Tag Archives: Fall

Pumpkin Spice Latte Financial Planning

Yes, I am exploiting the PSL (Pumpkin Spice Latte) seasonal bandwagon. I’m not the first in the financial business to do so. One of the weirdest was a link from a credit union offering Pumpkin Spice Loans. In the years since, media outlets are hijacking the seasonal treat to link to their own brands. You can also follow the PSL at Twitter-@TheRealPSL.

Now, we all know that there is just a little pumpkin (used to be none at all) in this drink, so I can use pumpkin photos to spice up this post.

Ingredients in this latte:

Public domain image, royalty free stock photo from www.public-domain-image.com

Pumpkin: Vegetables and Fiber (Needs)

Dairy/Dairy Substitute: Protein (Infrastructure of the Plan)

Sugar: Energy and Taste (Motivation to Act)

Seasonal Spices: Extra excitement (Yes, you can have Wants!)

Whipped Cream: the initial exposure, getting a fresh credit card in the mail, a new job or a raise or (Treats and Rewards.)


What are your monthly financial needs? Consider the Maslow hierarchy, in which his original definition consists of “air, food, drink, shelter, clothing, warmth, sex, sleep”.

  1. Rent or Mortgage (cost of shelter)
  2. Utilities and Communications
  3. Groceries and Food (Groceries are needs-meals out are wants)
  4. Clothing (jeans, er pants, are a need-a specific brand is a want)
  5. Time to rest and sleep (hopefully no double shifts)

Financial Plan Infrastructure

  1. Spending Plan
  2. Income and Expense Monitoring
  3. Revise and Adjust
  4. Musts:
    1. Data Security (online banking and credit accounts)
    2. Credit History Report Maintenance and Annual Monitoring
  5. Financial family meetings or date nights
    1. A family meeting can be a useful way to involve everyone in planning a summer or winter vacation.
    2. I am a big fan of financial date night. It doesn’t have to be expensive, but it is a terrific way to catch up with your sweetie on monthly goals and progress to date. It is also a way to have a planned conversation about cash flow, credit use, and new expenses. Proactive chats, not reactions are, in my experience, easier on a relationship.  This is especially important if financial tasks are divided between a couple or you handle your own money separately from each other.

Motivation to Act

    1. External events: job change or loss, promotion, relationship status change, current events, goals achieved, change in incentives from work or hobbies, marketing convinced you, peers or affinity group, family member asked 
    2. Internal events: ruminating, growth, illness or treatment for same, goals achieved, goals or needs changed (See Maslow)
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