093. Strategic Inaction

Podcast

Hustle culture… Gig economy… Quiet quitting… the Great Resignation… Burnout… These are phrases we are seeing more and more in the news so we brought in an expert to talk through what this really means. Jinny Uppal has 20+ years of experience driving transformational growth by challenging existing norms in business. She joins The 411k to talk about how to manage the professional world without compromising your wellness. Specifically, Jinny teaches us about strategic inaction.

092. First Hustle Then Brunch

Podcast
Jazzy Thatch, founder of First Hustle Then Brunch, joins The 411k to talk about side hustles. We have a lot of questions about hustle culture including where to start and how to balance it all. Jazzy has tried a lot of different jobs so she shares from personal experience what works and what doesn’t.

091. Smart Money Mamas

Podcast

Chelsea Brennan, the founder of Smart Money Mamas, is an ex-hedge fund manager turned financial educator. She joins The 411k to talk about money – specifically how to talk about money with kids.

Kids are always watching! Even without talking about money, they pick up money habits from those around them – especially parents. Chelsea and Katherine share how their money mindset changed when they had children and how their perspectives have shifted as their families has grown.

Whether you are a mom or hope to one day start a family, you won’t want to miss out on these healthy money habits!

090. Money & Happiness

Podcast

We talk a lot on the show about how emotional money can be and we hear a lot about money shame, guilt, and grief. But today we want to talk about happiness! Melissa Leong, author of Happy Go Money, joins The 411k to talk about how happiness and money are intertwined.

Melissa challenges Katie, Katherine and the audience to answer two questions…

(1) On a scale of 1 to 10, how happy are you right now? (10 being the happiest)

(2) How much money would you need to become a 10?

Tune in to hear what research shows about these questions!

089. Retirement Planning 101

Podcast
Manisha Thakor, founder of MoneyZen, joins The 411k to change your financial life – because that’s what happens when you prioritize retirement planning in your twenties and thirties!

For those of us in our twenties and thirties now, we are the first generation that statistically speaking will likely spend more years in retirement than we did in the workforce. So it’s time we start preparing for our Golden Years! Manisha walks us through the retirement basics and encourages all of us to take control of the one thing we can control – when we start investing! How about now?

088. Talking Money with Jason Tartick

Podcast
Jason Tartick joins The 411k to share some money stories that are featured in his new book, The Restart Roadmap. You may know Jason from his time on The Bachelorette, but he also has a successful career starting in corporate banking and building as an entreprenuer. Now is a good time to reset, restart and talk money!

Interested in more from Jason? Check out our 411k bookclub for more information on his book, The Restart Roadmap.

087. Building Budgets

Podcast

Allison Baggerly, founder of Inspired Budget, joins The 411k to share her money story. After an unexpected pregnancy, Allison and her husband decided it was time to get their finances in order. They learned how to budget and came up with a plan to become debt-free. Now, Allison helps women get their finances in order with classes and printables through Inspired Budget. She will help you make a budget that fits your lifestyle.

082. Wallet Activism with Tanja Hester

Podcast

Tanja Hester joins The 411k to discuss her new book Wallet Activism which teaches all of us how to be more intentional with our money. Wallet Activism, sometimes referred to as “vote with your dollars,” touches on all the different ways that we can align our money with our values – how to identify the Good Guys vs. the Bad Guys when it comes to spending. But also how we donate our money and even where we invest or bank it.

079. Tax Season with Atiya Brown

Podcast
Atiya S. Brown, aka The Savvy Accountant, is a CPA in Canada and a Certified Financial Educator Instructor. She joins Katie and Katherine to answer questions about tax planning and tax preparation. Tax season can cause many people anxiety. What’s the difference between a tax credit and a tax deduction? What is a standard deduction? How can I get a bigger tax refund? Why do I owe money? In this episode, Atiya makes these confusing concepts approachable and easy to understand.

077. Divorce Funding

Podcast

Nicole Noonan, CEO of New Chapter Capital Inc., joins The 411k to discuss divorce funding. Nicole is a nationally recognized divorce expert and shares her experience helping families solve financial disputes.

In the United States, we hear that more than half of all marriages end in divorce. With second marriages in the U.S., the divorce rate rises to 65% and for third marriages, the divorce rate climbs to 75%.

Many people save for a wedding but they rarely save for a divorce. Instead they can turn to credit cards, friends, family gifts or divorce funding to help them afford a divorce.

