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!”.