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Stop Wasting Food

MoneyWise / Rob West and Steve Moore
The Truth Network Radio
November 10, 2020 7:03 am

Stop Wasting Food

MoneyWise / Rob West and Steve Moore

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November 10, 2020 7:03 am

None of us do it intentionally, but Americans end up wasting a tremendous amount of food. And when those over-ripe bananas go into the garbage, so does the hard-earned money we used to buy them. On the next MoneyWise Live, hosts Rob West and Steve Moore share some ways to help you cut your losses when it comes to unused food. We’ll talk about how to stop wasting food on the next MoneyWise Live at 4pm Eastern/3pm Central on Moody Radio. 

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That's Real Radio.

The West has some ways to cut your losses. Then it's your calls at 800-525-7000. 800-525-7000. I'm Steve Moore. Stop wasting food.

That's next right here on Money Wise Live. Well, Rob, this is something no one really wants to talk about, but it's the rare household that doesn't have some kind of science project growing in the fridge. Things that are green, of many shades, and shouldn't be in the back, in the corner there. Just how bad is this problem? Well, it's bad, Steve, including what you just described. You know, even if only half of what a recent study found is true, it's bad. Researchers at Penn State have determined the average U.S. household wastes, I should say, 32% of the food purchased. They used data collected from 4,000 households, so it's not a small study. It revealed that two-thirds of those households waste between 20 and 50% of the food brought home from the grocery store. And that, even the latest wasteful families, 10% of the food they purchased goes uneaten. Yeah, but look at the bright side.

This is how penicillin was discovered. Ah, there you go. Pretty sure. Something like that.

Always a glass half full kind of guy, Steve Moore. Okay, what kind of money are we talking about here? Well, listen to this. It translates to nearly $2,000 a year in wasted food for the average family. Now, while that's bad, it also leaves a lot of room for improvement, and we can definitely do things to cut down on food waste.

Yeah, all right. Well, let's get into that because I know you have some ideas for us. Where do we start?

Well, the first idea is pretty simple. Just start taking notes of what you throw away, whether it's left on plates after a meal or one of those science projects you talked about growing moldy in the fridge. Write it down, and in a few weeks, you'll get a good idea of where you should buy smaller amounts of things. Next, pay attention to storage life. Some foods last longer than others. So save things like apples, carrots, and potatoes until after you've eaten the softer fruits and the leafy greens that spoil faster. Or get a dog. Okay, well that makes sense.

All right, what else? Well, if you have any children, pay attention to how much food you put on their plates, some of which often gets wasted. You can always give them seconds if they want more, and then store the rest. And now that you've got leftovers in the fridge, put them to good use. They make perfect lunches the next day for you or the kids, and if there's a lot, make it a second dinner. Some meals like, I don't know, spaghetti or lasagna actually taste better the second day, at least that's my experience.

Yeah, I've noticed that as well. Maybe not with fish, but maybe anything else. Okay, what else? All right, how often have you come home from the store and found that you already had something you just bought? Well, that can lead to waste. So take time before heading out to see what's already in the fridge or pantry, then cross those items off your shopping list, which, by the way, you should always have. Exactly. Okay, good idea.

What else? Well, pay attention to the contents of your freezer. Meats often get tossed in there and turn into Frosty the Snowman before you can think to use them. At the same time, it's okay to rely on frozen fruits and vegetables if you don't leave them in there too long. They may actually have more nutrients frozen than if they're allowed to wilt in the fridge, interestingly.

Okay, Frosty the Snowman in the freezer. All right, how about another idea? Well, we often waste food without even knowing it. We tend to toss things out that are actually quite edible and nutritious. For example, broccoli stems. Instead of discarding them when you prepare fresh broccoli, cut them into smaller pieces and you can make a soup out of them, I'm told. Save those squash seeds and bake them for a snack. If you buy carrots with the top still on them, well, those greens can go in a salad, again, I'm told.

So the idea is think before you toss and if there's a way to turn those scraps into part of a meal, well, why not do it? This is enlightening. Carrot tops in your salad.

Who knew? All right, anything else? Well, there's another one. Think ugly and here's what I mean. Look for things that aren't pretty in the produce section. Sometimes stores will actually set aside things that aren't perfect like potatoes. Maybe they're lumpy or misshapen. They'll mark them down in price.

They taste just the same and maybe you can save a few bucks along the way. There you go. Mr. Potato Head.

Who knew? You're listening to MoneyWise Live 800-525-7000. Give us a call right now. More information helps you clear up the confusion, unrack your nerves and make the best mortgage decisions possible with confidence. Navigating the mortgage maze available when you click the store button at MoneyWiseLive.org. For 30 years, Soundmind Investing has been helping Christians reach their financial goals with step-by-step guidance for investors at every stage, from those just getting started to those getting ready for retirement. Through scriptural principles and practical suggestions, SMI offers financial wisdom for living well.

