One of the great things about America is that we have such an amazing military. Because of them we get to go about our everyday lives with much less threat than in other places in the world. Today, we are super excited to have a military member/ personal finance wizard to help explain to us some of the perks that military people get and how to manage money while serving. Military Dollar is a personal finance blog that caters to the men and women in uniform and have been featured on sites such as Rockstar Finance!
[4:9] What made your decision to joining the military?
Wanted to be an astronaut
Planned to become a pilot so joined Air Force
Changed focus in college
[5:43] What branch did you join? Why that one?
Nerdy- not a huge fan of dirt
[6:57] What are some of your favorite perks of being a veteran?
all the cool experiences the military has offered
[11:32] From a listener: What do you recommend for the younger soldier who wants to come home and drop 40k cash on a truck instead of investing it etc
Made smart choices before they deployed- put it aside before
Saving deposit program- can only get while deployed- 10% savings interest
Thrift Savings Plan- put all extra money into TSP
Can use that money to live off of and contribute money to retirement
Instead of a car- invest in experiences
[16:2] What to do and how to handle the influx of money post deployment?
Sometimes there are areas where you can spend money
[17:1] What do you recommend as far as all of the offers? When should you accept deals? Ie- credit card lenders offering far more than they would to a civilian.
Deals that aren’t good: Payday lenders/ used car sales
Think about the deals offered
Take advantage of deals offered- when it makes sense
[22:25] A lot of people get in trouble because they don’t look at their paychecks and then have to back pay due to divorce or children, leaving them in debt. How do you recommend saving for an emergency fund?
Backed pay story
Always reach out for help- talk to finance to set up a payment plan
[30:0] What are some options to organize finances when a family member is deployed?
Give powers of attorney to someone you completely trust
Best thing: set things up for autopay
2018- there is still internet
Deployment pause: cell phone service, cable, car insurance
[37:2] Veterans have special mortgage loans they can apply for when buying a house. What is the name of the loan and how do they go about purchasing? Is it different than buying a house with an FHA loan?
Called a VA Loan
Depends on what you are looking for
Can buy a house with 0% down and there is no PMI
Don’t buy more house than you can afford
VA Loan MUST be owner occupied- not a rental property
[42:42] You recently wrote a post, the civilians guide to understanding military pay and allowances. Can you talk a bit about that and some common misconceptions that civilians usually have?
3 main sources of money in a paycheck and explained
Value Link Round (VLR)
Will be talked about in the next episode 70B.