Our latest success story comes from Bill who lives with his wife and family in Greensboro, North Carolina. Not long after Bill first discovered Mvelopes, he had some great things to say about the product. Bill said:
We’ve been using Mvelopes since May, 2007. Before that we have budgeted in detail since the first month we were married over 18 years ago. It changed a lot over the years from green column paper to Excel to Money Matters, the entire time utilizing the envelope method of budgeting.
In May, a friend and I were talking at a 40th birthday party about the fact that there had to be an easier way to keep up with a budget. We had both gone through Financial Peace University but were at times overwhelmed by the constant details of keeping up with every transaction and the amount of time we spent. Well, that got me thinking, there has to be a better way to do this with the growth in on-line banking tools. That is when, through some internet searches, I found Mvelopes.
Wow, I was impressed right from the start. I immediately signed up and converted our budget to the on-line program, initially funded our envelopes (49 at last count . . . yes, we are detailed), and began easily and quickly assigning transactions. My wife at times got overwhelmed by our old system and now loves how easy it is to track and split all transactions. We also love the fact that it is not tied to a particular computer. We can work on and update our budget from anywhere.
But it didn’t stop there for me. I thought, I have got to tell everyone I know about this. I am on staff at a local church and often meet with people about finances and budgeting. Most methods are too complex for them to handle though. What if I could hold workshops and teach people how to budget and implement these on-line tools? I spoke to my pastor about the idea and he was all for it.
So far I have led three workshops for over 30 people with most going on to sign up and use Mvelopes. My next workshop in two weeks already has 31 people signed up with more signing up each day. I am so excited about the difference this software can make in people’s lives and marriages. My hope is that people will be able to get a handle on their finances, eliminate debt and be freed up to live financially fit.
Thanks for developing this awesome tool. It is making an incredible difference in people’s lives.
I recently spoke with Bill to learn a bit more about his experience using Mvelopes. Our discussion included the following questions and answers:
Q: How long have you been using Mvelopes?
A: It’s about two years now.
Q: How has Mvelopes assisted you in living within your income?
A: It has made it easier to keep track of expenses. We have been using the envelope method since we got married 20 years ago, so we’ve always tried to live within our income, but Mvelopes has just made it a whole lot easier. It gives you a window into what’s important.
Q: How much consumer debt have you been able to eliminate during that time?
A: None, because we haven’t incurred any debt.
Q: How much have you been able to save while using Mvelopes?
A: For many years, we have had a habit of saving, so using Mvelopes hasn’t really made us focus more attention on this, but it just makes it so much easier to monitor.
Q: How much has your average checking account balance increased while using Mvelopes?
A: Again, those types of things haven’t really changed, but it’s definitely easier to keep on top of things. So we haven’t really seen a change in our account balance.
Q: What financial goals have you achieved while using Mvelopes?
A: We have been able to save in advance for our car purchases (we pay cash for our cars). We have been able to prepay the tuition for our children’s school. And one of the most important goals we’ve been able to meet is that we’ve been able to completely avoid consumer debt. One of these days we’ll have enough in our “big screen TV” account to actually make that purchase.
Q: What are your next financial goals?
A: Well, my oldest daughter will be driving soon and we’ll need to work into the budget the additional insurance costs. After that, we’ll have college to look forward to, and we’re preparing for those things now.
Q: How many envelopes have you created?
A: We have 49 envelopes.
Q: How has Mvelopes helped to reduce financial stress?
A: The nice thing is that we can log in from anywhere and my wife and I can both assign our own transactions. We are able to manage the budget on a day-to-day basis, without having to take a long time working it. It’s also nice to be able to split a purchase (like a purchase made at Target) into many different envelopes.
Q: If married, how has Mvelopes helped you better collaborate with your spouse?
A: As I mentioned before, we’re both able to access the information and we both work on the budget together. There are no secrets–we’re both on the same page.
Q: What advice would you give to new Mvelopes users?
A: Give it an honest shot for at least 90 days. Leave yourself a “general” envelope when you’re starting. There will likely be a lot of old expenses coming through that may put some of your envelopes in the negative. If you have a general envelope, it will help you clear out any negative balances. It will likely take 60 to 90 days to get into the swing of things.
Q: If you could create a “tag line” for Mvelopes-keeping in mind what it’s done for you-what would the tag line be? (In answer to this question, Bill provided several tag lines! I couldn’t choose a favorite, so I will share them all.)
A: Figure out what’s important to you and make it happen! Mvelopes is the tool to help you reach your goals. Mvelopes makes managing your money (more) manageable. Customized tools means money management success.
Bill, thank you so much for taking time to speak with me. And thank you, too, for sharing all those great tag lines! I think they summarize, quite nicely, the many benefits that come from using Mvelopes. We wish you and your family continued financial success and much happiness.