More information, including a short video webinar on profit and peace of mind, no matter what's happening in the market, is available at SoundmindInvesting.org. Welcome to High School Prep Debate. Our topic tonight, religious expression in the classroom. Please help me welcome our dignified debaters from Central High School in Michigan and Jefferson High School in Virginia.

All right, let's get started. Central, give us your opening argument on religious expression at school. The founding fathers of our country would roll over in their graves if they knew prayer and Bible clubs were meeting at school. There's no place for it. We're here to educate, not indoctrinate. And Jefferson, your opening statement please. Oh, religion is like ice cream.

There's lots of choices, and we should sample as many choices as we can. I mean, who can say one religion is better than another? Religious expression at school should be encouraged.

Getting tired of all the talk? How can you debate the important issues without any morals or values? You have to have truth, otherwise the answers to critical issues are capricious. Jesus said the truth will set you free, and the Lord Jesus is truth. If the heavy burden of debt is robbing you of freedom and peace of mind, Christian Credit Counselors can help. We're a nationwide nonprofit credit counseling organization that has helped over 300,000 individuals in the last 27 years get out of credit card debt 80% faster, while honoring that debt in full. To learn how Christian Credit Counselors can help you, visit christiancreditcounselors.org. That's christiancreditcounselors.org, or call 800-557-1985. Hey, good to have you with us today.

It's MoneyWise Live. Rob West is the guy taking your calls and providing all the answers. I'm Steve Moore, just kind of helping out around here.

I clean up, I empty the waste paper baskets. In fact, during the break, someone contacted us, Rob, and said that penicillin, the penicillin strain that we all use today was found on a grape soft drink bottle behind a shopping mall somewhere or something. What was that all about? I don't know.

I don't know either. Sounds fascinating, though. But others have been calling in. Karen is with us right now. Oh, I have to give the phone number first, or Rob will fire me.

800-525-7000. Oh, but the caller we were all set to say hello to, we lost her phone line. It was Karen, and she had a tip for not wasting food, putting veggie peels and bones in the freezer to cook down for stock for when you make soup or something like that. But Karen, since the idea is original with you, if you're still out there listening and you want to try to call us back, we'll try to get you on the air. But if anyone else has some suggestions about ways to save money on food, not waste food, we'd love to hear it. And of course, we're taking your financial calls on anything today.

800-525-7000. In fact, Rob, we've had a number of people answer this question on our Facebook page today. The question was, what ways have you found to cut food waste? Lisa says, always ask for a carryout box when dining out, and then have a second meal the next day.

I like that. Maria says her family makes a menu plan and sticks to it. And then Flynn, why don't you read us Flynn's response, Rob?

Well, Flynn just says anything he can't eat right away, he freezes. So I think there's a theme there that perhaps portions are larger or we might cook more than we need. And so saving that, repurposing it for another meal, maybe taking it for lunch and cutting cut down on spending by eating out would be a great way to stretch your dollars and not waste food.

So I think that's great. Now here's something I've heard, just through the grapevine, I'm just passing it on, I'm just the messenger. I've heard that if you hang out late at night at Chick-fil-A, I'm talking like 1 a.m., out back when they clean out the stuff and they put stuff in the dumpster, occasionally there are several nuggets that find their way out into the parking lot. And if you're a nugget guy, you could grab those up. Interesting. I will tell you though, my brother-in-law, who has kind of a green thumb, has put a little personal composter in the backyard.

So he's composting extra wasted food that they have at the end of the night and using it in the garden. So there's all kinds of opportunities, Steve, if you get creative. There you go, 800-525-7000. Anything you want to talk about that's financial today, fair game, and we have these open lines, so let's fill them up. That's what they pay us to do, 800-525-7000. Alan's calling from Terre Haute, Indiana. Alan, what do you have for us, sir?

Yes, I just want to say thank you to you guys. I've been a long-time listener. Actually, I got started on Dave Ramsey about two years ago. And then I've been listening to you guys for about a year and a half now, and it has finally paid off.

Last week, I actually hit a deer in my truck and totaled it out and did not have enough insurance to cover it. But with your guys' advice and listening to you guys and everything, I am at a place where my credit score is great. I've got money saved up, and I have a brand new vehicle, a 2019, that's paid for right off the lot.

Wow. Well, Alan, I'm so delighted to hear you've been listening. I'm thrilled that you're active in our MoneyWise community and that you've been applying God's principles, which puts you in a position when the unexpected comes.

And certainly a deer running out in front of the car is the unexpected, that you were in a position—first of all, I'm glad you're okay—but that you were in a position to replace that vehicle with cash. Tell me how you did it. What have you been doing? Did you cut back on your lifestyle? Did you cut back on expenses? How did you save that money? It started with the baby steps with Dave Ramsey's and then applying everything you guys talk about, the food that you guys were talking about today.