076. Finding Purpose with Miracle Olatunji

Podcast

Miracle Olatunji is a public speaker, content creator, entrepreneur, and author of Purpose: How To Live and Lead With Impact. She is the founder of OpportuniMe, a mission-driven company which helps people and organizations to realize and reach their full potential. She is also building Her Wallet Media, an inclusive and shame-free coaching and financial education platform to help women build their net worth, network, and self-worth. Miracle joins The 411k to share her personal money story and inspire her Gen Z peers to find their purpose!

Money Dates

Relationships

Pour the wine, light the fire, get the dessert… it’s time for a money date! For a lot of couples, money isn’t exactly romantic. For many, it’s uncomfortable. Even scary. But money dates are important for couples to align their values and goals.

When should you start talking money? Is it the first date? When you move in together? Once you’re engaged? Married? There is no right answer.

Even before you start really talking about money your date is showing you their values (where the money goes). Do they take you out to fancy dinners with champagne and candlelight? Do they order the steak or just eat the tableside bread? Or maybe you get takeout and watch a movie at home? Do they splurge on a sushi spread and rent the newest release? Or do you split a cheese pizza and watch a movie on his sister’s Netflix account? On your next date, see how your date shows their values. What are they telling you without telling you? How are you talking money without talking about money?

Where do we start? Starting with “does going out to dinner work with our budget? can lead to “should we start saving for that dream vacation?” which can lead to conversations like investing for a future together – a wedding, a home, a family, retirement, etc.

Here are some conversation starts that you can use on any date to get the money talk flowing:

  1. If you won $1 million dollars, what would you do with it?
  2. Are you a spender or a saver?
  3. Do you like to spend money on experiences or things?
  4. What are you saving for right now?
  5. What are our financial goals? (How can we reach them together?)
  6. Did your family talk about money growing up?
  7. What are our priorities?
  8. If you are comfortable, what is your salary?
  9. Are there any big purchases you/we have coming up?
  10. Do you invest?
  11. How do you picture your retirement?

Practice makes perfect… Habits! Now that you both are talking money, let’s make this a regular thing! Deciding how to manage your finances will be one of the first and most important decisions about your financial future as a couple. And the way in which you talk about money may evolve over time. There is no “one size fits all” approach here. Find the cadence and style that works best for you and your partner.

Money dates shouldn’t be a shame or stress inducing evening. So make your money date something that you both look forward to. Check out our episode with Aditi Shekar, founder of Zeta, to learn about how to talk money with your partner on your next money date!

Yours, Mine & Ours?

Relationships

We’ve interviewed many experts who agree that it’s important to talk money with your partner. One of the top sources of stress in a marriage is money so taking the time to focus on this before marriage can strengthen your financial partnership with your spouse. Getting married means sharing your money with your spouse. And when you’re used to managing your own money, even the thought of sharing it with someone else can be confusing, stressful — even scary. Banking with your spouse doesn’t have to mean entering into a world of conflict. Power couples bank together in a way that allows them independence while operating as a team. 

Before you start combining money, it’s lay all your cards on the table. Shannon McLay, founder of The Financial Gym, calls this “getting financially naked” with one another. Talking money is personal and getting to this level with a partner is intimate. Everyone is bringing baggage to the table. It can be stressful and uncomfortable but ultimately helps better align your goals as a couple. What do you want to save for? Where do we see this money going in our future?

Bank Accounts with Benefits? Don’t be afraid to start small! Some couples who are living together, engaged or married consider setting up an “ours” bucket for finances. This could be a shared account or shared credit card. Determine how much each is contributing and set up a monthly transfer to the account.

This works really well when the individuals want to maintain independence while still easily managing shared expenses. It helps the couple to manage the shared budget for things like rent, household items, eating out together, etc. And most importantly, it keeps pre-marital money separate for things like student debt, if one partner isn’t prepared to take that on just yet.

We love talking about money and relationships! Check out our episodes on aligning financial goals with Lindsay Bryan Podvin and talking money like a power couple with Casey Rose Shevin.

Prenup?

Relationships

If you’re in a serious relationship and thinking about marriage, or you might already be engaged, take some time before you get married to talk money. You might find out that a prenup is right for you!

We will admit that the word “prenup” is very taboo word especially when it comes to love and marriage. As such, we wrongly assumed prenups are just for Kardashians or the Real Housewives. In our episode with Casey Rose Shevin, she explained why some couples opt for a prenuptial agreement.

