In 2009, Tiffany Aliche seemed to have her finances — and her life — together. She had purchased her first (used car) in cash at the age of 22, and she saved $40,000 in a bank account over the course of 2.5 years. Aliche had used that money to purchase her own home at the age of 25, and she had a retirement account that was growing at lightning speed.
But then the Great Recession hit and, over the course of a few years, Aliche lost her job as a teacher and went on unemployment. She couldn’t afford her monthly mortgage payments, so her home began to slip into foreclosure. She moved back in with her parents and she drained her retirement account in order to get back on her feet. Aliche also fell victim to a financial scam that left her with $35,000 in credit card debt.
Now here we are today in the midst of a Pandemic and Ms. Tiffany is educating Dream Cathers and millions of others across the globe on how to pivot, thrive, and survive in today’s economy. During my recent conversation with Ms. Tiffany, she shared her passion for educating consumers.
Ms. Tiffany, please introduce yourself to our reading audience.
Tiffany Aliche is America’s favorite personal financial educator. Through my Live Richer Movement, I’ve helped over 1 Million women save, manage, and pay off millions of dollars. We call our tribe the “Dream Catchers” and fancy ourselves to be the Bey-hive of personal finance.
I’m a former preschool teacher for ten years with a Master’s degree in Education. I was instrumental in getting The Budgetnista Law (A1414) passed in January 2019, making financial education mandatory for middle school students in New Jersey.
I also have an online financial school, the Live Richer Academy, which gives women further access to the tools and resources they need to transform their financial future, from budgeting 101…to starting a business… to help with estate planning. There’s something for everyone!
Ms. Tiffany, what made you want to go into business?
In 2009 (age 29), during the height of the Recession, I lost my job as a preschool teacher. I was working at a nonprofit school that lost its funding. Despite having an impressive financial picture up to that point (my Dad, a CFO and Accountant, taught me everything), I went through a really rough period: unemployed, a home lost to foreclosure, $40K cash savings drained and over $300K in debt and student loans.
Once I finally got over the shock of hitting rock bottom, I was able to use the money skills I learned growing up, to turn things around for myself in a big way. The people around me really started to notice my progress and I began coaching them through their financial woes as well. Eventually -after a ton of volunteering- I landed a paid contract with the United Way to teach financial classes for their community. That contract led to more work and I was able to launch The Budgetnista, my financial education business. As social media’s influence grew, I took my business online to expand my reach to help more and more people.
Why are you so passionate about empowering women?
Did you know that women make 70% of the money decisions in their households? That’s a staggering percentage. But yet and still, women have traditionally been left out of the money conversation. A lightbulb went off and I realized that if I could give women access to the financial education they desperately needed, that it would create generational shifts. Women are so powerful. I knew that once they were hip to financial literacy, they would take that information and pass it on to their partners, their children, and their extended family and friends, without hesitation.
What’s something most of the subscribers don’t know about you – something fun, witty, out of the box…
That I’m a nap-a-holic. I take at least one nap a day… sometimes more.
How can one Stomp Out Those Student Loans?
If they are federal loans:
- Consider consolidating with your federal loan provider
- Adjust your family size to make sure you’re monthly payment isn’t higher than allowed
- Ask for help. By law, your loan provider must provide help options if you’re unable to pay
- Look into the student loan forgiveness program
If they are private loans:
- Consider refinancing with a credit union company like SoFi
- Automate your payments
- Make sure you have a fixed rate
What motto do you live by?
“Do Good Work. Help Good People. Make Good Money.”
It’s a reminder to myself… as well as a little encouragement for folks who are also in the business of service to others. There’s this false narrative running around that serving others means being “forever broke”. Not true! I’m here today running several multi-million dollar businesses, even though most of the tools, resources, and information I share with my Dream Catchers are 100% free. I don’t believe that it’s the responsibility of my audience to make me rich, but rather that it’s my responsibility to figure out how to monetize my free services in other ways. For example, getting companies and organizations that actually have money to spare, pay me for partnerships and speaking engagements.
What is your favorite quote?
“Giving activates abundance.”
I believe that continuous giving unlocks more doors than the hoarding of my time/knowledge/resources ever could. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve had a major business (or even life) “win”, from something I poured into someone else without any expectation of return. I’m still being presented with new, exciting opportunities through people I might have helped in some way 10+ years ago. Truly awesome!
How can people connect with you?
I’m “The Budgetnista” everywhere: Instagram, Facebook, Twitter. You can also go to thebudgetnista.com to find information about joining my free Dream Catcher Facebook community (450K+ strong), as well as links to all of my free resources and tools.
What is next for you in 2020?
My new, financial children’s book, Happy Birthday Mali More. In the book, Mali has to learn an important lesson about the things that matter most. The goal of my new children’s book, Happy Birthday Mali More, is to teach the kids in your life essential, pre-financial education lessons like math, counting, numbers, matching, rhyming, less vs. more, giving, sharing, service and community.
The back of the book also includes interactive activities that you can use to extend the lessons for your reader.
For more on The Budgetnista, click here.
Check out The Budgetnista Blog today!
Contributing Writer – Dr. Cozette M. White, Advisory Accountant and Tax Expert. Learn more about Dr. Cozette M. White at www.cozettemwhite.com.