Lauren (Greutman) Cobello is dedicated to helping others save money. Saving is something that financial coach Cobello struggled with for years. Her inability to save led to $40,000 of debt. But through dedication and simple changes, Cobello and her husband pulled themselves out of debt to reach a point of financial security. Now she shares her knowledge and experiences so that others can avoid the same money mistakes that she made. So if you need help saving money, here’s some helpful advice from a former spender. You can also work with a financial advisor to get the advice you may need for your own unique financial situation.
Top Financial Advice From Lauren Cobello
Lauren Cobello’s biggest advice is to handle your money based on your values. Do you value spending time with your family? Then manage your finances in a way that allows you to enjoy time with your family. Cobello put herself in debt by spending on things that didn’t align with her goals or values. It was through cutting back on those unnecessary expenses that she finally took control of her finances.
Cobello admits that she was a spender. Saving was not a priority and she had a hard time with it. If you’re a spender too, she has some advice that might help you. The first thing you need to do is admit that you have a problem with spending. Be honest with yourself and understand that you need to make some changes.
Once you dedicate to breaking bad spending habits, take an inventory of all your debts and all your spending. Write everything down. Putting everything on paper will help to make things real. You’ll be able to see clearly and simply what your situation is. Cobello provides forms in her book, “The Recovering Spender,” and on her website that you can fill in with your debts and expenses.
Now that everything is out in the open, it’s time to create a new budget. A budget will help ensure that you don’t spend more money than you want to. Your exact budget will vary based on your financial situation. Do you want to buy a home in the near future? Then saving for the down payment will be part of your budget.
There’s one more key to Cobello’s success. Be frugal! Don’t just cut the unimportant things from your budget. Save money everywhere. One example that Cobello gives is groceries. Groceries are a big expense for most people (especially if you’re a mother of four like she is). With just a few tweaks though, you can save money on your groceries. Buy the store brand instead of the pricier name brand. Plan your weekly meals in advance so that you know exactly what you want from the store. You can also use a number online sites and apps to help you compare prices, find deals and stay on budget.
A Brief Bio of Lauren Cobello
Cobello was always a spender. As a result, she was always broke. She would go into a store to buy one thing and come out with five other things. She spent thousands of dollars every year on eating out. It reached the point where she had a $1,000 spending deficit each month. She couldn’t afford her bills and would skip paying one bill just to pay off another. There’s also the fact that she was in she was $40,000 in debt. The thing that made the whole situation worse was that her husband didn’t realize how much she was spending or how much debt they were in.
One day she decided it was time to do something. Cobello printed all her credit card bills, laid them out and had a conversation with her husband. She told him that she had a problem with her spending and she needed help to break her bad habits.
Then she and her husband worked together to turn things around. They sat down and thought about how they should spend their money. What things were important to them? She realized that what she valued was building a family that she could grow old and happy with. She wanted financial security and she wanted to work with her passion of teaching.
With her actual values in mind, Cobello and her husband created a budget to help them meet their financial goals. The budget would limit their spending and help them focus on saving for things like retirement and their children’s college funds.
As they dug themselves out of their financial hole, life got better. There was less stress and they fought less about money. Cobello realized that she could help others by sharing her story. She created a website to tell people about her journey. Saving money on groceries was a particular challenge for her as a mother, so she created simple recipes and affordable meal plans for others to use. She also published a book in 2016 that details her financial struggles and how she overcame them.
Financial Focus and Philosophy
Lauren Cobello has come a long way in her financial journey and the thing that she has found more important than anything else is figuring out what you value and letting that guide your spending.
Cobello also recommends that everyone takes a frugal approach to life. Don’t spend money on things unless you have to. Her website and social media sites are full of money-saving tips for people from all walks of life.
In her book, “The Recovering Spender: How to Live a Happy, Fulfilled, Debt-Free Life,” Cobello talks about how she was always a spender. Saving was something she didn’t think enough about. Throughout her book and her blog, Cobello tries to help people overcome the habit of overspending.
Where You Can Find Lauren Cobello
Learn more about Lauren Cobello and her money-saving tips by visiting her website, LaurenCobello.com. You can find her on Twitter at @laurengreutman and on Facebook at @LaurenGreutman. Cobello’s YouTube account also features money-saving advice. Her name is still mixed on social media because she started many of her accounts prior to getting married. Lauren also hosts a podcast (The Hard Money Talks Podcast).
Cobello published her first book in late 2016. The book, “The Recovering Spender: How to Live a Happy, Fulfilled, Debt-Free Life” talks about her financial journey to reach a point of financial stability. She now works to provide content and advice to more than 90,000 people every week via email and to the thousands that listen to her podcast.
The Bottom Line
Lauren Cobello used to struggle with saving money and found herself $40,000 in debt. However, with some simple changes, she was able to climb out of debt and reach financial security. If you’re trying to get your spending under control, Cobello’s story may be worth checking out. She’s also a mother of four who manages to stick to a budget. So if you’re raising a family and have a hard time juggling all the expenses, her advice could help you.
Tips for Following Lauren Cobello’s Advice
- You don’t have to just try and follow Lauren’s financial advice. You can also work with a financial advisor who can provide you with advice specialized to your unique financial profile and goals. Finding a financial advisor doesn’t have to be difficult either. SmartAsset’s free tool matches you with up to three financial advisors who serve your area, and you can interview your advisor matches at no cost to decide which one is right for you. If you’re ready to find an advisor who can help you achieve your financial goals, get started now.
- To start paying off your debt, Cobello tells people to write down everything they owe. A great tool for finding what you owe is your credit report. Learn how to read your credit report because it will tell you all the accounts you have open and their statuses. Do you owe money on a credit card that you haven’t even used in years? Your credit report will tell you that.
- As you create your budget, prioritize bills. Cobello found herself in a situation where she avoided paying bills because she didn’t have enough to pay them all. View your bills as a necessity and always work to pay them before spending on your “wants.” You can also save on some bills by comparing prices. Life insurance plans in particular are perfect for price shopping. You might even be able to eliminate some bills from your budget entirely.
- Marriage is challenging when both spouses aren’t holding up their end of the financial bargain. One step you can take to protect yourself is talking about your finances before you get married. Getting everything out in the open before marriage can save a lot of frustration in the future. There are also other ways to deal with a financially irresponsible spouse.
Photo credits: laurencobello.com, laurencobellow.com, ©iStock.com/skynesher