88% percent of Americans think it’s important to have financial conversations before saying “I do”, yet only 51% actually discuss how to handle finances as a team before getting married. Even more shocking, only 41% of married couples disclosed their annual salaries before getting married and only 36% disclosed their debt! The millennial generation is taking their turn getting hitched and, like so many other things, upending the status quo by opting for premarital financial disclosures. Holla we want PRENUPS!


A prenuptial agreement, or a prenup, is a legally binding contract you sign before you get married. If you get divorced, your prenup outlines how you’ll divide assets and debts. You can sign a prenup that is pretty much all encompassing, leaving little to be negotiated at the time of divorce, or you can limit the prenup to address only a single asset or circumstance. For example, if one partner is coming into the marriage with a significant amount of student loans, a prenup can outline that in the event of a divorce, that debt remains 100% with the partner that took out the debt.

Marriage can be the biggest legal binding contract that people enter into. Prenups are created during a time of love, with a focus on the future. A prenup can actually prevent a contentious split because it forces you to think ahead about one of the top sources of stress in a marriage – money. Financial conflict is the leading cause of divorce, and taking the time to focus on this before marriage can strengthen your financial partnership with your spouse. 

For more information, check out our episode with Casey Rose Shevin, a family law attorney and mediator.

Expense Ratio

WTF is

An expense ratio (ER) or management expense ratio (MER) is the cost or the amount charged by a mutual fund or an ETF (exchange-traded fund). Funds have to pay for portfolio management, administration, marketing, and distribution, and other expenses. The cost is always expressed as a percentage of the fund’s average net assets (instead of a flat dollar amount).

HUH? An expense ratio measures how much you’ll pay over the course of a year to own a fund. For example, a fund may charge 0.2 percent. That means you’ll pay $20 per year for every $10,000 you have invested in that fund. 

Funds can be actively managed (meaning a person or team are actively picking which stocks, bonds, etc are in the portfolio) or passively managed (meaning they mirror the market or existing benchmark like the S&P 500). Actively managed funds cost more because someone is actively trying to beat market returns. 

SO WHAT’S LOW COST? A reasonable expense ratio for an actively managed portfolio is about 0.5% to 0.75%, while an expense ratio greater than 1.5% is high. For passive or index funds, the typical ratio is about 0.2% but can be as low as 0.02% or less in some cases. Robo-advisors typically invest in low-cost ETFs with much lower expense ratios, ranging from 0.05% to 0.20% in most cases. Or you can do it yourself! The cheapest option would be to open an account and invest in low cost index funds or ETFs.

WHY IS THIS IMPORTANT? Expense ratios significantly affect a fund’s return and an investor’s profit, especially over time. 1% doesn’t sound like a lot but it is!

Check out our episode with Amanda Holden to learn more about the importance of low cost investments.

075. A Year in Review

Podcast

What a difference a year makes! Katie and Katherine discuss the life events and big financial moves they’ve made over the last year. As a reminder, our hosts are not know-it-all experts. They are living and learning as they go. In this episode, they share some successes, some strange turns, and a few mistakes that got them through this year.

074. Next Generation Investor

Podcast
Kelly Lannan, Vice President of Personal Investing at Fidelity Investments, join The 411k to discuss the next generation of investors. Millennials and Gen Z are doing things differently than those generations before them – getting married later, renting longer, having families later, etc. These generations do not subscribe do the same timeline as their parents or grandparents. However, it’s critical to not put off investing! Kelly Lannan is responsible for educating and inspiring young adults to get more engaged with their finances.

073. Scrappy Investing with Amanda Holden

Podcast

Amanda Holden, aka Dumpster Doggy, joins The 411k to get real about investing. Starting at 21, everyone is telling you to start putting money into a retirement account. Yes, we know that we are in a retirement crisis but there is so much more that we can learn about how to make our investments work for us. Amanda makes money fun and relatable so tune in to learn more about how to better understand how investing works.

072. Modern Frugal Living

Podcast

Jen Smith, creator of ModernFrugality.com, joins The 411k to talk about what it means to live a frugal life in the modern world. Yes, being frugal can mean saving $5 at the grocery store by shopping sale item but this conversation centers around the big frugal moves like moving to a more affordable city, buying a more modest house on one income, saving an old kitchen table instead of buying a new one. Big frugal moves can save you hundreds or even thousands of dollars. You won’t want to miss this conversation on the benefits of a frugal life.