Actually, it really is.
One of my New Year goals is to get in better financial shape. In Australia, that means following the advice of our monetary Marie Kondo. Scott Pape – The Barefoot Investor. He is at guru status now, still holding on to his title as Australia’s best selling author.
For those playing in other countries, he is the Australian equivalent of Dave Ramsey, but keeps his money in banks, not envelopes. I recommend this for any spoonies with brain fog. I still open books and find dollar dollar bills ya’ll that I have hidden in a moment of impure genius. Banks, much safer.
Pape’s system is to have “buckets” to divert your income into. 60% for Daily Expenses, 20% for a Fire Extinguisher to assist with emergency and savings, 10% to Splurge on your own good self and 10% to work on your future Smile. Not dental bills but dreams. Like Bora Bora. He also recommends that you do all of this planning on date nights. He had me at Mexican.
I don’t use cash. I’m financially independent so I don’t need to. I’m the only person that gets to cringe at my bank statements and the amount I spent on coffee and biscotti. So for me, it is quite easy to see where every last cent goes by downloading my banking history into an excel sheet, sorting by merchant and hiding all KFC transactions and pretending that never happened.
This is where it gets a little different for spoonies. Medical needs are daily expenses, but if you include them it’s going to mess up your ratios. If they are like mine, combined with my daughters, they fluctuate enormously. Unexpected ones technically could come from your Fire Extinguisher account, but what if your oven breaks down the same day as a brain MRI is ordered? In Australia, we have exceptional health care courtesy of Medicare and the PBS, however my out of pocket expenses last year could have funded a lovely first class ticket around the world. Or you know, go towards my mortgage.
Like all gurus, the Barefoot Investor has many groups of followers on the Book of Face and they are often a source of great wisdom. HOT TIP: never start with “I haven’t read the book yet but…” the collective eye-roll would be felt at Zuckerberg’s open plan hot desk.
Taking my financial woes to my personal favourite Barefoot Facebook group it appears that I have missed a pretty important subsidy to cover catheters under the Continence Aids Payment Scheme. At the time of entering the world of our new normal, I was assured that we wouldn’t qualify for anything. I had a cursory glance and trusted the professionals.
This is a Barefoot no-no in the world of finance and must be applied to more than our interest rates. We should be doing regular check-ins, we should be lobbying for change, we should scrunch dry our “may I speak to the manager” haircuts and ensure we are getting the best possible deal. Government budgets change often and we should be setting minimum yearly pulse check. On our health finances, not the Government. That caper is Weekend at Bernie’s enough.
So today in that spirit, mine not Bernie’s, I will be putting in an application to relieve some of the financial pressure we face as a duo spoonie household and diverting that money to a first class ticket to Bora Bora.
I mean, the mortgage.
But if Scott isn’t reading – totally Bora Bora.