I came across it about seven, eight months ago. We started doing that, not going out on vacations, not going out to eat all the time, just watching every dime that comes in and it's paid off. That's great, Alan. Well, listen, you stay on the line. I want to get your information. We're going to send you a copy of Howard Dayton's book, Your Money Counts.

I think it'll be a real encouragement to you. And by the way, you're going to get Steve, Rob and Dave next Tuesday. Dave Ramsey is actually our guest on the 17th. He'll be right here on MoneyWise Live. So be sure to tune in every day, but most certainly next week, and we'll look forward to having our friend Dave Ramsey along with us.

And Alan, while you've been talking to Rob, I've been Googling and here's what I found, that the average whitetail deer will feed a family of four for three weeks. So you covered a lot of different bases there. You got a new car. You filled the freezer. You are one creative guy, Alan. And God bless you, brother. We're glad that you called in. Make sure you tune in next week to hear Dave Ramsey. He will be here on the program and we're going to chat about all sorts of fun stuff. He's a fun guy.

And we like to think we are as well. We're glad that you called today. 800-525-7000.

Teresa in North Georgia, what do you have for us? Hi, thank you for taking my call. I have a question about credit card debt, and I have about $17,000 worth of revolving credit card debt. And most of it came about because of a family crisis where I had to quit my job and take care of a family member. Anyway, but I've been paying on it for several years and I'm just not getting anywhere.

So my question is, would it be a good idea to just take out a home equity loan and get these paid off? Yeah. You know, Teresa, I mean, what I'm hearing from you is this wasn't a result of just lifestyle and overspending without a budget.

Obviously, there was a real event that occurred. You had to step in and care for some family and that resulted in some debt. So it puts it in a little different category. With that said, I still don't like putting it on the house right now. This is unsecured debt, not secured. And although the interest rates are higher than you probably want them to be in those low lower interest rates right now on home loans are pretty appealing. We're going to collateralize it by the house. We're also going to potentially stretch it out over a much longer period of time so that lower interest rate is not going to be as effective because, you know, we could end up paying on this credit card debt for the next 20 years or more. So my preference in this type of situation is to use a debt management program. Are you familiar with how that works? No.

Okay, so here's the deal. Credit card companies work through nonprofit credit counseling agencies to lower interest rates if someone will close their card and work through the nonprofit credit counseling agency to make their payments. It's not factored into your credit score, although the fact that you are in a credit counseling program is noted on your credit report.

So if a lender pulled your credit report, they might see that, but it's not going to be reflected necessarily in the credit score itself. What's the benefit? Well, the combination of a consistent monthly payment to the credit card company through the credit counseling agency and the reduction in interest rates because just about every issuer will offer lower rates through credit counseling will allow you to pay this off 80% faster. So I like this a lot better because it doesn't involve any new debt.

We're not trying to consolidate anything or roll it up. We leave it right where it is, the account gets closed, and then we send one payment every month with that lower interest rate, which helps you to get a lot more going to principal reduction each month. Our partners in doing that, they've been doing it a long, long time, they're all believers, is Christian Credit Counselors. I encourage you, Teresa, to start there at christiancreditcounselors.org. They're going to pray with you, they're going to help you walk through exactly how this would work, they'll tell you exactly what the interest rates would be reduced to, and then as long as it fits into your budget, which it will because you've been paying the minimums currently, you would just pay one monthly payment to any of those credit card companies that you have. And then I think you'll be encouraged that it'll start coming down, the balance is at least much quicker. So that'd be the way that I'd go.

I'd prefer that over a new consolidation loan and certainly over a home equity loan as well. Teresa, thank you very much for your call. We wish you the best as you work through that.

Chad Nuga, Tennessee. Hi, Gary, what do you have for us today? Thanks for taking my call.

Love your show. I have a food saving tip. We started a tradition New Year's Day of checking expiration dates on food in the pantry and the refrigerator, and we found that we were doing last in, first out, and all the older stuff was sitting there year after year. The oldest item we saw was 2010, and between our house and my wife's folks' house, we threw away two five-gallon buckets of either dry food or liquids that had expired beyond what I would eat. And my rule of thumb was I'll eat it a year after the expiration date on canned goods.

It tastes a little bit old, but you'll still, it won't make you sick. But get away first every year. Clean out that old stuff. I love this.

Well, I mean, there's so much that I like about what you're talking about here. First of all, you're applying accounting principles to food savings here with the last in, first out concept. The second thing is, boy, you're right. We had a tropical storm come through here recently.

Steve was affected by it as well. We were out of power for days. Because of that, as you know, you've got to clean out the fridge. You wouldn't believe some of the expiration dates we found.

