The October 2012 issue of Black Enterprise (BE) magazine holds a familiar face to many Newarkers – someone I’ve known for a few years now. Although I’m beyond thrilled for her, I have to say I’m not surprised. This is the person who treats the Goodwill like a Bergdorfs, who makes saving seem as simple as spending. Since she has shopped in thrift stores since childhood, I had no choice but to accept it as a compliment when she told our friends on Facebook about my $.50 sweater from a church basement sale!
Tiffany spends her days doing workshops for a variety of audiences, and her self-published book, The One Week Budget, is #3 on Amazon.
The Budgetnista has been in BE before – one of her money saving tips was included in an article. But this time, when local Newark business WhitPR pitched her to them, more than her words made it! She is (finally!) featured in one of the most popular magazines in the country as one of “3 Young Professionals Building Wealth.”
One thing that does surprise me is the article itself – how transparent she is about her finances and how she got to where she is.
Why would you be so transparent about your finances in a publication with such a wide reach?
When I’m teaching, how can I truly be of service without telling them the truth? About how close I got to foreclosure, about how I lost $20,000 in a bad investment – I have to be able to show them that, “I’ve been there too.” Many people are in financial trouble because of all the secrecy and shame associated with money. Money should be a conversation, like the way you talk about your boyfriend or clothes. Whatever mistake you’ve made, we can fix it. I’ve made mistakes, you’ve made mistakes, the people next to you has made mistakes…so let’s move on to the solution!
Why did you write a book?
So many people would come to me and ask how I could buy a house, and a car (CASH) at 25 years old on a teacher’s salary of only $35K a year?!? I started to teach my family and friends on the weekends. And then I got tired of it! So I started a notebook with steps in it to share with friends. That’s how the 12 steps were born. They were in this notebook for like 2 or 3 years. I fixed it up, turning the “steps” into 7 days and it sat there for another 2 years. Then I got together with friends to get the editing finished and the cover done, and there it was!
How did you turn “The Budgetnista” into a Brand?
The Budgetnista wasn’t necessarily supposed to be a full-time business, but I needed a cute name once I decided I wanted to do workshops for kids. After doing an extensive domain search of different names I liked, I found The Budgetnista was not in use or trademarked. I didn’t really want to spend the money to trademark but I am so glad I did. I didn’t use any of the popular online services for incorporation and trademarking; they aren’t necessary. I simply went to the local government website to file.
So what’s next?
Well…there are a few more major placements in the works for me. Landing the feature in BE has led to additional speaking engagements – something I really enjoy. I will continue to write curriculum, teach seminars and do contract workshops with organizations like the United Way. The sky’s the limit, and I’m enjoying the process!
Follow the Budgetnista on Twitter (@theBudgetnista), and on Facebook http://facebook.com/budgetnista. And Get Day 1 of Tiffany’s bestselling book, The One Week Budget here for FREE: http://thebudgetnista.biz/