Success Story of the Week – Lahilahi Simeona
Financial Peace of Mind?
When I joined the Coast Guard back in January 2009 I thought to myself, finally my own money I can spend how I want! So living paycheck to paycheck was my “normal”, it’s how I thought everyone lived.
At the time I was 20 with nothing more than a cellphone bill because I was living on a Coast Guard boat and didn’t have a vehicle.
After two and a half years in Seattle, WA, transfer season was approaching fast and my boyfriend of two years decided it beneficial and in our best interest for me to purchase a car. Still barely scraping by monthly, I took what little I had and went to buy a car. After three days of hassling with the dealers, my boyfriend offered me a $1000.00 loan for a bigger down payment, and to co-sign with me for the car.
I drove away with my dream car. What I didn’t know, because I was not educated on financial responsibility; was what a co-signer really was, why I couldn’t qualify for my own loan, and what the potential downfalls are of having a boyfriend as a co-signer.
For example, only eight short months after our “beneficial purchase” together, he decides it’s all too much for him and that I needed to either refinance or sign the car over to him. It was then I knew something needed to change with my life, but more specifically, my financial responsibilities to secure my future. In July of 2011 my parents Ed and Jackie Simeona told me of the new financial plan they were working and all the great things that were happening financially for them. At first I wasn’t so convinced, being I had “already come so far on my own.” Plus I did not have the credit score needed to qualify for the 101 program so they started me with the 99 program.
After committing whole-heartedly and knowing that I needed to better myself financially, I began working the system the way my father/financial advisor was teaching me to.
In Oct 2012 I finally had a qualifying credit score to advance to the 101 program. And again began the frustrations of learning to work the system a different way. With my only debt being my car loan, I used to wonder why I was still financially unstable. Why was I barely scraping by month to month? Why wasn’t this program working for me like it was everyone else? Although I had been second guessing this program and myself since joining, I had to keep telling myself I can’t quit now.
July 15th 2013, just short of a year on the 101 financial program, I paid off my $12,500.00 car loan! The amount of pressure that was lifted emotionally is indescribable.
I know it’s not a BIG elaborate story about overcoming financial hardships, but to know that in less than a year I had overcome that car loan all on my own, and earlier than expected, I have nothing but high hopes for me financially in the future.
Lastly and most importantly, I’d like to share that had it not been for my parents sharing the knowledge, and all the benefits of this program, I would not be where I am financially today. I know that I will struggle with money for the rest of my life, but I now have the knowledge, tools, and resources to manage my way to FINANCIAL PEACE OF MIND.
– Lahilahi Simeona