So January 1st every year, go through them all, and then prioritize those that are the oldest so you don't have to throw them away. I love it. I love it. I love it. Gary, great information. Thanks very much.

You're listening to MoneyWise Live 800-525-7000. Here's Beth Moore with a quick word. We're going to look at Exodus 4.

I want to start reading at verse 1, just through about 4. Moses answered, What if they do not believe me or listen to me? And said, The Lord did not appear to you. Then the Lord said to him, What is that in your hand?

What is it you're holding on to? And Moses replies back to him, A staff. And the Lord said, Throw it on the ground. And Moses threw it on the ground, and it became a snake, and he ran from it. Then the Lord said to him, Reach out your hand and take it by the tail. So Moses reached out. Now would anybody that knew anything about a snake would know, you don't want to grab the thing by the tail, or it's going to whip around and it's going to bite you.

So it's very, very important that we see that he takes it by the tail. So Moses reached out, took hold of the snake, and it turned back into a staff in his hand. This, said the Lord, is so that they may believe that the Lord, the God of their fathers, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob has appeared to you. See, we look back and we think that God cannot use what seemed to us to have been skills he gave us in the secular world, things he uses of us out there in the world. We cannot imagine that he could then sanctify them and empower them to use them like nothing we could have imagined in the true ministry and service to Jesus Christ.

We can't even imagine that. And yet he said to him, what is in your hand? And I wonder today, what is in our hand? What is he placed in our hand?

What has he given us to do? You've been listening to Beth Moore with today's quick word. We have two ways to experience, now that faith has come, a study of Galatians. The online experience is now available at Bethmoor.org.

The workbook edition will release in January 2021. Either way, Beth would love to have you in Bible study. God cares a great deal more about our money than most of us imagine. In fact, Jesus says more about our use of money and possessions than about anything else, including both heaven and hell. In Managing God's Money, author Randy Alcorn breaks it all down in a simple, easy-to-follow format that makes it the perfect reference tool if you're interested in gaining a solid biblical understanding of money, possessions, and eternity.

Managing God's Money is available when you click the Store button at MoneyWiseLive.org. Great to have you with us today along on MoneyWiseLive. Today we're branching out a little bit beyond where we normally are as far as topics are concerned. Today's opening topic was Stop Wasting Food. We were getting ready to turn the corner, but then, Rob, all the lights started blinking and we have a number of people who are letting us know how they save money on food and not wasting food. Gail's calling from New Mexico.

What do you guys do, Gail? Well, we feed the scraps to the chickens, and then they produce eggs for you. What kind of scraps can you feed to a chicken?

I'm being serious here. What will they eat? Well, they'll eat lettuce, they will eat vegetables, they'll eat corn, they'll eat a lot of the things that you might be throwing out. Yeah, basically everything you don't eat, Steve. It sounds like they do eat corn, lettuce.

And then you eat the eggs, and if you have to, then you eat the chickens. But, hey, Gail, we appreciate your call today. God bless you.

Thanks so much. Sandy calling from Davenport, Iowa. Sandy, what's going on in your basement? Sandy, are you there? Oh, Sandy.

Oh, there she is. Sandy, what do you have going on in your basement? I have a worm farm down there. It's peat moss and shredded paper, and then all of your vegetable scraps, no proteins, but just vegetable scraps. And you start out with a little thing of worms, and you end up with a whole big container of worms. And I put them out in the garden, and I have compost and worms, and the birds are happy, and my garden's happy, and I don't have to throw away so much stuff.

Wow. And then if there are any fishermen or fisherwomen in your family, you've got worms to go fishing, I suppose, if you wanted to. This is very true. But you have to use red worms, not night crawlers. Not night crawlers? No, it's too hot for the night crawlers. Oh, okay.

So you use red worms. All right. I don't have to ask this. You know what? I'm not going to ask it, Rob.

I was thinking protein, but I'm not even going to ask it. Yeah, no, please. I'm so glad you're not going to go there. I'm just going to say, Sandy, thank you for calling today. You have made the program today.

And if we were giving anything away, we'd send you one, but we're not. But we're glad that you called. God bless. Thanks so much.

Orlando, Randy, what's going on with your credit score, sir? Okay, I got a question. First of all, I didn't even call about food, but now you guys got me hungry here. But my wife does. She does a lot where she'll go out and we'll just buy a whole bunch of chicken, like a little chicken cutlets, and they're already frozen. And she'll cook up a bunch of chicken out on the grill. We'll also cook up hamburgers, and she'll also make patties. And she'll do a lot of freezing. So we'll have stuff where I think if once you're prepared, it's a big thing about saving money, not just off the cuff, just going out there and let's go just get something to eat and go out to eat. You know, just, you know, just, I guess you've got to be prepared. So she has everything kind of prepared. That's kind of good.

