I came into the Air Force at 23 years old in 1993 with about 12 outstanding bills (hospital bills, car loan, car insurance, school loans, credit cards, etc.). You name it, I had the bill. Thanks to the Family Support Center, Dave Ramsey's Financial Peace University, and many other sources, I now have no outstanding bills.

I only have rent and utilities (no even a car payment). I want to help other military members get out of debt. I was able to pay off all my bills by year 1999. I used money from TDYs and deployments to pay off my bills from the least to the greatest principal. At the same time, I started building an Emergency Fund. 

Now I have the following:

  • A Good Basic Need Budgeting Plan
  • Money Market Emergency Fund
  • Roth IRA
  • TSP

I hardly use credit cards and I access my credit report annually through www.annualcreditreport.com. This website is free unless you want your credit score along with it. The credit score costs about $5.00. I take whatever financial management information the military has to offer and apply them to my own financial management and it works. I am always willing to learn more and help other people get a handle on their finances.

TSgt Shaunta Hopson
43rd Logistics Readiness Squadron
U.S. Air Force

Tip of the Day

  • When opening an account with a bank or credit union ask about overdraft, ATM & other fees that may be in fine print. http://bit.ly/2IoelBh

Pledge to Save

I pledge to save money, reduce debt, and build wealth over time. I will encourage my family and friends to do the same

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Saver Stories View all »

Money on the Side

Camp Arifjan, Kuwait -- A colonel in the 1st Theater Sustainment Command has money on his mind.

Army Col. George Fields, the Chief of Intelligence, or G2, has been teaching a free "Managing Your Money" class here in his spare time. More than 400 students have attended his six week-long class to learn more about increasing their own finances.

"All I did was sit down and listen to a guy one day who showed me what he was doing" said the colonel as he explained how he became interested in what he calls, "becoming financially free."

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A Plan for Success

I’m Staff Sergeant Robert Zuniga and I have been an active duty Air Force medic for eight years. I plan on staying in long enough so that I can retire at 20 years. I have always been interested in personal finance and would like to share how it IS possible for me and my stay-at-home wife and two kids to not only save and invest a ton of money but also have a lot of responsible fun as well on 'low' enlisted pay. You CAN do it too!

First off, we write down our goals and separate wants from needs.

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Building Wealth by Setting Goals

My name is Allison Mecadon and I’m a Youth Coordinator with the Virginia National Guard Youth Program. My husband, Tom, is an M-Day Army National Guard Member (an M-Day member is one who performs weekend drill, but is not on full-time duty).

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