Personal Finance Stories

Personal Finance Stories:

Personal stories about the finances of real people of all ages, including advice and tips from people at all stages of their financial lives.

Thomas Hill III

Published: Fri, Apr 25, 2008
The Hill Family

Name: Thomas Hill III
Age: 49
Current financial situation: debt-free.
Largest amount of debt: zero.
Road to recovery: not applicable.

Linda Payne

Published: Fri, Apr 25, 2008
Linda Payne

Name: Linda Payne
Age: 49
Current financial situation: Back to putting incidentals on plastic, after taking a home equity loan to redecorate.

The Dillards

Published: Fri, Apr 25, 2008
Dillard, 9, (from left) show the money they've saved for a family reunion trip using their money jars.

The best teaching tool with which to develop financially adept children is the simple piggy bank, economic advisors agree. In the absence of a penny-eating pig, a money jar is an alternative savings institution.

Linda Horton, Norman, distributed big, glass containers to her grandchildren last summer when they started discussing this summer’s family reunion.

Mark Clayton

Published: Fri, Apr 25, 2008
Mark Clayton

Mark Clayton knows his new Mercedes goes beyond being a splurge.

“Mega-splurge,” he said.

The former Oklahoma receiver made the high-dollar purchase earlier this year — top-end Mercedes Benzes cost as much as half a million dollars — and he spent a serious chunk of his paycheck from the Baltimore Ravens to buy the car. Still, it wasn’t an impulse buy.

Alison Radecki

Published: Fri, Apr 25, 2008
Alison Radecki

Name: Alison Radecki
Current financial situation: Will be debt-free by year-end, except for her mortgage and student loan.
Largest amount of debt: nearly $30,000.
Road to recovery: signed up for a debt repayment plan with the Consumer Credit Counseling Services of Central Oklahoma.

Lorri Scroggins

Published: Fri, Apr 25, 2008
Lorri Scroggins

Jimmy and Lorri Scroggins married 15 years ago, and then built a new two-story, four-bedroom house for themselves and their four children from previous marriages, ages 15, 14, 13 and 8. Their goal was to have the house paid off by the time the youngest child graduated from high school.

They missed the goal by one year but the 30-year home loan was paid off in just 11 years. The couple have also bought and paid for four cars and saved money from tax refunds to pay for insurance costs for the home and cars and taxes on the house.

Harold Hamm

Published: Fri, Apr 25, 2008
Harold Hamm

Name: Harold Hamm

Current financial situation: With a net worth of more than $4 billion, this self-made Enid oil man is Oklahoma’s second-wealthiest resident.

Largest amount of debt: No exact figure, but “things were very skimpy getting started. There was a few weeks there that if I’d ruined a tire I would have been out of business.”

Road to recovery: Keep close track of debt. Cut back on spending and work hard to stay ahead.

Barbara and Charles Kostelecky

Published: Fri, Apr 25, 2008
Barbara and Charles Kostelecky

Name: Barbara and Charles Kostelecky, Midwest CityCurrent financial situation: The Kosteleckys live off of the retirement savings that Barbara Kostelecky, 74, accumulated during a 15-year nursing career at Midwest City Regional Hospital, from where she retired in 1996. Charles Kostelecky, 83, also has a small Teamsters Union pension he earned as a diesel mechanic for a trucking company.

Tom Kight

Published: Fri, Apr 25, 2008
Tom Kight

Name: Tom Kight

Current financial situation: Comfortable income from energy properties. Kight spends most weekdays trading stocks from his northwest Oklahoma City office.

Largest amount of debt: $400,000.

Road to recovery: Borrowed heavily on credit cards and negotiated with creditors to avoid bankruptcy without losing any property.

The Thompsons

Published: Fri, Apr 25, 2008
The Thompsons

NORMAN — When Herschel and Alison Thompson married in 1998, the couple had student loans totaling $28,000. Although committed to being good stewards of their money by living below their means, like most newlyweds the couple had trouble managing their spending.

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