She comes home, she'll cook it into a little steamer and, you know, we save money that way by not going out. I like it. Well, next time Steve and I are on our way through Orlando, we'll call you ahead of time. You can pull them out of the freezer and we'll go to town. I like it. I like it.

We'll bring some bread, but you're on the hook for the rest of it. Okay. What's your credit score situation? Okay. I got a question. Well, it's not, it's really, here's what I got. So I got 805 credit score and, you know, I've got a lot of friends, you know, we talk about the credit scores and stuff like that.

They tell me where they're at and dah, dah, dah. And some people like, you know, the high seventies and some people like the low sixties, but someone asked me a question like, okay, you got 805, but you know, is it really worth you trying to get an 850 or is it like me? They're like, they're like 795. Is it really worth going through all of this? Cause is there really a difference that you're going to get with interest rates and you know, in your credit cards?

Yeah. I mean, you know, unless you're wanting to compare credit scores with your brother-in-law at Thanksgiving and kind of one up him, there's really no benefit to trying to get above 805. You're going to qualify for the very best interest rates with that credit score. So I would just say, keep following God's principles.

You'll be rewarded. You already have that. You have a great credit score. So I wouldn't think about it any further. Yeah. With a credit score like that, you can afford to actually go out and eat occasionally.

You don't have to pull it out of the freezer. Thanks for calling. We'll be right back. Investing is more than just returns. It's an expression of who you are and what you value. Does the way you invest your money reflect your identity as a Christian? At Eventide, we design investments for performance and a better world so you can invest with a confidence to reach your financial goals while remaining true to your Christian values and commitments. We call this investing that makes the world rejoice. More is available at investeventide.com.

That's investeventide.com. Thank you from the bottom of my heart. I couldn't have had the procedure I needed without CHM's help sharing the bills. That letter from a member displays Christian Healthcare Ministries purpose to glorify God and serve his people.

CHM is the original non-insurance voluntary health cost sharing ministry enabling its members to share the cost of each other's medical bills. Call 800-791-6225 or visit chministries.org. Hi, my name is Hal Hudson, a biblical studies major at the Moody Bible Institute. As we remember our nation's veterans, the Moody Radio Verse of the Week is found in Deuteronomy 31.6. Be strong and courageous. Do not fear or be in dread of them, for it is the Lord your God who goes with you.

He will not leave you or forsake you. That's Deuteronomy 31.6, the Moody Radio Verse of the Week. Remember Patrick Henry?

Give me liberty or give me death. But on his deathbed, he said this about the Bible. Here is a book worth more than all the others, yet it is my misfortune never to have found time to read it.

Don't let his story be your story. Read the Bible. Today in the Word can help. Sign up for this free devotional at todayintheword.org.

That's todayintheword.org. Do you know if you have enough? Enough money? Enough house?

Do you know how much is enough? If not, Ron Blue can help with his book Master Your Money, a step-by-step plan for experiencing financial contentment. Learn how to save, invest, and give wisely, how to create a long-term financial plan, and how to get out of debt.

You'll find it all in Master Your Money by Ron Blue, available when you click the store button at Money Wise Live. For SRN News, I'm John Scott. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell says the President is 100% within his rights to take such action.

McConnell saying that media projections are not the final official word on the election's outcome. And forward planning on locating debt to U.S. factories. 350 jobs.

That would be in Missouri and in Michigan. Stocks finishing mix. The Dow picked up 262 points. The S&P lost 4. This is SRN News. If you find God's plan for your financial life, this is Money Wise Live with Rob West. I'm Steve Moore, and here's our phone number. We have four open lines. This is a great time to try to get in. In fact, if you call right now, you will get in. 800-525-7000. Cordellane, Idaho. Jennifer, how can we help you?

Hi, thanks for taking them by call. We're in a crazy situation, unfortunately. Both my husband and I have lost our jobs due to COVID.

I'm a fiber artist, and so usually I travel and do art shows and craft shows, and Christmas is a big time of year, but those are all canceled. My husband was a camp director at a Christian camp, and they let go the directors. As a result of that, working for a nonprofit, he cannot get unemployment, and we also lost our house. So it's a difficult time for our family. My question is, last year we had purchased sort of a tiny home, if you want to call it, about an hour from camp.

It was going to be our respite place, like a place to get away from the chaos of camp and whatnot. So our family has moved into that. Thankfully, we have a place to go, even though it's a little difficult. But we have been smart with our money, and we have savings. We don't have a lot of debt, but we have about 25,000 in savings. The reality is, though, our situation, my husband has applied for over 100 jobs.

He can't find one. And so I'm looking at this long term, and I'm looking at, okay, our savings can get us through a good chunk of time if there was no other income coming in. But at the same time, I look at, okay, our car, we only have 6000 left on it.

