About This Episode

As Dads, we have all struggled with money and budgeting. In this episode we unravel some of this with our guest Grayson Stalvey of Grayson Stalvey Financial.  We talk about the great things that can happen when we get on the same page with wives. As well as some tips for getting on the same page and what to do when a financial emergency strikes.

Mentioned In This Episode

Grayson Stalvey Financial
Dave Ramsey
Dave Ramsey Resources
Jim CollinsSimple Path to Wealth (blog post)

Episode Transcript

Grayson Stavely 0:01
They tell me that, you know, we’re communicating better than we have before. Because we’re making it a priority to sit down at a certain time at a time. And I think when that communication happens, and you’re more comfortable with each other, necessarily, the incident aspect is going to come along with it.

Brandon Billinger 0:20
You are in the Dad Huddle, the show where we invite you to join us improving the playbook on father. I am Brandon Billinger, The Rookie dad, father of two and my co-host is Rob Ainbinder, the Digital Dad, father to one.

Rob Ainbinder 0:35
Hey, Brandon, how’s it going?

Brandon Billinger 0:37
Pretty good. How are you man?

Rob Ainbinder 0:38
All right, man. Really looking forward to getting down to it today.

Brandon Billinger 0:41
I know we have a really exciting episode coming up.

Rob Ainbinder 0:44
Yeah, absolutely. So today we’re joined in the Dad Huddle by Grayson Stalvey of Grayson Stalvey Financial Coaching as a financial coach grace and guides focused individuals and families through simple actionable steps to get them from financial frustration to five Financial Freedom, love that. After spending 12 years in the US Coast Guard grace and transition to corporate life and found it lacking mean who has combining a love for teaching and personal finance, he started Grayson style the financial coaching as a way to inject purpose back into his life and make meaningful difference in the well being of those he works with. Since launching in January 2019 Grason Stalvey Financial Coaching has guided clients through paying off nearly a quarter-million dollars in consumer debt, as well as reducing stress and anxiety and improving communication and Financial Peace. Grayson has been married to his wife for eight years. They have three children and currently live in Cincinnati, Ohio. Grayson, welcome to the Dad Huddle.

Grayson Stalvey 1:46
Thanks, Rob. Thanks, Brandon. I’m so excited to be here.

Brandon Billinger 1:49
Yeah, we’re excited to have you.

Grayson Stalvey 1:50
Absolutely.

Brandon Billinger 1:52
Yeah. So Grayson, let’s let’s get right into this. The topic of budgeting, spending, money management with your partner? It can be a very difficult conversation to have. How do you suggest starting that conversation with money management with with your partner?

Grayson Stalvey 2:14
Yeah, it’s a great question. Um, the statistics show that money is one of the number one causes of divorce in America today. So having that open dialogue is essential to know a healthy marriage. When you’re looking to start that conversation, it’s really important to approach it in a non judgmental way. You know, you find a space that’s non threatening for both of you, you know, pour glass of wine and just sit down and talk about it. Um, it’s really important to be clear on what your priorities are, when you’re, when you’re beginning this process. You know, what do you hope to accomplish? What do you want to do with your money? And oftentimes, it’s not uncommon for two couples to have different priorities. And you know, it’s really just part of the process. When I work through this with my clients, what I have them do is is, you know, separately, come up with a list of what your top priorities are getting out of debt, paying off the mortgage, saving up for renovations to the house college funds, what have you. Come up with your list of priorities, and then make it make your top 10. And then when you get each got your list, get back together and see where that overlap is because even couples that have wildly different priorities, they’re going to have a couple of things that they agree on our on their top 10 on their list, and you find that common ground and you move from there. So I find that’s really the best way to get started with that. Interesting,

Rob Ainbinder 3:46
very interesting, I guess in a related way, what have you found is the best way to handle money between a dad and his wife or partner

Grayson Stalvey 4:00
I’m a big fan of combined financials in committed relationships, marriages or, you know, long term commitments. If you essentially if you if you’ve committed to spending the rest of your life with someone. I’m a big fan of combining those finances just because it puts that commitment in a more tangible, real manner. There’s no there’s no hedging in that scenario. Yeah. Does that answer the question?

Rob Ainbinder 4:31
Yeah, absolutely.

Brandon Billinger 4:32
Yeah. Yeah. for dads who have hit, you know, the finance or, you know, families who have hit the financial bottom, I know I, we’ve, we’ve hit this. A couple of years ago, we hit you know, our bank account was at zero. I mean, and I got the bank, I got the text message from my bank, and I went, Oh, crap, you know, how are we going to be able to make the next market we made it work and then we were recovering from that, but How do you advise that couples dads who have reached that financial bottom recover from situations like that?

