INTRODUCING STACEY SWANSON, MONEY COACH
Back Story In Her Own Words
Hi! I am a life insurance provider, Money Coach and owner of Wealth & Women. I am passionate about guiding women to Money Confidence through education on money concepts.
After 30+ in the government finance field I obtained my life insurance license and began practicing part-time. I finally began my career as an entrepreneur in 2020 and now coach.
I am a Purse Strings preferred provider, a FemCity leader, an Annie’s Project facilitator. I also sit on a Board of Directors for a local foundation.
FARMING AND SMALL TOWN LIFE
Team Sammy: Share with us a little about you, your current family, your non-professional life, a favorite hobby, etc., so readers can get a sense of who you are.
Stacey Swanson: I grew up on a farm with my siblings. It was fun but often boring being ‘stuck out in the country’. Until my brother could drive, we didn’t go too many places in the summers. But it was a blessing to be free to roam around, explore, and fix motorcycles or build whatever we imagined.
Our community was small with only 4500 people in the nearest town. Everyone knew everyone (or was related). My parents, aunts, uncles, siblings, myself and my children all graduated from the same high school.
FROM SHOWING SHEEP TO OWNING A CAR
Team Sammy: Share with us a little about one of your first money memories or experiences.
Stacey Swanson: In 4-H we showed sheep. We had to buy them young, then raise them, then take them to the fair to show.
My grandmother would loan all 3 of us kids enough money to buy 5 lambs each and pay for the grain to feed them.
Once we showed them there was a sale. With the income we earned from the sale, we would pay grandma back and put the remainder in savings.
When we turned 16, we each had enough money to buy ourselves a car!
BANKING, FUN WITH FRIENDS, FREE GAS, AND AUTO INSURANCE
Team Sammy: What was your first job (formal or informal)? How much did you earn and what you did with the money?
Stacey Swanson: My first job at 16 was at a bank in the summers (I had to be able to drive 😊). I think I made $4.75/hour. I used the money to have fun with friends. We were given free gas from the farm but had to pay our own car insurance.
A BIG EYE OPENER
Team Sammy: Did your parents talk to you and/or teach you about money / personal finance growing up? What do you remember? What, if anything stuck?
Stacey Swanson: I don’t recall actual lessons. Farming can be very brutal with mother nature in charge, so often there was talk about losing a crop or things being tight.
We never wanted for anything, but we weren’t going on vacations or spending much money.
My mom did the farm books, and I know there were times my parents would argue. The one major thing that stuck was when I was 17. We had to sell the farms.
Although many farmers were dealing with this and it was blamed on the economy, I still was embarrassed.
As an adult, I found out the whole story. I wish my parents had known more about handling money and maybe the farm would be passed down to the 5th generation today.
MOM WAS SMART
Team Sammy: Who was your primary or one your main money mentors as a child or teen?
Stacey Swanson: My mom. She also worked at the bank and was really smart. Looking back I also think I wouldn’t have felt comfortable talking with a man (Dad) about money.
WORK IS AN INFORMATIVE EXPERIENCE
Team Sammy: At what age and how did you come to realize money had a value?
Stacey Swanson: I am not sure. It seems I always knew. It was probably when I got my own job and had to pay for car insurance.
WORK. WORK. WORK.
Team Sammy: Did you work as a teen and/or in college?
Stacey Swanson: I have worked my entire life except for 10 years as a stay-at-home mom. In college I worked at banks and at the college.
TO SAVE OR NOT
Team Sammy: What was one mistake and one smart money choice you made as a kid or teen?
Stacey Swanson: A smart money choice was saving money for a car. A mistake would be not saving more of what I earned.
Team Sammy: What piqued your interest in personal finance?
Stacey Swanson: Personal finance, and my lack of knowledge about it, became super important to me once I was divorced and had two kids to raise.
At that time, I did not have my degree, so making ends meet on a small income was tough. I felt like I had no one to ask for advice and had to make decisions on my own.
Once I became more confident in my money, I started seeing the same pattern among other women, especially those divorced and widowed.
THE ONE MONEY HABIT
Team Sammy: One question I ask everyone is: If you could only teach a child one money habit, what would it be and why?
Stacey Swanson: Do not purchase anything on credit! Debt is so detrimental to saving and building wealth. It gets so many people into financial strains. Just DON’T DO IT!
Team Sammy: Is it important to teach kids about money? Why? At what age should parents start?
Stacey Swanson: Yes! Yes! Do it as early as possible. Start with the chore chart which earns them an allowance they can save to buy things with. Teaching them to save money they receive as a gift. Then show them to start investing once they are older. These are all necessary skills every person needs in life.
Team Sammy: Should personal finance be taught in schools?
Stacey Swanson: Yes! This is so important because it isn’t being taught anywhere else. It is not by parents, colleges, or schools.
If we can give kids a great foundation and these necessary real-life skills, it will improve our economy as a whole!
Team Sammy: Any thoughts on student debt?
Stacey Swanson: Is it really worth it? Although I am very proud to have earned my degree and it is important to me, I wish all students and parents were better educated on the ramifications of this debt. I feel most have no idea what it will cost them in the future.
EDUCATION IS PART OF THE SOLUTION
Team Sammy: Any thoughts on credit cards?
Stacey Swanson: We need to go back to the days where it was difficult to get a credit card and they weren’t giving them to college kids. There also needs to be education around the ramifications of this debt and why not to use one to pay for everyday things like groceries.
MONEY. MONEY. MONEY.
Team Sammy: What are one or two of your financial pet peeves?
Stacey Swanson: Women not talking about THEIR money, not taking care of their own money and still thinking a man will take care of them in their old age.
Team Sammy: Do you have a favorite book on personal finance?
Stacey Swanson: Happy Money by Ken Honda. One lesson I gleaned from his teachings is we all have Money wounds we carry with us from our past (even from ancestors) that need to be forgiven and healed so we stop making the same mistakes. An example for me would be selling the family farm.
Also, he teaches about your money container which prevents us from making more money. It needs to be stretched.
Team Sammy: What is one of your favorite quotes on money?
Stacey Swanson: “Ladies, you work so hard for your money, don’t ignore it or let someone handle it for you!” By Me!
Team Sammy: Do you have any favorite websites, magazines or resources on personal finance?
Stacey Swanson: Naturally, I like my own: www.wealthandwomen.net. Other sites I enjoy are: Mindvalley.com, NatalieBacon.com, Think & Grow Rich (book) by Napoleon Hill, KenHonda.com, The Big Leap (book) by Gay Hendricks, DaveRamsey.com, ManifestingMadMoney.com, SammyRabbt.com.
Team Sammy: Do you have any personal finance heroes?
Stacey Swanson: Ken Honda. Vishen Lakhiani. Napoleon Hill. Dave Ramsey. Amanda Steinberg. Jack Canfield. Jedidiah Collins. Dr. Barb Provost. Sheryl Hickerson, Sam X Renick.
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