So my dilemma is, what do I do? Do I just make these minimum payments in the essence of trying to stretch out our savings? Or do I say no, let's go ahead and get rid of all of these small ones. And even if that significantly reduces our savings, we're at least rid of the small ones.

I don't know what is the best choice here. Yeah, no, I totally get where you're coming from, Jennifer. And let me just first say I'm sorry to hear about the havoc that's been caused by this pandemic in your lives financially.

I know it's probably been a challenging season and continues to be. Let me just encourage you, though, this is not caught God by surprise. He is your provider, not the camp, not the government, not your employer, no one.

And he will not abdicate that to anyone else. And yet this is a difficult period right now. And my prayer is that there's people and the body of Christ rallying around you right now. And we're certainly going to pray that part of God's provision will include new employment for both you and your husband very, very soon. You know, I like the idea of you preserving cash right now as much as I understand your thought about, well, if we just knock these out, then we don't have those payments any longer. And we're sitting on this lump sum, which, by the way, I'm so thankful that you followed God's principles and you have that emergency fund. That's exactly why you have an emergency fund for a period like this where the unexpected happens.

And this certainly, 2020, was the unexpected for so many families. So I think right now it's a time for you to continue to pay those minimum payments, try to preserve as much as you can that savings that can sustain you while you continue to pray and search and apply, just as he's been doing for what God has for you all next. In the meantime, you go into that May Day budget, which you've done exactly that from what I'm hearing. You moved into that tiny home again, thankful that you had that. I'm sure you're looking at every expense. You know, you've got to start with housing and utilities and transportation, food, and then everything else is kind of on the table, right, where we look at every opportunity to cut back and to save, you know, expenses just to reduce lifestyle and the outgo on a monthly basis. So I would hang on to that 25 you have, stretch it as long as you can, pay the minimums on all the debts so everything stays current, try to continue to reduce expenses as much as possible.

And let's just pray that God will provide as he has thus far, even though you're in a season you didn't expect. Does that make sense though, Jennifer? It does make sense.

And that's sort of where I was. I do have one other question. You know, during this time of COVID, a lot of companies have also said, hey, do you want to, you know, we're offering a skip of payment and we're offering this and I hesitate to do that, even though my family has said, why don't you take advantage of it now? And I said, because I have savings. But is that also something, you know, is that something that I should not be being prideful maybe about and say, take that right now? Yeah, I would take advantage of those, Jennifer. It's not like you're, you know, taking advantage of anyone doing something you shouldn't. This is an unprecedented time.

We're in the midst of a global pandemic. And these lenders are offering these skipped payments and so forth because they're trying to help families that are in a desperate situation, trying to preserve the cash that you have, which, you know, down the road, if things don't materialize as quickly, you'll be glad that you had that. And I can guarantee you they're going to eventually get paid because anything that's not paid now is going to be going on the back end and it will be extended. Hopefully they'll be doing that without adding any interest, although by extending it out, you're probably going to pay a little bit more. But the bottom line is, if there are opportunities in a smart way to take advantage of, you know, these reprieves that are being offered by certain lenders, I would take full advantage of that until such time as this situation corrects itself and you all can see steady income coming back in. So I would encourage you, as others have, it sounds like, to go ahead and take advantage of those as long as you understand exactly what you're getting into.

We don't want to pay exorbitant interest rates, but if they're really just allowing you to kind of pause those payments for a period of time because of what you're facing, then I would take full advantage of it. Jen, we have 30 seconds here. Do you have a website that shows off your artwork if people wanted to see the kind of things you do, particularly with Christmas right around the corner? Oh, thank you. Yes, you can find me actually on Etsy at Compass Moon Creations. I'm a fiber artist, so I make hand sewn yarn and things like wool dryer balls, stuff out of sheets, fiber, and things for knitters and crocheters. So thank you for asking. So yeah, Compass Moon Creations.

Compass Moon Creations. It might be just the thing for Aunt Mary and Uncle Paul, and maybe your kids too, at Christmas time. I'm sure Jennifer can come up with something that relates to the faith that we celebrate at Christmas. Well, you check her out online and let us know how that works out. And Jen, God bless you and your husband. Thanks very much. Dover, Ohio, and Elizabeth, how can we help you?

Hi, thanks for taking my call. My question is, I have credit karma, and I checked my credit score, and it's only at about $686. And so I was wondering, I currently don't have any open credit cards or anything like that, any auto loans. So is there a way that I could build my credit?

I guess my question would be, should I take out a credit card in order to build my credit, or would you recommend not doing that? Yeah. Elizabeth, have you pulled a copy of your credit report directly from the bureaus recently?

No, not recently. Okay. All right. Well, I would encourage you to do that.