Grayson Stalvey 5:08
That’s all too common of a scenario. A lot of people hit that rock bottom and they just feel hopeless, they don’t know where to go. In reality, it happens to more people than you probably realize. So the first thing is realize you’re not alone in that situation, you’re not the first person to be there and you’re not going to be the last. If you do find yourself in this situation, that’s when having that priority list really comes in handy. If you’re in a situation where money’s tight, and you know, you’re, you’re having to choose between, you know, paying the mortgage, paying the bills, and you’re having to make those concerted, the conscientious decisions of where your money’s going to go. I recommend people cover your four walls first, have a roof over your head, put food on the table, put gas in the car so you can go to work and keep yourself closed. So We call those the four walls. After that, you’re gonna you’re going to cut out anything unnecessary, until you take care of what you need to take care of your your obligations to keep that roof over your head to keep the car in possession to keep yourself from getting sued. So four walls and then you hit that debt hard. And that requires a lot of sacrifice that requires saying no to things that maybe you haven’t had to say no to before, and really just making some decisions that you may not have been prepared to make. And really that’s what having a good accountability partner really comes in handy. Whether it’s your spouse, whether it’s a friend that you trust, whether it’s a financial coach, just someone to keep you on the right track and focused on what your goal is.

Rob Ainbinder 6:49
Interesting.

Brandon Billinger 6:50
Okay. Great advice. Great advice.

Rob Ainbinder 6:52
Great advice. And I heard I heard four walls and I know the four walls so I guess You’re somehow a fan of Dave Ramsey?

Grayson Stalvey 7:04
Big fan of Dave Ramsey. I teach Financial Peace University at my church. I am a graduate of the Ramsey Solutions, financial coach master training. I’m a certified financial coach through Ramsey Solutions and I’m a preferred financial coach. So, if folks go to Dave Ramsey’s website (www.daveramsey.com) on the on the bottom right, there’s a speak one on one with a coach and if you enter anywhere between Cincinnati and Lexington, Kentucky, its chances are my name will pop up. So yeah, big fan of Dave Ramsey.

Rob Ainbinder 7:36
Oh, nice. Nice. Nice. Yeah. So as dads, we we might have had have a strained relationship with our wives over money. You know, there’s maybe there’s some baggage around money. Maybe we bring bad experiences with money with into the relationship. You know, what, what do you advise that we do as dads in committed relationships about that.

Grayson Stalvey 8:07
Again, it really comes down to communication. Um, we talked earlier about how money is one of the number one causes of divorce in our country. And a big part of that is financial infidelity, not being honest with what you’re doing with your money, whether you’ve got a hidden bank account, whether you’ve got credit cards your spouse doesn’t know about. So if you’re committed to that relationship and committed to having that financial talk, being open and transparent with what your money where your money is, and where it’s going is essential to that. Another thing I do with my clients is I have them set up weekly meetings with their spouses, and this is just a 1530 minutes Sit down. Again, find a non judgmental space where you’re both comfortable. Don’t do it like where you pay your bills, where you guys have had fights before, you know, find a place where you can just sit down and relax and Review the money you spent in the past week, review the expenses you have coming up in the next week. And then if you have a budget, just look at where you are, over the course of the month with that budget. So you have an idea of where your money’s gone, where you’re expected to go and about how much money you have left in that budget. And when it comes to that meeting, you know, I have, I have my clients, put it on the calendar and circle it. That’s a sacred meeting. That’s not something that we bump, you know, because we’re too tired or because, you know, the Smiths invited us to go out tonight like no, that’s that’s a sacred meeting. It’s important to us because we’re making it a priority in our lives.

Brandon Billinger 9:43
um, for couples, you know, dads, wives, partners who are not, you know, money minded. What do you suggest? For situations like that say we’re not, you know, we don’t have any experience, putting together a budget. We don’t have any experience, you know, Just having, you know, controlling our money in any way, shape or form, how do you suggest? What do you What’s your suggestion on what couples should do for that?

Grayson Stalvey 10:09
The first thing is to realize when you get started, you’re not going to get it right. You know, you’re just not. So you got to give yourself some grace in that situation. There are a plethora of free budgeting accessories out there. Whether you use an app like every dollar or a website like mints or personal capital, or even just get a pen and paper or build a spreadsheet. Think about where you’re going to spend your money and and just write it down. So I’m going to spend $500 on groceries this month, we’re going to spend $300, eating out whatever it is, take your best shot at it, and then track your money throughout the month and and you know, do your best to stay within the budget that you’re setting, but realize that it’s going to take 234 months before you’re really, you’re going to nail it. budgeting is like a muscle just like anything else, the more you do it, the better you’re going to get at it. So a lot of people get frustrated in that first month or two, when, you know, they may have put an unrealistic number for for certain budget categories, and then they find that, you know, we’re not even close, so I’m just not even gonna bother. Right. It’s, it’s, it’s a process, not an event. And what do you

Brandon Billinger 11:28
Yeah, and I think the hardest part is being honest with yourself and your wife over, you know, some of the spending that has gone on over them, you know, when you’re tracking your money as well.

Rob Ainbinder 11:40
And I can totally relate to that need to adjust and refine that spending plan. I mean, it it is an iterative process. It is. It could even change months, two months. I mean, you know, especially in the first year that you’re doing it That’s what we’ve we found in my past. But it’s, it’s definitely very helpful, I guess, moving to our next question, realizing that dads are Come come to listen to us in all different stages of life. Some are getting remarried, some are going through separation, summer getting divorce, is there any special counsel you you could give them?

