We initially met Chris on Twitter. Over time, we realized we had a lot in common with Chis and his wife. Similar to them, everything looked great on the outside for us. Then we realized our finances weren’t matching our lifestyle.
Chris is passionate about money and talking about money. Chris speaks from a pragmatic voice, almost as if you’re talking to your buddy over a beer. We like talking money and like beer, so we should have a beer with Chris someday.
One of our recent favorite posts of Chris is his The Seven Myths of Cash. Our readers know that we believe Cash is King. People seem to be afraid of cash for various reasons. Chris nicely breaks down those myths.
1. What’s your story?
I am actually a firefighter in Arizona and really had no intentions of having a passion for personal finance. I really didn’t think much about it until 2011. My wife and I were both working full time jobs and had a fantastic income between the two of us. She is a television news anchor and with my firefighting job, our income was great. However, we were dead broke. We were paycheck-to-paycheck with really no plan in place. We just slowly started to spend more and more until one day we realized we didn’t even have enough money in the bank for groceries. We were both pretty embarrassed and finally had the “I’ve had it moment”. We decided to learn a new way of handling money since our way was officially terrible. The first thing we learned was we were normal. Normal is living paycheck-to-paycheck, with little to no savings, and owning all the luxury items in life to impress people we didn’t know (or really care about). On the outside, we looked rich! On the inside, we were struggling.
The first thing we decided is that we needed to be on this new “money plan” TOGETHER. It won’t work if one of you is pulling in one direction and the other is pulling the opposite way. We sat down together and cut up all of our credit cards. It was pretty simple: we sucked at using them! We stopped kidding ourselves that we were “responsible” with them and literally cut them out of our lives. Next, we got on a budget that works and started to pay down all of our debt using The Debt Snowball. A crazy thing happened – it worked.
Our friends and family thought we were pretty crazy at first. Then they noticed that our “new” way of behaving with money was working and people started asking us our secret. The secret was really called common sense. Over the period of a few years we began leading families through Dave Ramsey’s Financial Peace University. Then we started having people over for dinner and showing them how to set up their budget. Things started moving even faster and eventually Money Peach was born*.
*The Name:* My name is Chris, but my friends have called me Peach since I was a kid. Some of my best friends don’t even know my real name 🙂 Since I like to talk about money and my name is Peach, my creative mind really came up with something special – * insert sarcasm face here.*
2. What’s your point of view, as a personal finance blogger?
I think there is a lot of good out there in the personal finance blogging world, but I also think there is a lot of boring and/or safe. It seems like you can read 5 different personal finance blogs and you may think you are reading the same author. My tone is a little bit different because I am not from the finance world. I’ve never worked in an office or wore a suit and tie to work. I am a husband, dad, firefighter, friend, and just the guy next door who happens to like the topic of “everyday money”. You can call it “Personal Finance”, but to me that already sounds way too sophisticated. My focus is to allow people to realize this money stuff is really only 80% behavior and 20% fifth-grade math. It’s common sense in a world where common sense isn’t that common. It’s stuff you and I and everyone in between can understand. It’s your money, your life, and your future. It’s supposed to be simple to understand. That’s what has worked for us and what has also worked with people we have helped out over the years.
3. In one sentence, what’s one piece of sage advice from your personal finance background that you’d like to share with our readers?
Getting out of debt and living a life of financial freedom is going to be simple to understand, it’s going to be hard to achieve, and it’s going to be better than you had ever imagined.