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To get the word out on personal finance bloggers, I’ve started the Sunday Blogger series. It’s my hope that you’ll discover some new voices in the series. I'm so happy at how many bloggers have signed up. This is the third round that I've done the series and I think it'll be the biggest to date.
Today's interview is L. Marie Joseph from First Generation White Collar. L. Marie's budget system reminds me of our joint budget – we pay our bills with my husband's income and save mine as it varies throughout the year.
First Generation White Collar Interview
Why did you start First Generation White Collar?
I wanted to talk about personal finance specifically to people that were the first in their family to graduate from college and enter the white collar professional world and also tap on the successes and challenges that come with being first generation college graduate.
How long have you've been blogging?
I have been blogging since 2006, My blog was then called moneymonk.net and in 2010 I decided to name it First Generation White Collar in 2010 appropriately titled after my book.
You must have some favorite posts that you’ve written on First Generation White Collar, which are they and why?
- My Advice to a First Generation White Collar, my favorite is because it was straight from the heart, I wanted to show people the direction I was coming from and I also released some rants.
- What makes you feel powerful? teaches you that money is psychological
- This is why you're not wealthy it gives you 5 tips in staying ahead of the game
How do you handle your own finances? Do you have a formal budget or a more informal system?
Not really. We pay ourselves about 30% of our income (savings, retirement, investments). My husband income varies so we actually bank his income and pay bills from my income. Since my husband and I have no debt is a little easier to budget. Mortgage and car insurance are on automatic drafts since they are fixed expenses. Utilities are variable therefore, I like to actually look at the bills first before I pay them.
Since after school care for our daughter cannot be drafted will actually pay that with cash. Whatever is left is for fun and giving!
What's the biggest financial mistake you've ever made? What did you learn from it?
Fresh out of college I bought a brand new car. I was not aware it was a balloon loan. Meaning after 3 years the entire balance comes due. The car company sent me a letter saying that I can pay off the balance in full which was $10,000, refinance, or volunteer repo. Neither of those choices were good. I gave the car back.
What are your goals this year with First Generation White Collar?
Joining the Sunday Blogger Series
If you’re interesting in being interviewed as part of the Sunday Blogger series, I have a few requirements to make it interesting for everyone.
- You’ve been blogging for 3 months. I'm looking to showcase committed bloggers, but I didn't want to wait a year, so 3 months reasonable.
- You’ve publish genuine content. I want to connect to genuine bloggers, not linking to a spam site. I review all the sites before sending out interview questions.
- You’re willingly to promote other bloggers in the series. I don’t expect you to tweet ever interview, but I would like interviewees to spread the word on their favorite bloggers. By the way, I don’t want others to just promote the posts, please share posts from your favorite interviews. They are some wonderful bloggers out there.