What Teresa Giudice Taught Me About Personal Finance

Some of you may be wondering, who the eff is Teresa Giudice? She’s basically the main cast member of the Real Housewives of New Jersey.¬† Whoever pisses her off, gets kicked off the show. Right away, I thought she’s the gal to watch.

I was right, but not because it was positive. On the first season of the Real Housewives of New Jersey, Teresa had a sh*t load of cash on her at all times. My first thought as a millennial was, “duh – her husband is involved in something shady”. Unfortunately, for her, I was right.

He, along with their lawyers, had Teresa sign some mortgage documents, which had fraudulent information on the legal documents. That was the only reason they could afford their very large, tacky, New Jersey mansion.

She, the typical stereotype housewife, signed the papers without any thought of deception. As a result, she faced just under 1 year in prison, and her husband is currently doing almost 5 years.

But, we don’t dare say the word prison… It’s camp, if you’re Italian! I am not, though. So, it’s prison, b*tches!!!

Do I feel bad for her? Yes. Do I think this is an opportunity for others to learn from her mistakes? Of course.

My lessons from this highly publicized, but not so crazy to understand scenario was:

  1. Don’t trust lawyers, even if you pay them.
  2. Both partners need to be aware of their finances.
  3. Ladies (and guys!), make your own $.
  4. Live within your means.
  5. Move the eff on.

Don’t Trust Lawyers, Even if You Pay Them

Just because you pay someone, doesn’t mean they have your best interests at heart. I know that’s annoying to hear, but it’s the truth. Salespeople make most of their living from commission. Do I honestly believe they care more about me than their family they’re trying to take care of? No. And if they do, they suck.

Both Partners Need to Be Aware of Their Finances

It doesn’t matter what gender you are. Especially, in this gender fluity time. Both partners in the relationship need to be well aware of their finances as a partnership. If Gail Vaz-Oxlade taught us anything, it’s that money is the leading cause of divorce.

Ladies (and Guys!), Make Your Own $.

I may work in the 9-5 corporate grind, but that doesn’t mean everyone has to. Many stay-at-home spouses or parents think their earnings will be non-existent as long as they don’t have a T4/W2 paying job. But, these days there are so many options to make money online. (This is my first attempt at it, so I’ll let you know how it goes).

Live Within Your Means

I’ve been out of college for 5 years now. Within that time, I’ve allowed my spending to increase minimally. I still live in the same apartment as I did when in college. This has allowed my housing expenses to remain pretty much constant for the last 5 years.

Grocery expenses have gone up a little as I no longer live on the ramen/Mac & cheese/frozen pizza  diet.

Car expenses went up once I purchased a car (paid off the car loan in 1 year).

All the other bills and fun spending have gone up a bit, but not much. Sometimes, I actually think I should be spending more on these things, but then I remember what’s important to me.

Move the Eff On

Ya, you can face sh*tty times, but guess what? You also get the chance again to face good times. So eff the bad times, and let’s start focusing on the good times. I have been known to be a pessimist at times, but I’m hoping this blog and possible community I meet out of this experience will allow us to both teach and push each other to reach amazing, positive things!

That’s all for today, folks.

Keep fighting the good fight, and “Dracarys, bitches!”.

Hello, is it me you’re looking for?

Hi FIghters,

I’m not going to lie, this feels very odd not knowing who I am speaking with, other than myself. I’m crazy enough on a good day, so adding to it is not required.

Guess you’re wondering why the hell you should care about what I have to say? Truth be told, you probably shouldn’t. I’m just a 30 year old Canadian guy, who loves Bravo TV and finances.

Yes, you read that right. I am a male. I watch Bravo TV. I love all things Real Housewives, Vanderpump Rules, and Southern Charm. Don’t you dare ask me if I like Below Deck; otherwise, you’re looking to get decked, below the belt.

With that comes an attraction to personal finance. Maybe these fake people aspire me to make money? Just don’t let me get botox yet. Apparently, botox parties are all the rage in my city lately.

Since graduating college 5 years ago, I’ve paid off $55,000 of student loan, credit card, and car loan debt, and grown my networth by more than $150,000. Writing that seems INSANE to me, as I’m just a regular guy with a regular, government job. No 6 figure income and no nest egg from mommy or daddy. Actually, the opposite (son of a single mother – story for another day).

In the last few months, I’ve started getting burnt out at work and saving/investing. I thought about calling it quits, buying a bunch of things, and looking for any other creative outlet. After a few trips, deaths, and some soul searching, I know physical things just aren’t as important as freedom and time with loves ones.

This site is to keep me accountable as I work towards financial independence. I’ll share my networth, income, and expenses to keep me accountable. They won’t be huge $100k increases, but anything + is the right direction.

Anyone who wants to join me and be an accountability partner is SO SO SO welcome to send me an email at guymeetsfi@gmail.com.

Dracarys, bitches.