True personal financial guidance?
March 9, 2015 11:36 AM   Subscribe

Is there a service or person that I can hire to help me get my financial house in order? And I don't mean just my credit, but in depth day-to-day finances?

I make decent money. I have bills. I have low credit but it's getting better. I'm trying to buy a house one year from now. Sometimes I feel like I don't know how to juggle bills, paying off debt, spending money, etc. I'm no spring chicken and I'm not stupid, but I also work (and live) as a creative and don't have as organized a mind as I'd like in these areas.

Is there a service or person you can hire to take a look at your whole personal financial situation and make recommendations on what to pay first, prioritize, etc? I've been to credit counselors and they have helped me with that aspect of my life, but I'm talking more of a holistic style coach.
posted by tunewell to Work & Money (5 answers total) 8 users marked this as a favorite
I know someone who does exactly that, actually. She was a financial planner, now she does a mixed money coach/life coach thing. I think she calls herself a financial life planner?
posted by okayokayigive at 12:06 PM on March 9, 2015

The questions asked previously and previously are slightly different than yours, but many of the answers apply to your situation as well.
posted by Mr.Know-it-some at 12:20 PM on March 9, 2015

One year is way too short a window to go from having a low credit score and disorganized finances to buying a house. You will get killed on mortgage interest rates if you buy a house before you have good credit.

Based on Google's mortgage calculator a mortgage for the median us house price in 2013 of $265,800 would cost $452,427 over 30 years at 3.92%. At 4.92% the cost is $509,006. So more than $50K difference just from a 1% worse mortgage rate. Plus with poor credit you will probably have to pay for mortgage insurance as well which is huge hit.

Set a more realistic goal like a 5 year target to fully rehab your credit and accumulate a significant down payment by automatic payroll deduction into something like a roth ira.

I manage my debt using this google docs Debt Reduction Calculator template. (it also helps control my spending because I can see what adding any debt by buying stuff now actually costs over the lifetime of all my debt - pretty sobering stuff).

I'd suggest you drop the notion that there is something about you or your lifestyle that precludes being financially competent and organized and take it on yourself rather than outsourcing it. You should be able to manage your financial affairs with less than half an hour per weeks effort. Getting full personal control of your finances is actually extremely liberating and empowering. YOU will know how well YOU are doing and as a result YOU will be free not to worry about it. If you hire others to manage your money or your situation you will always be at least a bit in the dark and perhaps wonder about trust (and trust me you shouldn't trust other people with your money unless you want them to have it).
posted by srboisvert at 2:15 PM on March 9, 2015 [1 favorite]

There are tons of blogs and forums that will do this for you, for free, if you are okay with posting basic info about your finances--askme is actually great for this as well as r/personalfinance.
posted by chaiminda at 2:17 PM on March 9, 2015

Along the lines of chaiminda's suggestion, you can get tons of advice in the SomethingAwful Business, Finance, and Careers forum.
posted by neushoorn at 2:50 AM on March 10, 2015

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