Sammy Rabbit’s 1st National Dream Big Read Financial Education Initiative is pleased to present CFP Rachel Songer’s money memories. Rachel is a financial planner at Keener Financial Planning in Keller, Texas. She’s and her husband, Adam, are enthusiastic dog owners. Rachel also enjoys hiking, horseback riding, and reviewing new recipes to test. Rachel realized in high school she liked working with numbers. That led her to study accounting in college, which helped her discover the world of personal finance.
RACHEL IN HER OWN WORDS
Sam X Renick: Rachel, please tell us a little about your interest in financial planning.
Rachel Songer: I entered the financial planning industry 6 years ago after graduating from Texas Tech’s Personal Financial Planning program. I’ve always been interested in finances and enjoy hearing about how other people think about money and how that directs their behaviors with money.
NO MONEY. NO FUN.
Renick: This a question I ask everyone. It is the question I asked myself prior to creating Sammy Rabbit and entering the financial literacy industry. If you could only teach a child one money habit, WHAT money habit would you teach them? Please explain why.
Songer: Always save a part of any money you receive whether it’s your first summer job mowing lawns, babysitting, your allowance for doing chores, etc. This instills the idea of saving for a large purchase or just having some in reserves for when that summer job is over and you want to go to the movies with your friends… no money, no fun!
Renick: What memories do you have related to your first saving experience?
Songer: My parents helped me open a savings account at the local credit union to deposit money I received on my birthday. This credit union had a “kids’ club” where you could get points for being active in their savings club. Points could be redeemed for prizes, which, at the time, was more motivating than seeing my savings account grow! I think making it fun went a long way for me.
GROSS EARNING ISN’T NET EARNINGS
Renick: Tell us about your first experience earning money? How old were you? What type of a job was it? How much did you earn? What did you do with the money? What did you learn?
Songer: My first “16-year-old job” was at Hobby Lobby as a customer service rep. I was making minimum wage at $7 per hour. I socked most of the money away but was also expected to fund some of my own personal expenses from this job. I learned about the numerous taxes and deductions very quickly–gross does not equal net!