Grayson Stalvey 12:26
Again, it’s really, you have to take care of the basics first, regardless of your stage of life. Knowing what money you have coming in, and where it’s going, is the key to financial stability. That’s the key to having control of your money and being intentional with it. Regardless of you know, certain situations are going to have certain special needs that go along with it, but everyone to a person can benefit from again, knowing how much money you have come Again, and where it’s coming up where it’s going each month. That one’s that one’s kind of difficult to speak with any real clarity without knowing you because everyone’s situation is different. Because you could be, you know, if you’re in an unfortunate situation where you’re moving forward with divorce, you could be coming from a, you know, we’re we’re up to our necks in debt. And we have to figure out you know, where how this is going to get split, or you could be debt free and trying to figure out where your assets are going to go. And there are many different scenarios that have different the different needs that go with them. But if you have those basics under control, you’ll be better off than you were otherwise.

Brandon Billinger 13:52
So and speaking about relationships and that is there a connection between good money management and a good sexual really

Grayson Stalvey 14:01
That’s a question I’ve never been asked before. I’m going to go out on a limb and say yes. And I’ll tell you why I’ve got a couple of theories for it. So money is one of the key aspects of your life where if you gain control over it and get discipline, it’s going to bleed over into other aspects of your life. Right? There. There are different disciplines where this is true. money management, time management, eating well working out. If you get discipline in this area of your life, it’s going to bleed over into other areas of your life. When it comes to couples, and and this is where that monthly meeting really comes in, into play here. The monthly meeting starts out as a as a money meeting. It starts out as looking at our money, but it will over time and evolve into a communication pattern. You’re going to find yourself communicating more not just about the money, you’re going to start using that to Plan your week to talk about what what’s happening in your life. And a lot of the clients that I work with, they tell me that, you know, our, we’re communicating better than we have before, because we’re making it a priority to sit down at a certain time at a talk about it. And I think when that communication happens, and you’re more comfortable with each other, necessarily, the incident aspect is going to come along with it. So I’m going to say yeah,

Brandon Billinger 15:29
great, yeah, that’s good to hear. I know. Especially when me and my wife are in a better you know, when we’re in good moods and everything is going right you know, whether it’s budgeting, whether it’s, you know, in other aspects of our life, things just kind of like fall into place and then you know, our relationship seems to be going really well. Again, we are talking to Grayson Stalvey of Grayson Stalvey financial coaching about family budgeting and spending and investing. So are there any books courses, magazines or websites that you you recommend for recommend for couples or anybody who is thinking about starting

Grayson Stalvey 16:06
again big fans of Dave Ramsey So Dave Ramsey has a bunch of great resources for just starting out in the budgeting journey and and getting out of debt. So if you’re in the if you’re in the spectrum of how do I work my way out of the situation with my debt, Dave Ramsey’s a great place to start for people that have their little further along that are looking for you tips on Okay, I’ve got the debt under control. Now I’m looking to start building wealth and looking to how do I retire comfortably or even retire early. There’s a website called choose ephi.com that really delves into the early retirement, the fire financial independence, retire early realm, and then one of the godfathers of the fire movement is Jim Collins and his website is Jay l Collins in h.com. And he’s got a stock series that he works through, which is really just everything you need to know about the about investing, which I’m a big fan of. So those are two or three great places to start.

Rob Ainbinder 17:17
Great, that’s fantastic list of resources. And we’ll be sure to include all those in the show notes. So, people that visit the website, get access to that. I guess, getting back to your business a little bit. Do you specialize in advising a certain type of client or your general practitioner? Yeah,

Grayson Stalvey 17:36
I, I can work with anyone. But I try and target my marketing to professionals. So folks that are, you know, they’ve been in the workforce for a little while and they’re frustrated with their lack of progress, whether it’s paying off student loans, or they feel like you know, I’ve been working so long I’ve got a good salary and I’m making good money. I just don’t feel like I have anything to show for it. So those are the clients that I really specialize in working with. So if you’ve ever thought, you know, like, I make way too much money to be living paycheck to paycheck or be this far in debt, then we can probably do some good work together.

Brandon Billinger 18:16
Well, now that leads into our next question, if somebody wants to get in touch with you, how would they go about doing that?

Grayson Stalvey 18:22
So you can go to my website, it’s Grayson Salvy.com and it’s got everything you need to know about me and financial coaching and you can book a free complimentary 30 minute discovery session where we really just sit and talk about what’s going on in your life financially, what you’re looking for and how it might be able to help you. I’m also on Instagram at FinnCoach_Grayson. Those are the two best places to find me.

Brandon Billinger 18:51
Yeah, so thank you Grayson. It’s been it’s been a great episode of I Know I personally I’ve learned a lot through this episode and I hope some other dads Learn as well. And maybe they you know we can help help them along their journey. So our next episode we’re going to talk about all things health, fitness and how dads can what dads can do to stay in shape. So be sure to stay tuned for that and thank you for listening to the Dad Huddle.

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