There's no cost. Go to annualcreditreport.com, grab one from each of the three bureaus. What you're going to see on there is they're going to list the top four reasons that are impacting you negatively. If it's a lack of credit, then yeah, opening either a secured credit card if you don't want the ability to perhaps get into debt, or if you're managing your money wisely, an unsecured card where you put a budgeted recurring charge on there and then pay it off every month will help to improve your credit. But check that out, annualcreditreport.com.

We'll be right back with more after this. The financial wealth you leave behind could be the best thing that ever happened to your loved ones, or the worst. In Splitting Heirs, giving your money and things to your children without ruining their lives, Ron Blue explains why it's important to make these decisions now, instead of forcing your heirs to do it later. Splitting Heirs will foster a real appreciation for the precious resources that God has entrusted to you.

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Available when you click the store button at MoneyWiseLive.org. Well, we are certainly learning about all sorts of unique things today. We've been talking about, well, worm farms in your basement, what to do when you hit a deer, credit scores, how to increase your credit score.

Whoa, dryer balls, which I've never heard of before, but they make fantastic ones at Compass Moon Creations. And yeah, I mean, we're covering the waterfront today, aren't we, Rob? Yes, for sure. All right. Grand Rapids. Hello, Josiah. How can we help you start investing? Is that your question?

Yeah. Thank you, Rob and Steve, for allowing me to be on. I'm kind of new to your show and it's been pretty cool. A lot of good things. So I recently took Dave Ramsey's SPU class and got my debts paid off. I've got about 17 grand saved.

Wow. And I'm working on just trying to figure out how to start investing some of that. I'm also like, I don't have a house.

I'm living at home right now with my parents. And so I actually have kind of two questions. The first is, I heard your guys' talk with Inspire Investing and kind of was convicted by that. I wanted to make sure that I invest in a good way and, you know, things that I'm morally supportive of. But I don't know how to go about doing that. Like, part of me wonders, should I try to come up with what to invest in on my own to research to save money or should I get an advisor? Yeah. And how do I know that, you know, I can get the right advisor? I guess that's my first question. Sure, sure. Well, Josiah, I'm delighted to hear, first of all, that you're a young guy.

You're thinking deeply about these topics. You really want to honor the Lord with what he has entrusted to you and you have already demonstrated you're willing to make some good decisions. You know, you purposed yourself to pay off some debt and you were successful in that.

So you should be really encouraged. I also love the fact that you've saved some money and you want to put that to work. You know, this whole area of faith-based investing where we invest in a way that aligns with our values either because we're avoiding certain companies that we find that the corporate profits are used with four things or supportive of things that are conflicting with our values or investing in companies that are making an impact in the world socially or from a kingdom perspective. You know, it's a really exciting and growing segment of the investing universe and you've mentioned Inspire. That would be a great place to get started. You can go to inspireinvesting.com.

They have some wonderful ETFs, exchange-traded funds that are traded on the New York Stock Exchange that would give you good broad diversification but making sure that you are investing in companies that align with your values. Another would be Eventide. Investeventide.com.

I would check that out. This would be as opposed to avoiding certain companies that might conflict with your values at Inspire. Eventide would be an example of how you engage in companies in particular that are making a difference in the world. They say investments that make the world rejoice. So they might be really solving some significant problems in the medical space or really promoting human flourishing in some segment of the world through their investments. And so I think this is an area that you ought to just begin to learn about, read about, but either ETFs or mutual funds, ETFs at Inspire, mutual funds at Eventide, would be a great way to go because with $17,000 to put to work, you want broad diversification.

Which you'll see affirmed in God's word in Ecclesiastes. So you don't want to be picking individual companies with that amount of money. I also think to your question about advisors, there's great value in having wise counsel. What you're going to find though is you're going to need to get up a little bit higher in the assets under management that you have before you'd be able to turn this over to an advisor who would make those decisions for you.

So I think either of these options would be a great place for you to start, get that money working for you in a way that you can feel really good about as a believer, but have the diversification that you need with that amount of money. So hopefully that'll be a help to you. And if you do that, stay on the line.

We'll send you a copy of Austin Pryor's book, Sound Mind Investing, that I think will be a great read for you as well. Oh, it sure will. Josiah, we're glad you got through today. Thanks very much. Stay on the line. We'll get that right out to you.

Verland Heights, Ohio. George, what's your question today for Rob? Yeah, I keep track of my credit score every month and I usually run 820, 816. I retired, refinanced my house to get a lower interest. Out of the three, two of them stayed at 820 and one dropped at 765.

