Be a 'Smartey' with your cash!

Be a 'Smartey' with your cash!
Do you talk to your friends about money?  “So…how’s your 401K coming?”  I am guessing that’s not a typical topic for most people at a peer level – maybe if you’re in the finance world that’s different, but we all have to save for retirement, get out of debt and pay for housing, so we all need to be as smart as we can be about these issues!  
So, do you know what you are going to do with that tax return check?  Pay down some student loans?  Put it in a Roth IRA?  Savings account?  Pay off credit cards?  
The truth is finances are tricky, especially when you have words like….debt and loans in your vernacular. helps you allocate your funds when you get a income, (paycheck, tax return, etc) and suggest how much money should go towards debt, 401k, etc.
I had the pleasure of meeting up with local Chicagoan and entrepreneur, Adrissha Wimberly of last week and we talked about her new start up and the successful event for Smarteys on Feb 24 at ING Direct Cafe in the Gold Coast…the event was paired with Power2Switch (which I will have to blog more about because it is SO COOL!) and America Saves Week and the Economic Awareness Council.  Their launch had DJ, cocktails, and prizes  – what’s more….it started a real, interactive dialog among peers about finances.  Attendees were given topics and encouraged to mingle with their peers and talk about the financial topics.  Financial questions/myths were asked to the group and responders who tweeted correctly won a prize – rewarding good financial behavior and being smart!  
Let’s test you with one of the questions…..Is this True or False?  
“I save money when I buy things on sale”
Some people would say “True – buying this $40 purse at Marshalls I saved 50%, $40 dollars!”  But the answer is FALSE!  Although you may be spending 50% less, you are still spending 100% MORE if it isn’t budgeted!  
Smarteys overall is looking to encouraging good financial behavior and educating you about how to be smart with your money.  Adrissha and her co-founder (both from University of Chicago’s Booth School of Business) both studied behavioral economics and want to use incentives to reward smart financial behavior….already as a frugal girl, I am liking this idea…for example, let’s say you pay your credit card bill on time for 6 months in a row, (and while I think you should ALWAYS pay it on time) if you got a reward like a Starbucks gift-card or something of the like, you would be much more encouraged to keep doing so!  If anyone has kids or pets, you already know that rewarding good behavior works!  Everyone likes free stuff,…and what’s more?  You’re building smart, solid financial habits that can last a lifetime!  
In a way, is a lot like the candy…a whole roll of Smarties is your total paycheck or lump sum, and the folks at will help you intelligently allocate all those little sugary pieces!
Check out Smarteys and also click on their “ADVICE BLOG” for solid financial advice from “what to do with a lump sum” to “saving for education” and more.  One of the best pieces of advice is to find a financial friend!  Get someone who you can talk to and learn together about finances….demystify the financial fog and start talking to your peers about building wealth, getting out of debt and saving!  


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