Some time ago, Joy (from Morro Bay, California) shared the following comments with us:
I have used Mvelopes for over four years, since before I was married. When I was married, eight months ago, Mvelopes simplified the financial transition to married life. Mvelopes provides an accurate account of our finances, which facilitates our conversations about our financial choices. Mvelopes also helped us keep track of our wedding expenses and kept us on budget. And, we were able to use all the money we received for our wedding on a dream honeymoon to New Zealand. However, this is only one reason I am a huge believer in the Mvelopes product. I work at a large organization and frequently use my personal credit card for business expenses that must be reimbursed. Thanks to Mvelopes, I have never overlooked a reimbursable expense! I check my Mvelopes every day, and I love the fact that my transactions are automatically updated. I will always use Mvelopes!
After reading about Joy’s success using Mvelopes, we wanted more information. So we recently followed up with her and obtained the following additional information:
Q: How long have you been using Mvelopes?
A: I have been using Mvelopes for the past five years. I have reset my account three times, but now there are so many great features that I don’t think I will have to ever re-open my account. I have only continued to be more impressed by the product.
Q: How has Mvelopes assisted you in living within your income?
A: Mvelopes has definitely helped me live within my income. The greatest part of using the system has been to track every single transaction. This has given me a clear picture of where I am spending. I consistently run reports to evaluate how much I spend in every area.
Q: How much consumer debt have you been able to eliminate during that time?
A: I have always paid my credit cards in full every month. Mvelopes has helped me avoid consumer debt by allowing me to track my spending so I do not exceed my monthly income.
Q: How much have you been able to save while using Mvelopes?
A: I have saved almost $10,000 while using Mvelopes. When I started using the program, I opened an account called my “push back fund.” This was a fund that I knew I could live off of if I ever had to quit my job or wanted to launch a new career. I just dipped into my push back fund this year when I stayed home on maternity leave. Using Mvelopes, I was continually reminded of my push back fund and enjoyed watching it grow.
Q: How much has your average checking account balance increased while using Mvelopes?
A: I keep a minimum balance in my checking account because all my funds are usually directly deposited into savings accounts or expensed at the beginning of the month to pay bills.
Q: What financial goals have you achieved while using Mvelopes?
A: Mvelopes helps me to “pay myself first.” I fund my Mortgage, HELOC, Push Back Fund, and Savings envelopes every month. I also like the fact that even though the “balance” in my savings account is a dollar amount, Mvelopes helps me see that those funds are already allocated to certain envelopes.
Q: What are your next financial goals?
A: I want to pay off our HELOC (Home Equity Line of Credit) and my student loan (which is deferred for another year). I also want to start funding my daughter’s 529 College Savings Fund.
Q: How many envelopes have you created?
A: I have 40 envelopes. In my “savings” folder, I have created seven envelopes. And in my “Utilities” folder I have six envelopes.
Q: How has Mvelopes helped to reduce financial stress?
A: I am fortunate that I do not worry about our finances. I believe that by diligently tracking our expenses and income, we know exactly where we are financially and feel empowered.
Q: If married, how has Mvelopes helped you better collaborate with your spouse?
A: I would guess that we have a non-traditional agreement about our finances. We keep separate checking accounts and, at the beginning of each month, my husband contributes to the mortgage, bills, and other expenses. I handle paying the bills and allocating the funds. I am the primary breadwinner, and this helps us feel that whatever money we each earn beyond the necessities is our own to spend as we wish. I track my expenses in Mvelopes, but my husband does not.
Q: What advice would you give to new Mvelopes users?
A: My advice is to use Mvelopes daily. It takes about a month to develop a new habit like adopting a new budgeting system. Also, if you have questions, do not hesitate to contact technical support. The customer service at Mvelopes is the best I have ever had with an online service! I have actually learned about accounting from questions I worked through on Mvelopes.
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?
A: Mvelopes helps you take control of your finances!
Joy, it is wonderful that you’ve been able to save $10,000, that you were able to take maternity leave without having to worry about finances (your baby is beautiful, by the way), and that you are able to stay out of debt because of your discipline and use of the Mvelopes product. Thank you so much for sharing your experiences with us. We wish you and your family continued financial success and much happiness.