Any ideas why? Yeah, it could be that, George, when you refinance that inquiry that the lender had to submit in order to pull your credit to verify your credit worthiness to then extend you the loan, that inquiry is temporarily brought your score down. Bottom line is nothing's really changed. You know, the primary components of your credit score are going to be your payment history, whether or not you've been an on-time payer, doesn't sound like you've had any late payments, your credit utilization, which is the overall debt you have outstanding versus the credit that's available to you. It sounds like nothing has changed other than the balance is coming down. So, you know, unless you've closed some accounts recently, it's probably the inquiry as a result of that refi. So I wouldn't be worried about it. You still have a stellar credit score and bottom line is if you're not looking to borrow anything right now, it really doesn't matter.

I think it'll jump right back up for you and you just keep doing the things you need to do to manage God's money wisely and your credit score will follow suit. George, did you say that you check your all three credit scores every month? Correct. Why do you do that?

Why do you do that? Yeah, on LifeLock. Yeah, you're just making sure there's not any fraudulent activity or something that's coming out of left field. And, you know, the good news is with Credit Karma, most credit card companies right now, I know Discover and Capital One, they give you once a month free access to your credit score. So it's a great way to stay on top of things because if somebody has compromised your credit, meaning they've taken or opened an account in your name and it's impacting your credit score, that's usually the place it's going to show up first.

So if you see a sudden drop, that should be a red flag, which is another reason, George, why you may want to go and pull a copy of the three credit reports at AnnualCreditReport.com. It won't cost you anything. It won't be considered an inquiry because you're doing it. And just review those accounts, make sure there's nothing that is erroneous or fraudulent there.

And if not, then you should be good to go. George, do you check your blood pressure every month? I keep track of my heart rate every day. Every day? There you go.

There you go. You struck me as that kind of guy who just stays on top of the numbers. And of course, I know you check the air pressure in your tires and you check your oil on a regular basis. And that's why you're going to live to be 110, George. And we're glad that you call if that calls back on your 100th birthday.

All right, we're going to go quickly to Frankfurt, Illinois. Bobby, what's the situation in your life? My husband and I turned 65 this year. We have term insurance that expires when we hit 70. They want to sit down with us to convert our policy into a paid life insurance. But I just think that's kind of crazy.

Yeah, I think the question, Bobby, is why? Do you all need life insurance at this point? No, we've been debt-free for 12 years and we don't have a ton of money in the bank. We have about $250,000 plus our house. And are you all still working? Yes, we both are working.

Okay. And how long do you plan to continue working and what is your plan in retirement for income? Income is just to live off of our, we plan on working until we're 70 and we keep building our retirement because we really don't have, other than a 401, we're paying for our own retirement. So basically we're just living on that.

Great. Well, so what I would say is the fact that you've already synced up the term life to remain level until 70 when you're going to retire. And if you have a plan in retirement beginning at age 70 to be able to fund your own income, meaning Social Security between the two of you and drawing a modest amount of income from these retirement accounts, then essentially you no longer need life insurance at that point. So to convert these to a permanent policy when you really don't need that death benefit beyond 70 and you'd rather take anything extra that would be going towards savings and just continue to pile it into your retirement accounts. I think that's a better approach, at least from my perspective. So I think you guys should just stay the course with exactly what you're doing. Bobby, we wish you the best with that.

Thank you very much for your phone call today. And Rob, with that, we're pretty much out of time, but you know, I see a thread moving through today's program, whether we're talking about, let's see, I think earlier we were talking about saving money on food and staying abreast of the amount of money you spend on food and how much food you eat. We've talked about credit scores and maintaining a working relationship with your scores so you know exactly what's going on. It all boils down to staying on top of your money, your finances, keeping track. We would say it points to having a budget, knowing how much comes in, knowing how much goes out.

And if you know all those numbers, they're not foreign to you, and then you're able to really take advantage of situations that pop up that you weren't prepared for, right? Well, that's exactly right. You know, the bottom line is God owns it all. And we're the stewards, Steve, which means we should be on top of our finances, right? If we're God's money manager, we need to be found faithful in that responsibility because here's the reality. We will be held to account, each one of us, as to how we manage God's money, which means we need to be organized and we need to be on top of it. Now, if you're listening to my voice and say, Rob, that doesn't describe me at all. My finances are a mess.

Well, there's nothing you can't leave at the foot of the cross. Invite God into your financial life and purpose yourself from this day forward to get on top of it. Two quick ways to do that, Steve, connect with one of our coaches, MoneyWiseLive.org, or download our MoneyWise app in the app store that you use. I love it. Thank you very much, Rob. We'll come back tomorrow and do it again. MoneyWise Live is a partnership between Moody Radio and MoneyWise Media. My thanks to Amy, Chris, Dan, and of course, Jim Henry for being with us today, pushing all the right buttons at the right time. For Rob West, I'm Steve Moore. Drive safely. Join us again next time.
Whisper: medium.en / 2024-01-28 18:59:25 / 2024-01-28 19:21:15 / 22

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