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The 3-D Budget With John Putnam

FaithFi: Faith & Finance | Mar 6, 2023


Show Notes

Asked if he’d like dinner, a budget airline passenger asked, “What are my choices?” The attendant responded, “Yes or no.” When you’re on a budget, you may forget that you still have choices and flexibility. Today John Putnam joins Rob West to talk about the “3-D Budget” and how it can help you get your priorities straight. This is Faith and Finance - biblical wisdom for your financial decisions.

John Putnam is a Certified Financial Planner, a Certified Kingdom Advisor, and founder of Smarter Stewardship, a marketplace ministry.

  • I recently came across the 3-D budget you offer as a free resource at SmarterStewardship.com and I really want to share this with listeners as a fresh, new way to look at their spending plans. Why is that important?

    • Over time, your budget categories can begin to look “the same” and you can overlook the simple options you have for control, efficiency and impact to reach your respective financial goals. So often, we look at our budget and forget an important fact: All expenses are not created equally.
  • How does your 3-D budget help someone get better control of their money?

    • It’s designed to remind you of the expenses you have each month and categorize them in a way that creates a fresh perspective that can highlight related opportunities. This can refresh your goals, decrease flexible outflows, increase cash flow and provide a written record that can be shared with your spouse, friends or advisor.
  • What are the nuts and bolts of a 3-D budget?

    • Imagine a grid with 3 columns: Budget, Need to pay, have to pay and want to pay.
    • Column 1 is what I NEED to pay - needed, but flexible (ex. Internet, cable, dry cleaning, maybe ‘rent’).
    • Column 2 is what I HAVE to pay – payment that is contractual or required (ex: credit card).
    • The third column is what I WANT to pay – 100% optional (ex. Eating out, coffee shops, movies).
    • The third column is what you can take to zero, for example, during recessions.
    • The NEED TO and HAVE TO columns also hold opportunities for flexibility, they’re just more difficult to affect.
  • How does this help you prioritize your actions — what you can do now, or in the next few months, and even longer range planning?

    • It helps provide a fresh perspective of flexibilities and efficiencies in budgeting for listeners and gives them additional options.
  • You can get your own copy of the 3-D budget on the resources page at SmarterStewardship.com.

Next, Rob answers these questions at 800-525-7000 or via email at askrob@FaithFi.com:

  • What should you do with an annuity IRA you inherited from your husband who passed away last year, and you are the primary beneficiary but his brother is the contingent beneficiary and you want to the funds to benefit your children? (Rob referred the caller to a CKA professional, by going to faithfi.com and clicking the Find a CKA at the top of the page.).
  • Should you pay for a company to guard your credit or just freeze your credit report, if you don't want to get scammed?
  • Is it true that you don't have to worry about capital gains tax if you purchased 60 acres of raw land 20 years ago for about $1000 an acre and could sell it now for up to six times as much?  
  • What should you do if you are attempting to roll over a 401k from a company that closed in 2021, and the plan administrator is saying you need to contact the employer but they no longer exist?

Remember, you can call in to ask your questions most days at (800) 525-7000. Also, visit our website at FaithFi.com where you can join the FaithFi Community, and even download the free FaithFi app.

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