Susan Greenhalgh, AFC®. An “AHA” Money Moment

Susan Greenhalgh, AFC®

We are pleased to have Susan Greenhalgh share an “aha” money moment and childhood memory with us.

About Susan

Susan gratefully lives in the best of both worlds in Rhode Island and the Caribbean. She uses her superpower of being good at numbers to coach others wanting to live their best lives fully funded. A perfect day is educating and encouraging clients and growing her business, Mind Your Money, LLC in the morning and then boogey boarding in Narragansett Bay, swing dancing at night and in the winter, swimming with the fishes in warm blue waters. She has a Bachelor’s degree in Accounting and is a AFC® ( Accredited Financial Counselor ). She envisions a day when financial education will be required in all grades and all schools! 

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In Her Own Words

I was about to take a leap. Six months prior, I had gone to the Caribbean for the winter. This journey was the result of seeds being planted for me years before. I was finally sowing them. Soon, things got really interesting. I had the chance to not only winter in the Caribbean, I was offered a job. That meant I could buy a home and come back every winter!

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Having gotten myself in good solid financial shape to make the 3-month trip I felt confident I could manage having one home in Rhode Island, one in St. Croix and continue to work, pay down the debt, and fund my retirement.

Things were working out!

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Shopping for a condo was a fun and fabulous way to explore the island. With a friend, I went from complex to complex. I learned about the neighborhoods, the home owner assessments, and taking tours. Soon, I had it narrowed down to 2 choices. One was a very affordable one bedroom. It had a great sea view and low fees. The other was on the beach. It had two bedrooms, 3 times the fees and 3 times the cost!

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As I thought about my options, I like to say, I tried them on. I pictured myself living in each, where friends and family would stay, and how the finances would fit in my budget. I felt like I was trying to talk myself into the one on the beach. I felt so much more at ease when I thought of the smaller condo. It was nagging at me because I could afford the more expensive option, although it was a bit of a stretch. And, it was on the beach! Why was I conflicted?

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I made my decision. 

It dawned on me years later once I became an Accredited Financial Counselor and learned more about peer pressure, marketing pressure, and how our monkey brains really work.

That is when I knew! The truth was I wanted the larger condo on the beach because that is how I wanted people to see me: As someone who could afford a two-bedroom condo on the beach in the Caribbean, even though the costs were so much higher and it would have been a stretch. 

I’m happy to say I chose the less expensive studio condo and have never regretted it. 

The moral of the story is don’t go broke trying to look rich!

Discover more about Susan Greenhalgh, by visiting her website:

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